Saturday, October 5, 2013

Bus equipped element diaphragm valves for pharma application in France!

The AS-i communication bus facilities, remote visualisation capability and easy clean, stainless steel construction of Bürkert’s Element range of diaphragm valves has resulted in their specification by Unither, a world leader in the manufacture of formulations for the pharmaceutical industry, as part of a major modernisation of the company’s plant at Gannat, (F)

With five production sites, a research and development centre, and commercial offices in Paris, UNITHER is currently the world leader in the manufacture of pharmaceutical formulations used by European pharmaceutical laboratories and producers of generic drugs (in particular, eye drops, physiological saline solutions and anti-asthma drugs in sterile soluble unit doses). It has a turnover of 151 million euros with a workforce of 850 people.

The Gannat site, employs around 150 people. It is a specialised production site for the manufacture of soluble tablets, dry formulations and anal suppositories. Recently, Unither decided to modernise its production equipment at the plant, with the aims of increasing production efficiency, improving safety and meeting the strictest pharmaceutical standards. In addition, Unither also wanted to develop and install an AS-i communication bus, to make its production as flexible as possible.

With all these objectives in mind, the operators of the Gannat site approached Bürkert, specifically because of the company’s know-how and experience of pharmaceutical processes. In addition, Bürkert was the only manufacturer of components and solutions capable of responding to all of Unither's needs in terms of valves and instrumentation, as well as BBS pipework accessories such as viewing windows and filters. This was evidenced by Bürkert’s design and manufacture of special valve blocks for the ELEMENT diaphragm valves, which reduced, as far as possible, the retention volumes where bacteriological growth could occur.

The new installation is equipped with a number of intelligent ELEMENT diaphragm valves. These offer a high degree of modularity with embedded diagnostic tools, guaranteeing maximum reliability and safety. Limit switch devices with AS-i communication are installed on each pneumatic valve.

The installation consists of a tank bottom drain valve type 2105, a draw-off valve type 2014, 2-way manual and automatic valve types 3233 and 2103, as well as the multi-port ELEMENT valve block, type 2034. The tank bottom drain valve is designed for regulation of ultra-pure, sterile, aggressive or abrasive fluids. It guarantees total draining of the tank and offers optimum possibilities for refilling.

Among the advantages offered by this new installation are the stainless steel design of all valve types and the AS-i type 8691 device with high intensity, multi-colour position indicator for visualisation of valve state from a distance – a facility which particularly impressed the operators of the Gannat site.

The ELEMENT range of diaphragm valves was perfect for the Gannat project as it has been designed by Bürkert to provide maximum reliability and safety for the most exacting users. The valves offer the advantages of being very easy to use, via simplified adjustment, excellent diagnostics and visualisation, ergonomics, safety of use, adaptability, and ease of electrical and pneumatic connections. In addition, start-up times are reduced by simple automatic regulation of the travel limits (auto-tune function); and reliability is also secured by an integrated filter on the pneumatic supply.

Additional major features include a small valve footprint, and a design where the lifespan of the actuator and control heads is increased through use of a self ventilated system (fresh air design). Also, crucially, the ELEMENT valves are easy to clean and also easy to maintain.
The ELEMENT 2-way diaphragm valves, type 2103; the "zero deadleg" draw-off valves and the tank bottom drain valves, type 2105, used at Unither, are supplied in nominal diameters from 8 to 150 mm.

The FDA and USP class VI approved membrane they are supplied with is made from EPDM, PTFE/EPDM or advanced PTFE/EPDM. The valves can withstand a pressure of 10 bar and a fluid temperature between -10° C and +150° C.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Meter for online gas specific gravity measurement

Emerson Process Management has released the Micro Motion® Specific Gravity Meter, the next generation of their Micro Motion 3098 Gas Specific Gravity Meter, designed for custody transfer, refinery/fuel gas energy measurement, hydrogen purity control and many other process gas applications.

In applications where fast response, direct gas measurement is required, this meter is the ideal choice to solve the problems that users confront on a daily basis, such as managing rapidly changing fired heater air-to-fuel ratios, reducing refinery hydrogen impurities and minimising windage losses in hydrogen-cooled generator sets.

This meter directly measures gas molecular weight and can be configured to output hydrogen purity, specific gravity, relative density, calorific value/BTU or Wobbe Index. Building upon proven Ni Span C® cylinder technology, this precision measurement technology provides the benefits of low cost of ownership, reduced maintenance costs and a new innovative integral transmitter.

The Specific Gravity Meter now incorporates a head-mounted transmitter that has the flexibility to digitally connect to distributed control systems, as well as the ability to output raw sensor signals to flow computers - conforming to custody transfer best practices. This innovative new transmitter module has the unique capability of being able to output sensor data in four formats simultaneously - sensor frequency (time period), 4-20mA, HART® and RS485 Modbus. The Gas Specific Gravity Meter now incorporates a new diagnostic capability, Known Density Verification, which checks the meter for measurement alarm conditions, sensor integrity and the presence of coating, erosion or corrosion. This new technology expands the availability of diagnostics information in critical density measurement applications and can result in significant reductions in maintenance costs and cycle times.

Extending transmission paths in 10 Gbit/s network cabling

The new Harting Ha-VIS preLink® Extender permits the easy extension of transmission paths in 10 Gbit/s network cabling systems, as well as allowing unused cables to be reactivated and extended until the next required connection.

This new addition to the company’s innovative Ha-VIS preLink® cabling system not only enables the simple extension of transmission paths in data network cabling: it also allows fire zones to be bridged and subscriber ports to be directly connected to the terminal block connector without the need for intermediate patching.

Even unused cables can be reactivated and extended to the next required connection. The installer simply assembles the Ha-VIS preLink® termination module onto both ends of the cable to be extended. The terminated cable ends are then inserted into the Ha-VIS preLink® Extender. A flexible shield clamp transmits the cable shield potential.

The extender itself can be directly mounted on walls, in cable ducts or in a switch cabinet via two 3.2 mm diameter fixing holes. The compact (15.6 x 13.2 x 65.7 mm) design permits installation even in cramped spaces.

The Ha-VIS preLink® Extender meets the transmission performance specifications for Category 6A in accordance with the ISO/IEC 11801 Ed. 2.2 (2011-06) standard. As a result, the structured cabling run can be used for applications up to 10 Gbit/s up to the maximum link length.

Discrete manufacturing execution


GE Intelligent Platforms breakthrough manufacturing execution management software solution, Proficy for Manufacturing Discrete (PfMD) is now available. This powerful solution designed specifically for complex discrete manufacturing environments takes manufacturing execution to a new level through complete digitization of paper-based processes.

Manufacturers of complex products in industries such as Aerospace, Energy Equipment and Heavy Machinery, face particular challenges in reducing production cycle times, while maintaining quality and meeting regulatory requirements due to long production cycles. Proficy for Manufacturing Discrete provides digitized standard operating procedures, advanced dispatch capabilities and structured capture of quality data to support real-time decision making and continuous process improvement, especially in complex, engineer-to-order and build-to-order environments.
“PfMD incorporates the best practices of GE’s own world-class manufacturing businesses,” said Don Busiek, General Manager, Manufacturing Software for GE Intelligent Platforms. “It incorporates our learnings in real-world discrete manufacturing environments, as well as our 25 years of MES expertise. In addition, we are seeing amazing results from implementation at GE sites.”
  • 70% reduced warranty investigation time
  • 10% reduced WIP Inventory
  • 20% reduced product cycle times
  • 25% reduced rework and scrap
  • 20% reduced manufacturing costs
PfMD is adaptable to multiple manufacturing environments ranging from the production of long-cycle, complex products engineered to order, to discrete products being configured to order. By digitizing work processes, PfMD enables the entire manufacturing workforce, including operators, production supervisors, manufacturing engineers and quality engineers to produce products faster, more efficiently, and consistently. PfMD has been designed to handle environments where more than 100,000 routes, hundreds of thousands of documents, and tens of thousands of quality forms required to support the products being produced.

Integrated with GE’s Proficy Manufacturing suite for consistency across products, PfMD provides standard connectivity to ERP and PLM systems for rapid deployments. It is modularized to deploy in phases for near-term and long-term benefits and features advanced architecture to integrate with existing plant floor controls and operations.

A key feature of PfMD is its Dispatch capability which enables operations to be dispatched to lines and/or work cells based on the route definitions in the form of jobs to be executed. The queue of jobs associated with a line and/or a work cell is made up of comparable operations from multiple orders. Also, the product’s documentation management capabilities allows production supervisors to manage the documents utilized within the system, including the creation, modification, and revision control of documents, which can be routed through an approval process prior to production. In addition, PfMD provides detailed order scheduling, product management, order execution, route management, labor tracking, WIP management, manufacturing instructions for operations.

Genealogy and Traceability features of PfMD capture a permanent record of as-built product data, including the material/BOMs, along with all quality data and routes/operations. The solution also captures quality data associated with the product and/or process through quality forms and configures the qualifications and/or certification levels of equipment and personnel to ensure the right people and/or equipment are allowed to perform the operations (i.e., execute the jobs).

Digitized information enables true real-time digitized WIP Visibility and Management to reduce cost and improve product manufacturing cycles. PfMD also Streamlines Supply Chain Management by capturing supplier and outsourced operation data.

Digitizing MES processes is a critical enabler for achieving effective operations and supply chain optimization,” concluded Busiek. “PfMD delivers optimized performance today and a forward-looking foundational path for success tomorrow.”

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Thermal images of industrial processes!

The recent introduction of the infrared linescanner system ScanIR3, from Raytek, complements the product portfolio of the Ircon pyrometer brand. This new series was specially developed to create real-time thermal images in a wide variety of applications, for instance in the glass, metals, semiconductor, and plastics industry. The linescanners are suitable for temperature monitoring of continuous processes as well as discrete manufacturing in production lines. The series comprises eight models for various spectral ranges and wide temperature ranges. Featuring built-in laser sighting, water-cooling, and an air purge housing, the rugged units withstand even the most demanding conditions.

A protective enclosure enables operation at very high ambient temperatures. With a maximum optical resolution of 200:1, a scan speed of up to 150 lines per second, and up to 1.024 measurement points per line, the new Ircon linescanners are among the most precise and fastest systems in the market. Even minimal temperature non-uniformities and hot spots are detected and displayed in real time. The ScanIR3 contains a calibrated infrared sensor that scans measurement points along a straight line by means of a motorized mirror with a 90° field of view. Thereby, a two-dimensional thermal image is generated in moving processes.

The scanner is available with a rugged processor box which is connected through a single cable with a robust one-click connector. The box features Ethernet or fiber optic interfaces (optional) as well as various analog and digital I/O options. This enables stand-alone operation without the need for an external computer and, therefore, eliminates the risk of a Windows operating system crash. Temperature data are displayed in real time and can be made available in a network via an OPC or DDE server. The accompanying ScanView Pro software provides comprehensive parameter and analysis functions. The ScanIR3 system also contains a complete range of accessories.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Withstanding the racing vibe!

Building on its well established relationship with motor racing, from grand prix to touring cars, Kistler Instruments has introduced a high quality, miniature piezoresistive pressure transmitter. The new sensor has an overall length of 40.8 mm, weighs only 13.3 grams and may be specified with either flying leads or a high quality LEMO connector.

Designed to withstand the high vibration generated by current motor sport applications, the sensor has M6 mounting to simplify installation where space is limited.

Main applications will be for pressure and temperature measurements in gearboxes, steering systems, braking systems, water and oil circuits, and hydraulic systems where very high reliability is a paramount requirement.

The new Type 4080 pressure transmitter is available for pressure ranges of 5, 10, 20, 130 and 250 bar at temperatures from -40 to +150°Celsius with temperature compensation for the range +25 to + 125°Celsius. The integrated signal amplifier has an output signal of 0.2 to 4.4 V for pressure and 1.8 to 3.6 V for temperature. The supply voltage can vary from 8 to 16 V making the transmitter ideal for motor racing applications.

Main applications for racing are pressure and temperature measurements in gearboxes, steering systems, braking systems, water and oil circuits, and hydraulic systems.

New website & headquarters!

Magnetrol®; International has launched its new, redesigned corporate website.

It has a brand new look! "After almost a year in development, MAGNETROL is excited and proud to announce the launch of its new, revamped corporate website. Users will enjoy the improved functionality and simplified navigation. The streamlined product offering enables the company to focus to a greater degree on customer’s and representative’s needs."

This new site enables the company to more efficiently promote new products and initiatives, as well as quickly direct traffic to the content they are looking for. Additional enhancements and improvements that are on the way will be constantly reported on the new site.

Not only is its website new, so is the corporate headquarters! In August, the U.S. headquarters relocated to Aurora (IL USA). Magnetrol’s headquarters move accommodates the need for increased capacity by the company. The relocation to a new 20.530m³ facility in the Meridian Business Campus more than doubles its production capacity, while housing Magnetrol’s headquarters operation under one roof.

Also the build - out of the facility in Belgium, which houses manufacturing, sales and administration operations, will double production capacity of Magnetrol’s regional headquarters for Europe, Middle East, Africa and India markets. The expansion is scheduled for completion in the fall of 2013.

“Magnetrol’s growth represents our commitment to delivering excellent products and service, while leveraging strategic market opportunities,” said President and CEO Jeffrey K. Swallow. “Our company’s history is tied to instrumentation technology breakthroughs, and our continued success will come from remaining our customers’ preferred partner for level and flow control solutions.”

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Resistors for measurement and control systems!

MSR Bare Element Resistors from ARCOL, have been developed for current sensing and shunt applications in intelligent power systems and instrumentation.

The MSR series feature a special alloy element, copper-clad steel leads and welded construction. Built in stand-offs and standard lead spacings make for simple PCB mounting.

ARCOL MSR Bare Element Resistors offer values from 0.0005Ω to 1Ω, are low inductance (less than 10nH), have a flameproof construction, a TCR of 20ppm/°C and are RoHS Compliant. MSR resistors will operate up to 275°C and have power ratings up to 5W at 85°C.

Tony Daly, Sales Manager at ARCOL, comments; “OEMs increasing need to automate manufacturing and our high power RWS range offer previously unavailable SMD assembly of high power resistors offering time and manufacturing cost savings.”

Refinery-wide optimisation solutions contract!

Invensys has signed a multi-year, multi-million dollar contract with KBR, Inc. to supply its SimSci™ PRO/II® simulation software.

Under the terms of a corporate licensing agreement, Invensys will provide PRO/II steady-state simulation software to help KBR accurately model its process technology, used in both the designs KBR provides to its customers and the technology it licenses to the hydrocarbon processing industry. In addition, Invensys will provide on-site guidance to assist KBR during transition from the previous model.  

“Before agreeing to standardise on PRO/II software, KBR needed new functionality to support them while they transitioned from a previous simulation tool,” said Tobias Scheele, Ph.D., vice president, design, simulation and optimization for Invensys. “Our Invensys developers worked hand-in-hand with the KBR team so that they can more accurately model and quickly deliver their processing technology to the market. We are pleased to provide these new features to KBR, as well as to deliver hands-on guidance and on-site engineering services to help them make the transition. We look forward to a long, mutually rewarding partnership.”

One of the refining industry’s leading simulation solutions, PRO/II software is a comprehensive simulation solution for process design, revamp and operational analysis. It is backed by more than 45 years of research and development and includes proprietary correlations to model heavy oils.

“We recognize Invensys’ strong commitment to the refining and petrochemical industries,” said John Derbyshire, president, KBR Technology. “This mutually collaborative relationship and the valuable assistance they have provided during the transition will help us continue to safely deliver key projects for the benefit of our global customers and other stakeholders.”


Invensys will demonstrate its PRO/II technology at its North American Software Conference and Tech Support Symposium, covering the company’s Avantis, SimSci and Wonderware software offerings. The event will be held October 15 through October 17 in Dallas (TX USA)

Chemical analysis acquisition

SEAL Analytical has acquired Thomas Cain, a manufacturer of automated chemical addition, sample preparation and digestion systems for the analysis of mercury and metals in environmental laboratories.

Thomas Cain designs, manufactures and distributes the DEENA range of graphite block digestion systems which are supplied throughout the world. The company also designs and manufactures a range of automation options for these systems which reduce or remove the need for manual intervention in hazardous processes during sample digestion. The Thomas Cain ERICA sample preparation systems provide a fully automated liquid handling system for mixing samples, standards and reagents. Ranges of standard and bespoke consumables for different sample and digestion types are available for both systems.

Air preparation range!

A new cost-effective compact air preparation service unit, the DB-mini has been launched by Festo. When compressed air consumption and energy costs are in focus, a correctly operating and carefully set air preparation unit such as the DB-mini is one of the simplest ways to improve profits. The DB-mini provides excellent filtration and flow performance while being simple to use and install.

Air preparation in pneumatic systems is essential to achieve reliability, performance and longevity of the pneumatic components. The lightweight, polymer bodied DB-mini air preparation units reliably filter out contaminants including particles, dust, oil and water, reducing wear, contamination and potentially unhealthy exhaust elements. The regulator function simply reduces compressed air usage, many applications can reduce the operating pressure from 6 bar to 4.5 bar immediately saving 25% without any detrimental effects.

The DB-mini is ideal for all standard compressed air systems; modules include a manual, lockable isolation / dump valve, filter, regulator and for those applications that require an oil mist injection, a lubricator unit. Typical applications are almost universal but include workshops, small assembly and packaging machinery.

For its compact dimensions, the DB-mini provides an exceptionally high flow rate of up to 2,000Nl/min. Suitable for supply pressures up to 7bar, the 40μm filter enables this series to achieve a purity class of 7.4.4. according to ISO 8573-1:2010.

Two of the module options are worthy of a closer look. The lockable manual on-off valve (HE) won an iF Design Award for its neat design. The vertical slide valve function is visually easy to identify and understand the flow state, it saves space and provides simple padlock lock-off for ensured isolation during maintenance or to prevent unnecessary activation and wastage during stand down periods. The similar space-saving and extremely lightweight distributor FRZ is half the width of the main unit and so is ideal for applications in tight fitting spaces. The DB-mini is available pre-assembled meaning customers can benefit from ordering a single part rather than specifying each part individually and then having to assemble on site.

“The cost-effective DB-mini is a welcome addition to our wide air preparation range,” says Steve Sands, product manager at Festo. “The high flow rate enables machine builders to install a more compact unit and possibly even downsize from a higher port size therefore saving more space and cost on their machine.”

Turbine flow meters for diverse applications

The Vision Series turbine flow meters, from Badger,  comply with lead-free provisions of the United States Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) and are bisphenol A (BPA) free. The compact meters are designed for flow measurement of low-viscosity and non-aggressive liquids, including de-mineralised water, alkaline solutions, oils, fuel, beverages, water solutions and coolants.

The Vision turbine flow meter is intended for use in diverse applications found in the food, medical products, chemical, pharmaceutical, automotive and general industrial fields. Many of these applications are affected by the SDWA, which authorises the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set health-based standards to protect against both naturally occurring and man-made contaminants in the nation's drinking water supply.

The Vision Series consists of two turbine flow meter models: the V1000 for measuring liquid flow as low as 0.026 gallons per minute (gpm) and up to 0.65 gpm, and the V2000 for measuring liquid flow as low as 0.13 gpm and up to 9.2 gpm. The flow meters provide accuracy of ±3 percent with resolution up to 70,000 pulses per gallon (ppg), depending on the model. They have a temperature range of –4…212° F and withstand operating pressure up to 362.50 pounds per square inch (psi).

According to Peter Vander Grinten, marketing manager, Badger Meter, the Vision turbine flow meter provides an exceptionally robust and reliable flow measurement solution. "The simple mechanical construction of the Vision meter guarantees a long lifespan without any loss of accuracy. Pressure spikes less than burst pressure rating do not affect its measurements. This meter is especially suitable for washing machines, dishwashers, coffee machines, laser cooling plants, solar solutions, bakery machines, steam cooking machines in large kitchen plants, and CD or DVD cleaning."

The Vision turbine flow meter employs a volumetric operating principle, whereby liquid flow causes a bladed turbine inside the meter housing to turn at an angular velocity directly proportional to the velocity of the liquid measured. As the blades pass beneath a magnetic pickup coil, a frequency signal is generated. Each pulse is equivalent to a discrete volume of liquid. The frequency pulse is directly proportional to the turbine angular velocity and the flow rate.

The large number of pulses generated by the Vision meter ensures high resolution. The pulses can be used for digital or analog signal processing and specified as a K Factor. As the mass of the turbine is small, the response time is fast. It is not necessary to install a straight length of pipeline upstream of the meter.

High-speed, multichannel LVDS recorders for R&D, earth, sea & airborne applications.

Pentek has introduced three additions to the Talon® family of high-speed turnkey recording systems handling LVDS (low-voltage differential signaling) digital I/O: the Model RTS 2718 commercial rackmount, the Model RTR 2738 rugged portable and the Model RTR 2758 rugged rackmount recorders. Using state-of-the-art disk storage technology, these systems are highly flexible and achieve aggregate recording rates up to 4 GBytes per second.

As complete recording systems, the Talon recorders 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 recorded data to other drives, networks and I/O channels. Plus, post-processing and analysis tools installed on the workstation can immediately operate on the recorded data.

“These LVDS recording systems offer a low-level, general-purpose interface commonly found in many digital systems,” said Rodger Hosking, vice president of Pentek. "The recorders exploit the latest storage technology to deliver the industry's fastest recording rates and deepest capacities. Because the LVDS interface incorporates a Virtex-6 FPGA, Pentek can offer options for configuring custom interfaces and protocols to handle special applications.”

"Our SystemFlow® recording software simplifies user operation, and the 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 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 information. Files are stored in the native Windows NTFS format, allowing drive units to be read directly by PCs and eliminating the need for file conversion. Files can also be transferred from the system through gigabit Ethernet, USB ports or written to optical disks using the built-in 8X double layer DVD±R/RW drive.

Talon recorders capture data at a very high rate using the latest generation of high-capacity disk drives. The rugged portable (Model 2738) and rugged rack-mount (Model 2758) are configured with SSDs (solid state drives) while the commercial rack-mount (Model 2718) 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.

Fieldbus integration

The Fieldbus Foundation is developing technical specifications for integration of devices based on the Modbus® communications protocol into its FOUNDATION for Remote Operations Management (ROM) technology. Integration of these instruments will help enable an overall remote operations solution in a wide range of industrial automation applications.

The first development of its kind integrating remote input/output (I/O), ISA100.11a, WirelessHART®, wired HART, and FOUNDATION fieldbus H1 protocols into a single, standard data management environment, FOUNDATION for ROM extends the capabilities of FOUNDATION fieldbus to wired and wireless devices installed in some of the world's harshest and most remote locations. This open, non-proprietary solution provides a unified digital infrastructure for asset management in applications ranging from tank farms and terminals to pipelines, offshore platforms, and even original equipment manufacturer (OEM) skids.

Petrobras Cenpes Research Facility
The FOUNDATION for ROM technical specifications for the remote I/O, wired HART, WirelessHART and wireless ISA100.11a interfaces have been completed and were successfully demonstrated at a live end user demonstration at the Petrobras research and development facility (Cenpes) in Rio de Janeiro (BR), in April of this year.

The Fieldbus Foundation is now proceeding to develop specifications for Modbus integration into FOUNDATION for ROM. Modbus devices such as well head flow meters and submersible pump controllers need to be integrated as part of the overall solution in some applications.

The Modbus integration team, comprised of end user and supplier engineers, had their kickoff meeting in May hosted by Shell Global Solutions in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

The team completed the use cases in August and finished their review at a meeting in September hosted by MTL in Luton (GB). The team is now proceeding with requirements and specification development.

Fieldbus Foundation Director of Technology Development David Glanzer said: "We have a great team working on the Modbus integration. They have made exceptional progress on the use case development." Technical Team Leader Todd Shadle of Phoenix Contact agreed, saying, "All of the team members are fully engaged and are eager to complete the specification."

Whether operating on a wired or wireless HSE backhaul network, the FOUNDATION for ROM solution enables automation end users to bring device data into the FOUNDATION fieldbus infrastructure, which provides a single source of data management, diagnostics, alarms and alerts, data quality control, control-in-the-field capability, and object-oriented block structure.

Unique portable humidity calibrator!


Michell Instruments has upgraded its portable humidity calibrator - the S503 - with an optional, external battery pack. Michell introduced the modification in response to requests from customers who found that many of the locations on their sites where calibrations were made did not have easy access to mains electricity.

The battery pack provides 12 hours or more of continuous use from a single charge, allowing a full day of calibrations to be completed on-site. This is a unique feature not currently offered by any other calibrator on the market, and provides true portability, allowing the S503 to be used even where mains power is not available.

This portable humidity calibrator is a practical, affordable and flexible solution for calibrating RH sensors. It can be used by most staff as no specialist training or experience is necessary.

Simply connect up to 7 probes, set the desired humidity with the front panel switches and wait for the humidity within the calibration chamber to stabilise. Response time is fast too – stabilisation occurs within just 10 minutes of setting the relative humidity, enabling a 3-point calibration to be carried out in around an hour. At less than 2kg in weight and 24cm wide, the instrument is compact and easy to transport. A convenient carry case is also available to hold the calibrator and its accessories.

Michell Instruments are experts in their field and have over 35 years’ experience in moisture calibration and sensing. Using the S503 in combination with a Michell Chilled Mirror Hygrometer, such as the Optidew Vision, you can create a transportable, traceable humidity calibration system.

Michell Instruments products are marketed in Ireland by Instrument Technology.



High-end Visual IR thermometer

Fluke has introduced the high-end Fluke® VT04 Visual Infrared Thermometer, a troubleshooting tool with an infrared heat map which offers higher resolution as well as temperature alarms and time-lapse features. Fluke Visual IR Thermometers fill the gap for when a single-spot temperature reading is not enough and a high-resolution thermal image is more than users need: the one tool combines the visual insight of a thermal imager, the visual images of a digital camera, and the point-and-shoot convenience of an IR thermometer.

Compared to the VT02, the Fluke VT04 offers a wider 28°x28° field of view for improved scanning and up-close evaluation and four times sharper images. It also features a Hi/Lo temperature alarm which enables hot spots to be found in seconds, and time-lapse functionality which automatically monitors equipment over time or automatically captures images after an alarm has been triggered. Images are saved to a micro-SD card, eliminating the need to write down single or multiple measurements: analysis and reporting software is included.
Using the new Fluke VT04 is far faster for conducting inspections of electrical, industrial, HVAC/R and automotive applications than an infrared thermometer, which requires multiple readings and manually recorded results.

The Fluke VT04, like the VT02, instantly detects problems using blended thermal and digital imagery. It will display and save images as full visual, full infrared, or in three blended modes (25, 50, and 75 percent). Markers pinpoint hot and cold spots indicating the hottest temperature with a red box and the coldest with a blue box. A temperature reading is provided at the centre point.

Affordable, compact, and intuitive, the Fluke Visual Infrared Thermometers operate with focus-free simplicity, expanding the user base from senior to junior technicians and broadening the applications for in-house staff as well as creating new business opportunities for service contractors. Images can be imported into SmartView® analysis and reporting software, included with the VT04 and VT02, to produce professional reports that document problems detected, or repairs made, for management and customer review.

• Fluke products are marketed by Irish Power & Process in Ireland.

Water flows in a closed cycle at plant!

In its electronics manufacturing plant in Amberg (EWA), Siemens has commissioned the first washing center for cleaning SMD (Surface Mounted Device) tools to operate entirely without the generation of wastewater. For each cleaning cycle, 1,800 liters of rinsing water are regenerated. After around ten uses, the water is evaporated using a special method and subsequently returned to the cleaning process. The system has also succeeded in driving down operating costs by 40 percent.

The Siemens EWA plant processes around three billion components from 200 suppliers every year. Over a total of 18 SMD lines, regular maintenance and cleaning operations include the regeneration of condensate filters from the reflow ovens and cleaning over 70 used stencils every day. Previously, the purified process water was discharged into the sewage network. By installing a new electronic washing system, the aim was to not only significantly increase overall cleaning capacity but also to achieve savings in terms of costs and fresh water consumption. The solution supplied by Kolb Cleaning Technology GmbH permitted wastewater emissions to be reduced to zero.
A schematic view of the new washing room at Siemens in Amberg: On the right the three fully
automatic Kolb AF 60 cleaning systems, next to them on the left the (blue) storage tanks for
the cleaning fluid. Further to the left are the (light colored) storage tanks for the rinsing water
and in the foreground is the (blue) Vacudest evaporator.

Using the AirFlow process developed by Kolb, the used tools are placed in a cleaning chamber and submerged under pressure into cleaning fluid, which is subsequently filtered. After around ten washing cycles, the cleaning fluid is guided into an evaporation system for treatment. The system centers around the Vacudest wastewater evaporator supplied by H2O GmbH, a German company based in Steinen. The evaporator uses the principle of material separation due to boiling point differences. Heavy metals, salts, oils and greases remain in the evaporation residue. The evaporated water from the cleaning fluid is fed back to the cleaning circuit in the form of condensed fresh water – to be used for another ten washing cycles. The plant now works in continuous mode without producing any wastewater whatsoever, and has also allowed operating costs to be reduced by 40 percent. «

Monday, September 30, 2013

New sensor factory opened!

Sensor technology company Zettlex has celebrated the opening of its new production facility in Newton, Cambridgeshire (GB).

At the official opening recently, Zettlex General Manager, Mark Howard was joined by guests, including the local MP Rt. Hon. Andrew Lansley CBE as well as customers, suppliers, members of the local press and journalists.



LtoR: Rt. Hon. Andrew Lansley MP; 
Mark Howard, General Manager
 & Dr. Darran Kreit, Technical 
Manager, Zettlex.

Mark Howard of Zettlex commented: “We are enjoying a boom from USA, Germany, India, Turkey and China and this has meant that we simply had to create more production capacity to keep pace with demand. This year exports will account for 50% of our business and next year this is likely to increase to about 75%.”

Andrew Lansley CBE MP for South Cambridgeshire commented: "This area has a proud history of high-tech innovation and it's good to see a young company growing, prospering, generating jobs and exporting products from South Cambridgeshire to the rest of the world."

The new production facility, which is located adjacent to Zettlex’s existing technology labs in Newton, increases the company’s production space by 7,000 square feet. Zettlex has also recruited additional production and engineering staff to help meet this increased demand for the company’s IncOder range of precision sensors. IncOders are ideally suited to operating in harsh environments where electrical contacts, optical encoders or capacitive devices are unreliable. The IncOder range now includes more than 500,000 product variants which are used in a wide variety of applications in the medical, defence, aerospace, motor sport, automation, oil & gas sectors.

New Profibus system connections!

The Siemens's range of Profibus system connections for PCs and PGs (programming devices) has been incresed to include two new PCI cards. The new communication processors CP 5613 A3 and CP 5614 A3 come with their own microprocessor to take some of the strain from the host system. Unlike predecessor products, the new CPs additionally feature a run time meter and temperature sensor, which operate independently of the operating system and application of the PC/PG. Communication processor statuses can be evaluated via an interface, providing the basis for actions such as preventive maintenance.

Using CP 5613 A3, a PC or Simatic PG/PC is connected to a standard Profibus with up to 12 Megabits per second. Direct link-up to the CP’s dual port RAM means that process data can be rapidly accessed. CP 5614 A3 is also fitted with a second Profibus port, which allows the processor to act simultaneously both as DP master and DP slave.

In this way, a single PCI card can be used to connect two Profibus networks to a PC and exchange data within a hierarchical structure.

By pre-processing communication, the new communication processors reduce the workload for the host CPU of the PC or PG, supporting control tasks such as PC-based, numeric or robot control. Data exchange with real-time capability in equidistant mode makes the CPs additionally suitable for motion control applications. An optional developer package for driver porting is available for applications in non-Windows operating system environments. «

Four year guarantee for power supplies!

Stadium Power is offering industrial users a wide range of high reliability DIN rail power supplies all featuring up to four year warranty.

Suitable for a wide range of applications including; process control, building and factory automation, alarms, telemetry, signaling and control panel applications, Stadium DIN Rail power supplies are suitable for DIN rail TS-35 / 7.5 or 15 installations. All units feature universal AC input, output protection circuitry, status indicators, and operate at efficiencies of up to 92%.

These compact, fully enclosed DIN Rail power supplies are available as single, dual and triple outputs from 3V3 to 48Vdc over a power range of 15to 240Watts, and meet the international safety agency requirements of UL, C-UL and CE.

Stadium’s higher power models, FDR180 and FDR240, feature active power factor correction, as standard.

Stadium Power’s range of DIN Rail power supplies are now available to order from stock from their online shop at http://www.stadiumpower.co.uk/buy-online Online orders will be available for fast delivery from stocks held in Britain. Discounts of up to 50% are possible on high volume orders placed for online stock.

Stadium Power offers a range AC-DC Power Supplies for almost any application. Power levels range from 5 Watts to 10kW. Power supplies are available either off the shelf or if not available a full custom power supply design facility is available with in-house power supply design engineers on hand for technical support. In addition to , 15 - 240 watt DIN rail supplies Stadium also supply 5 Watt to 3KW open frame AC-DC models, high efficiency MVHR power supplies to SAP Appendix Q and 5 – 30 watt external plug tops.

North American appointments!

Excelsys Technologies has appointed John Stevenson as Vice President, North American Sales. John comes from Norvell Electronics where he was National Sales Manager.

"Excelsys is committed to providing best in class high power density, high efficiency power solutions with outstanding customer support in the North American market” states Gary Duffy, Excelsys CEO. "John’s relationships, history and success with Excelsys products specifically, and his knowledge and expertise in the marketing of power components and value added power solutions to OEM customers in the industrial, medical and military markets will help Excelsys win in this space”.
John Stevenson

Mr. Duffy adds, “John Stevenson has a proven track record of success in the power component, power solution and value added power systems markets. His understanding of the market and the critical issues facing our customers makes him an excellent choice to lead our Sales efforts in the USA”.

With over 24 years of experience in the technical sales, electronics and the power supply industry, John has held senior sales and sales management roles with Omnirel Corporation, Vicor Corporation, PictureTel Corporation, Wakefield Thermal Solutions and Norvell Electronics.

John received his BS degree from The University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT.

Excelsys Technologies also announces the retirement of Jim Oursler as Vice President North American Sales. Jim has held this role since 2005 and has managed the growth of the Excelsys North American Sales and Organisation. Mr Duffy commented, “Jim has done an outstanding job for Excelsys over the past 8 years growing our North American business from scratch to become 40% of our global revenues. His contribution to the management team at Excelsys has been immense and I am delighted that Jim will continue his involvement with our company initially in a consulting role and later on our advisory board.”

Enhanced safety system for Oil & Gas

Yokogawa Electric Corporation has released an enhanced version of the ProSafe®-RS safety instrumented system and the addition of a new function to the DPharp EJX multivariable transmitter. The new ProSafe-RS version, R3.02.10, offers improved functions for upstream oil and gas, which is one of Yokogawa’s core markets. The DPharp EJX multivariable transmitter has been enhanced to improve connectivity with ProSafe-RS.

In upstream oil and gas processes, there is an ever-pressing need to prevent accidents and protect the environment. Accordingly, there is a growing demand for safety instrumented systems that can detect abnormal conditions and safely initiate emergency shutdowns. However, wells and pipelines are typically distributed over a wide area and often have limited space for the installation of equipment. To improve operational efficiency and reduce hardware costs, there is a need to consolidate the functions performed by control and safety instrumented systems. In response to these needs, Yokogawa is releasing a new version of the ProSafe-RS safety instrumented system and has enhanced the DPharp EJX multivariable transmitter.

New developments and enhancements include AGA (American Gas Association) gas flow rate calculation, Modbus communications between DPharp EJX and ProSafe-RS for gas flow rate calculation, and support for the wide variety of networks used in oil and gas upstream applications.

To monitor and control gas wells and pipelines, gas flow rate compensation is required. The in-situ gas volume needs to be compensated to a standard volume because the gas volume rises or falls significantly depending on the process temperature and pressure. This compensation is usually carried out by a control device or dedicated flow computer. For customers in regions such as the Americas and the Middle East who wish to eliminate the need for such dedicated devices, Yokogawa has incorporated a gas flow rate calculation function in ProSafe-RS R3.02.10. Thus ProSafe-RS, which is certified for use in SIL3 applications, is now suitable for use both in safety instrumentation and monitoring & control. SIL is a standard relating to the functional safety of electrical and electronic equipment that was established by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Safety integrity levels (SIL) are defined by the IEC61508. At SIL3, the risk factor for a plant where safety measures are not in place has been reduced to a range from 1/1000 to 1/10000.

To compensate the gas flow rate, differential pressure, static pressure, and temperature must be measured. The DPharp EJX multivariable transmitter is a sensor that can measure all three of these variables. As the Modbus protocol - an industrial communications protocol developed by the US company Modicon (now owned by Schneider Electric) - is widely used in upstream oil and gas processes for communications between sensors and gas flow rate compensation devices, Yokogawa has added Modbus protocol support to the DPharp EJX multivariable transmitter. This sensor can thus be used together with ProSafe-RS to perform highly reliable and accurate gas flow rate calculations.

A variety of networks are used to link ProSafe-RS at the site to the Yokogawa FAST/TOOLS SCADA system. Some networks use high-bandwidth optical fibre, while others rely on low-bandwidth wireless links. By optimising the frequency of data collection and the volume of transmitted data, ProSafe-RS R3.02.10 can now link up with other systems using low-bandwidth media. This improves maintenance efficiency by enabling remote engineering. Essential data is stored on the ProSafe-RS controller, ensuring continuity in the event of a network failure.

Major target markets and applications include emergency shutdown and fire prevention/suppression, production, and other applications in process industries such as oil, natural gas, and petrochemicals.