Monday, September 29, 2008

Photonfocus, a manufacturer of CMOS industrial cameras, has brought out the Pixel Professor CMOS Smart camera, featuring on-camera image pre-processing. The pre-processing in the camera enables the design of machine vision systems with distributed intelligence. Performing pre-processing on the camera reduces the vision system computer CPU load, meaning the vision system can run faster or use more sophisticated algorithms in the same time period, producing better results. The technology is scalable and can be fitted to a customer's application.

The Pixel Professor supports common image pre-processing operations in pipelined processors, such as convolution and non-linear filters, histograms, erosion and dilation, adaptive thresholding, image buffers, image arithmetic, colour space conversion, look-up tables (LUT), triangulation and others. Setting up the pre-processing unit on the Pixel Professor is made easy with a simple graphical user interface (GUI).

It allows for control loops and multiple passes. Customised operators can be implemented alongside standard operators. Alternating frame capture setups can be realised with an embedded sequencer to achieve maximum frame rates.

In-built pre-processing hardware in the camera removes the reliance on specialised frame grabbers or other hardware accelerators. The Pixel Professor cameras output pre-processed images via USB 2.0 or Gige. No frame grabbers are required. The benefits of the Pixel Professor cameras include: reduction of pre-processing time, which increases frame rate; enhanced algorithms with same CPU-load compared to software image processing; and real-time processing of up to 640 Mega pixel per second (Mps).

Thursday, September 18, 2008


Our most technically advanced inverter drive continues AC Tech's tradition of innovative compact inverter design. The performance and flexibility make the SMVector an attractive solution for a broad range of AC Motor applications including:
  • Food Processing machinery

  • Packaging machinery

  • Material handling systems

  • Conveying Systems

  • HVAC systems
The SMVector Series can be used with 3-phase AC induction motors rated from 1/3 HP up to 30HP (0.25 - 22 kW) on voltages from 120V single-phase to 600 V three-phase. NEMA Type 1 (IP31) and type 4X (IP65) ¹ industrial enclosures allow mounting the drive close to the motor and the equipment operator. Filtered input versions of the SMV are available in NEMA 4X (IP65) models for compliance with the CE EMC directive.
Programmable digital and analog I/O allow the drive to be configured for many application specific tasks such as multiple preset speeds, electronic braking and motor jogging to name a few. Like all AC Tech sub-micro drives, the SMVector uses EPM memory technology for fast and efficient programming. Technical documentation for the SMVector Series Drive, and all AC Technology drives, is available in our Technical Library.
¹ type 4X enclosures are available in either ABS plastic, suitable for most indoor industrial environments or Polycarbonate plastic that offers UV protection and has higher impact strength at low temperatures

National Instruments has released an instrument driver that allows users of NI Labview to interface with environmental monitoring sensors that communicate via SDI-12. SDI-12 is a serial-based communication protocol optimised for battery-powered intelligent sensors NI Labview is a graphical system design platform. With NI Labview SDI-12 Application Programming Interface (API) software, researchers, engineers and scientists can easily acquire measurements such as turbidity, dissolved oxygen, tank level, soil pH, conductivity and other critical environmental sensor measurements.

The SDI-12 protocol makes it possible to communicate with a wide variety of sensors and recorders that are most commonly used in environmental data acquisition applications such as climate change tracking, water quality and testing, ecological research, soil monitoring, agriculture and weather analysis.

Using the Labview SDI-12 API, researchers, engineers and scientists can connect traditional environmental data with the wide variety of I/O that works with Labview, making it a comprehensive and flexible environmental data-logging solution.

The Labview SDI-12 API, combined with an RS232 to SDI-12 converter and any computer or NI programmable automation controller that includes a serial port, can be used to make environmental measurements in a laboratory setting or deploy stand-alone systems into remote locations.

Friday, September 12, 2008

The SO analyser is M+P International's real-time analyser for noise and vibration measurement, analysis and reporting in the field and in the lab. The latest SO analyser Rev 3.3 supports M+P's new portable, fan-less 4-/8-channel VibPilot front-end with 24-bit resolution and USB 2.0 interfacing. Full support comprises all native sample frequencies from 1024Hz to 102.4kHz, input modes including AC/DC floating or grounded and ICP user selectable on each channel.

Two tacho inputs with 32-bit high-speed up/down counters are included for measuring synchronous signals on rotating machines. A sound quality analysis module has been added to the new software revision. The basis of the SO analyser sound quality analysis is Zwicker loudness that provides standardised methods for this type of product refinement.

The implemented functions, which are available both as online and post-processed analysis, can be viewed as 2D, 3D, or as colour maps (spectrograms) for further analysis. The SO analyser Rev 3.3 introduces other capabilities including full operation under the Microsoft Windows Vista operating system, the least squares fit analysis tool, percentile calculations and amplitude distribution statistics.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Pepperl+Fuchs has introduced the CorrTran Corrosion Data Logging System. This Division 2/Zone 2 system complements the CorrTran MV online corrosion monitoring transmitter, allowing users to access real-time corrosion data via Ethernet, USB, SD card, or locally via videographic chart recorder. The corrosion data logging system is packaged in a portable, stainless steel enclosure weighing less than 20lbs
The transmitter outputs a 4-20mA HART signal that is used to scale the corrosion rate in a PLC or DCS system.

The rate of corrosion can now be evaluated with all other relevant process signals. The corrosion data logging system includes Pepperl+Fuchs' KFD2-HLC-EX1.D HART loop converter. This device receives HART data from the CorrTran MV corrosion monitor and delivers three distinct 4-20mA outputs that represent general corrosion, localised corrosion and conductance. These three variables can then be recorded and displayed on a paperless data recorder that features a full-colour touch-screen display, up to 16 analogue inputs, multiple types of media retrieval, and a Class I/Div 2, Zone 2 Ex-hazardous rating.

A Type 4X stainless steel enclosure allows for the most severe of installations. The lightweight construction also permits easy mobility for the system to be moved from one location to another, where a PLC/DCS might not be available.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Saft are to exhibit a range of energy solutions developed to meet the dynamic needs of the telecommunications industry. Saft's main focus for the exhibition is on power backup systems that ensure maximum reliability and optimum total cost of ownership for the wide variety of remote or outdoor plants now playing a vital role in decentralised telecom networks. Key technologies on show will include the Tel.X maintenance-free nickel-cadmium (Ni-Cd) battery together with the Intensium range of lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery systems.

Saft has developed Tel.X to offer advantages for demanding outdoor telecom applications in remote areas. It is compact, light and takes around 15 minutes to install a 48V battery. Tel.X offers a service life of more than 20 years in normal temperatures and more than 14 years at 40C. In many cases the battery can be expected to outlive the installation, meaning it will not need topping up with water. Tel.X offers volumic energy density of up to 100Wh/L. It is designed for use in standard 19in and 23in racks and cabinets. Tel.X offers performance over a temperature range of -20C to 40C and can withstand extremes from -50C to 70C.

Unlike valve regulated lead acid batteries often found in telecoms applications, the construction and engineered electrolyte used in Ni-Cd batteries mean they cannot not suffer from 'sudden death'. Tel.X is suited for backup power applications in outdoor installations, such as cabinets and end terminals in fibre-optic triple-play networks, as well as BTS (Base Transceiver Station) and BSC (Base Station Controller) installations in wireless networks. Intensium Li-ion batteries provide power and energy density in a compact, rack-mounted modular system.

The latest addition to the range is the second generation Intensium 1 Power Plus battery intended for short duration power backup, from 3 to 30 minutes. It is suited to smaller, decentralised outdoor plant installations, required to support telecoms networks such as micro and macro BTS. This Li-ion offers an anticipated 20-year life at 20C and a 10-year life at 40C. The new batteries offer 30 per cent more power, with the maximum power increased from 3kW to 4kW. As well as the standard 48V battery system, Intensium 1 Power Plus is now available in a 24V version.