Friday, March 24, 2017

Agreement introduces corrosion measurement.

Yokogawa has signed a mutual sales agreement with Rohrback Cosasco Systems, a leading US-based manufacturer of corrosion monitoring systems and equipment.

Under this agreement, Yokogawa will distribute Cosasco’s ISA Wireless™-based MWT-3905 and CWT-9020 corrosion monitors and Cosasco will distribute Yokogawa ISA Wireless-based field wireless system devices. ISA100 Wireless is a technology that is based on the ISA100.11a standard. It includes ISA100.11a-2011-communications, an application layer with process control industry standard objects, device descriptions and capabilities, a gateway interface, infrared provisioning, and a backbone router.

Yokogawa can thus add corrosion sensors to its lineup of field wireless devices that help customers efficiently maintain facilities and ensure safety at their plants. For Cosasco, the ability to offer its corrosion monitors in combination with Yokogawa field wireless devices is expected to increase sales.

Yokogawa has developed ISA100 Wireless-based technologies and products such as wireless access points and management stations, and Cosasco has a long global track record in supplying various kinds of corrosion monitors to the oil and gas, petrochemical, chemical, and other industries.

Through this agreement, Yokogawa aims to increase sales for its field wireless business by being able to offer a wider field wireless device lineup. Cosasco, on the other hand, aims to drive up sales for its wireless corrosion monitors by being able to offer them in combination with Yokogawa field wireless devices that are used to link field devices with host systems. Monitoring of corrosion is vital in facilities at offshore platforms and other types of oil and gas installations, petrochemical plants, chemical plants, and water and sewage treatment plants

Features of Cosasco’s Wireless Corrosion Monitors
Corrosion sensors monitor the thinning or deterioration of the metal walls of pipes and other installations. A variety of technologies are employed, including electrical resistance and ultrasonics. Cosasco’s MWT-3905 and CWT-9020, the devices covered by this sales agreement, are direct measuring type corrosion sensors that use high speed electrical resistance and linear polarisation resistance (LPR) technology. The major features are as follows:

  • Corrosion rate measurement for all process environments
  • Highly secure and reliable ISA100 Wireless networks
  • Low installed cost
  • International hazardous area certifications

Yokogawa is to continue to expand its lineup of ISA100 Wireless transmitters and other devices such as adaptors to develop best-in-class solutions.

@YokogawaIA @COSASCO  #PAuto 

Thursday, March 23, 2017

New pressure and temperature sensor for composite moulding.

A novel, combined low pressure and high temperature sensor specifically to support new, automated resin transfer (RTM) and wet moulding composite manufacturing methods has been intrioduced by Kistler Instruments.
For some years the aerospace industry has been using composite materials to save weight without compromising strength but now the automotive industry is rapidly catching up in the quest for lower fuel consumption and emissions. Unlike the aerospace sector where a relatively few, large items can be produced by expensive, labour intensive methods, the automotive sector needs to produce large quantities of much smaller components cost effectively. The techniques used for high volume composite production demand monitoring and control similar to conventional injection moulding to ensure consistent, high quality output. With its long experience of developing systems and components for the injection moulding industry, Kistler Instruments is ideally placed to provide the process monitoring systems needed by low pressure composite moulding techniques.

Much like injection moulding and other filling processes, the cavity pressure curve is a key factor in process optimization and production monitoring. Characteristic process phases such as evacuation, filling and curing can easily be identified from the pressure curve allowing process parameters to be easily optimized to make production more cost-effective.

The pressure signal can also be used as a control variable for individual process steps for online process control. Anomalies in the pressure curve show whether defects can be expected in the final part which, if out of tolerance, can be ejected. The pressure signal is also captured and recorded to allow traceability of individual process steps. For these reasons, the pressure curve is an essential tool for quality assurance. Due to the much lower cavity pressure experienced in composite moulding systems, the cavity pressure sensor needs to measure low pressure with high resolution to reliably detect even the smallest pressure or vacuum changes. The new Type 4001A sensor meets all of these demands plus the integrated temperature element, accurate up to 275°C, monitors the temperature conditions inside the mould allowing automatic temperature compensation to correct the pressure signal due to thermal changes during the process.

The new Type 4001A low pressure and high temperature sensor is a vital addition to Kistler Instrument’s range of sensors and systems specifically tailored to optimize and automate manufacturing processes, including related quality assurance requirements.

 #Kistler #Pauto

Enhanced integrated production control system.

An enhanced version of Yokogawa's CENTUM® VP integrated production control system has been released. The enhancements in this latest release, R6.04, include a new input/output (IO) module that will give Yokogawa end users a greater range of choices.

Control systems rely on field IO devices to transfer data to and from field instruments such as sensors and valves in order to automate the control of plant facilities. CENTUM VP’s N-IO (Network-IO) is one such field IO device. As the universal IO module originally developed for the N-IO device can handle a wide variety of IO signal types, it is easy to install different types of sensors when constructing a new plant or renovating an existing facility; this saves significant time and effort, and makes it possible to complete such projects much sooner. There are cases, however, when users may wish to add sensors that do not require this versatile capability. For just such a need, Yokogawa has added to its N-IO lineup a new low-cost IO device that handles only digital signals.

1. New IO module
As the latest control systems often primarily use digital signals, a new, low-cost IO module that handles only digital signals has been added to the N-IO lineup. To accommodate both analog and digital signals, it can be used in combination with the universal IO module. In this way, the cost of a plant construction or expansion project can be reduced.
In addition, a signal conversion function is included in the new IO module’s adaptor. With the universal IO module, a dedicated signal conversion board is required to directly receive signals from a field instrument such as a temperature sensor. The incorporation of this function in the new IO module eliminates the need for this hardware.

2. Windows 10
This latest CENTUM version uses Microsoft Windows 10 Enterprise, the optimum OS for control systems. Based on its Long-Term Servicing Branch (LTSB) service model, Microsoft provides five years of extended support in addition to the standard five years of mainstream support (free-of-charge support that includes security patch updates), thus enabling a 10-year product lifecycle. By such means, Yokogawa continues to optimize its systems and, in turn, ensures stable long-term performance.

3. Ring network topology
CENTUM VP’s Vnet/IP® is a control network originally developed by Yokogawa and features high reliability and quick response. CENTUM VP’s Vnet/IP® real-time control bus uses the star topology, in which all devices are connected to a central hub. This latest CENTUM version also allows the use of a ring topology, in which devices are connected to each other in the form of a ring. With this feature, more flexible networks can be configured to satisfy customer needs.

Major Target Markets include process industries such as oil and natural gas, petrochemicals, chemicals, electric power, pulp and paper, pharmaceuticals, foods, iron and steel, and water and wastewater in the operation, monitoring, and automatic control of plants.

@YokogawaIA #PAuto

Massive MIMO trials for 5G wireless.

National Instruments (NI) has joined the quest for highly efficient 5G wireless connectivity and has been given a boost thanks to a collaboration between a team of 5G engineers from the Universities of Bristol and Lund, NI and BT, one of the world’s leading providers of communications services. The research team has undertaken field trials of a massive MIMO system at the BT Labs in Adastral Park, Suffolk. The trials were conducted in a large indoor hall mimicking a stadium environment and outdoors within the Adastral Park campus.

The goals were to test massive MIMO spatial multiplexing indoors and improve the understanding of massive MIMO radio channels under mobile conditions with untethered devices. While carrying out these field experiments, the team obtained promising results indicating that this technology could offer spectrum efficiency figures in excess of the 100 bits/s/Hz mark, improving upon the capacity of today’s long term evolution (LTE) systems by ten times.

It is expected that techniques such as massive MIMO, which offers full spatial multiplexing – where multiple data streams are transmitted at the same time and on the same radio channel will become a crucial part of future 5G networks; the next generation of mobile technology.

The research team, consisting of five PhD students from Bristol’s EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Communications and a researcher from Lund University, under the leadership of Professor Mark Beach, worked with the BT research team, led by Ian Mings, to assess the performance of a 128 element Massive MIMO system operating at 3.5 GHz at BT’s Adastral Park campus.

Initial experiments took place in BT’s large exhibition hall and used 12 streams in a single 20MHz channel to show the real-time transmission and simultaneous reception of ten unique video streams, plus two other spatial channels demonstrating the full richness of spatial multiplexing supported by the system.

The system was also shown to support the simultaneous transmission of 24 user streams operating with 64QAM on the same radio channel with all modems synchronising over-the-air. It is believed that this is the first time such an experiment has been conducted with truly un-tethered devices, from which the team were able to infer a spectrum efficiency of just less than 100bit/s/Hz and a sum rate capacity of circa two Gbits/s in this single 20MHz wide channel.

In addition to the indoor trials, a series of outdoor experiments were conducted with the array at a height of around 20 metres. This enabled far field array characterisation, multi-element handset performance as well as experiments to improve the understanding of the massive MIMO radio channel under mobile conditions to be carried out.

Mark Beach, Professor of Radio Systems Engineering in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering and Manager of the EPSRC CDT in Communications, explained: “We are delighted to be collaborating with BT.  Massive MIMO is a key technology for 5G and the research team’s achievements last year with massive MIMO arrays, which are cellular base stations with more than 100 antennas, demonstrates that this technology could deliver ultra-fast data rates to high densities of smartphones and tablets.”

Professor Tim Whitley, Managing Director, Research and Innovation at BT, added: “The BT Labs have a long history of pioneering wireless research, and with the acquisition of EE, we’re excited to once again be at the forefront of mobile technology development. Massive MIMO has the potential to significantly boost available data rates in future 5G mobile networks, and we’re pleased to be able to explore that potential with leading academics in the field at the University of Bristol.”

The experimental system uses the same flexible SDR platform from NI that leading wireless researchers in industry and academia are using to define 5G.  To achieve accurate, real-time performance, the researchers took full advantage of the system’s FPGAs using LabVIEW Communications System Design and the recently announced NI MIMO Application Framework. As lead users, both the Universities of Bristol and Lund worked closely with NI to implement, test and debug this framework prior to its product release. It now provides the ideal foundations for the rapid development, optimization and evaluation of algorithms and techniques for massive MIMO.

The state-of-the-art platform was made possible thanks to hardware provided by Bristol Is Open, a joint venture between the University and Bristol City Council that aims to make Bristol the first open programmable city in the world. Spectrum and power efficient wireless communications are core to Bristol University’s Communication Systems and Networks (CSN) Group and the EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT in Communications as well as to the Department of Electrical and Information Technology at Lund University. The researchers are now processing the data sets and aim to publish their findings in leading journals in the near future as well as adding enhancements to the system in preparation for further trials.

@niukie #Wireless

Gas detection company opens in France.

Ion Science new office in France, will be the company’s third office in Europe and fourth worldwide, all supported by a global distributor network. Headed up by current France and Africa Territory Manager, Xavier Zinsch, the new facility will help strengthen the company’s position in the French petrochemical, biochemistry and oil and gas industries.

Xavier Zinsch
“Setting up the French office will enable us to better serve our customers and partners across France and the French speaking world. It is excellent opportunity for me and the business, and it is a great privilege to be given the chance to expand the French speaking market, ” commented Xavier Zinsch.

Duncan Johns, Ion Science Managing Director added, “As the number of customers increases in the European region, establishing an office in France has always been an important strategic move for us. Having traditionally sold through distributors, we are confident it will enable us to offer an even better service and further penetrate our target markets. We will be focusing our business development efforts in this area in the months ahead.

“Opening the French office underlines our commitment to extending our geographic reach to match the needs of the global petrochemical and oil and gas industries in particular.”

• The new office will be located at 41 Rue de Etoiles, 83240 Cavalaire-sur-Mer, France, Tel: +33 6 13 50 55 35.

@ionscience #PAuto #France

Automation group appoints a new CEO for America.

Shuji Mori, a company veteran who has been with Yokogawa for nearly three decades, has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of Yokogawa Corporation of America. In the role of CEO, He will be responsible for all day-to-day business operations in North America.

Shuji Mori
Mr. Mori began his career as an engineer, helping implement systems projects for Yokogawa customers all over the world. Over the years he has held a variety of roles throughout the company, most notably in global major account sales, and has acquired extensive experience in the global industrial automation market.

“The North American market is changing rapidly, and Yokogawa Corporation of America has huge growth potential in this strategically important region,” said Takashi Nishijima, President and CEO of Yokogawa Electric Corporation. “I am very confident that Yokogawa Corporation of America will become a stronger organization under his leadership and continue to focus on building a brighter future by creating value with our customers.”

“At the end of the day, all successful business is based on personal trust. We always aim to understand our customers first – their business goals, the challenges they face, and how their companies operate,” said Mr. Mori. “I will make every effort to ensure Yokogawa’s day-to-day operations in North America remain focused on generating new value with our customers and driving the growth of their businesses.”

@YokogawaIA  #PAuto 

Alliance creates industry's first complete solution for optimising crude blending operations.

The industry’s first complete blending solution that includes online crude characterisation has just been announced by Emerson and TopNIR Systems. This same technology is also used to improve performance in the product blending area of the refinery.

To remain competitive and profitable, refiners are increasingly challenged to work with opportunity crudes that provide a cheaper feedstock, but are more challenging to process. With the Emerson/TopNIR integrated blending solution, operators can confidently exploit the profitability opportunity of a wider array of different crudes by providing hydrocarbon property data in real-time that helps identify the potential value content in each crude stream.

Faster access to property data allows Emerson’s model predictive control (MPC) to modify and optimise crude stream mixtures while capturing product value during distillation. Asset monitoring applications minimise the impact of opportunity crudes on process units. These capabilities are a part of Emerson’s broad portfolio of automation technologies that help refiners optimise production, minimise downtime, and ensure that their operations are more agile.

“Downstream producers can tap the power of complete solutions for both crude and product blending operations that are designed, sold, installed, and serviced by a single supplier - all with support from Emerson’s global network of experts, consultants, and service technicians,” said Marcelo Carugo, global director of refining and chemical at Emerson.

TopNIR holds over 30 patents associated with near-infrared spectroscopy systems. One of these, Topological Near-Infrared Modelling, is a form of non-parametric modelling. TopNIR’s proprietary software can measure multiple properties of hydrocarbon streams faster than any other solution on the market today. This not only provides results well within ASTM repeatability and reproducibility standards quicker than other mathematical models, but it also adapts easily to operational changes and allows for a smaller maintenance footprint.

“TopNIR fits perfectly with Emerson’s advanced process control solutions by delivering full on-line analysis of any hydrocarbon stream in less than one minute, allowing real-time optimisation and superior quality control,” said Didier Lambert, CEO of TopNIR Systems.

In addition to improving crude blending performance, customers will now be able to streamline their operations on the fuel blending side of the refinery. The Emerson/TopNIR blending solution allows refiners to more easily test and adjust the characteristics of each blend to avoid touch-up blends that can result in millions of dollars in product quality giveaway each year. Refiners will also be able to minimise inventory and tankage costs, and ensure compliance with the latest global clean-fuel emissions regulations taking effect over the coming years.

@EMR_Automation #PAuto @Emerson_News @Topnir

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Transmitter for moisture in oil.

The EE360 moisture in oil transmitter from E+E Elektronik is dedicated for reliable monitoring of lubrication, hydraulic and insulation oils as well as diesel fuel. The device measures water activity and temperature, and calculates the absolute water content of the oil. The probe can be employed up to 180 °C (356 °F) and 20 bar (290 psi). The colour display shows actual as well as logged measured data.

The well proven E+E sensing technology ensure highly accurate measurement of water activity (aw) and temperature (T). Based on the measured values and on oil-specific parameters, the EE360 calculates the absolute water content (x) in ppm.

On the 3.5"TFT colour display all three physical quantities can be read simultaneously. The integrated data logger stores 20,000 values per measurand, which can be shown as graph on the display. This means that, beside current data, the user can keep an eye on the oil condition trend.

The stainless steel probe can be installed into the process with an ISO or NPT slide fitting, which facilitates the accurate control of the immersion depth. Using the optional ball valve, the probe can be mounted or removed even without process interruption. The pluggable probe version allows for easy installation and replacement.

The measured data is available on two analogue outputs or on the digital Modbus RTU interface. The configuration of the outputs as well as the humidity and temperature adjustment can be easily performed via display and push buttons. Extensive error information and diagnosis are available on the display as well as via status LEDs and acoustic warnings. Two optional relay outputs can be used for alarm or control purposes.

Comfortable setup and adjustment of the EE360 is also possible with a computer and the free EE-PCS configuration software. The USB service interface is used as well to download logged data and perform firmware updates.

The modular IP65 enclosure facilitates mounting and maintenance of the transmitter. The evaluation unit, which accommodates the electronics and the probe, can be replaced within seconds, while the wiring remains untouched. The material of the enclosure is approved according to UL94-V0.

• E+E Elektronik products are marketed in Ireland by Instrument Technology.

#EplusE #PAuto 

Competitive advantage for full-service EMS provider.

The latest customer to integrate the Aegis Software’s FactoryLogix® manufacturing execution software (MES) is ROB Cemtrex GmbH, a full-service EMS provider headquartered in Neulingen, Germany.

With a broad offer that includes hardware and software design and development, electronics assembly and test, and design and production of cable assemblies, ROB Cemtrex provides customers a comprehensive electronic systems solution. Building on its successful history, the company’s ambitious plans for growth prompted its search for a highly-capable MES system to streamline operations, and provide robust, real-time data analysis for internal and external stakeholders.

“We serve customers in high-quality, high-reliability sectors such as automotive, medical, automation and security,” comments Francesco di Sabatino, Head of Production and Process Engineering. “The addition of FactoryLogix to our operations will help us dramatically improve efficiency by eliminating manual data logging and analysis. This saves time, ensures accuracy, improves quality and makes our company even more competitive.”

Aegis’s FactoryLogix enjoys an installed base of over 1700 manufacturers worldwide – and counting. Its unique, modular design allows electronics specialists to select one or many of its components for a customized solution with a range of module options including NPI, logistics, production, analytics, integration and devices. Designed to adapt to and improve manufacturing operations, FactoryLogix helps manufacturers meet demanding production timescales while ensuring exceptionally high quality. The FactoryLogix solution for ROB Cemtrex includes NPI, production, logistics and analytics modules.

“Our team also appreciated the cost and benchmarking performance transparency provided by Aegis,” says Sabatino, noting this as a differentiator for FactoryLogix. “We knew the up-front investment; the system is standardized and there are no surprises when it comes to the price/performance equation. This isn’t the case with all MES providers. For the FactoryLogix modules we’ve implemented thus far, we couldn’t be more pleased with the results.”

@FactoryLogix  #PAuto #MES

Strain Gauges and Ceramic Cements for extreme temperature applications.

A new line of free-filament wire strain gages and ceramic cements, expressly designed for extreme high-temperature environments has been introduced to the global market by the Micro-Measurements® brand of Vishay Precision Group.

The new free-filament wire strain gages allow for high-reliability measurements of both dynamic and limited-static strain, at much higher temperatures than have been traditionally possible with conventional bonded strain gage designs. The gages, offered as the ZWH-, ZWN-, and ZWP-Series, can accurately measure dynamic strain values in temperatures up to +1900°F (+1038°C), as well as limited-static strain to +1500°F (+816°C). They offer excellent oxidation resistance, along with improved bond strength, as compared to traditional free-filament foil gage designs.

Each series offers unique application advantages, depending upon specified parameters. In applications where a compensating grid is used to achieve limited static strain measurements, for example, the iron-chrome-aluminum alloy ZWH-Series is recommended. In applications where optimal fatigue life is desired, the Nichrome-V alloy ZWN-Series is typically specified. And finally, where requirements call for a combination of highest possible oxidation resistance and highest temperature measurement capabilities, the platinum-tungsten alloy ZWP-Series is recommended.

All Micro-Measurements ZWH-, ZWN-, and ZWP-Series gages are RoHS compliant and feature a free-filament wire construction, along with a series of integrated, welded 0.003-inch (0.076 mm) diameter lead wires. A high-fatigue wire (Option Z) is available upon request. The gages offer 120-ohm resistance and are packaged with a fiberglass reinforced segmented tape carrier, which holds the grid and lead patterns intact during installation. They are bonded using either ceramic cement or Roxide flame spray. Among the new Micro-Measurements high-temperature ceramic cement offerings are the WC-16, NCC-3, and HG-1. The WC-16 ceramic cement offers best compatibility with new ZWP-Series free-filament wire gages, while the NCC-3 offers an environmentally friendly and RoHS compliant alternative to ceramic cements containing hexavalent chrome. The HG-1 ceramic cement offers high-performance bonding with steel and superalloys.

Recommended accessories for the new ZWH-, ZWN-, and ZWP-Series include the Model 700 welder and hand-welding attachment, both available from Micro-Measurements, for ease of cable welding to gage leads. Typical applications for the Series include extreme high-temperature strain measurements in chemical plants, power plants and nuclear environments, as well as the testing of gas turbine engine blades and components, automotive exhaust and transmission systems, in-chamber environmental testing, and spacecraft propulsion systems.

@Strain_Gage #PAuto @VishayIndust

Successful fair concludes in China.

productronica China ended successfully last week (16 Mar 2017). Together with electronica China, productronica China covered an exhibition area of over 69,000 square meters (2016: 62,000). A total of 1,230 exhibitors (2016: 1,088) from 28 countries and regions presented the latest product developments. And more than 68,215 visitors (2016: 61,455) came to the Shanghai New International Exhibition Center (SNIEC).

Compared to 2016, there is a 13 percent growth of exhibitor number and an 11 percent growth of visitor numbers. productronica China 2017 featured a full spectrum of exhibits on the intelligent manufacturing, innovative products and smart solutions. And an array of accompanying programs focused on the automation manufacturing and advanced process technologies rounded off the three-day trade show.

Falk Senger, Managing Director of Messe München is very satisfied with the result of productronica 2017: "Advanced manufacturing technology is rapidly transforming the global competitive landscape. The innovative automation products and solutions at productronica China are believed to inspire the industry and create opportunities to change the future."

Factories and businesses are changing. This year, productronica China led the visitors into a world full of creativity, from automatic production line to smart factory solutions. Martin Stier, Head of Business Development & Member of Group Management, Schleuniger said, "For years, we have been watching productronica China developing soundly. The quantity and quality of visitors are very good. We have made contacts with key clients from automotive industry in China. Especially, we also met clients from Europe."

• The next productronica China will take place in Shanghai from March 14 to 16, 2018.

@productronica #PAuto

GRP inspection door for outdoor installations.

A unique inspection door for outdoor equipment protection enclosures has been announced by Intertec. The new GRP Inspection Door comes with a window frame made entirely from GRP (glass reinforced polyester) - a material offering a very high degree of protection against corrosion combined with excellent thermal insulation.

The design offers a more durable alternative to the conventional aluminium or stainless steel window frames commonly used for field equipment in harsh environments, helping to extend the lifecycles of business-critical process control and instrumentation equipment. Doors are available with either IP54 or IP65 ingress protection ratings.

Intertec's GRP inspection doors are ideal for enclosures and cabinets containing control and instrumentation equipment fitted with user interfaces, indicators and displays. This embraces a broad range of commonly-used field equipment including process transmitters and PLCs. A lot of this type of equipment is increasingly being located deeper inside the processing areas of a plant, where environments can expose the equipment to harsh and corrosive atmospheres.

GRP is an inherently inert material that is virtually immune to corrosion and atmospheric pollutants. It does not rust or degrade in any meaningful way, and is resistant to a wide range of chemicals. The GRP sheet material used in the door's construction also provides excellent thermal insulation for field equipment requiring heating or cooling. GRP's thermal conductivity is around 5,000 times less than aluminium and 1,000 times less than steel - alternative materials widely used for window frames in this application. This helps to eliminate 'thermal short cuts' between interior and exterior, which can lead to cold spots and condensation problems. In its basic form, these properties make GRP a superb material for robust outdoor enclosures - allowing maintenance-free lifecycles of 30 years and more.

Two variants of the new GRP inspection door are available with window frames measuring approximately 50x35 or 67x47 cm (19.7x13.8 or 26.4x18.5 inches). Intertec can fit these frames with acrylic, safety glass or insulated glass panels to suit the application. Options include an insulated glass panel filled with Argon - which has a significantly lower thermal conductivity than air. The U-value of the Argon-filled panel is 1.7 W/m²K. The inner glass pane of this unit also features a heat-reflecting coating offering a g-value of 50% to reduce the impact of solar energy heat transmittance (untreated insulating glass has a g-value of around 90%).

Intertec's GRP Inspection Door can be fitted with a variety of handles and locks to suit the application. As standard it comes in light grey, but it is optionally available in other colours. An antistatic version of the door is also available for hazardous area applications.

#Intertec #PAuto 

Poppets or spools!

Festo offers free advice to help engineers designing and specifying pneumatic systems to select the best valve for their application. The intention is to give confidence when choosing from the company’s Blue Star Core Range of products, which are available for next day delivery and combine proven Festo quality with attractive pricing.

Andy Parker-Bates, Product Manager for pneumatics at Festo, says: “Production demands have led to an extension of the range of available technologies and valve types, models, and their properties, so choosing the best fit for your application has become increasingly complex in recent years. We felt it was time to share our expertise and help our customers to choose the best valve for the job.”

Included in the guidance are descriptions of poppet and piston spool valves (the most commonly used valves in pneumatic applications), their operation and respective pros and cons. For example, poppet valves are lower cost and offer good switching times, but provide lower flow and can be noisier than other alternatives. Hard-sealed spool valves will also experience leakage and lower flow rates but are more durable and do not stick after long periods of inactivity.

Soft-sealed spool valves have traditionally been relatively expensive due to seal wear, but now normally come with a cartridge which holds the gaskets and sealing rings. This greatly reduces wear and increases their working life, as well as enabling the valve to operate at up to 16 bar and with vacuum. If you are looking for a valve with low leakage, the option of vacuum and ejector pulse, or if you require higher operating pressures, the most suitable option is probably a piston spool valve with cartridge sealing technology.

In addition to valve operation, Festo’s guidance also covers associated topics such as connectivity, mounting and correct sizing of valves. “Oversizing valves can lead to connectors, tubing and sometimes actuators being larger than necessary, which adds additional component cost as well as using more air and therefore energy,” says Andy Parker-Bates. “Undersized valves on the other hand cause restrictions in the circuit and can seriously impair the performance of the system.”

Festo’s guidance is available free online in a number of formats, including a series of short videos as well as top tips and, for those seeking more in-depth information, a white paper giving a technical comparison of available solenoid valves.

@FestoAG #Pauto #Pneumatics

SM photo-microsensor range extended.

Omron Electronic Components Europe has extended its surface mount photo-microsensor range with a new 5mm slot width type, increasing the range of applications in office equipment, consumer electronics, ATM, vending machines and industrial control systems in which this device can be applied.

The new Omron EE-SX1350 brings the range of surface mount transmissive PMS from Omron to four sizes, with 2mm, 3mm, 4mm and now 5mm slot width. The new PMS has a high resolution, with a 0.5mm detector aperture. All these devices can be reflow soldered – allowing them to be assembled to the board in a single step along with other standard components. This reduces production cost and hence total cost of ownership. The surface mounting EE-SX1350 is also 65% smaller than the existing terminal style with overall dimensions of just 8.8mm × 4mm × 9mm.

The EE-SX1350 is that it is offered with a choice of photo-transistor outputs. In the near future, Omron is to release a 5mm slot width PMS with photo-IC outputs, known as the EE-SX3350. In photo-IC form, the device gives a sharply defined and stable ON / OFF output, and excellent accuracy and repeatability. The output is also much less affected by noise especially on the input channel. It gives the highest output current, so that it can be directly interfaced with relays and PLCs. It also gives fast operation, with switching speeds of micro-seconds. The photo-transistor version is lower cost.

Omron now offers a range of 40 transmissive PMS devices, with connector, terminal and wire terminations as well as the SMD styles.

Photo caption: Omron has extended its surface mount photo-microsensor range with a new 5mm slot width type, increasing the range of applications in which this device can be applied

@OmronEurope  #PAuto

Monday, March 20, 2017

Industry 4.0 an industrial communications.

Harting  is showing its range of Industry 4.0 solutions, incorporating Modular Integrated Computer Architecture for industrial networking, and RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) systems at next month's Industry 4.0 summit (4th-5th April 2017 Manchester GB)

Harting’s approach to smart manufacturing is grounded in the addition of intelligence to manufacturing processes with the aim of achieving a high level of connectivity, visibility, awareness, and adaptability at all stages in the supply chain. By enhancing users’ processes with RFID technology, Harting makes it possible to implement solutions that deliver real profitability gains without the need for re-engineering already proven, stable manufacturing processes.

Their Integrated Industry/IoT systems involve the use of RFID based technology to collect manufacturing data which can then be analysed and “operationalised”. This allows production lines to be adjusted, maintained, or re-tooled, based on live, accurate, production information that assists in creating a competitive advantage in complex markets.

At the Industry 4.0 Summit, Harting will demonstrate a practical implementation of these concepts developed for Tritec Systems Ltd., a leading British control systems integrator. Tritec’s integration solution is built around a simple industrial HMI equipment interface, and enables rapid and easy integration of RFID with PLC control systems. To minimise the need for customisation Tritec needed a range of RFID readers that could be deployed in a wide variety of situations and yet communicate over standard networking interfaces and protocols. The company chose Harting's wide range of RFID products because they are suitable for use in almost all industrial and commercial application areas including manufacturing, transport, infrastructure, stock/asset tracking and many others.
Also featured is Harting’s capability to allow manufacturers to integrate together the two key manufacturing IoT elements machine-to-machine communications and manufacturing logistics. This is through its new open-source industrial computing device known as MICA (Modular Industrial Computing Architecture). MICA can save, evaluate and process data from sensors, and can then either act as a stand-alone offline computer that can make local decisions, or operate as a gateway via the internet to allow access to a higher-level IT system.

“By applying both of these innovative Harting solutions - passive UHF RFID and MICA technology - production line manufacturing managers can monitor the condition status of key machinery in real time for material supply chain management or preventative maintenance issues”, comments Howard Forryan, Product Marketing Specialist: “They can then carry out continuous control adjustments through the separate simple, compact and reliable computing device which provides secure access to the main operating software system to maximise process efficiencies. As a consequence, users can achieve important productivity gains.”

MICA operates with open architecture software, allowing it to be easily customised. Software applications run in Linux-based containers which hold all the necessary libraries and drivers. As a result, there should be no concerns over data security when MICA is allowed access to a higher-level production operating network.

New connectivity products shown by Harting include a range of sensor/actuator boxes which allow sensors to be quickly and easily connected to passive distributor boxes using standard M8 and M12 slots. With a choice of 4, 8 or 10 slots, the sensor cables no longer have to be drawn from the sensor into the control cabinet, but only to the local, application-led distributor box. The rest is taken care of by a master line to the control cabinet.

By using the new sensor/actuator boxes, users will save both time and money. Installation is much quicker, and costs are reduced because fewer lengths of cable are needed between the sensor and the control cabinet.

@Harting #Pauto #industrie40

Tech Tips Videos!

Thomson strives to continually innovate and lead the marketplace in linear motion solutions and share their application engineering and technical expertise. To that end, the company has authored a wide range of educational videos, webinars and technical white papers. These resources inform and guide design engineers, explain technology alternatives and simplify the linear motion component selection process.

Now it has released its latest set of educational videos on linear actuators. The web videos illustrate step-by-step methods on how to install and control actuators in order to meet various industry demands.

Thomson “Tech Tips” videos support design engineers who may face potential mishaps or simply want to ensure proper operation of the actuators. Topics include:

  • How to Install Electrak HD’s Integrated Connector in the event a cable harness is lost or destroyed in the field.
  • How to Control a Thomson Linear Actuator with J1939 CAN bus functionality in order to dictate a certain speed, position and current limit on the actuator.
  • Defining Static and Dynamic Loading and providing application examples.
  • How to Use Thomson’s Manual Override (Hand Wind) to access to the actuator’s gearing, in case of power failure.
  • How to Mount an Industrial Linear Actuator quickly and easily without shortening the actuator’s life.
  • How to Protect a Thomson Linear Actuator Throughout its Stroke Length by using an overload clutch.
  • Defining Duty Cycle and how often you can use the actuator for a given load
  • Ball vs. Lead Screw Technology. Breaking down the differences and areas the technologies are mostly used.
  • Defining Dynamic Braking and how it can be achieved.
  • Electric Linear Actuator Maintenance Requirements. One of the most important things in an actuator application is the maintenance of the system to ensure proper operation over the life of the product. Thomson provides electric linear actuators that are designed to be maintenance-free.
  • Anti-Rotation and its Usefulness. Many of Thomson’s linear actuators are designed to allow rotation of the extension tube. This can simplify the installation process by allowing manual rotation to a specific mounting location.
  • Defining Low Level Switching, a feature offered by Thomson where users are able to downsize their power supply to run and change the direction of the actuator off of a simple control.
  • The Relationship Between Load, Speed and Current Draw. The ratio of the gear train determines the load capacity, speed and current draw on most actuators, which is important to consider when sizing an actuator to your application.
  • How to Vary the Speed of a Thomson Industrial Linear Actuator by adjusting the supply voltage.
  • How to Size a Power Supply for Industrial Linear Actuators, an important step when sizing an actuator.
  • Defining Back Driving and how the process can be prevented.
  • How a Wrap Spring Brake Works, the advantages of using a ball screw style actuator and how to assemble it. 
These videos are available to view free on their website here!

@Thomson_Ind #Pauto 

Durable labels.

New, completely customisable and durable digitally printed product labels in full colour are available from Brady. The enable communicating important detailed product, safety and compliance information.

Full colour & complex printing
These new product labels are digitally printed in high resolution photo or multicolour quality for optimised communication of important product information with customers. RAL, Pantone and other colour codes can be specified. New print tolerances up to 0,1 mm enhance the full colour quality of small and complex texts, company logos, barcodes and pictograms on Brady's durable product label materials.

Durable product labels
Brady offers a wide range of polyester and other durable product label materials which are laminated in a matt or glossy finish. The labels offer a high resistance against chemicals, solvents and abrasion to increase their legibility over time.

Completely customisable
These full colour pre-printed product labels are fully customisable. Large and small label sizes can easily be created with serialisation, company logos, production lot numbers, barcodes and other variable data even in extremely small fonts. Specific label material and adhesive combinations can be selected to increase the label durability and legibility in specific, more demanding conditions. Companies also have the possiblity to add more data to the labels on-site, using a quality label printer from Brady.

@BradyEMEA #PAuto #Safety

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Board elected!

At CiA’s annual general assembly, the associations’ members elected the board of directors. New Business Director is Christian Schlegel (HMS above left). The Technical Director, Uwe Koppe (Microcontrol), and the CiA Managing Director, Holger Zeltwanger (above centre), were re-elected.

The following member companies are in the Business Committee: Emtas, ESD, Janz Tec, Microcontrol, and Vector. The Technical Committee comprises Bosch Automotive Electronics, ESD, HMS, Infineon, and Vector.

The budget for 2017 was accepted unanimously. Most of the membership fee is spent for developing CANopen and CAN FD specifications as well as to support the international standardization. Another important part of the nonprofit association’s income is used for promoting activities including stands at EmbeddedWorld in Nuremberg, SPS IPC Drives in Nuremberg, Interlift in Augsburg, and IAS in Shanghai. Of course, a part of the membership fee is used for the free-of-charge technical e-mail “hotline” answering technical questions.

The international users’ and manufacturers’ group has 615 members. This year, the association celebrates its 25th anniversary. The birthday party was held during the 16th international CAN Conference (iCC) beginning of March. CiA organizes also several CAN 2020 webinars informing about the next steps in the CAN FD and CANopen FD technology developments. These webinars are free-of-charge, but limited in number of participants.

 #CAN_CIA @52holger