Friday, December 7, 2018

Component market forcasts growth though uncertainty reigns!

“Overall result will be flat to plus 2.5% but Brexit can and probably will change everything”.       Nigel Watts, Ismosys.

A Forecast just released by the manufacturers’ authorised distributor (afdec) group within the Electronic Components Supply Network (ecsn) predicts that the Britain & Ireland electronic component market will grow in the range 3.4%-to-8.5% in 2019, achieving a mid-point of 5.9%. Compiled from individual returns from the association’s member companies the Forecast further revealed that the market is likely to have grown by 9.2% in 2018, and Distribution's share of the TAM (Total Available Market) in Britain will have grown to about 41%, encouraging the consensus opinion that the recovery in the high-tech manufacturing sector of the economy will remain strong and despite the many uncertainties, is likely to outperform the macroeconomic environment.

Aubrey Dunford
Aubrey Dunford, ecsn Market Analyst commenced his presentation of the association's 2019 Forecast by announcing that the UK / Ireland electronic components market results for the current year (2018) will conclude at the higher end of the guidance range provided by the association in December last year. According to Dunford, the market grew strongly throughout 2018 and should show a growth of about 9% over 2017 compared to the forecast, which predicted a growth range of 6.5% to 10.5%: "Every quarter of this year saw sales growth when compared to the same quarter in 2017,”said Dunford. “Growth was not quite as strong as had been expected in the first half of the year but has continued to show stronger than predicted growth in the second half”. The ‘Book to Bill’ ratio remained above unity throughout the first half of 2018 but has softened somewhat in recent months: “The level of billings remained high in the second half, so we must expect that the growth rate will slow a little as we enter 2019, but our members are forecasting a further four quarters of growth at least”.

ecsn/afdec believes that the outlook for 2019 is positive with growth continuing, although the rate of growth might dip especially in the second quarter, but the association expects growth will pick up again during the second half: “The global electronics market is set on an expansion path with automotive systems and new mobile standards such as 5G leading the way, but these will all need a huge investment in infrastructure which is where UK companies can really make a mark”, Dunford said. ecsn/afdec members remain confident that there are opportunities for further growth in 2019, despite numerous factors that simply cannot be predicted with any certainly, not least Brexit and continuing trade wars, even if at present they seem to be abating. He concluded, “whatever the final outcome of our Government’s negotiations with the EU we are certain that UK companies will be preparing to participate fully in that growth”.
DTAM Growth per quarter 2013-2019 incl forecast
Continuing growth
At the end of 2017 ecsn/afdec reported six quarters of ‘quarter-on-same-quarter-the-previous-year’ growth, which at the time was the longest period of sustained growth seen since 2000: “We’ve now achieved ten quarters of continuous growth and are forecasting that we’ll achieve fifteen quarters of growth by the end of 2019, a performance unseen since we started collecting the data way back in 1984”, Dunford observed. The growth period started in early 2016 but really accelerated during 2017 and has continued in each quarter of 2018: “It is now clear that there are a number of factors behind the upswing, among which the upturn in the global electronics markets predominates. The seed change in electronics markets has enabled more competitive pricing of manufactured goods in export markets now that the use of electronic systems has finally come into economic use enabled by the IOT and inexpensive WiFi connections, which together are transforming control systems the world over”.

According to Dunford British companies find themselves in an ideal position to capitalise on the opportunities presented, most of which are within the market sector served by authorised distributors. He acknowledges that this Global growth has also caused lead times to extend on some product lines, especially in the more commodity product areas, which does threaten to limit some of the growth in the first half of 2019, but manufacturers are beginning to expand production: “It is clear that customers who work in close co-operation with authorised distributors are able to meet their production requirements even although overall availability is becoming restricted.”

According to Managing Director Peter Hannon Harting UK saw continued good positive growth in 2018, which he says was underpinned by Projects and new investment in product ranges: “We enter 2019 with a record order book, however we see early signs of softening in the general UK market. Brexit uncertainties will be another factor in determining how 2019 will actually turnout”

Commenting on the 2019 Forecast ecsn / afdec chairman Adam Fletcher welcomed the continued growth in the global economy and the likely consistent growth in the global electronic components market, which he believes will surge as 5G is rolled out: “The trajectory for the electronic components markets continues to be up and to the right and underlying growth has become the new normal but growth will probably not be linear and we must anticipate the odd bump along the way. I’ve been predicting that the growth curve will adopt a hockey-stick shape towards the end of 2019 and into 2020, causing further supply network problems as components manufacturers scramble to keep up with the increased demand”. He believes that growth in the UK, Europe and US will lag behind China and Asia-Pac economies who will be the primary beneficiaries of the 5G roll out and the increased demand for handsets: “I’m confident that UK electronic components markets will continue to grow over the next few years but at a rate lower than the global average rather than at the top of the growth. That said, I fear that we may to be negatively impacted by long lead-times and shortages of some components.” Fletcher added.

Fletcher believes that merger and acquisition activity in the electronic components markets will slow in 2019 but that this will be replaced by increased activity in collaboration, cross-licensing, joint ventures that accelerate market access and strategic investment in order to secure capacity or access to technology: “Manufacturers are desperately filling the gaps in their product portfolios to address the emerging technology needs in high growth markets, including 5G infrastructure, industry 4.0 and automotive, but they continue to be conservative in adding manufacturing capacity to meet demand in these new markets", Fletcher concluded.

Ismosys Managing Director Nigel Watts believes that 2019 will be all about Brexit for the UK: “Will we, won’t we? Uncertainty reigns”. Putting Brexit to one side he fears that the industry may have an uncertain Q1 based on continuing MLCC extended lead times and the tariff threat, although that has subsided somewhat recently. That said, Watts agrees that the underlying trend is up and he expects 2H ‘19 to be strong, recovering any reversals in 1H: “Overall result will be flat to plus 2.5% but Brexit can and probably will change everything”.

#ECSN #PAuto @HARTING_Group #Breatimeacht #Brexit 

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Fast communications for rail industry.

Harting has introduced a number of innovative connector solutions and products targeted at the rail industry and focusing on the three key benefits of weight reduction, easy handling and increasing data throughput.

Weight reduction plays an increasingly important role in rail vehicle construction, and connectors can make a measurable contribution here. For trains and trams, the continuous transition from metal to plastic can reduce the weight of connector housings by up to 50% from one generation to the next.

In line with this trend, Harting has extended its Han-Eco® plastic connector series by adding housings in Han B® size which are plug-compatible with Han® connectors in metal housings and offer additional installation flexibility.

Harting offers the largest selection of contact inserts for industrial connectors, with more than 100 different modules and at least as many monoblocks available for the transmission of power, data, signals and compressed air.

The plastic housings are not only lightweight: they can also be mounted quickly. Unlike standard connectors, where cables must be routed through a mounting cut-out in order to assemble the inserts on the control cabinet, the Han-Eco® B monoblocks and modular inserts can be pre-assembled and snapped directly into the mounting housing, easing assembly by allowing harnesses and control cabinets to be prepared separately for final assembly.

By using smaller connectors, including modular types, more functions can be combined in a smaller space. This not only reduces the weight of the connectors, but also their space requirements. This gives users more flexibility when designing rail vehicles and opens up further opportunities to save costs in this area.

As a result, Harting has developed the High Pressure Railway (HPR) housing series, in which more connector modules are fitted into a single housing. One of the largest HPR housings, the Han® 34 HPR, can now accommodate up to four 650 A high-current contacts or 12 Han-Modular® single modules. In the past, two housings each had to be equipped with six Han-Modular® individual modules to supply a comparable data volume.

Another Harting solution that can help to reduce weight in railway applications is the Han® 22 HPR Slim motor connector, which is particularly suitable for underfloor applications due to its compact, flat design. Through miniaturisation, Harting has succeeded in creating space for four contacts in the connector – without sacrificing performance.

Ethernet over Single Twisted Pair
In order to save weight and still be able to handle the same volume of data, Harting’s future rail technology offering will rely on Ethernet via Single Twisted Pair and small T1 connectors according to IEC 61076-3-125. For cable lengths up to 40 m, IEEE 802.3bp (1000 BASE-T1) can transmit 1 Gbit/s, using cable about one-third lighter than conventional 8-wire Ethernet cable. Commercially available Ethernet cable with four wire pairs for 1/10 Gbit/s Ethernet weighs about 45 kg per kilometre. A single-pair cable with the same bandwidth weighs only 30 kg per kilometre. Since several kilometres of cable are installed in the coaches of passenger trains alone, there is considerable potential for saving vehicle weight here.

Harting offers its PushPull connector solutions in order to simplify assembly and service in the railway sector (Easy Handling) and make it more reliable. The M12 circular connector is now also available with PushPull locking. For device connection technology, there is also the easy-to-use PushPull system in the square connector variant 4. Both with M12 and with variant 4, the secure transmission of power, signals and data up to Cat.6A can be managed without problems.

The advantage of PushPull connectors is their tool-free installation, regardless of whether round or square versions are used. They are simply gripped and mated. An audible click signals that the connectors have been securely locked and correctly connected – and thereby saves up to 75% of assembly time.

In trains, IGBT semiconductor elements control high-performance electric drives, which are connected to the required insulation via plastic fibre optic cables. Previously, the connection between controller and driver board was managed using single fibres. The electro-optical conversion of the signals takes place in the transceivers of the printed circuit board where optical contacts make the connection to the fibres. Each optical fibre has a single connector on both the driver and controller boards that house the transceivers. With this previous solution, all transmit and receive elements on the controller board require significant space, and the board is unnecessarily enlarged.

Harting now offers users a miniaturised solution in IGBT control: the Multifibre module, based on a transmission principle that includes the transfer of the transceivers of the controller board into a pluggable module, thereby integrating the optical interface according to the principle of “plug electrically and transmit optically”. In the future, only a robust interface rather than up to sixteen sensitive optical contacts will need to be accessed for maintenance purposes.

#Harting #Transport @hartingindia

Factors affecting the choice of VOC sensor.

VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) perform many vital roles as fuels, solvents, cleaners, feedstock, sterilants etc. However, they can be harmful to health and the environment, so it is often necessary to monitor their concentration. By definition, organic compounds contain the element carbon, and exhibit similar chemical properties, which is advantageous from a monitoring perspective.

These properties unfortunately vary widely between the many thousands of different VOCs, so in the following article Arthur Burnley, Sales and Marketing Director of sensor manufacturer Alphasense, explains the factors affecting the choice of sensor – for both end-users and manufacturers of monitoring instruments. Arthur also discusses the key questions that must be addressed, but first it is important to be aware of the technologies currently available.
--> VOC Measurement Technologies What is the main application?
This is the most important consideration because it impacts the choice of technology. For example, the ability to measure a specific VOC may be required, and this would rule out many of the technologies if other interfering VOCs are likely to be present. Similarly, whilst the cost might be attractive, the potential presence of certain inorganic gases may mean that Metal Oxide sensors are unsuitable. However, in applications such as process monitoring the identity of other gases may be known so the response of a specific type of sensor may be solely attributable to the VOC of interest.

Regulatory monitoring of VOCs in applications such as industrial stack emissions and ambient air quality necessitate certain technologies such as GC/MS and FTIR. However, these technologies are less well suited to applications such as leak detection, surveys, workplace safety, personal safety, Hazmat etc due to cost, power requirements and portability. The most popular technologies for these applications are electrochemical, metal oxide and PID, and by offering all three technologies, Alphasense is able to recommend the most appropriate technology for these applications, taking into account a wide variety of factors such as:
  • Range
  • Speed of response
  • Specificity
  • Accuracy
  • Interferences
  • Maintenance requirements
  • Longevity
  • Cost
Electrochemical VOC sensors
With resolution from 10 to 50 ppb, electrochemical cells are low cost, low power, compact sensors. Electrochemical sensors need to be optimised for the target VOC because each VOC requires a different ideal bias voltage for best sensitivity. Also, electrochemical cells respond in about 25 seconds, in comparison with 1-2 seconds for PIDs. Nevertheless, electrochemical sensors are suitable for some applications, where cost is important and performance characteristics are known. For example, Alphasense has developed an electrochemical Ethylene Oxide sensor for applications including fumigation of certain agricultural products and sterilisation of medical equipment.

Metal Oxide (MOS) VOC sensors
Metal oxide sensors are compact and low cost but require more power than electrochemical sensors. Humidity sensitivity and baseline drift are all characteristics of traditional n-type MOS sensors, but Alphasense p-type metal oxide gas sensors have more stable baselines and very low humidity sensitivity. MOS are not as sensitive at low concentrations, compared with PIDs. MOS sensors also respond to high concentrations of some inorganic gases such as NO, NO2 and CO. MOS may be a more suitable technology than PID in applications requiring the measurement of halogenated VOCs such as CFCs.

PhotoIonisation (PID) VOC sensors
PIDs respond to most VOCs except for small hydrocarbons such as methane, and for some halogenated compounds. Each VOC has a characteristic ionisation potential and the peak photon energy generated in a detector depends on the PID lamp used. For example, a Xenon lamp = 9.6 eV, a Krypton lamp = 10.6 eV and an Argon lamp = 11.7 eV. Hence, the use of an argon lamp provides the largest detection range of VOCs, whereas a Xenon lamp can increase selectivity.

Clearly, the choice of lamp is dictated by the likely VOCs to be measured, lamp lifetime considerations, and the sensitivity and level of selectivity required.
The Xenon lamp (9.6 eV) is suitable for many aromatics and unsaturated VOCs containing at least 6 carbon atoms (C6+). For example, this lamp is commonly used for the selective detection of compounds such as BTEX (Benzene, Toluene Ethyl Benzene and Xylenes).
The Krypton lamp (10.6 eV) detects most non-halogenated C2, most C3 and C4+ VOCs. Among Alphasense customers, the Krypton lamp is most popular because of its high sensitivity and longest lifetime: these lamps can operate for up to 10,000 hours. A filtered Krypton lamp, operating at 10.0eV is the best choice for BTEX due to its higher intensity than the 9.6eV lamp.

The Argon lamp (11.7eV) can measure halogenated VOCs, but has a much shorter lifetime.

Users of PID instruments should be aware of the variety of response between different VOCs. Manufacturers of PID sensors provide a comprehensive list of response factors. These figures represent the response of a lamp to a specific VOC relative to its response to a calibration gas – generally isobutylene. So, if the response of a PID to a particular VOC is eight times smaller than it is for the same concentration of isobutylene, then the response factor would be 8. Similarly, if the response factor for a particular VOC is 0.5, the PID response is twice that for isobutylene at the same concentration. Many instrument manufacturers build in response factors to enable the quantification of a specific gas when measured in isolation.

This article highlights that different sensor technologies are better suited to some applications and careful consideration should be given before making a choice, through discussions with manufacturers such as Alphasense.

In addition to the technical considerations outlined above, it is also vitally important to choose the right supplier. For end-users, the effectiveness of their work relies on the accuracy and reliability of their monitoring equipment, and for instrument manufacturers, their brand reputation is built on the quality and reliability of their equipment. It is therefore important to seek suppliers with proven levels of quality and reliability.

For sensor manufacturers, quality management procedures should extend beyond the requirements of ISO 9001. All sensors should undergo a test and validation procedure ensuring complete stabilisation prior to characterisation. Test data should be stored for each and every sensor, including sensitivity, time of response and recovery, and zero off-set. This is important because some manufacturers simply record the average test data for a batch, or record test data for a sample from a batch. This increases levels of uncertainty and prevents traceability.

The choice of VOC sensor therefore starts with a discussion about the potential application and suitable technology, and ends with the delivery of an appropriate sensor with traceable test and validation data.

 #Alphasense #PAuto #Environment @_Enviro_News 

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Panel mounted connectors.

Cliff Electronics' comprehensive range of market leading FeedThrough (FT) connectors, supplied in the industry standard 24mm diameter XLR panel cut-out, now includes the very popular CAT3 RJ11 and RJ14 connectors offering users a panel mount option.

The RJ11 and RJ14 are the most widely implemented connectors in telecommunications and commonly used for token ring and simple 10Base-T networks providing 10 megabits per second (Mbps) transfer rate, operating at 16 megahertz (MHz).

The Cliff CAT3 RJ11 and RJ14 connectors are true feed-through with connections both sides of the panel made using standard off the shelf cables with matching plugs pre-assembled. Versions are available with plain or countersunk mounting holes to facilitate assembly on either side of a panel.

John Hall, Managing Director of Cliff Electronics, comments; “CAT3 RJ11 and RJ14 6P4C connectors sell in very high quantities and adding them to our panel mounted FeedThrough connector range offers OEM manufacturers and systems integrators simpler and faster assembly.”

The CAT3 RJ11 and RJ14 6P4C connectors can be incorporated in pre-assembled 19” rack panels together with other types of Cliff FeedThrough connectors to meet bespoke connectivity requirements or make patch panels.

The Cliff FT series of true, feed through, data connectors for electrical and electronic instrumentation are perfect for developing custom I/O configurations for wall plates, enclosures, rack panels, etc. All fit within a standard XLR panel cut-out and use common standard cabling for front and back connections with no soldering or screw terminal connections required. FT connectors may be mounted from the front or back of a panel and a low rear profile accommodates the tightest behind-the-panel spaces. Pre-assembled 19” rack panels fitted with a range of FT and standard connectors are available from Cliff to simplify end system assembly.

Cliff’s XLR format FeedThrough connectors take advantage of the standard 24mm panel cut out widely used in audio and broadcast systems and which is finding increasing popularity instrumentation, medical and industrial applications due to the format’s flexibility, security and reliability. Blank socket plates are also now available for customers to create custom connector solutions.

Versions available include GJ45, HDMI, BNC and USB3.0 compliant single and dual USB versions in addition to the existing range which provides Analogue, Digital and Optical Feed-Through connectivity in formats including Firewire, HDMI A-A and metal or plastic 50 ohm BNC versions, USB2 A-to-B and B-to-A “gender change” sockets high speed USB Type – C, USB3 to USB3 in all gender changing configurations - A-A, A-B and B-A. Also available are all popular data and Ethernet connectors including USB 2.0 and 3.0, LC and SC fibre (Duplex & Simplex), UTP and FTP RJ45s in both Cat6 and Cat5e (shielded and unshielded), Toslink, RCA Phono and HDMI and blanking plates. Dust covers are now available for many of the connector range.

#CliffElectronics  #PAuto 

Nitrate in water.

Responding to global demand for improved monitoring of nitrate in freshwater, OTT HydroMet has launched a new optical nitrate sensor, the OTT ecoN.

“This is fantastic news for scientists, catchment managers, water companies, regulators and environmental consultants,” says Rónán Ó Maitiú, Global Product Manager for the OTT ecoN. “In the past, customers have been caught between low-cost/limited-performance sensors and high-end technologies, for which purchase costs prevent large scale deployment. The OTT ecoN neatly fills that gap; as a continuous nitrate monitor, with minimal maintenance requirements, it can be left to monitor in remote locations, and an optional wiper makes it suitable for extended deployments.”

In addition to a low purchase cost, the ecoN also lowers the cost of ownership because it is factory calibrated for life. With automatic drift compensation, zero baseline checks with ultrapure water are quick and easy to perform and are only required as an occasional test of instrument function.

The ecoN measures nitrate by the absorption of UV light at 212 nm and removes the possible effects of organics and turbidity by similar measurements at 254 nm and 360 nm respectively. As an optical sensor, the ecoN provides high accuracy and low resolution without the drift and interferences of ion-selective electrodes, or the ongoing reagent and maintenance costs of wet-chemistry analyzers.

No specialized software is necessary to communicate with the ecoN – a simple, intuitive browser-based user interface is accessed by connecting a small interface unit to the sensor.

Measurements can be stored internally within the sensor, but as a specialist in sensing, datalogging and telemetry, OTT HydroMet can supply the most appropriate monitoring system for every application. This includes the choice of sensor, because the ecoN is available with different cell pathlengths to ensure optimum performance across all measurement ranges. However, OTT HydroMet is also able to conduct a retrospective change of optical path length when customers need to change application, such as moving it from very turbid surface water to groundwater for example.

Summarising, Rónán says: “Nitrate is an extremely important contaminant of freshwater; causing health issues in humans and playing a major role in eutrophication and the proliferation of algae. It is therefore essential that the role of nutrients is fully understood and that water professionals are able to access accurate, reliable data on nutrient sources and loading, as well as being provided with alarms when pollution events take place.

“The ecoN has proven extremely accurate and reliable in the field, and has been priced for extensive deployment, so we are very excited with the prospects for this technology.”

@OTTHydrometry #Environment @_Enviro_News 

Changes at the top!

A number of senior management changes have been announced by the Endress+Hauser Group. Effective 1 March 2019, Dr Andreas Mayr will become Chief Operating Officer (COO) responsible for sales, production and support, thus assuming more responsibility on the Executive Board. In this function he will serve as deputy CEO to Matthias Altendorf.

Dr Andreas Meyr
The impetus behind the reorganization is the increasing dynamic of digitalization, the fluctuating economic and political environment, and last but not least, the sustained growth of the internationally active Group. “We want to continue to actively shape this transformation,” explained Klaus Endress, President of the Supervisory Board. “By bundling the operational responsibility of the Group in the hands of a COO, we can free up more time for the CEO to focus on his activities.”

Matthias Altendorf, who has led the family-owned company since 2014, will focus more intensely on aligning, growing and strengthening the Endress+Hauser Group, as well as further anchoring the corporate culture and values into the global network of companies. Apart from strategy, business development and digitalization, the CEO will concentrate on further expanding the laboratory analysis business.

Andreas Mayr (57), as Corporate Director of Marketing & Technology, was already a member of the Group’s Executive Board. He holds a doctorate in physics and joined Endress+Hauser in 1998. In his new role, he will focus all of his time and efforts on helping to manage the Group.

Dr. Peter Selders
His successor as CEO of Endress+Hauser SE+Co. KG in Maulburg, Germany – the Group’s center of competence for level and pressure measurement technology – effective 1 January 2019 will be Dr Peter Selders (49), who has been Head of Main Division, Technology to date.

On 1 October 2018, Jörg Stegert joined the Group to oversee the entire personnel area as Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO).

Joerg Stegert
Jörg Stegert joined the Executive Board on 1 October 2018 to head up the Group’s human resources area. The 48-year-old was most recently Head of Human Resources at Knorr-Bremse AG in Munich. There he supported the company at the executive level and oversaw projects in the HR area such as the establishment of international structures and a state-of-the-art IT landscape for HR applications. Jörg Stegert is furthermore familiar with issues related to internal communications and training and education. He replaces Roland Kienzler who left the company to pursue other opportunities.

The Executive Board of the Endress+Hauser Group also includes Dr Manfred Jagiella (Corporate Director, Process Analysis Business), Chief Information Officer Pieter de Koning (IT), Chief Sales Officer Nikolaus Krüger (sales and service), Chief Financial Officer Dr Luc Schultheiss (finance) and General Counsel Dr Heiner Zehntner (legal).

@Endress_Hauser #Pauto

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

WirelessHART Gas Detectors.

United Electric Controls has announced availability of discounted Beta test versions of its Vanguard WirelessHART gas sensors for ammonia (NH3) and carbon monoxide (CO). The new capability is delivered as interchangeable sensor heads for the WirelessHART Vanguard gas detector.

“Our power industry users have been using the Vanguard detectors primarily to reduce the cost of finding methane leaks in natural gas lines and eliminate explosions from accumulations in silos and bunkers. The addition of ammonia and carbon monoxide provides even more capability to monitor important assets and keep workers safe,” said Andrew Liptak, United Electric Controls Product Manager for Gas Detection.

WirelessHART Vanguard Gas Detectors interface with existing networks to provide continuous coverage while reducing the cost of detecting toxic and combustible gases. United Electric Controls has recently upgraded the Vanguard to handle a broader ambient operation temperature range (-40°C to 65°C); enhanced zero stability; and with interchangeable firmware that enables measurement of additional gases without changing the base unit. NH3 and CO are the first new gases to take advantage of this unique capability.

Power producers use ammonia to reduce nitrogen oxide (NO) — the chemical that creates smog and acid rain (NOx) in flue gas before it enters the atmosphere. CO results from incomplete combustion and can leak from boiler casings and smoldering coal. Undetected leaks of either can be toxic or result in explosions.

Future Vanguard versions will address other gases commonly found in the power industry, including hydrogen from electric generators and battery rooms and oxygen that might be depleted in continuous emissions monitoring (CEM) shelters.

Beta testers of the ammonia and carbon monoxide detectors receive up to fifty percent discount on the first three ammonia or carbon monoxide Vanguard detectors they purchase. They can also purchase additional sensor heads which will enable them to detect hydrogen sulfide (H2S) or methane (CH4) using the Vanguard base unit.

@UEControls  #PAuto #WirelessHART

Laser beam quality.

Gentec-EO has now introduced an automated system, Beamage-M2, that can determine the quality of a laser beam in only 20 to 60 seconds by means of an M2 measurement*. Available exclusively from Laser Components, this system is the only one in the world with a complete set of 50 mm optics. This allows measurements to be made on larger beam diameters and divergence angles. The detector is a particularly large CMOS sensor chip (11.3 x 11.3 mm) with a resolution of 4.2 megapixels. All measurements comply with ISO11146 and ISO13694.

Two adjustable deflecting mirrors ensure that the laser beam can be adjusted easily and flexibly. The beam path is “folded” 180° inside the device via two factory-set deflecting mirrors. This enables 400 mm of travel of beam path at an optimized speed, requiring a minimal amount of space.

With its handy design, the Beamage-M2 can be easily mounted on optical tables. This makes it ideal for use in R&D laboratories. Automatic and manual measurements are possible via user-friendly software.

The beam quality factor M2 describes the difference between the divergence angle of a laser beam and the ideal Gaussian beam. The smaller the value, the better a laser can be focused.

*M2 is a parameter for quantifying the beam quality of laser beams

 @LaserComponents #PAuto

Emitters, Detectors and LEDs for Wearables.

Marktech the designer and manufacturer of standard and custom optoelectronics components and assemblies, including UV, visible, near-infrared (NIR), and short wavelength infrared (SWIR) emitters, detectors, InP epiwafers and other materials, has announced its dedicated offerings for wearables.

Their standard and custom emitters and detectors, in both multi-wavelength and hybrid designs and in UV, visible, infrared, and SWIR ranges, are routinely specified within consumer- and hospital-grade flexible, stretchable and wearable devices. Some of the most common wearable applications supported by Marktech include consumer-grade fitness trackers; high-end cardiac, oxygen, and blood pressure monitors; audiological diagnostic devices, used to detect inner ear abnormalities and damage; non-invasive optical chemical sensing; and indoor/outdoor UV-level detection.

For wearable designs requiring more advanced onboard monitoring and detection capabilities, Marktech offers a number of multi-wavelength emitter-detector combinations. These combinations may be seamlessly integrated into a single package along with a multi-wavelength range detector. In addition, their Silicon and InGaAs photodetectors may be similarly combined with its GaP Schottky UV photodiodes, creating an expanded spectral detection range of approximately 150 nm to 1750 nm. Optoelectronics assemblies are available in plastic, ceramic, and glass-to-metal (hybrid) package types. A number of options are also available to effectively address specialty requirements for hermetic sealing, temperature extremes, and humid or moisture-rich environments.

In addition, their high-brightness LEDs and LED emitters are routinely specified for wearable displays and remote physiological monitoring requirements. Standard LED emitters are offered in wavelengths from 280 nm to 1720 nm, with expanded wavelengths by special request. The LED emitters can be further optimized for low power consumption. Such optimizations can result in increased wearable device battery life, while still maintaining required output levels. The achievement of operating currents of 2 mA or less are also possible. In applications requiring the incorporation of a white LED, an assortment of color temperature and CRI are available, as well as lower-profile direct-attach (DA) type chip packages.

@marktechleds #Medical

Weighing indicators.

Variohm EuroSensor has added a new line of weighing indicators that will fulfil the cost and performance requirements for a wide range of counting, check weighing and platform scale applications across industries such as food & beverage, packaging, agricultural equipment, weighbridges and more. The new W-series offers four models for DIN-rail and panel mounting with entry level to advanced interfacing and a choice of output, display and interactive functionality. Covering 4 or 8 load cell inputs up to 350 Ω, the range includes an ATEX compatible model and an electronic overload guard for redundant operation.

The cost effective WT1 model has DIN-rail mounting and with either RS232C half-duplex or RS485 full duplex serial doors may be loaded with ASCII or Modbus RTU protocols to enable communication with a PC or PLC. The indicator has an internal resolution of 16 x 106 counts and a 5 digit, 7 segment LED display has a resolution of 16,000 counts, with a three- key mechanical keyboard providing easy access for pre-programmed functions.

The WT2 weighing indicator builds upon the WT1 with connectivity via PROFIBUS as its default protocol offering the ability for control in more complex systems. The WT2 also features an optional Ethernet connection which comes with a 128-byte in/out buffer for high-speed PC connections.

For almost any application where DIN-rail mounting is required, the WT14 weighing indicator features RS232 and RS485 serial ports and a USB device port as standard. Fieldbus options that allow interfacing with the vast majority of supervision devices include PROFINET, DeviceNet, Ethernet (10 to 100 Mbps), Ethernet IP and EtherCAT. The model features expanded storage capability and a 6 digit, 7 segment, LED display with a visible resolution of 999,999 counts - plus a four-key capacitive keyboard for easy access to the configuration and calibration functions.

At the top end of the range, the panel mounted WT15 weighing indicator boasts a smart multi-lingual touch-screen and a 32-bit ARM Cortex microprocessor that provides impressive computing power for a wide range of industrial and commercial weighing applications. With 6+6 opto-isolated input and output ports, and multiple serial bus output options, the WT15 has all the fieldbus capability of the WT14 model but offers a more sophisticated solution for complex automated weighing tasks. An ATEX-certified version is available for use in potentially explosive environments.

All weighing indicator models offer optional analogue outputs and suitability for intrinsically safe barriers for use in hazardous areas. Performance specifications through the range include input sensitivity to 0.02 V/division and linearity to >0.01% of full scale with 24-bit D to A conversion.

The DIN-rail mountable WG3 electronic overload guard is a compact redundant safeguarding system for prevention of weighing machine overload. With two independent inputs for load cells it meets the category 3 EN 13849-1:2008, PL d standard. The double security load limiter design includes an integrated alarm for load cell malfunction or power failure.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Corrosion-resistant moisture analyser.

Michell Instruments has announced a new variant of its OptiPEAKTDL600 moisture analyser, developed specifically for use in catalytic reforming processes in refineries. The OptiPEAK TDL600 is based on tuneable diode laser spectroscopy technology – a non-contact form of sensor as it uses absorption of frequencies of light to measure moisture content in gases.

The use of non-contact TDLAS measurement technology means that the system does not suffer from potential hydrochloric acid corrosion issues which may affect other direct contact sensors. In addition, the fast response to changes in moisture value make the OptiPEAK TDL600 ideal for use in catalytic reforming processes where controlling 10 to 20ppmV moisture content is critical to maintaining optimum catalyst condition and efficient creation of high-octane reformates.

Catalytic reforming is found in every refinery, since the straight run naphtha hydrocarbons distilled from the crude unit must have its octane raised to levels necessary to meet gasoline fuel specifications. Semi-regenerative and cyclic designs were originally used, but virtually all the new reformers in at least the past 20 years have been continuous (regeneration) catalytic reformers (CCRs).

The OptiPEAK TDL600 is the latest addition to Michell’s offering for monitoring moisture in catalytic reforming processes. The QMA601 moisture analyser, which uses quartz crystal microbalance technology, has also proven itself in H2 recycle gas with innovative adaption which reduces the impact of HC corrosion.

• Michell products are marketed in Ireland through Instrument Technology

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Fibre Optic Media Converter range extended!

With over 30 years’ experience in automation and communication, Advantech is aware that the demand for media conversion is increasing, and understands the difficulty involved in replacing or rewiring existing devices. These new fibre optic media converters are especially suitable for users looking to meeting their ongoing requirement with minimal costs and effort.

With the ability to connect two dissimilar media types, these new media converters are simple to install allowing networks to be commissioned quickly. The EKI-2541/2741 series media converters provide cost benefits by affordably integrating fibre infrastructure and copper equipment, an ideal solution for “fibre to building” applications for central offices or local sites.

Typical applications include power and energy, transportation (ITS), machine and control automation, building automation and factory automation.

Key features include
MDI/MDI-X auto crossover
Automatically detect if the link partner is MDI or MDI-X. Auto-MDI/MDIX can be enabled or disabled. When the function is disabled, the port reverts to MDI mode.

SC fibre port
Unaffected by electromagnetic interference fibre is normally used in EMI noisy environments, or in situations where cabling distance exceeds the 100m maximum offered by copper cabling . In addition fibre is future proof, as applications that need higher speeds and distances appear fibre is the only cabling type capable of supporting these demands.

The EKI-2541ML and EKI-2541SL have 1 x 10/100Mbps Ethernet RJ-45 connector and 1 x 100Mbps multi/single mode SC type fibre port.
EKI-2741ML/SL/FL offer 1 x 10/100/1000Mbps Ethernet RJ-45 connector with 1 x 100/1000Mbps Ethernet port with SFP or 1 x 1000Mbps multi/single mode SC fibre port for 1000Base-SX/LX device.

Using fibre conversion ensures ease of installation, low cost and flexibility so allowing the customer to build a flexible communications infrastructure, protect their investment and provide seamless connectivity.

@AdvantechIA #PAuto