Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Valve terminal ranges with low-cost networking connectivity

Festo has extended the reach of its VTUG and MPA-L valve terminals and added a low-cost connection module for use with Fieldbus or industrial Ethernet networks. As a result, OEMs and machine builders can now connect the valve terminals directly to protocols such as CANopen, Profibus, EthernetIP and DeviceNet thus reducing installation and engineering costs significantly.

Using its innovative dual purpose connector, the valve terminals are configured and delivered complete with an M18 connector. This allows connection directly to the industry standard IO-Link network or, by fitting a separate CTEU network module connection to many Fieldbus or industrial Ethernet protocols are possible.

Whether multipin, IO-Link or network connection, the pneumatics doesn’t change.  This means the design of the circuit stays the same however connected electrically, thus enabling OEMs to reduce design and drawing costs and to access Festo’s ‘plug and work’ philosophy.

The affordable CTEU bus node module includes a comprehensive range of diagnostics functions which helps reduce downtime and machine failure significantly, for example, by identifying overvoltage and short circuits.

The VTUG terminal is an extension to Festo’s standard valve range and is an aluminium sub-base valve terminal that can accommodate up to 24 valve positions, saving users significant amounts of wiring and control cabinet space. The MPA-L, which is a polymer sub-base valve terminal, offers individual modularity with up to 32 positions; these positions can be a mixture of three different valve sizes matching the user’s application exactly, thus saving compressed air. High level IP65/IP67 protection also enables use under harsh ambient conditions.

Supporting the industry trend to decentralise machine installations, both valve terminals are compact and easy to install.  This enables users to save energy as the valve terminals can be mounted directly next to the cylinders.

In addition, the CAPC distribution module allows one network module to be used to run two valve terminals as a distributed network with data cables of up to 20m.  This offers cost savings in the number of network modules needed as well as giving users the convenience of mounting the valve terminal exactly where required.

“At Festo we have a wide range of pneumatic valve terminals, from single valve, multipin and fieldbus valve terminals to complete automation platforms, readily available to suit all applications,” says Jacqui Hanbury, product manager at Festo.  “I’m delighted we can now offer affordable Fieldbus and Ethernet compatible valve terminals that can be easily integrated to the network, allowing our customers to realise the benefits of networking.”

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