Thursday, December 28, 2006

Workers at Schneider Electric's Telford Site have raised over GBP 7000 for a number of good causes, including the company's chosen charity the NSPCC. Staff exceeded their fundraising target for the NSPCC donating over GBP 5000 towards helping vulnerable children in need in the UK. Over GBP 2500 was raised in a single event - the Telford town road race in conjunction with the Wrekin Road Runners.

In addition to the company's usual fundraising initiatives such as theme days, raffles and bike rides for the NSPCC, Schneider Electric Telford's money-making ideas have included getting involved in the Wear it Pink day for Breast Cancer Relief; two brave employees having their chests waxed for the Children in Need appeal; and getting involved in Jeans for Genes day that helps children with genetic disorders.

Julie Kane-Gblog of Schneider Electric enthused: 'The huge efforts of employees this year is appropriate for a company whose slogan is 'Giving the best of the new electric world to everyone, everywhere, at any time' and we are delighted to have raised such a large amount of money for deserving charities'.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

These new additions to the Series 9000 family incorporate the latest in ASIC technology, which when combined with the proven mechanical and optical package of the Series 9000 will provide the user with a distinct advantage for the most challenging industrial applications. Both new models have improved LED functionality; for example, a flashing green LED indicates an unstable condition such as lens contamination while a flashing red LED indicates a short circuit in the field wiring.

The 42GSP-9000 provides a teach function which eliminates the need to manually adjust the sensor’s sensitivity level. The manual adjustment potentiometer of the standard 9000 has been replaced by a single pushbutton which is used to initiate the “learning” of both the light and dark conditions presented to the sensor.

The 42GLP-9000 contains a manual adjustment potentiometer to adjust the sensor’s sensitivity level. As an enhancement over the standard Series 9000, the adjustment pot of the 42GLP-9000 provides a linear response to user input.

Both the self-teach button and the manual adjustment pot models, when combined with the new LED functionality, will drastically reduce set up time for installers and troubleshooting time for maintenance personnel. Additional features of both the 42GSP-9000 and 42GLP-9000 include:
Exceptionally high resistance to electrical noise and fluorescent lighting
Temperature compensation for environmental changes

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Red Lion Controls Data Station Plus was designed to act as a nexus for industrial data collection and management. The unit offers multiple protocol conversion, data logging and remote machine access. With three built in serial ports and a 10 Base-T/100 Base-TX Ethernet port, the unit performs protocol conversion, allowing disparate devices to communicate seamlessly with one another. The Ethernet port supports up to four protocols simultaneously so even Ethernet to Ethernet protocols can be converted. The CompactFlash card allows data to be collected and stored for later review.

The files are stored in simple CSV file format allowing common applications, such as Microsoft Excel and Access, to view and manage the data. The free Websync utility provides a means to synchronize the files with a PC's hard drive for permanent storage. The CompactFlash card may also be used to load new configuration files into the Data Station. The built-in web server allows log files to be retrieved manually, and also provides access to the unique "virtual HMI".

The virtual HMI is programmed just like regular G3 Series HMI. Any standard web browser such as Internet Explorer or Netscape may be used to monitor or control the HMI from a PC anywhere in the world. The USB port may be used for blazing fast file downloads, or to mount the Data Station's CompactFlash card as an external drive to your PC. The Data Station's DIN rail mounting saves time and panel space and snaps easily onto standard top hat (T) profile DIN rail.

Monday, July 31, 2006

A new range of conduit adapters designed for transitioning from conduit to 7/8-16UN Minifast, M12 Eurofast and M23 Multifast connectors. Hans TURCK has a range of new conduit adapters designed for transitioning from conduit to 7/8-16UN Minifast, M12 Eurofast and M23 Multifast connectors. The front of the adapter provides quick disconnect compatibility, while the back provides Screw Terminals for wiring inside the conduit. The conduit adapters are available with one or two connectors and attach to standard conduit bodies.

The conduit adapters are available with one or two connectors and attach to standard conduit bodies. These rugged Turck connectors provide IEC IP67 protection when all receptacles are connected or covered with plugs. Receptacle housings are available in nickel-plated brass or 316 stainless steel to suit many applications. The conduit adapter also includes a gasket and mounting hardware (8-32 by 0.5in) for ease of installation.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Lenze has developed 8200 vector inverters using the 'cold plate' technique for cases where the inverter can be mounted directly onto a substantial heatsink. AC Tech (Lenze AG) 8200 Vector Inverters are available for power 0.55 to 90kW with three-phase supply. In the more popular smaller sizes up to 22kW, a space saving variant can reduce the requirement for panel space by up to 40%.

By dissipating the heat outside the cabinet, these 'cold plate' versions enable panels to have higher enclosure ratings. Alternatively a plate with external cooling by liquid or air can be used. The cold plate versions of the 8200 vector inverters have no heat fins, so heat generated is passed to the mounting plate and transmitted out of the cabinet.

In this way inverters require less mounting depth and the space savings are substantial. For a 1.5kW inverter the saving is 25%, rising to 40% for a 22kW inverter. Therefore panels can be smaller and costs reduced. As the heat is now transmitted to outside of the cabinet, requirements for a flow of cooling air through the cabinet are removed. Cabinets can be sealed and protection to IP65 is easier to achieve.

This is particularly advantageous in dusty conditions where any through flow of air would cause a dust build-up. Above 22kW the cold plate design is not available. However an alternative 'push-through' design can be used right up to 90kW. Here the Lenze Inverter Heatsink is mounted outside of the panel, gaining the advantages of panel space and enclosure as described. The concept of the 8200 vector frequency inverter is based on a modular system of complementary components.

Combined with a Lenze geared motor or a Lenze three-phase AC motor, it can be used to implement electronic variable speed drives for a multiplicity of applications. Compact: Side-by-side mounting saves space in the control cabinet. Integrated filters (optional) simplify installation. Flexible: The modular structure enables the inverters to be optimised for your application. This results in cost-effective but high-performance drive solutions. Whether as a "stand-alone" inverter with setpoint selection via potentiometer or a networked inverter with speed feedback in master/slave mode, the inverter functions can be adapted to suit every application.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Xycom Automation's new 1510 Industrial PC answers a common need to separate the display from the PC. The 1510 series Xycom Industrial PC is a "node" box (without integrated display) with up to 700 MHz Pentium III performance for demanding factory automation applications. Coupled with the Xycom 3015 LCD flat panel monitor, the 1510 gives the user an array of options to choose from. The 1510 Xycom Industrial Computer offers a 10-slot passive backplane with 8 available expansion slots including 4 full-length ISA, 3 full-length PCI, and 1 half-length PCI.

Ian Law, Xycom Automation's Sales Director, explains "There is a large group of factory Automation customers that require a "blind" PC solution with ISA and PCI expansion, or have good reason to physically separate the display from the rest of the PC. Many of these customers have accepted the limitations of using commercial grade PCs with an Industrial Computer LCD monitor. Because these same customers usually require ISA expansion and the commercial market has abandoned ISA expansion capability, these customers are left with even less desirable solutions.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The new multidrives, extension of ABB Low Voltage Industrial Drives, based on a modular configuration of dramatically smaller inverter modules, were introduced on exhibit at the Hannover Messe 2004. Following the debut of the multidrives there, it has been a successful roll out to a wide range of applications and industries around the world. The modular configuration of the multidrive provides control of multiple motors across a 1.5 - 5,600 kW power range, from 380 V up to 690 V. A single rectifier unit can be combined with a host of inverter units that are connected in parallel, to provide output current required by any given application. The multidrive offers a state of art solution for offshore and drilling applications - ultra compact and modular design ensures high availability and service.

ABB's multidrive is built from industrial drive modules that are connected to a common DC bus bar. The common bus bar is used to supply the drive modules with DC power, and each module then inverts the DC to AC and powers an individual motor. The DC power is derived from a single supply unit (rectifier) that is built into the front of the same multidrive configuration. The standard DC bus arrangement enables single power entry and common braking resources for several drives. "Common braking includes regenerative braking and motor-to-motor braking depending on the demands and modes of the various motor loads in a process or on an original equipment machine," according to Tuomo Tarula, market manager for Marine and Offshore, ABB Drives, Helsinki.

Modular construction simplifies the total installation and results in many benefits: savings in cabling, installation and maintenance costs; reduced line currents and simpler braking arrangements; energy distribution over the common DC bus bar, which can be used for motor-to-motor braking without the need for a braking chopper or a regenerative supply unit; reduced component counts; increased reliability; and space savings.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Oriental Motor USA Corp. introduces the new BLF series brushless DC motor system that adopts a brand new design for its motor, gearhead, and driver. High performance speed control is achieved with an increased speed range of 80 to 4,000 rpm (50:1). In addition, the new BLF series is IP65 rated providing splash and dust protection.

The BLF series driver introduces a detachable digital operator unit that serves both as a data input unit and a digital display that can be used up to 16.4 ft (5m) away from the installed driver. The user can program 8 separate speed levels. Each speed can be set in units of 1 rev. per minute with separate acceleration and deceleration values. Detection of various motor and driver error functions including overload, overvoltage, low-voltage, missing phase, overspeed, overcurrent, etc., will immediately stop the motor and output an alarm signal.

The Oriental BLF series driver utilizes 3 speed display modes to help the user. The display modes include motor speed display in rpm, conveyor speed display in meters per minute, and load factor display in percentage of actual load to rated load. A speed teaching function allows the user to set BLF series speeds by physically operating the motor. Four speed-setting methods available to the user are: digital operator, internal potentiometer, external potentiometer, and external variable DC voltage. The motor and driver can be separated by a distance of 65.6 ft (20m).

The BLF brushless dc motors are available in 30 watt (BLF230A), 60 watt (BL460A), and 120 watt (BLF5120) versions. Two Oriental Motor gearhead families, the parallel shaft gearheads and the hollow shaft flat gearheads, are available for use with the BLF motors depending on your requirements.

TURCK USA introduces new programmable pressure sensors that combine high accuracy and performance with simple programming, resulting in an extremely user-friendly sensor. The PS400 and PS500 sensors are easily programmed via three controls: two push buttons for scrolling through programming features and one recessed enter key. The menu is clear and concise to allow parameters such as set points, reset points, output functions, analog ranges, and a range of special options to be programmed with ease. The menu also includes an optional electronic lockout that disables the push buttons from functioning until the lockout is removed.

The high accuracy programmable pressure sensors are specified with a switch point accuracy of ≤+/- 0.5 percent, generally exceeding what is required by the machine engineering sector. The combination of high accuracy and flexible programming often allows a single sensor to replace several conventional sensors (with varying sensing ranges) resulting in a significant reduction in inventory.

These TURCK sensors feature a large, bright 4-digit, 7-segment LCD display with a constant indication of pressure in either psi (pounds per square inch), bar, kPa (kilopascals), or MPa (megapascals). This display is tilted at a 45° angle, and can be inverted electronically for easy reading in a variety of applications. The PS400 and PS500 pressure sensors are encased in compact, 34 mm diameter housing with various threaded connections for simple, versatile installation. The PS500 series also features a process connection that allows the housing to rotate 360 degrees for optimal viewing prior to locking the sensor in place.

The innovative PS400 and PS500 pressure sensors were designed to tolerate tough applications. Stainless steel housing with an integrated stainless steel M12 eurofast ® connector enables fast and reliable installation. The sensors also offer a variety of stainless steel pressure connections including G1/4 and 1/4-18NPT threads.

The sensors are highly resistant to overpressure and burst pressure, yet they also incorporate a patented medium stop system that prevents leakage when these levels are exceeded, which immediately seals the sensor if the pressure cell has been damaged. All of these features were incorporated to create a pressure sensor ideal for use in virtually any application.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Paper manufacturer UPM's plant at Shotton has achieved its goal of producing all its paper from recovered waste paper, rather than virgin wood, with the help of ABB variable speed drives. Known as the '100% Shotton' project, it has involved the building of a new recycled fibre plant, a sludge plant and modifications to Paper Machine 1 and Paper Machine 2. ABB General Purpose Drives are used mainly on pumps in the process, using variable speed to match pump speed to the production rate.

They are also used on chemical dosing pumps to accurately add chemicals to the pulp. Some conveyors on the process also use ABB variable speed drives. The drives help control the process better, adjusting the inputs to the plant to maintain the correct pressure and temperature conditions. The drives also make it easier to control the production rate. Additionally, they contribute to energy savings by reducing the power drawn.

Ray von der Fecht, Project Automation Manager on the 100% Shotton project, says: 'We chose ABB variable speed drives because ABB is a respected name, well known in the paper industry. Also, we know the products and the people. Overall, ABB offered a very good solution along with the best price. So well did the implementation phase go, that start-up of the system went according to plan, with the drives and automation system being switched on at the exact planned minute in the schedule'. 'It was like switching on a light', says von der Fecht.

One of the UPM's major criteria for the drives was maintainability. The drives had to be capable of being changed out quickly in the event of failure and also had to be easy to move. Interchangeable cards were also considered an advantage, allowing the company to keep dives running by simply changing some of the critical components. Compact size was also part of the demand, to save on space, improve efficiency and heat loss and cut cooling costs. The ABB drives scored on all the points. Another useful feature was their ability to communicate over Profibus, the industry standard for communication in paper production. The drives also feature input line chokes to reduce harmonics fed to the network and output filters to reduce the electrical stresses on the motor windings. High reliability was the most important criterion. Says von der Fecht: 'We have had good experience with the ABB drives'.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

With the increasing demand for machine device control and communication over industrial Ethernet, DeviceNet, and other networks, OEMs have found that installing traditional power supplies in distributed and remote locations has become prohibitively complex and costly because of the need for protective enclosures, fans, and excess wiring. In addition, enclosures introduce another potential point of failure into the production line.

To reduce cost and complications, SolaHD has launched its new IP67 SCP-X self-sealed power supplies. They mount directly on machines or as freestanding components on a production line, removing the constraints imposed by power supplies that must be housed in enclosures. Compared to power supplies housed in a separate enclosure, the IP67 SCP-X reduces total cost of ownership by as much as 54 percent.

Because the IP67 SCP-X is available in 100 watt and dual 100 watt models, it has the versatility to power from one to four loads. The 100 watt model has a single output of 3.8A at 24Vdc to deliver cost-efficient field power in a compact unit that requires minimal assembly. Dual 100 watt models have quad output of 7.6A at 24Vdc (3.8A max per pair). It eliminates need for splitters or additional wiring to power up to four loads, making it perfect for high density power requirements such as large conveyor belts or automative assembly lines.

Extreme environments found in industrial locations will compromise the performance of a standard power supply. This is why SolaHD took every measure possible to make the IP67 SCP-X the most robust industrial-grade power supply on the market today. This extends from its shock-absorbing, self-sealed IP67 rated enclosure impervious to water, dust and corrosion, to an optimized thermal management layout that prevents overheating while doing away with bulky external fans or forced air. It will operate reliably in ambient temperatures of -40°C to 60°C for the single watt model and -20°C to 60°C for the dual watt. In addition, it keeps signal noise and electromagnetic interference (EMI) well below the limits required to ensure reliable data communications.

Design engineers will welcome the IP67 SCP-X's ability to be directly mounted on a machine. In addition to not requiring an enclosure or a fan, it minimizes cabling to power devices while offering the flexibility to mount in any orientation with no derating. Quick change connectors simplify connectivity for distributed I/O devices, as well as assembly/disassembly. Its compact footprint of 4.7" x 7" compares favorably to a traditional power supply enclosure measuring 16" x 14".

New SolaHD IP67 SCP-X power supplies are immediately available. Both 100 watt and dual 100 watt models are backed by a five year limited warranty, the longest in the industry. All models are certified to meet Class 2 requirements for power limiting.