Friday, February 27, 2009

CCE has added several capabilities to Ensuite 2.2 - its software for sharing detailed product knowledge across the extended enterprise. EnSuite's latest release provides access to product manufacturing information (PMI) stored in annotated 3D models. This type of information, typically required by manufacturers and fabricators, includes geometric dimensions, tolerances, surface roughness and datums.

By providing PMI data, Ensuite helps manufacturers improve collaboration throughout the supply chain by providing accurate product specifications, allows increased use of 3D product information throughout the product lifecycle, dramatically reduces design and fabrication errors caused by the misinterpretation of 2D data or paper documents, and cuts paper handling and document delivery costs.

The Ensuite update also includes a Shrink Wrap tool that can be used to combine all the solid bodies available in an assembly file to a single solid. The result provides an accurate external representation of the model. This model can be shared, where sharing detailed design information is not required.

This is useful in a supply chain environment, as it reduces the detail of production data for intellectual property protection and creates simplified data for complex assemblies. Ensuite supports files from multiple CAD formats, including CATIA V5 R19, Solidworks 2009 and NX6. Ensuite is designed to provide quick access to critical engineering information residing in CAD data, no matter which CAD system was used to author it. Its interface can be used by non-designers.

Bison Gear's Tightdrive speed control for permanent magnet DC (PMDC) motors was designed for applications that require a convenient location for the control on the motor. The majority of PMDC gearmotors and motors used in industry require speed controls in order to operate.

Typically, the control is wired to the motor through a costly, complicated cable system and the motor and control can be many steps away from each other. Bison Gear and Engineering's Tightdrive motor-mounted speed control can be easily field-mounted on Bison PMDC gearmotors up to 1/6 horsepower (124W) and offers a 20:1 speed range with maximum output of 90V.

The Tightdrive is housed in a durable aluminium extrusion that offers NEMA 1 (IP30) protection and good heat dissipation. Speed is controlled with a combination on/off switch and speed potentiometer. In addition, three easily accessible adjustable potentiometers provide settings for minimum rpm, maximum rpm, and current limiting. The SCR control architecture also provides tighter speed regulation than alternative controls.

The Tightdrive is designed for 115V 50/60Hz operation and comes complete with a 3ft power cord and NEMA 5-15P plug. Users can mount the drive directly to the motor in 90-degree increments to optimise position of cord exit and motor leads. The Tightdrive speed controls are available for immediate shipment from Bison's distribution network or direct from the Bison Gear website.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

ABB Group's Variable Speed Drives have won an award for cutting energy usage and extending the life of refrigerators. The Food and Drink Innovation Network Clegg Food Projects Award for New Process and Environmental Awareness was presented to ABB at a gala dinner at the National Space Centre, Leicester. More than 60 per cent of industrial electrical energy is used to power electric motors, the majority of which are used on fans, pumps and compressors.

These devices are used in refrigeration equipment. The motors driving these applications usually run at a constant speed, even though the load is varying. Using variable speed drives (VSDs), the speed of the motor can be slowed down, thereby reducing the amount of energy consumed. A VSD can be retrofitted to most existing systems.

The mechanical controls are simply locked fully open and the VSD directly controls the speed of the electric motor. Since cold storages and fridge plants typically run for 24 hours, most refrigeration drive applications are potential VSD candidates. Any refrigeration system with a wide variation in operating hours or with a heat load that is less than the peak load can benefit from a VSD. ABB applied existing technology to the food industry by developing bolt on variable speed drive motors for refrigerators.

These keep units running at regular speeds and prevent peaks of energy use when something is put inside a fridge, reducing energy use and costs and cutting carbon footprints. This increases the life of the equipment. Instead of continually running at full speed, the lower speed reduces stresses, increases the equipment life and extends service intervals, cutting maintenance costs.

A range of zero-backlash speed reducers is now available to the UK market, as a result of the recent appointment of Precision Motion (Cofil) as agent for the Japanese manufacturer Kamo Seiko. Available in both co-axial and right-angle configurations, these speed reducers utilise precision ground steel balls as the transmission medium.

According to the company, the speed reducers offer zero-backlash; rolling contact, therefore reduced noise; high efficiency; high torque capacity; and excellent accuracy. There is a choice of several input/output options to suit all applications, including a version to allow direct fitting of NEMA 11 to 34 frame motors.

In addition, the housing is designed to facilitate the addition of custom-made flanges for special applications. Reduction ratios are available from 5:1 to 1600:1, with rated output torque capacity ranging from 1.6Nm to 98Nm. Precision Motion will also be responsible for sales and technical support for Kamo's range of miniature cam and cam/pneumatic hybrid indexing mechanisms, for small fixed stroke positioning applications.

Pepperl & Fuchs has released the Ident control compact interface unit, which supports RFID readers with 125kHz, 250kHz, 13.56MHz, 868MHz and 2.45GHz frequencies. Two versions are available to support one or two readers. The interface options include Ethernet, Profibus, RS232 and RS485.

The metal IP67 housing measures 137 x 62 x 41mm, stabilising it against electromagnetic influence. It can be mounted in any orientation to suit the application. Two LEDs provide commissioning and maintenance information for the read/write heads and two LEDs for bus communication and diagnosis. Further commissioning and testing is performed with the free RFID-Control software. Connection to the unit utilises M12 connector plugs for the bus, power and read/write heads.

Monday, February 16, 2009

American Sensor Technologies' (AST) AST46HA is a media-isolated explosion-proof sensor with digital compensation and single-seal approval. It is made of stainless steel and is approved to CSA30 (UL1203/FM3615) Class 1, Division 1 and Zone 1 Group IIB Explosion Proof, groups C and D. The AST46HA is suitable for extreme temperature applications, including arctic environments and off-shore platforms.

It applies digital compensation and utilises Krystal Bond technology. It utilises a one-piece stainless steel non-oil-filled sensor design, which offers continuous operation at temperatures that cause other sensors to fail. The AST46HA is suitable for applications where linearity and repeatability are critical. The AST46HA is versatile and suitable in a variety of applications.

These applications include: oil and gas pipelines, well optimisation, drilling platforms, CNG/LNG fill stations, paint booths and remote transmitter units (RTU). The AST46HA operates at a wide ambient temperature range -40 to +85C, offers a compensated temperature range of -30 to +55C and a media temperature range of -40 to +125C. All AST46HA units come standard with +/-0.1 per cent BFSL accuracy, EMI/RFI protection of 100V/meter and a variety of output options including 4-20mA, 1-5V and 0.5-4.5V ratiometric.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Introducing the next generation of high performance encoders - Accu-Coder (Encoder Products Company) Model 25T. As contemporary as its appearance, the Model 25T features the largest thru-bore available in a 2.5” encoder, mounting directly on shafts as large as 1.125" (28 mm). With resolutions of up to 10,000 CPR, and Frequencies of up to 1MHz this industrial strength encoder is perfect for fast revving motors.

The 25T features the next generation of EPC's proprietary Opto-ASIC sensor which provides superior accuracy and precision counts. The injection molded housing, made from EPC's custom blend of nylon composites, is grooved with "cooling fins" and can take the extreme heat of the motion control industry. With sealing available of up to IP66 and many new rugged flexible mounting options, the Model 25T can perform in demanding industrial environments.

This revolutionary new 2.5” encoder truly is unlike any other and ideal for replacing HS20, HS25, and HS35 style encoders.

Meltric Corporation has announced the availability of its 2009 product catalogue featuring Decontactor Series switch rated plugs, receptacles and connectors. This 224-page catalogue also provides information about Meltric's other plug and receptacle product offerings including hazardous duty rated devices, PF high ampacity devices (up to 600A), and a wide variety of multi-pin devices (up to 37 contacts).

Decontactor Series switch rated plugs and receptacles allow technicians to change-out motors, welders and other electrical equipment. They are an NEC approved 'line of sight' disconnect and are UL approved for both 'branch circuit' and 'motor circuit' disconnect switching up to 200A or 60 HP. Decontactors are also UL rated to make and withstand short circuits up to 100kA. A Decontactors integral switching capability ensures that the contacts are always de-energised before the plug can be withdrawn from the receptacle.

Once the plug is removed, the receptacle's safety shutter further ensures worker safety by preventing unintentional access to live parts to all but the correct mating plug. Since Decontactors maintain an NFPA 70E defined hazard/risk category of zero during equipment connection and disconnection, users do not have to wear PPE nor follow other NFPA 70E specified safety procedures that are typically necessary for electrical safety during electrical equipment change-outs.