Thursday, May 31, 2012

New fieldbus wiring hubs to reduce network costs

MTL Instruments, now part of Cooper Crouse-Hinds, has released the new F300 Series of Megablock wiring hubs for fieldbus applications. The F300 Megablock is designed for general purpose, Zone 2 and Division 2 hazardous area applications where the high energy trunk can be powered by a wide range of fieldbus power supplies and the ability to conduct live maintenance - such as replacement of field devices in hazardous areas is desirable. Live connection and disconnection of fieldbus spurs without a gas clearance certificate is allowed with Ex ic and non-incendive field devices but where live-working of the spurs is not required, Ex d (flameproof) or Ex nA (normally non-sparking) field devices may be selected.

The new F300 Series features a pluggable Trunk In/Out connector allowing replacement of a Megablock without breaking the trunk connection to other devices on the fieldbus segment. The compact F97 terminator may be mounted in the Trunk out connection to provide termination when the Megablock is located at the end of the fieldbus segment. It can be removed when the segment is extended, thus ensuring correct termination.

Megablocks minimize hand wiring and allow individual devices to be added to and removed from the segment without disrupting network communication. The pluggable connectors are screw secured ensuring reliable connections even in high vibration environments. Attention to detail includes the +/S/- fieldbus connections to prevent intermittent connection to an adjacent terminal causing fieldbus failure. A green power LED on each unit indicates whether at least 10V of DC power is present and pluggable surge protection components for the fieldbus trunk and individual spurs are available as an option, reducing the installed cost of providing surge protection on fieldbus networks.

The F300 Series Megablocks are part of the recently created FieldPlus™ brand initiative from MTL that is designed to make fieldbus component selection as easy as possible based on the network architecture being employed. By visiting www.fieldplus.info, system integrators, specifiers and engineers alike can benefit from MTL’s range of differentiated fieldbus solutions, providing assistance in selecting the optimum architecture to deliver customer value. The FieldPlus™ brand brings together MTL’s range of fieldbus products enabling you to easily recognise a suite of products designed with the Industrial Networks values of Intelligence, Flexibility, Safety and Control.

Miniature dust-proof detection switch

Unique and cost effective solution for electrical systems exposed to dry environments

Omron Electronic Components Europe unique new dust proof switch provides a very cost effective solution for the great many domestic and commercial electrical systems that don’t need a fully waterproof solution. Priced lower than typical fully sealed alternatives, the new Omron D2FD ultra-sub miniature dust proof detection switch is sealed to IP6x, and complements the fully sealed switches in Omron’s range such as the D2QW.

By using rubber packing, Omron has created a low cost switch that is very effectively protected against dust and other dry contaminants with a J-size case of 6.5 x 12.8 x 6mm. The switch is based on a single leaf moving spring design, and is available in a total of 12 versions, with solder or PCB terminals, pin plunger, hinge lever or simulated roller lever actuators, rated at 2A or 0.1A. The D2FD is protected against dust to IP6 standards but provides no protection against liquids.

For applications exposed to wet or damp environments, they offer a number of fully sealed solutions including the D2QW, that conforms to IP67 standards in the same J-size case. Featuring Omron’s high reliability slide contact technology, the D2QW-series offers a silent ON/OFF operation with an extra-long stroke even without levers. This large over travel allows the manufacturer of the application to use tooling with a wider tolerance to save costs.

Suitable for use at temperatures between -40°C and +85°C, the drip-proof structure make this the ideal switch to use in harsh environmental conditions, such as in automotive, industrial and machinery applications as well as energy, home appliance and building automation applications where exposure to moisture is experienced.

Connectors now online!

Intelliconnect (Europe) has been renowned for fast turnaround custom connector design. Now, to speed up the buying process for customer’s requiring standard products, new pages have been added to their website showing stock levels of their wide range of standard products.

Intelliconnect manufacture one of the widest ranges of connectors available to designers including; N,C,TNC, 7/16, SMA, SMB, MCX, Triax, 3.5mm, 2.92mm, 2.4mm, 1.85mm millimetre-wave (“mmwave”) products and Triax and Quadrax types. Intelliconnect also offers waterproof versions of all connectors with protection to IP68 when connectors are unmated.

If the required connecter is not in stock most connector, adapter, cable assembly solutions are available within a maximum of 6 to 8 weeks with quotations and drawings confirmed within 24 hours of enquiry.

The new stock index pages will be available from links on the Intelliconnect homepage as well as from all product pages. Each product family has an individual stock page and links to data-sheet PDFs

Roy Philips, Managing Director of Intelliconnect, comments. "Adding the availability of standard product stock to our website is a direct response to customer requests. We operate in a global market with buyers needing stock information 24/7 and we hope this information will assist our customers with their design, planning and purchasing activities. Sourcing all of our own components and manufacturing in the UK improves our production processes and ensures our lead-times are the best in the industry for any size of order.”

Intelliconnect offer fast, flexible and reliable delivery times from local stock, short manufacturing lead-times and lower inventory costs with Kanban and JIT available. A low carbon footprint is maintained as all components are sourced in Britain.

Typical applications for Intelliconnect RF connectors include medical, telecoms, satcoms, military, aerospace, space, general microwave communications, rail traction, oil and gas and marine. Intelliconnect also manufacture the market leading Pisces range of waterproof RF connectors, coaxial adaptors to facilitate inter-series connection and gender change etc. dust-caps and offer value added services including custom cable assemblies.

In the event that customers are unable to find a suitable standard connector for their application Intelliconnect are happy to provide custom designed solutions with low NRE and very short lead-times, typically 7 weeks from design acceptance.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Basic analog function generator offers high waveform quality

Aim-TTi has extended their TG300 series of low cost analog function generators by adding a model with vernier-dial setting of frequency. The TG310 is the most basic generator in the range and lacks the digital display of frequency and level that is included on other models.

The generator can produce sine, square, triangle, pulse and ramp waveforms from 0.03Hz up to 3MHz. Variable bi-directional symmetry with constant frequency is provided over a ten to one range. An external sweep input allows the frequency on each range to be varied by at least 1000:1.

The TG310 provides a main output with a maximum emf of 20V pk-pk from a 50 Ohms or 600 Ohms source. An amplitude vernier with a range of 20dB is combined with two switched attenuators of -20dB and -40dB to provide levels down to 2mV pk-pk un-terminated.
Unlike some other lower cost function generators, high waveform quality is maintained down to very low levels with minimal noise and waveform aberrations.

Variable DC offset of +/-10V is available via a centre detent control. An auxiliary output provides a fixed 0V to +5V level suitable for driving both TTL and CMOS loads

Monday, May 28, 2012

Best ever robot sales in Britain...but

Sales of robots from January to March 2012 have outstripped sales in any other quarter to date. Unfortunately the picture is not as good as it seems. The continuing success of the automotive industry in Britain is leading to record orders for robots. However, other sectors are not yet realising the benefits that increased use of robots do provide.

Staeubli Robot
In the first quarter robot sales of 923 units were recorded which is larger than the annual total for many of the previous years. Automotive orders contributed 85% of this figure. Mike Wilson, British Automation and Robot Association Chairman said "these large investments show the commitment of the automotive companies to their UK manufacturing facilities, however, robot sales in some other sectors, such as food and drink, are not keeping up with the increasing use of robots worldwide. Automotive continuing to buy robots is not a particular surprise – they recognise the benefits to their manufacturing. Our concern is the broader picture and the risk to competitiveness that will result from lack of investment in automation technologies”.

Grant Collier, Head of Marketing for the PPMA Group of Associations added "The free Government backed Automating Manufacturing Programme is starting to address these issues, showing manufacturers how they can benefit from automation and providing assistance on the first steps towards implementing automation.” Applications to date have come from a wide range of industries, including a significant number from the food sector. He continued, “the initial review is funded by the UK government, the application process is simple, all companies should be looking at this as a route to improve their manufacturing operations”.

Secure panel feed-throughs for industrial PROFINET device interfaces

Harting has introduced a range of new panel feed-throughs in extremely robust metal housings for use with its Han® PushPull (variant 14 to IEC 61076-3-117): the standardised RJ45 connector to protection type IP 65/67 for industrial PROFINET cabling.

The new feed-throughs are available for circular and square panel cut-outs for integration into industrial devices and switch cabinets.

A key feature of these new devices is their significantly improved electromagnetic compatibility. The category 6 performance of the RJ45 female module offers system reserves that are high enough to carry not only standard Industrial Ethernet but also 1/10 Gigabit Ethernet signals.

The RJ45 socket inserts have a 360° shield to increase electromagnetic compatibility and ensure interference immunity for the transmission path. Even at burst interference levels greater than 4 kV, stable and secure industrial Ethernet transmission is guaranteed. The flexible grounding concept also provides users with a greater number of options.

The feed-throughs allow rapid and easy fitting into devices and switch cabinets as well as retrofitting existing housings with a PROFINET interface to protection type IP 65/67. Users can choose from two RJ45 inserts. The RJ45 female model RJ Industrial® Bulkhead Cat.6 (with two RJ45 connectors) makes it possible to route the Ethernet signal inside the device or switch cabinet with simple IP 20 patch cables. The RJ45 cable socket Ha-VIS preLink® (with one RJ45 connector and eight IDC connections) allows easy and rapid build - pre-assembled or on site in the field - with an insulation displacement connection for connecting data cables to AWG 22/7 - AWG 23/1 cross sections.

Electromagnetic compatibility - and particularly protection against bursts - is critical in terms of the interference immunity of field devices in automation environments. Bursts consist of low-energy but transient interference that can couple capacitively with Ethernet data signals in applications such as welding equipment, and can compromises reliable communication with affected bus slaves.

To enable users to decide on the grounding concept for their equipment, RJ45 female connectors lock into the metal panel feed-through, making it potential free and therefore electrically insulated. This ensures that the RJ45 shield potential and the chassis ground are not connected by accident.

Users wishing to ground the RJ45 shield potential can clamp it to the metal panel feed-through or the RJ45 female connector via a blade connector. This effectively diverts electromagnetic interference coupling to the data shield and prevents it from entering the device.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Vision speciality!

The Vision Specialty for NI Alliance Partner Network for members who specialise in imaging and vision systems has been announced. The Vision Specialty includes NI Alliance Partners with experience in a range of industries, including consumer goods, food and beverage, pharmaceutics, robotics, electronics, automotive, semiconductor and medical imaging.

“For almost 15 years, NI has provided software and hardware tools for vision applications to help engineers and scientists meet a diverse set of challenges,” said Tony Vento, vice president of systems assurance and partners at National Instruments. “By establishing the new Vision Specialty, we’re recognizing the expertise of our top Alliance Partners in the vision space.”

“By building on the advanced core technologies of the NI vision platform, Cyth Systems has created solutions using classifiers and neural networks, allowing us to continue innovating in the machine vision world,” said Andy Long, CEO of Cyth Systems. “We’re excited to be recognized for our capabilities in building specialized automation and inspection solutions within the NI Alliance Partner Network.”

The following Alliance Partners are inaugural members of the Vision Specialty program:
Alliance Vision – Montelimar, (F)
• Cyth Systems – San Diego, (CA USA)
Graftek Imaging, Inc. – Austin (TX USA)
Qualimatest – Plan-les-Ouates (CH)

Instrumentation & system design

New ISA Edition Provides In-Depth Description of Successful Instrumentation and Control Design Process

As automation systems, worth nearly €52 billion ($65b), near the end of their traditional life cycle, the necessity to understand the design process has never been more critical to engineers, technicians and managers. The latest edition of Successful Instrumentation and Control Systems Design,  from the ISA stable, will help to achieve that understanding.

This edition delves into the business of design engineering and describes the ideal design package. It provides a roadmap to understanding the design process, which includes elements of a successful project, what specific issues to address and the engineering products that enable a successful practical design and maintenance plan.

The second edition presents a major revision to the first by introducing the concept of Integrated Control Systems (ICS). It includes chapters on Control Systems Integrator (CSI) and Control Panel Fabricator (CPF); and describes the interplay between them and the electrical and instrumentation and controls (I&C) engineer. Several sections have been added to give the reader more tools for managing projects or for anticipating the needs of the project manager. Some of the techniques for leading and participating in project meetings are presented from the viewpoint of turning potential time-wasters into time-savers. A bonus CD-ROM is included with new updates and figures.

Michael D. Whitt's, who edits,  experience includes 15 years with Raytheon Engineers and Constructors in the I&C department, first as an I&C supervisor and later as a lead systems integrator. He spent six years with Mesa Associates, Inc., as I&C department manager where he was responsible for instrumentation engineering and design, systems integration and panel fabrication groups and, an additional five years at Mesa, as a program manager for integrated control systems.

Logging temperature in smoke houses, ovens etc...

The RFOT is a wireless meat temperature data logger from Madgetech. The product has recently been enhanced with a new rugged probe that features a 3/16” straight diameter. The new probe design increases the products’ strength and durability, making it able to withstand harsher handling.

It is specifically designed for use in the cooking, cooling and storing of meat products. The device measures, records and wirelessly transmits internal product temperature readings back to a central computer for instant real-time monitoring. The instrument never needs to be connected to a computer as it has been designed for two way wireless communication. Full communication can be performed directly from a central PC. In addition to wirelessly transmitting data, the RFOT also stores each reading to internal memory for backup.

It can be used in smoke houses, ovens and other cooking processes up to 212°F (100°C) as well as refrigerators and freezers down to -4°F (-20°C). The device is equipped with a water-tight enclosure, making it easy to clean, and allowing the data logger to withstand wash down cycles.

MadgeTech’s easy to use software features user programmable critical control points, called “cooling flags” to assist in compliance with USDA Appendix B. The “cooling flags” are automatically annotated on the graph and tabular data views. The summary tab provides the cool down duration between each critical control point. The data can also be automatically exported to Excel® for further calculations.

Accessing controllers via iPad or iPhone

Control Technology Corporation (CTC), the manufacturer of automation controllers that integrate motion control, I/O, user interfaces, and enterprise connectivity, has released CTC qMon™, a free iPhone/iPad app that provides read/write access to your CTC controller. This app can access I/O, registers, flags and motion on Model 2700 and 5000 series controllers.

"qMon moves CTC's PC-based CTCmon utility to a platform that our customers have with them everywhere they go," said Tom Schermerhorn, CTC President. "It is always available to check on controller status and optimize system operation. For this reason it has already generated tremendous interest among our customers."

qMon can be used to reset counters, change setpoints, or review production data. It is available now for free download to iPhone or iPad from apple.com's App Store; a demo [ctcdemo.ctc-control.com] may be entered into the IP Address field to test a live controller. Visit CTC-s website for additional information on qMon set-up and operation.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Bulk liquid terminals

The Syncade Logistics bulk liquid terminal application has been installed at the new Vopak fuel distribution terminal at Amsterdam Westpoort
Working in close collaboration with Vopak, Emerson Process Management has developed a software solution specifically for the management and optimisation of bulk liquid terminals. The new application is based on the Logistics module in Emerson’s Syncade™ platform, which provides intelligent links between IT and industrial automation technology. This software application has been deployed for the first time at the recently completed Vopak fuel distribution terminal at Amsterdam Westpoort (NL), where an efficiency improvement of up to 30 per cent has been achieved.

Vopak has almost 400 years of experience in storage and distribution and is the world leader in independent bulk liquid storage terminals. "For Vopak, the focus of this project was to investigate the possibility of improving service levels and increasing efficiency by deploying intelligent information technology for the management and control of our terminals," explained Ton van Dijk, Global Director ICT at Vopak. "In addition, we wanted to make improvements in other areas such as safety, speed and asset optimisation."

"We developed this new software application to meet the requirements of Vopak and have now made it available to other terminal companies," said Guido Wink, Emerson Process Management General Manager - Sales and Marketing for the Netherlands. "Vopak provided the terminal technology and logistics know-how, and we have converted this into a specific application for managing bulk liquid terminals."

The bulk liquid terminal application has been developed to support the expanding terminal market. The new application within Syncade Logistics comprises advanced planning and integrated stock management tools, order handling and auto-routing. The software is aligned with the liquids handling application within Emerson’s DeltaV™ digital automation system. Through links to Emerson’s DeltaV process automation system and to Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, Syncade Logistics provides savings at the administrative level.


"Using our own performance indicators, we have been able to compare the performance of the Amsterdam Westpoort terminal using the Syncade Logistics application with our other terminals," explained Ton van Dijk. "Because this was a prototype installation of Syncade Logistics, the initial handling of orders was not flawless, but the results show faster order handling and an efficiency improvement of up to 30 per cent. We also believe that safety has improved, although we will require a longer period to substantiate this. With Syncade Logistics we were able to process larger than expected order flows in a highly efficient manner. This indicated an increase in the processing capacity and speed of the new application. We are currently expanding our storage and processing capacity by constructing new facilities in other parts of the world. Emerson’s Syncade Logistics application will be used at these new facilities."

High integrity process ball valve features bolted construction for installation security

A high integrity ball valve for process applications that combines a forged body with a novel bolted construction to ensure installation security has been launched by the instrumentation products division of Parker Hannifin – the global leader in motion and control technologies. The new valve is available in a wide range of sizes and with a variety of connection schemes to help simplify installation. Designed for use with liquid or gas, the valve is suitable for diverse process isolation applications across a broad range of industries, including chemical, petrochemical, biotechnology and pharmaceutical manufacturing.

The process ball valve uses the same technology as their renowned Hi-Pro range of ball valves to maximise performance and reliability. It is available with a wide range of bore sizes, from ½ to 2 inches, and a choice of tube connection schemes, including welded and NPT (National Pipe Thread) male and female fittings. The valve is manufactured from just three principal components – the body, end plate and insert – unlike conventional valves which require two inserts. This eliminates a potential leakage path.

Parker’s valve employs a novel two-piece body construction, with the end plate secured by four bolts; this ensures that the body cannot be unscrewed accidentally in the field, when connecting or disconnecting threaded fittings on the valve or adjacent components. This preserves the valve’s integrity following installation or maintenance operations. The design also simplifies installation by minimising the risk of damage being caused by over-tightening when fitting connections – some competitive products require a separate spanner to prevent movement of the valve insert.

The valve is fully bidirectional and is actuated by a 90 degree turn for fast on/off action. The operating handle features a spring-loaded detent mechanism to provide positive positioning with tactile operator feedback, and is fitted with an ergonomically-designed protective sleeve to facilitate operation. An integral locking nut enables a padlock to be fitted to prevent unauthorised operation. The valve mechanism utilises the floating ball principle and provides 100 percent bubble tight shut-off.

The valve is fabricated from duplex stainless steel as standard, with super-duplex available as an option, and is offered in NACE (corrosion) and HCT (heat code traceable) versions. Parker goes to considerable lengths to guarantee the quality of this valve. By employing material that has been forged, instead of the bar stock used by most competitive products on the market, the valve body has a highly oriented microstructure that is inherently stronger. Furthermore, the company sources its raw materials for the valve from mills and foundries in western Europe, ensuring that only very high quality steel is used for manufacture and providing a fully traceable record for quality audit purposes.

As standard, the valves feature PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene) packing and a PTFE valve seat. PEEK (polyetherketone) valve seat material is available as an option, and allows operation over a very wide temperature range of -54 to 232 degrees Celsius (-65 to 386 degrees Fahrenheit).

Parker’s process ball valve is additionally firesafe to API 607 and BS6755 Part 2, and is available in 800 and 2000 Class versions, suitable for operating pressures up to 6,000 psi (414 bar).

iPhone as oscilloscope

World’s first iPhone™- based mixed signal oscilloscope

Audon Electronics is now offering the iMSO-104 - the world's first mixed-signal oscilloscope that moves Apple's ubiquitous iOS devices and touch-screen interface into the test and measurement world. iMSO-104 is a revolutionary new 5MHz oscilloscope adapter for iPod touch, iPhone and iPad that is intuitive and easy to use, making it an ideal solution for field service, sales and application engineers, as well as students and hobbyists.

iMSO-104 is designed with a 5MHz bandwidth front-end and a 12MSa/s sample rate, simultaneously analyzing one analog and four digital signals for versatile, time-synchronized troubleshooting. All the usual input, trigger and math features you would expect from a high quality scope are incorporated, including cursor measurements, variable persistence, built-in 3.3V 1kHz reference signal and more. iMSO-104 also adds novel features such as computation power and instant emailing of screen captures. In addition, simple measurements of frequency, period, duty cycle, and reference signal capture are just a touch away. Timebase range is from 2uS – 1S/div, with input voltage display from 50mV – 2V/div. Maximum input voltage using a 10x probe is 40V.

iMSO-104 is based on Cypress Semiconductor’s PSoC 3, a low power, system-on-a-chip mixed-signal IC, which handles Apple's proprietary dock interface for iOS devices while simultaneously processing incoming analogue and digital signals. The result is a handy intuitive scope system that is both affordable and extremely portable. Intuitive finger movements are used to adjust trigger level, zooming, or repositioning channel displays. Captured signal screenshots can be rapidly sent as a time-saving email image for rapid reporting, Sent via other freely available Apps, current location and time can be included in the email with a link to Google Maps for uniquely logging on-the-job signal information.

Software for running iMSO-104 - including a demo package that does not require the actual iMSO-104 device - is available free at Apple™’s AppStore, and is available in English, French, German, Italian, and Spanish. iMSO-104 is compatible with all generations of iPod touch, iPhone, and iPad devices running iOS version 3.1.3 or higher. Setups can be customized and accessed quickly - ideal for on-the-go technicians. With these advanced features and Apple's intuitive multi-touch user interface and brilliant, high-resolution displays, iMSO-104 delivers the easiest, most intuitive scope solution on the market.

Technology conference plans announced

Early bird registration for NIWeek remains open until May 31.

Dr. James Truchard, NI CEO at NI Week'11
National Instruments has announced plans for NIWeek 2012, the company’s 18th annual technology conference, which takes place from August 6 to 9 at the Austin Convention Center. Each year this event attracts more than 3,000 engineers, educators and scientists to explore groundbreaking technologies and learn how graphical system design can improve test, measurement and automation. Attendees can participate in interactive demonstrations, roundtable discussions and keynote speeches to gain advanced technical knowledge and network with peers and NI developers.

The exhibit floor showcases interactive demonstrations from more than 75 companies, such as Averna, Cal-Bay Systems, Intel, JKI, Optimation and Xilinx. NIWeek 2012 also hosts numerous special events, including NI Alliance Day, Academic Forum, Build Your Own Embedded System workshop and The Future of System Design symposium.

“NIWeek explores the many industries using graphical system design to discover and shape the future of technology and discoveries that change our world,”
said Dr. James Truchard, NI CEO, President and Cofounder. “Engineers are using NI tools, including NI LabVIEW system design software, to create a variety of life-saving applications that improve everyday life.”

Monitoring for Carbon Dioxide and Methane

Edinburgh Sensors has launched the Guardian NG range of wall-mounted, single point gas monitors. This versatile new monitor range provides high accuracy, continuous sampling detection and measurement of either CO2 or CH4, with typical annual maintenance requirements of just 15 minutes. Improved measurement accuracy, new display capabilities, simplified set-up and enhanced external communication make the Guardian NG ideally suited to applications in a host of different industries.

Pressure and temperature-compensation have been added to proven, proprietary dual wavelength non-dispersive infrared detection technology to ensure true volume% readout of CO2 or CH4 over a wide range of temperatures and pressures. The Guardian NG’s inherent stability ensures no loss of calibration over extended periods. Models are available with detection ranges from 0-3000 ppm up to 0-100% by volume for CO2, and 0-5% to 0-100% for CH4 and an accuracy of better than ± 2% of full scale.

Gas concentration and pressure in the sampling cell are displayed on a new 5 digit LCD, which also allows simple menu setting of all monitor operating parameters including the independent high and low alarm settings. Gas concentration history over a period of up to 2 hours can be displayed graphically. The Guardian NG also includes password protection to prevent unauthorised adjustment of the monitor set up and calibration.

Built-in audible and visual alarm and fault indicators are complemented by volt-free relay contacts, as well as analogue outputs for connection to external indication, control or data logging devices. True RS232 output is provided, with optional LAN support.

Housed in an IP54-rated enclosure, the Guardian NG features an integral pump to allow gases to be sampled from distances up to 30 metres. The measurement cell is protected by a low flow gas sensor and an easily replaceable particle filter.

The Guardian NG can be used in high concentration applications such as biogas and landfill gas, low concentration applications such as horticulture and many others such as process control, indoor air quality, brewing and food processing.

End users and manufacturers encouraged to enter a plant for recognition

Nominees sought for 2012 HART Plant of the Year Award!


The HART® Communication Foundation is actively seeking qualified nominees for the 11th annual HART Plant of the Year Award. End users and manufacturers from all world areas are encouraged to enter their plant or customer’s plant for recognition. The HART Plant of the Year is the only international award presented to end user companies in the process automation industry to recognise the exceptional application of HART Communication technology. Nominations (forms are downloadable from their website!) will be accepted through 15 July 2012.

“Selection of the HART Plant of the Year is based on a plant’s use of HART Communication not on the size of the installation. We are seeking a plant that has taken the capabilities of HART instruments beyond configuration and calibration,” says Ron Helson, HART Communication Foundation Executive Director. “Or, the plant that is using real-time diagnostics and process variables in HART-enabled devices integrated with control, information, asset management, or safety systems.”

Previous recipients include Shell (Canada), MOL (Hungary), Mitsubishi Chemical (Japan), PDVSA (Venezuela), Statoil (Norway), Sasol (South Africa), Clariant (Germany), and DuPont (USA).

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

W&WW keynote & programme

The keynote speaker and technical program for the 2012 ISA Water/Wastewater and Automatic Controls (WWAC) Symposium have been announced. Now in its seventh year, the annual symposium offers a unique opportunity for automation professionals from the water and wastewater sectors to come together to share ideas, network and earn continuing education credits.

Taking place 7–9 August in Orlando (FL USA), the 2012 ISA WWAC Symposium is a three-day event that focuses on the challenges associated with automation and instrumentation in the water and wastewater sectors. It features two full days of technical speakers/presentations, a tour of a local water treatment plant, a general reception, networking events, a poster session and a supplier showcase. This highly focused symposium has a long tradition as an event that caters to the needs of automation professionals in the water and wastewater sectors.

Asset Management Keynote
Celine Hyer: Keynote Speaker
This year’s keynote speaker will be Celine Hyer, a long-time American Water Works Association (AWWA) member, who will present a keynote address entitled “Facing Utility Challenges: Managing Risk and Addressing Aging Infrastructure Needs.” Hyer is a principal consultant with Red Oak Division of Malcolm Pirnie/ARCADIS in Tampa, (FL USA), where she leads the asset management practice for the South.

Tom DeLaura, Water Environment Federation (WEF) Automation and Info Tech Committee chair, will also give a guest presentation on automation technology trends in the wastewater sector. DeLaura, vice president of Eramosa Engineering International, is a long-time member of both the International Society of Automation (ISA) and WEF and has a career in the wastewater sector that spans over 38 years.

“The 2012 ISA WWAC symposium offers a full program of over 25 technical papers and presentations that will be of interest to the water/wastewater automation professional,” says ISA Executive Director and CEO Pat Gouhin. “The symposium offers a focused event that caters to the needs of individuals who are involved with SCADA, automation and instrumentation technologies as part of their daily jobs in this important sector of our municipal infrastructure.”

“This year’s WWAC symposium program is a fascinating mix of instrumentation, SCADA, cybersecurity and human factor topics. The program offers great insight to anyone who works in either the water or wastewater sector,” says symposium Program Chair Joe Provenzano, who has been active in the industry for over 40 years.

WEF and Florida AWWA Partner to offer CEUs/PDHs
The Florida Section of the American Water Works Association (FSAWWA) and the Water Environment Federation (WEF) Automation and Info Tech Committee have joined forces for this year’s symposium as technical co-sponsors. We reported this in an earlier story Collaboration in water & waste event.

Symposium attendees can receive up to 2.0 CEUs or 20 professional development hours (PDHs) for participating in the symposium. For Florida-based attendees, FDEP CEUs and PDHs will be provided through the FSAWWA. ISA members and out of state attendees can receive PDHs through ISA. The optional short course on Automation & SCADA Security offers an additional 0.7 CEUs for attendance. More information can be found on the symposium website.

Package to power quality measurement in just 15 minutes!

Outram Research has launched its new PM7000 kit, to enable package to power quality measurement in just 15 minutes. The kit includes new guides that allow systems to be configured and connected more quickly and easily than before: it takes less than 15 minutes from unpacking the analyser to starting to log real data. It enables power engineers to set up their power quality analyser and begin recording 470 general parameters and up to 32 detailed channels of power quality data, including transient waveforms, in less time than was previously possible.

Power analysers can be configured in several different ways, and getting the correct physical set up of leads and software can be difficult. The new Outram PM7000 Hook-Up Checklist and Guide to Factory Configurations help engineers set up the analyser in less time, whilst also helping to prevent configuration errors. Vector diagrams in the checklist explain how to interpret the readings from the analyser, whilst an LED “traffic light” system gives clear indication that the system has been set up correctly.


“Power engineers are very busy people who can’t afford to spend large amounts of time setting up and configuring analysers,” said John Outram, managing director of Outram Research. “By shipping direct to site, and cutting the time from receiving the package to recording data to less than 15 minutes, we free them to concentrate on the higher-value tasks of identifying and resolving the cause of power quality problems.”

Outram power analysers have always offered some of the shortest set-up times due to their Single Cycle Adaptive Store™ technology, which eliminates the need to set trigger levels. This unique storage regime records down to a single cycle those disturbances that are most likely to show the cause of power quality issues, no matter how long the recording period. In addition, the powerful auto-ranking waveform capture feature automatically stores the waveforms of the greatest disturbances or abnormalities during a recording, and presents only the most severe, making identification of the periods when power quality problems have occurred fast and straightforward.

The Outram power analyser kits contain everything required, including fully-fused voltage leads and Rogowski coils accurate to 1%, to record power quality data and detect disturbances that could indicate the cause of power quality problems. The systems also ship with a netbook or windows compatible mobile phone, which has been configured to communicate with the analyser “straight out of the bag”.

The Outram PM7000 power quality analyser is now supplied in these “ready-to-go” kits and can be ordered with a mobile phone or netbook that is factory configured for immediate communication with the analyser.

Rugged high-speed, multi-channel serial FPDP recorders

The Talon™ family of high-speed, multi-channel Serial FPDP turnkey recording systems has been introduced by Pentek. These are the Model RTS 2716 commercial rackmount, the Model RTR 2736 rugged portable, and the Model RTR 2756 rugged rackmount recorders. Using state-of-the-art disk storage technology, these systems are highly flexible and achieve aggregate recording rates up to 2 Gbytes per second.

As complete recording systems, they are ideal for capturing any type of streaming sources including live transfers from sensors or data from other computers. The built-in Windows 7 Professional workstation with an Intel Core i7 processor gives the user total flexibility in routing data to various drives, networks, and I/O channels. Plus it allows the user to install post-processing and analysis tools to operate on the recorded data.

“These recorders exploit the latest storage technology to deliver the industry’s fastest recording rates and deepest capacities,” said Rodger Hosking, vice president of Pentek. “Our SystemFlow recording software simplifies user operation and the application programming interface (API) allows system integrators to add the recorder as a peripheral to a larger system. We offer these recorders in many different configurations for operation not only in the lab, but also in the field and on board vehicles, ships, and aircraft. The SSDs (solid state drives) we use in the ruggedized recorders are immune to shock and vibration and are ideal for severe environments.”

Data files include time stamping as well as recording parameters and optional GPS (global positioning system) information. They are stored in the native Windows NTFS (new technology file system) format, allowing drive units to be read by personal computers eliminating the need for file conversion. Files can also be downloaded from the system through gigabit Ethernet, USB ports, eSATA3 ports or written to optical disks using the built-in 8X double layer DVD±R/RW drive.

Talon recorders are able to move data at a very high rate to the latest generation of high-capacity disk drives. The rugged portable (Model 2736) and rugged rack-mount (Model 2756) recorders are configured with SSDs while the commercial rack-mount (Model 2716) recorder is configured with HDDs (hard disk drives). The drives are hot-swappable and can be easily removed or exchanged during or after a mission to retrieve recorded data.

About Serial FPDP Compatibility
The recorders are fully compatible with the VITA 17.1 Serial FPDP specification in all modes and operational features. Supporting 1.0625, 2.125 and 2.5 Gbaud link rates and options for multi-mode and single-mode optical interfaces, the modules can work in virtually any system. Programmable modes include flow control in both receive and transmit directions, cyclical redundant checks (CRC) support and copy/loop modes. The recorders can be ordered with either four or eight bidirectional Serial FPDP ports and with copper or optical interconnect options. The Serial FPDP interface provides an ideal light-weight protocol that is able to connect system-to-system and system-to-peripheral to enable recording in nearly any situation.

Supporting Features and Products
Pentek SystemFlow recording software features a Windows-based GUI (Graphical User Interface) that provides a simple and intuitive means to configure and control the system.


“Customers praise this easy-to-use interface for fast setup of their recording systems right out-of-the-box,” Rodger concluded.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Improving safety, reliability and environmental performance of refineries!

Innovative HF Alkylation measurement solution supports cost control, real-time safety and environmental excellence

Invensys Operations Management has signed a multi-year licensing agreement with Valero Energy Corporation, allowing use of Invensys Operations Management’s patented ACA.HF Advanced Alkylation Measurement Solution. In the first phase, Valero will implement the solution at seven refineries globally. The Invensys solution monitors and measures hydrofluoric acid levels in real time by analysing differential responses from online sensors, helping to improve the safety, reliability and environmental performance of the refinery and creating new opportunities to reduce operating costs.

Commonly used in petroleum processing, hydrofluoric acid is a highly toxic catalyst that must be carefully managed and controlled. Accurately analysing how much HF is re-circulating within the process contributes significantly to increasing the efficiency of the refinery because it can improve crude stock yield and associated costs. Early approaches to HF monitoring involved taking manual samples and analysing them in a laboratory. This approach however, even when carefully executed, potentially exposed lab workers to severe toxins, and its accuracy was limited. And while more recent techniques can produce more accurate readings, their adaptation for real-time online monitoring is complex and costly.

Invensys Operations Management’s advanced measurement solution, however, brings new levels of simplicity, cost effectiveness and employee safety to that task. By using real-time online sensors instead of people, it significantly reduces the possibility of accidental exposure, thereby diminishing the risk to employees and curtailing the potential for environmental hazards. And because it replaces conventional manual laboratory sampling and other types of analysis, it can drastically improve the efficiency of the operation while lowering costs.

“We are committed to developing and delivering innovative solutions that help our clients, including Valero, increase the safety and reliability of their operations,” said Maxie Williams, vice president and enterprise client executive, Invensys Operations Management. “An integral component of our InFusion™ Enterprise Control System, our HF alkylation measurement solution can openly communicate with a larger refinery and enterprise-wide control, information and decision-support system to provide real-time data and analysis. And because it is built from rugged materials long proven in industrial HF applications, implementing it costs about half that of other systems and requires little maintenance, with estimated mean time between failures exceeding 29 years. It is a perfect example of how we are combining advanced control and instrumentation to improve and optimise the real-time safety and performance of the operation.”

Earthing clamp approved!

Self-testing grounding clamp receives IECEX approval

The Bond-Rite Intrinsically Safe Self-Testing Static Grounding Clamp from Newson Gale is designed for verifying safe low-resistance static grounding and bonding conditions in many operations involving flammable liquid vapour, gas and combustible dust handling environments. The original model was launched in 2001 and there are now over 10,000 units in use in the worldwide chemical processing industries. The unit is commonly used for hazardous area static earth/grounding and bonding applications where there is a need for positive confirmation during drumming, filling, mixing and other transfer and handling operations involving solvents and/or combustible powdered materials. A pulsing green LED indicator provides the user with reassurance when a low-resistance bond to earth/ground has been established even in the presence of insulating coatings, oxidisation, corrosion or excessive contact resistance, as well as continuously monitoring the condition of the bonding cable.

While retaining the original innovative patented design features, the Bond-Rite Clamp has recently achieved upgraded hazardous area certification to the latest applicable sections of IEC 60079, enabling it to be used in global markets where the IECEX scheme is recognized, in addition to its existing approvals according to ATEX (European) and NEC (North American) hazardous area standards. As part of the updated certification, the unit has now been tested and approved for a wider ambient temperature range from – 40 deg C to + 60 deg C. This enhanced rating, coupled with its IP65 and NEMA4X ingress and environmental protection increases the range of applications where the Bond-Rite clamp may be put into use, both indoors and outdoors, while the long-life lithium battery power source means that installation is simple and cost effective, requiring no mains/line voltage power supply.

The Bond-Rite Clamp is suitable for use in all IEC/ATEX Gas and Dust Zones (0, 1, 2 and 20, 21, 22) as well as NEC Hazardous Location Classes I, II, III and Divisions 1 and 2. The standard unit is supplied complete with 5 metre/16ft retractable (coiled) hytrel static-dissipative cable, earth/ground connection junction box and stowage point for the clamp, and models are available where the clamp is fitted to alternative cable lengths or self-rewind cable reels. Another popular option is the Bond-Rite EZ which is a totally portable bonding and verification system for use in temporary or mobile applications, or wherever there is a requirement to continuously monitor an equipotential bond between two conductive items or earth/ground.

Scottish show

Now in its tenth year, the biennial Instrumentation Scotland and Offshore Systems exhibition to be held in Aberdeen on 5th and 6th September 2012 will be offering a series of free workshops to be given by leading industry companies including Honeywell and the Profibus Group.

Tony Alexander from Honeywell Control Systems Ltd. will be presenting his workshop entitled 'Becoming Wireless'. Their OneWireless™ Solutions help sites tackle critical industrial challenges in the areas of reliability, safety and process efficiency. The solutions comprise Honeywell’s distributed control system, wireless field instruments, mobile computing devices, wireless networks, advanced applications and facility management applications. The solutions also include Honeywell’s engineering services such as consulting, design, installation, commissioning and support that play a key role in ensuring a turnkey experience that protects users wireless investment.

The Profibus Group's workshop will address the key issues arising from the use of digital fieldbus communications technologies in process and hybrid industries.

With 50% of the seminar time dedicated to live demonstrations and most of the remainder taken up with practical advice based on actual experience, the programme will be of great value to Instrument Technicians/Engineers, C&I Engineers and System Engineers involved in design, operation and maintenance of modern process plant.

Located in the heart of the Offshore industry in Aberdeen, the exhibition brings together the many companies who supply products and services specific to the offshore industry in addition to others representing processing, power generation, paper, distilling, water and waste, and marine engineering in north east Scotland.

Show for Silverstone

The Motorsport Industry Association will be giving full support to the Sensors + Systems Show for Control & Instrumentation which this year is being held on 24th and 25th October 2012 in the impressive new Silverstone Wing pit and paddock complex (Hall 1) at Silverstone Circuit, the home of the British F1 Race.

The Motorsport Industry Association is a worldwide association which now provides a network that reaches into every corner of the motorsport business community. The community of MIA members spans the whole spectrum of international motorsport business, from the largest companies to the smallest private firms.

The show is already receiving strong support from exhibitors, well-known publications and distinguished engineering institutions, including The Profibus Group, the Institute of Measurement & Control, magazines Industrial Technology, Industrial Plant & Equipment and the new Controls, Drives & Automation publication, DP&A, and IEN together with the website Sensorland.com.

The show is the perfect place to display and discuss products, services and other material to engineers from such industries as the automotive, aerospace, rail, power generation, process industries, medical, motorsport, and R&D. Both Bartec and Impress Sensors & Systems will be using the show to promote their products.

Bartec will be showing their ANTARESplus, a remote I/O System for potentially explosive areas which can be connected to any current control with various bus systems (PROFIBUS-DP, Profi Net, Ethernet IP, Modbus TCP). There are nine different I/O modules available in the form of digital and analog inputs and outputs.

From Impress Sensors & Systems will be a range of submersible gauging level transmitters which are ideal for small tanks and containers. The new IMTG range of transmitters is designed for continuous submersion in liquids such as water, oils and fuels. The transmitters are ideally suited to applications in small (0 to 10 metre depth) tanks or containers, where conventional mechanical level switches and sensors are not suitable because of reliability issues and a higher degree of level 'control' and measurement is required.

The exhibition will again feature free workshops hosted by leading companies. Full details will be announced at a later date and will be available on the show website.

Redefining vibration screening

Best-in-class repeatability and accuracy for checking overall health of motors and other rotating equipment

The 805 Vibration Meter from Fluke, is a portable multifunction vibration screening tool that provides quantifiable information on a bearing and the overall health of motors and other rotating equipment. It is ideal for frontline mechanical troubleshooting teams that need reliable and repeatable measurements of rotating equipment to make imperative go/no-go maintenance decisions.

The instrument measures overall vibration from 10 to 1,000Hz, providing a four-level severity assessment for overall vibration and bearing condition; identifies bearing condition (Crest factor Plus, CF+) by detecting peaks in the vibration signal readings of roller bearings from 4,000Hz to 20,000Hz, and using a proprietary algorithm to interpret severity to determine if the bearing is going bad; and measures surface temperature using an infrared sensor which automatically measures contact temperature and displays it along with the vibration reading for a broader understanding of machine health.

The Fluke 805 Handheld Vibration Meter has a unique sensor tip design that minimises measurement variations caused by device angle or contact pressure. This reduces operator error and improves the accuracy and repeatability of quick vibration screening. The meter also provides a severity scale for both overall vibration and bearing condition readings, delivering more information than comparable vibration pens. Logged data can be easily uploaded into Excel to create trending reports.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Warehouse & office lighting

New energy efficient LED lighting provides 1-2 year payback
Bay Range of efficient industrial and office lights uses latest LED technology

Marl International has just released its most efficient ever range of high performance white LED lights, providing energy savings of 20% to 60% against conventional lighting technologies in applications like industrial, office and warehouse internal lighting, security and event floodlighting, street lighting and other applications.

The key feature of the new Marl Bay Range is its efficiency of 83-94 lumens/watt from a 110V-277V AC mains supply. For example, the 770 series light generates up to 8,800 lumens from a 94W supply, making it amongst the most efficient light sources available. Bay Range LED lighting is very directional, so that all of the light created illuminates the target area and there are no UV emissions, further enhancing efficiency. Bay range lights are offered with a choice of narrow (23°) or wide (50°) beam angles.

Commenting on the release of the Bay Range, Marl Managing Director, Adrian Rawlinson, said, “LED technology has moved forward rapidly even in the last few months, and more efficient light engines allow the creation of much brighter luminaires without excessive heat generation. Marl’s designers have exploited these characteristics to the full, creating a range that makes energy efficient LED lighting a viable option for the most intense illumination applications such as street lighting, flood lighting and even photographic studio lighting as well as more standard interior or exterior industrial and office lighting applications.”

He continued, “The new Bay Range is amongst the most energy efficient lighting available for industrial and office premises, and provides an instant, convenient and highly controllable source of light.

The first products in the Bay Range to be released are the 770, 771 and 778 series. The 770 series are square units with 2 or 3 LED modules offered in Cool White, Neutral White or Warm White form. For high bay applications, Marl is offering the 778 series, featuring six LED modules as well as the 771 series for long bay applications. All three offer the same exceptional efficiency and operate direct from a standard European or US mains electrical supply. The Marl Bay Range has been built using the latest high efficiency, high brightness Cree and LumiLEDS LED light engines.

Colour renditioning for all lights is very good, and each product is offered in a choice of cool or natural white colour temperatures. The lights can be readily integrated with dusk to dawn and motion sensors, and are offered with optional 1 to 10 volt dimming control lines. Most are sealed to IP67 standards, rendering them suitable for most indoor and outdoor applications.

Following the launch of the new range, Marl is offering customers the opportunity of a free lighting survey of their premises by a professional lighting engineer, who would produce a report detailing the energy savings available by adopting Marl’s class leading technology. Its team is nationwide, and can provide local support on upgrading customer’s lighting installations.

More load cells!

LCM Systems increases its range of stocked load cells for faster delivery.

Now with increased factory space, load cell manufacturer LCM Systems has expanded its existing range of stocked products. This means that customers can expect faster delivery and lower prices on a larger range of load cells. Recently added products include the SGA analogue stain gauge amplifier, the TR150 handheld load indicator and the renowned STA series of S-Type tension/compression load cells. All three products are commonly purchased together to provide a complete load monitoring system.

The SGA range of high specification, analogue strain gauge amplifiers has been designed for universal use and offers a degree of flexibility that makes these amplifiers perfect for use in a multitude of configurations, ideal for OEM customers. Similarly, the STA series is ideal for a wide range of applications specifically where high accuracy measurements are required. Typical applications include hanging scales, material test machines and general force measurement. And, added to these load cells and amplifiers, the TR150 is a versatile and intuitive precision load indicator ideal for use by both OEMs and end users alike. The portable, environmentally sealed unit has been specifically designed for accuracy and versatility. It can be used with the full range of sensor technology from LCM Systems as part of portable load cell and calibration systems or as a shackle, link load or hire fleet load display.

Customers can place their orders with an easy credit card payment system via email, phone or fax for same day despatch. Other products available from stock include the DCE load cells, small and versatile sensors for design engineers and systems integrators who are working on applications for tensile strength, tension measurement and general force

New SCADA/HMI software.

The new Pulse V 1.52, from AFCON Software and Electronics, includes improvements for quality, stability, and functionality of the product. The 1.52 version is the result of over 6 months of intense work carried out by the Afcon R&D group. Great attention has been paid to guaranteeing greater stability functionality, both in runtime and design mode.

With this new version Afcon extends its offering with Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2. Pulse customers can now purchase a professional package which includes Pulse 1.52 and Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2.

New features and enhancements:
• Tool Bar Instrument - static image support
• Crystal Report support from Pulse client Improvements and fixes:
• Alarm Counters
• Redundancy
• Alarm acknowledge by double click,
• Alarm Explorer present milliseconds format for SER support
• Context menu support for system localization
• Zoom-in/out
• Find and replace improvement and more

Technical details of the new features and improvements can be viewed in the Pulse Release Notes available on Afcon website. Pulse 1.52 can be downloaded from the Pulse section on the Afcon website and available on a new Afcon DVD upon request.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Measuring low level acceleration

ServoK-Beam High Sensitivity Capacitive Accelerometer

A single axis, high sensitivity, capacitive accelerometer for measuring static acceleration or low-level, low-frequency vibration is now available from Kistler Instruments. The new ServoK-Beam accelerometer has high resolution, excellent frequency response and insensitivity to thermal transients and transverse acceleration making it ideal for a wide range of applications from modal analysis of large structures and vehicle dynamics to measuring seismic effects on structures during earthquakes and aerospace ground testing.

The measurement range of ±3 g, wide static and dynamic frequency response from zero to 500 Hz and ultra-low noise of 4 μgrms below 100 Hz are combined with sensitivity of 1,200 mV/g, high immunity to thermal transients 1,500 gpk shock rating and low transverse acceleration. The ServoK-Beam is a three terminal, variable capacitance sensor, made by a bulk Micro Electro-Mechanical System (MEMS) process. The sensing element and conditioning electronics are integrated into an hermetically sealed titanium housing with a mass of 95 grams. A hard anodized housing provides ground isolation and the unit is powered by a bipolar supply between ±6 and ±12 V DC.

The safe installation solution for cable ducts

 G10 Safety - less is more

AS-Interface is the world’s most widely-used interface concept, which has simplified automation through quick connection technology via flat cables. The integration of safety on AS-i was a further important step towards an end-to-end solution which set new standards in terms of simplicity, clear overview and cost-efficiency.

Where other solutions require hardware, AS-i Safety impresses with reliable communication and intelligent-logic software. In installation technology, it is common to connect digital IOs via distributors or modules with several IO ports. In the case of safety solutions, superfluous parallel wiring or a parallel system environment often still predominate, which are rendered unnecessary with AS-i Safety.

Where safe components need to be implemented in PLe in a decentralized manner, either the AS-i interface can be integrated in the safe end device, or a complete, two-channel AS-i module can be used for connection. Many different AS-i integrated devices, or sufficient space in which to install the modules are necessary as a result. Pepperl+Fuchs convincingly puts an end to this dilemma with the world’s smallest G10 safety module featuring IP68/69k protection.

Any safety switch with dry contacts can be connected to this ultra-compact module in a modular fashion. Whereas the flat cable previously had to be fed out of the cable duct, direct installation within the cable duct is possible thanks to the unit’s low height of <23 mm. All that can be seen from outside is the round cable outlet to the safe end device. The one-piece housing enables flat cables to simply be fed through, contacted via round, gold-plated pins, while being tightly sealed at the same time, by means of a single screw.

The G10 safety module does not even require screw-mounting because it is so small and lightweight. It’s brilliantly simple and the smaller size and weight ensure a new level of extra functionality.

New Test + Measurement catalogue

Fluke has announced availability of its new 140-page full-colour 2012/2013 Test Tools Catalogue which can be obtained free via their web site - either by requesting a copy to be sent in the post, or by immediate download as a pdf version.

The new catalogue contains complete descriptions of features and specifications for Fluke's full line of test tools. Sections include handheld digital multimeters, basic electrical testers, ScopeMeters, installation testers, field calibration tools, power quality tools, clamp meters, digital thermometers, thermal imagers, insulation testers, EX test tools, portable appliance testers, indoor air quality tools and accessories.

An introductory section covers all the tools recently introduced, such as the Fluke Ti100/TiR100 Series of light, rugged Thermal Imagers; the Fluke 430 Series II 3-phase Power Quality and Energy Analysers, the first tools to use a patented algorithm to measure energy waste and quantify its cost; the Fluke 1654B Multifunction Installation Tester; and the Fluke 750 Series Documenting Process Calibrators.

There are also pages covering money-saving Combo Kits, Fluke After Sales Service, Fluke Web Portals which help with troubleshooting and the correct tool selection in industrial maintenance, electrical and process applications, and on safety issues and other application/background articles.

Partnership to offer "complete solution!"

Schneider Electric and Krohne have announced a partnership to provide customers with a complete solution including Schneider Electric’s PlantStruxure process automation architecture and Krohne’s instrumentation offer. This combination allows for easy integration of the complete solution, which enables customers to achieve increased energy efficiency, productivity, and process optimization.

"We are building this partnership on the shared values of search for simplicity, drive for innovation and Voice of the Customer oriented developments. I am confident that the partnership of Schneider Electric's global expertise in energy management and process automation, coupled with Krohne's world class expertise and engineering capabilities on both standard and customized Instrumentation solutions, will prove to be a winning combination for our customers," says Cyril Perducat CTO of Schneider Electric Industry Business.

David Orgaz, Vice President, Process Automation Systems of Schneider Electric, adds: "The integration of Krohne's best in class instrumentation offer with Schneider Electric's PlantStruxure offer will deliver some great synergies and superior customer benefits and is very much in line with what we hear in terms of what our customers need to cope with the evolving challenges in process and energy management."

Michael Dubbick, co-CEO of the Krohne Group, adds: “The collaboration agreement with Schneider Electric is a strategic partnership of high importance for Krohne worldwide. We have already worked together on several major projects in the past. Based on this experience, we strongly believe that the combined engineering experience of our two global companies, together with the Schneider Electric PlantStruxure system for plant automation and energy management, will become a real success story.


This collaboration is in accordance with our company strategy and supports our goal to grow sustainably by establishing long-term relationships with our business partners.”

Stephan Neuburger, co-CEO of the Krohne group, says: “The customers of Schneider Electric will benefit from our highly skilled sales and service staff. We look forward to contributing our engineering and application knowledge to projects in different industry segments such as Oil&Gas, Water&Wastewater, Food&Beverage as well as Metals, Minerals and Mining. In these vertical sectors, Krohne has already proven its unique level of expertise by not only resolving standard applications but also those which demand innovative, customised instrumentation solutions.”

Schneider Electric’s PlantStruxure process automation architecture helps customers achieve energy and productivity improvement objectives by creating a single environment to measure energy use, process data, asset utilization and machine performance. To achieve this, KROHNE delivers matching and integrated measurement solutions for flow, level, pressure and temperature measurements as well as analytical tasks, providing the necessary information to monitor and optimize plant processes that involve liquid, gaseous or solid mediums.

Delivering cryogenic liquids certifiably

Custody transfer solution includes the Coriolis transmitter and MID-approved printer with the option of a flow computer
Micro Motion® Coriolis flowmeters now have additional MID certification for custody transfer. The certification covers the F100 model from the F-Series product range, for truck deliveries of cryogenic liquids, such as argon, nitrogen and oxygen. This new certificate from NMi (Nederlands Meet Instituut) adds to an already wide range of MID approvals for the measurement of liquids and gases under normal and cryogenic flow conditions.

Micro Motion Coriolis flowmeters already have European, Asian, Australian and U.S. approvals for cryogenic liquids in custody transfer applications. The flowmeters provide accurate and repeatable readings of mass flow, density, and temperature, making them ideal for critical measuring applications.

The additional certification means that Emerson can now offer cryogenic liquid re-sellers and distributors a compact, reliable and accurate solution for their delivery trucks that meets the MID requirements for direct mass flow measurement in custody transfer deliveries. The complete Micro Motion solution includes the Coriolis transmitter and MID-approved printer, with the option of a flow computer.

In detail, the certification covers the Micro Motion F100 Coriolis Flowmeter and ATEX and IECEx IIC approval, for use with cryogenic liquids with flow rates between 3.5 - 450 kg/min, densities between 700 and 1500 Kg/m3, and temperatures down to -200°C. The ambient temperature range is from -40 to +55°C. These Micro Motion Coriolis flowmeters meet the requirements of the MID guidelines; environmental class M3/E3 and accuracy class 2.5, which specify an accuracy of 1.5% for the meter and 2.5% for the complete measuring system.

All European Union countries, plus Norway and Switzerland, have committed themselves to standardise all custody transfer applications using one set of rules and guidelines. This will allow easier and smoother transfer of liquids and gases between EU member countries. By 30th October 2016, all countries are required to have the applications to comply with these rules as stated in the Measuring Instruments Directive (MID) 2004/22/EC. Cryogenic liquids also fall under these regulations.

"Emerson Process Management offers a wide range of MID approved products and MID consultancy services," said Stephane Tritz, Vice President Flow Europe. "By providing MID certificates with products for single usage or to be integrated into a system, customers can focus their attention on their system design."

Investment signals the company’s commitment to next generation industrial engineers.

ABB has invested close to £1 million and signed a 10-year agreement with Imperial College London (GB) to support a new carbon capture pilot plant teaching facility located at the university’s central London campus. Further supplemented by a series of sponsorships for Imperial’s chemical engineering undergraduates, ABB’s investment and involvement in the project signals the company’s commitment to shaping the next generation of industrial engineers.

Using a combination of ABB’s instrumentation, drives, motors and process automation equipment, the control room provides students with hands-on experience of pilot-scale industrial plant operations and is the only facility of its kind in an academic institution in the world. The pilot plant will be used in undergraduate teaching with the aim of equipping students with the practical skills needed for a career in industry.

The agreement between ABB and Imperial gives the university access to the most advanced control and instrumentation technology available from any supplier, as well as life cycle services and support for the installation. In return, ABB has access to the carbon capture pilot plant for its own use and will use the facility for customer demonstrations and training, staff learning such as inter-divisional training, hands on experience for its apprentices and product testing and software evaluation.

“The pilot plant is a global showcase for the latest and best process control and instrumentation technology in use at one of the world’s leading engineering institutions,” says Martin Grady, General Manager, Oil, Gas and Petrochemical - UK, ABB Ltd. “We will be able to trial new technology in a low risk, well-managed environment to gather Beta site test data. It also gives ABB a great platform to train its staff and customers on a real pilot plant. Quite simply, there are very few industrial companies that have utilised all the leading-edge technology that Imperial College is featuring within this pilot plant.”

To further support its involvement with Imperial, ABB is providing four summer placements of eight to ten weeks per annum in its British operations. In addition a summer placement in Brisbane (AUS) will be awarded to a student on the university’s exchange programme, after spending their third undergraduate year in Australia. One final year student will be selected from previous summer students to have their final year tuition fees paid by ABB.

ABB’s involvement in the project is aimed at raising the awareness among chemical engineering graduates of the benefits of a career in control and instrumentation engineering. The investment is seen as a shop window for presenting the opportunities available throughout the ABB organisation, particularly at one of its main execution centres for oil, gas and petrochemical automation in St Neots, Cambridgeshire (GB) and its measurement products activities in Stonehouse, Gloucestershire and Workington, Cumbria (GB).

“By investing in the pilot plant and the awards, we are effectively investing in our own future, by making sure that ABB will have ready access to a stream of bright young engineers,” says Grady. “One of our biggest problems is finding enough suitably qualified engineers to fill the ever growing range of opportunities we can offer. Obviously if engineering in the UK flourishes, then we flourish too.


“The move by ABB is partly in response to government initiatives aimed at rebuilding the manufacturing base of the UK and re-establishing the important contribution that engineering makes to people’s everyday lives. The UK needs to increase its base of skilled engineers if it is to grow its manufacturing sector towards its potential. We believe that the pilot plant will support education by giving tomorrow’s engineers hands-on exposure to real-life technology. This pilot plant really brings the real world into the classroom for the first time."

In recognition of ABB’s support for the new carbon capture pilot plant, Imperial has named the hi-tech centre-piece of the installation the ABB Control Room. The ABB Control Room houses the extended operator workplace (EOW) and the distributed control system, System 800xA, from where operators can control and supervise the plant.

With many international students also studying at the College, the facility will help to position Britain as the global centre of excellence and expertise for engineering education. For ABB, there is the added attraction of building awareness of its technologies and capabilities across a global audience.


“The increasingly global nature of the projects we are working on, particularly in the oil, gas and petrochemical sectors, means that engineers from the UK and elsewhere are being called on to work in many different regions worldwide,” concludes Grady. “Our aim is to use the plant to create a lasting association between the real-life problems that students will encounter once they qualify and the technology and capabilities available from ABB that can help solve them.”

“The pilot plant contributes to making Imperial the leading international centre for practical, hands-on chemical engineering education and training,” says Dr. Daryl Williams, Director of the Pilot Plant Project at Imperial. “We were looking for a global control and instrumentation partner to work with us on the carbon capture pilot plant. The opportunity for both parties was immense. It provided a once in a lifetime opportunity to influence the training and education of thousands of young chemical engineers over the next 20 years at one of the world’s premier chemical engineering departments.”

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Advances in sensors!

IFSA has just published the first book from Advances in Sensors Book Series, Vol.1,

It’s titled "Modern Sensors, Transducers and Sensor Networks" and includes dozen collected sensor related, advanced state-of-the-art reviews written by experts from academia and industry. Coverage includes current developments in sensing nanomaterials, technologies, MEMS sensors design, synthesis, modeling and applications of sensors, transducers and wireless sensor networks, signal detection and advanced signal processing, as well as new sensing principles and methods of measurements.

Account manager for South of Ireland!

Peter Cullen has been appointed Account Manager South for Rockwell Automation Ireland. In this role Peter will be responsible for the sales of Rockwell Automation products and services including Process Automation Systems, IT/MES, Drives, Components and Customer Service Management Solutions.

Peter has nearly 20 years of industry experience with AT/IT Solutions business and has demonstrated track record of Relationship Based Sales and Leadership skills which he brings to our organization. His strong strategic outlook and critical thinking skills will be essential to ensure we deliver market leading products, services and customer solutions to ensure long-term value for our clients.

Peter previously represented ProsCon Ltd for seven years in the Irish Market and has also worked for Douglas Control & Automation and Jacobs Engineering.

Peter earned his degree in Cork Institute of Technology and went on to achieve a Higher Diploma in Marketing & Management from University College, Cork (UCC), a Postgraduate Diploma in International Business from Dublin Business School and an MBS from University College Cork.