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Showing posts from November, 2009

Revolvo Provides Flexible Large-Bearing Service

Revolvo is helping wind-turbine-maintenance companies to meet deadlines with its flexible service for large bearings. Flexible production allows the company to supply standard or bespoke solid and split bearings to order in sizes up to 1.5m outside diameter in a matter of weeks.

Revolvo also manufactures large, OE-standard solid bearings - cylindrical, taper-roller, thrust and deep-groove ball bearings - and can deliver them in a matter of weeks. This means that refurbishment projects can be delivered on-time and within budget by sourcing the bearings required for wind-turbine transmissions directly from Revolvo.

Revolvo manufactures solid bearings in sizes from 25mm bore to 1,500mm external diameter and SRB split roller bearings in sizes from 35mm bore to over 1,000mm internal diameter, plus imperial equivalents.

In addition, the company also manufactures inch, custom-designed and obsolete sizes of solid ball and roller bearings, which are used to keep older machinery in operation. All …

Controller Simplifies Multi-Axis Motion Setup

Parker Hannifin has launched the Compax3F electrohydraulic controller, designed to help engineers increase productivity and machine performance. The control features optimised force/pressure control, controller pre-setting for closed-loop position control, an updated valve library with the latest Parker valves, and a multi-axis tool supported by a comprehensive database of multi-axis applications. Compax3F is particularly suitable for applications such as die casting, metal forming, blow moulding and tube bending.

Up to 31 motion profiles can be selected including absolute/relative position, force/pressure control, positioning or electronic gearing, with the controller providing synchronous running for up to two hydraulic axes, including replacement for NC 100 axis in new projects. With absolute/relative positioning, for example, a motion set defines a complete group of motions by target position, travel speed, maximum acceleration, maximum deceleration and maximum jerk.

In the case of …

Clustajet Ventilators Extract Contaminated Air

The Clustajet ventilator range from Beckair has no moving parts and no electricity is required, leaving it maintenance free and safe to use in damp and wet locations. Clustajet ventilators are motorless and bladeless fans operated by compressed air utilising Beckair's Ringjet technology to create a robust, high-performance ventilator. A Clustajet uses numerous Ringjets (bladeless and motorless fans) situated within a resilient steel casing.

They are designed to generate a high velocity jet effect. The Beckair Clustajet is lighter in weight while its size is smaller than an equivalent electric fan. Applications for Beckair Clustajets include extraction, ventilating and cooling. Clustajets extract welding fumes, solvent vapours and dust. They are able to ventilate confined spaces, tanks, sewers and tunnels. Clustajets also have the ability to provide a cool, high volume stream of air suitable for cooling components, pipe work, and processes and drying.

They are suitable for use in haz…

Pocket Vibra Lite Diagnoses Machine Faults

C-Cubed has launched Pocket Vibra Lite, its entry-level, hand-held predictive-maintenance tool. Based around an ultra-rugged and waterproof unit with a high-quality colour touch-screen display, Pocket Vibra Lite takes signals from an accelerometer, positioned using a magnet mount, giving instant diagnosis of machine faults such as bearing wear, instability, out of balance, misalignment and looseness.

The instrument allows stylus-free data collection and the display shows full frequency spectrum and time waveform for acceleration (G) and ISO velocity (mm/s), plus crest factor and bearing noise (BDU), and readings can be saved as Excel files for later recall on a PC. The system can be upgraded to Pocket Vibra Pro.

Build Material Increases 3D Printed Model Demand

The Realization Group is using a combination of Z Corporation's ZP150 build material and the multicolour 3D ZPrinter450 to meet demand for models with richer colours and improved mechanical strength. 'Purer whites are especially important for architects, who traditionally prefer white models early in the design process so they can consider design, massing and space without the distraction of colour,' explains Rafael Tapanes, founder of the multidimensional architectural visualisation firm. 'Although earlier generation bone-white models are acceptable, customers have long been asking for pure white,' he added.

Architecture is a key sector for Realization Group, which helps clients breathe life into abstract concepts. Finely detailed physical massing models are created rapidly and cost effectively using the recently installed ZPrinter450 multicolour twin-head 3D printer. 'Speed is the key,' said Tapanes. 'I can take an order for a model today and deliver i…

Feedthrough System Withstands Up To 450F

ITT Interconnect Solutions has announced a high-temperature electric power feedthrough system for submersible pumps specifically designed for operation with conductor temperatures up to 450F (230C). Such a severe operating environment places significant demands on the individual components and stresses sealing elements of the system. ITT Interconnect addressed these issues by re-engineering the power feedthrough, incorporating a keying system and a new sealing system.

The engagement system between the BIW high-temperature feedthrough and the mating surface connector includes the Metal-Lok keying system, which prevents rotation of the surface connector should it be inadvertently turned or mishandled. In addition, seals between individual parts of the BIW high-temperature feedthrough are protected by a new sealing system, which can withstand extremely high temperatures, preventing the ingress of downhole fluids.

Exterior seals to the hanger and top flange have been fitted with high-temper…

ACI De-Duster Allows Safer Clean-Down Process

An Air Control Industries (ACI) Jetblack personnel de-duster has replaced a dangerous compressed air cleaning process at a Steetley Dolomite works. The Whitwell Works of Steetley Dolomite quarries and produces magnesium limestone products for the steel, refractory and agricultural industries. After the limestone is quarried, it is crushed, sized and processed to produce various products for applications such as steel furnace manufacture and repair, steel production, refractory products and agricultural soil improvement.

The processing of the limestone to produce these products results in the creation of a lot of dust around the plant, which gets deposited on the overalls of workers on site. To de-dust themselves, although advised frequently not to because of the very real danger that it poses, many of the staff would clean their overalls down with compressed air. Posters about the risks and verbal warnings from the safety leader for compressed air, John Collins, seemed to do little to …

Schaffler Agrees Uniair Cooperation With ABB

Schaeffler and ABB Turbo Systems AG have signed a cooperation agreement with regard to the Schaeffler valve-control system, Uniair. The collaboration agreement will see ABB contribute its knowledge of efficient, single- and two-stage turbocharger technology, as well as marketing and sales of large, high-performance engines. The cooperation applies to units with a performance of 400kW (544 PS) per cylinder or higher.

The applications of these large engines are typically in marine, machinery and stationary operation. The advantages of the VVT system in conjunction with high-pressure turbocharging are in the fields of emission- and fuel-consumption reduction and in the improvement of the start, part load and acceleration behaviour. The Uniair fully variable, hydraulic valve-control system is behind the VVT system and enables the variation of valve timing and lift.

The Alfa Mito 1.4 Multiair is the first vehicle to utilise this technology, which is branded 'Multiair' by Fiat. The fu…

Motor Technology to supply TPM pumps

Fuji Techno Industries has appointed Motor Technology of Stockport as its sole European agents to provide sales and servicing of its specialist triplex plunger metering (TPM) pumps. TPM pumps are used in metering applications where a predetermined volume of liquid is pumped into a process or system with a very high degree of accuracy - better than 0.1 per cent in the case of water - even under variable pumping conditions like discharge pressure, temperature or viscosity of fluid.

The pumps have three cams that discharge the required volume of fluid from three cylinders at a continually constant rate. The design of each plunger incorporates six phases of movement at increments of 60deg within one revolution of its respective cam. The flow rate at the suction side is kept constant to minimise the possibility of cavitations and pulsation. The pump's cams are designed to enable the plungers to deliver a constant volume of fluid from the three cylinders.

Fuji Techno's TPM pumps can…

DEK OTS Clamping Secures Printed Circuit Boards

DEK has launched its Over Top Snuggers (OTS) substrate clamping technology. Securing printed circuit boards firmly in place ready for processing, the flexible technology is designed to ensure high-quality printing for enhanced end-of-line yield. OTS clamps the board flat before enabling finite snugging and clamp control for precise board location.

The board is pulled down flat to enable a strong vacuum tooling contact and the clamps are then pulled away from the board top face surface to allow close-edge printing. By optimising edge-printed paste deposits, this process enhances yield potential.

The OTS system automatically adjusts for variations in board thickness, eliminating setup requirements between production batches and runs and removing the need for manual intervention. The clamps will also automatically adjust for out-of-parallel boards. The technology uses the Instinctiv V9 user interface software to adjust and store clamp and snug pressure via a touch-screen interface. OTS is …

Prysmian Releases Afumex LSX Low Fire-Hazard Range

Prysmian's Afumex LSX low fire-hazard range has been developed to address the specific needs of modern building services. It is designed for power and lighting circuits where a screened low-smoke halogen-free cable is required. BASEC approved to BS8436, it meets all the requirements of the 17th edition wiring regulations for installation in thin walls and partitions, among other applications. Afumex LSX is a robust yet lightweight cable that is compact and inexpensive.

Infineon Adds LED Drivers To Energy-Saving Range

Infineon Technologies AG is extending its portfolio of energy-efficient lighting ICs with a range of low-cost linear LED drivers. The BCR320 and BCR420 product ranges address the market for energy-saving and environmentally friendly light-emitting diode (LED) lighting solutions. Designed for driving 0.5W LEDs with a typical current of 150 to 200mA, these LED drivers feature a negative thermal coefficient, contributing to a long lifetime of LEDs and a digital interface for a pulse-width modulation (PWM) signal for dimming.

The BCR320 and BCR420 LED drivers are tailored to address deficiencies for 0.5W LED applications, providing a low-cost solution with a small form factor. With both devices, the use of inductors, capacitors and free-wheeling diode can be avoided. The elimination of electrolytic capacitors can also contribute to the extended lifetime of the LED system. The BCR320 products are designed for a peak output current of up to 300mA. For continuous operation, a maximum nominal …

ITT Introduces Packer Feedthrough System

The BIW field-attachable packer feedthrough system launched by ITT Interconnect Solutions is designed to provide a faster method of passing power cables through packers. Consisting of a field-attachable feedthrough connector, a mating attachable cable connector, a cross-over adapter and related hardware, this system allows the connector to be installed on the top side of a packer using a cross-over adapter, eliminating the need for splicing of down-hole cables.

Potential stress on the cable is eliminated as the packer feedthrough includes a completely variable threaded adjustment system, allowing vertical adjustment of up to 3in (76mm). When appropriate, it is possible to install the termination contacts on the cable conductors before the cable is passed through the packer. This may reduce the amount of work an installer is required to carry out in a vertical position over an open well.

Electrical specifications include voltage ratings of 5,000V AC, 140A current, pressure up to 5,000psi…

Jena Tec Offers Ballscrew Repair Discount

Jena Tec can repair ballscrews of any make, type or configuration, with whichever type of ballscrew transfer system. Its specialised repair and ballscrew testing facilities means it repair ballscrews up to 15m in length and 200mm in diameter. The company can offer express ballscrew repair out of hours while the customer waits. It can collect failed ballscrews needing repair or be available to accept delivery 24/7.

Upon receipt of the ballscrew, it is logged onto the repair system and given a free assessment report - measuring critical parameters and conducting a 32-point ballscrew repair check. Jena Tec's ballscrew repair service technicians can assist with removal and refitting of the ballscrew on request. The company also provides rapid reverse engineering and emergency replacement of failed ballscrews if repair is not possible.

The ballscrew upgrade service diagnoses failure modes and provides a drop-in replacement from the XLF series precision ballscrews. Jena Tec offers Europ…

ABB Drives Reduce Swimming Pool Energy Bills

ABB drives have helped a UK holiday park operator save GBP77,000 a year on energy bills for its swimming pools. Bourne Leisure, which owns brands such as Haven, Butlins and Warner Leisure hotels, has swimming pools at a number of its properties. ABB Drives Alliance partner APDS was asked to investigate the energy-saving potential for the swimming pools and a trial was conducted on two of the three filtration pumps at Bourne Leisure's Devon Cliffs site.

The pump was monitored for a period before a variable speed drive (VSD) was installed. Monitoring with a temporary VSD fitted demonstrated that considerable energy savings could be made. The direct-on-line pumps were working at 50Hz drawing an average of 30A. When the drive was introduced, this figure was reduced to 23A during the day and 15A at night, with no effect on water quality. APDS and ABB recommended fitting VSDs to the pumps feeding the pool filters.

The pump filters operate by trapping dirt and debris in the sand filter a…

Q-Sys Provides Custom-Designed Motion Systems

Q-Sys offers a complete design-and-build service for all types of precision motion and positioning systems. Q-Sys aims to fill the gap between standard catalogue motion products and real-world applications. Instead of trying to create a solution for a complex motion task from components designed for mass production, Q-Sys enables engineers to obtain exactly what best suits their needs - bespoke, high-accuracy motion equipment.

By exploring the real requirements of the application, Q-Sys said its engineers can offer high-performance but cost-effective solutions to today's demanding motion systems needs. This may result in a custom design to directly meet the customer's specification. However, more often than not, the solution will use one or more elements from previous designs. These are carefully selected to ensure the most cost-effective solution.

The company said that this technique has proved successful, not only for one-off special-purpose systems, but also in producing the …

Verderflex Dura Pump Ensures Bubble-Free Printing

Peterson Packaging, a Danish printing company, has selected the Verderflex Dura peristaltic pump to gently handle water-based ink. Transferring ink from storage containers to the rollers on printing machines was proving problematic for Peterson. Air diaphragm pumps were originally responsible for the job, but had proved unable to handle the water-based ink gently enough.

As a result, bubbles formed in the ink, ruining the packaging, creating excess waste and adding expense. To resolve the problem, the company decided to look for a gentle-action pump to ensure bubble-free ink. The chosen design also needed to be both cost effective and sufficiently compact to fit into the limited space available. With the Verderflex Dura peristaltic pump, ink is completely contained within the pump's hose, which is compressed by a rotating roller.

On restitution of the hose, the resulting vacuum draws in more liquid, creating a gentle and accurate pumping process. The design eliminates any danger of …

Insertion Probes Monitor Bioproduction Process

Stratophase has collaborated with the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI) to develop an insertion probe variant of its Spectrosens system. Enabling real-time monitoring of the bioproduction fermentation process, the multi-output Spectrosens insertion probes track compositional changes and monitor temperature in the liquid.

Multiple discrete readings can be taken simultaneously at numerous locations, providing more reliable measurements and a reduced chance of false positives. As a result, the entire fermentation process can be precisely monitored to ensure reproducibility and clear determination of the desired end-point. The Spectrosens system sensors can be placed throughout the production process and networked via the control and analysis unit.

Using only light at the point of measurement, the sensors are intrinsically safe and spark free, removing any chances of ignition. The insertion probe fits standard ports for dissolved oxygen (DO) and pH probes, enabling ultra-high resolution, …

Ansys Software Helps Ferrari Improve Comfort

Italian car manufacturer Ferrari is using software from Ansys to optimise automobile design and performance. Ferrari is using software from Ansys to predict thermal comfort in a vehicle's interior. In order to assess comfort qualitatively and quantitatively, the car manufacturer worked with Pisa University in Italy to define thermal comfort indices and to evaluate the general aspects of thermal comfort. Since an experimental approach was not practical, the investigating engineering team used fluid dynamics software from Ansys to perform the calculations. According to Giovanni Lombardi, professor of aeroplane aerodynamics and vehicle aerodynamics at Pisa University, the Ansys engineering simulation software rendered accurate and reliable results. The research team based its resulting 'global thermal comfort index' on several local indices: the thermal equilibrium of the human body, discomfort caused by drafts and horizontal and vertical temperature gradients. Various fact…

BCT Extends Resolution HMI SBC Options

Blue Chip Technology (BCT) has followed up the launch of its Resolution HMI single-board computer kit with the release of a supporting Linux BSP and the addition of a 7in LCD module. Released in June 2009, Resolution has generated interest from the instrumentation, multimedia and mobile markets.

Comprising the RE1 single-board computer, mounting, interfacing and range of display options - Resolution offers the design engineer the basic building blocks needed for a versatile embedded HMI module. The usual cabling, signalling and power issues of integrating a display and embedded board are all managed within the design, which guarantees long-term availability and problem-free fit, form and function upgrades.

Working with the Linux community, Blue Chip has released a RE1 BSP that includes all the tools and guidance to kick-start a Linux-based embedded project - a Linux kernel, root file system, Yamon bootloader and sample configurations. Additionally, Blue Chip has added a 7in 800 x 480 re…

Thermometers Feature Advanced Signal Processing

Ircon has introduced the Modline 6 Series of infrared thermometers with advanced signal processing and background-reflected energy compensation capabilities. This line of sensors also includes one and two-colour fibre-optic IR devices designed for harsh operating environments. The Modline 6 Series thermometers are used in a variety of demanding industrial applications, including metal heat treating, steel production, foundries and primary and secondary glass.

The Modline 6 firmware now provides engineers with enhanced signal processing options, including averaging, 'peak hold' and 'valley hold'. The thermometers also incorporate an electro-optic design offering built-in compensation for background-reflected energy. These features are accessed via Modline 6 Multidrop support software, which is intended for remote sensor configuration and data acquisition, display and archiving.

The software includes demonstration tutorials that pictorially guide users step by step through…

Micro Stepper Motors Bring Pictures Into Focus

Electro Mechanical Systems has supplied Precistep micro-stepper motors to Life Optics to allow it to develop a compact, reliable and light-weight head-mounted microscope. The result was high-precision technology in the smallest possible space. Each system has two motors, one 8mm diameter and one 10mm, which provide dynamic zoom and focus controls, delivering the high precision and accuracy required for this demanding application.

In the basic microscope version, available as Varioscope AF3, users can move freely in a working distance of 300 to 600mm. The foot-operated zoom function allows infinitely variable magnification from 3.6 to 7.2. The field of vision is 30 to 144mm and the pupillary distance can be individually adjusted to each user. The Varioscope M5 provides an extendible modular optical system; changeable oculars extend the magnification range and integrated lighting addresses shadows. With an optional video camera, procedures carried out by the user can be precisely recorde…

Aaeon Introduces Fanless Vehicle Computer

Aaeon has announced the launch of the AEC-6811 low power consuming and fanless vehicle computer. For enhanced performance, Aaeon has included features such as the AMD Geode LX 800 processor in a compact embedded controller to cultivate the vertical market of transportation.

The AEC-6811 features the AMD Geode LX 800 500MHz processor and accompanies it with DDR400 RAM SODIMM (up to 512MB) system memory. This mini embedded controller also provides one Mini-PCI expansion, which makes it suitable for Industrial PC applications.

The AEC-6811 includes one SATA/IDE hard disk and one Type II Compactflash slot for storage (Compactflash slot is only for AEC-6811 Rev.B). It accommodates four COM ports and four USB 2.0 ports for flexible expansions. The AEC-6811 equips two 10/100Base-TX Ethernet ports for network connection. The user-friendly network function makes the AEC-6811 suitable for mobile and network applications.

HRP-75 Power Supply Is Energy Star Compliant

Mean Well has introduced the HRP-75 series, a 75W miniature high-reliability AC/DC enclosed power supply that is now available from Ecopac Power. The HRP-75 series, along with the existing range of products HRPG-150, HRPG-300 and HRPG-600, allows Mean Well to offer various wattage options from 75W to 600W all with PFC function and energy-saving functions. Featuring low no-load power consumption and an operating efficiency of 89 per cent, the Mean Well HRP-75 series reduces the size and increases the working efficiency in comparison to the existing range of 75W power supplies. With a five-year warranty, the HRP-75 series complies with Energy Star and operates at -30C to +70C. In addition, as the units comply with the 'no load power consumption of less than 0.5W', it allows designers to conform with the requirements of Energy Star and EuP for end-user systems and applications. The HRP-75 series has a profile of less than 1U (41mm) with overall dimensions of 129mm x 98mm x 38mm…

Microcontroller Targets Smart Card Readers

Atmel Corporation has announced the Atmel AVR microcontroller designed for the smart card reader market. The AT90SCR050 includes an Atmel AVR microcontroller, 16KB of ROM, USB FS 2.0 and smart card interface with an integrated DC/DC to support cards compliant with the EMV L1 requirement and ISO7816. These features offer designers a complete system solution to help bring their high-volume products to market at cost-effective price points.

The AT90SCR050 is a member of the AT90SCR range. With an Atmel AVR secure microcontroller embedded in these devices, customers can use the free AVR Studio and AVR JTAGICE Mkii that support all AVR-based microcontrollers. An evaluation kit, AT90SCR100MEB-01, is available for this device. AT90SCR050 samples are available now in QFN28 packages and QFN24 packages by special specific request only.

Controller Provides Triac Dimming For LEDs

Light-Based Technologies has announced the release of its first LB4 LED Controller application - triac dimming for LED fixtures. This application utilises the capabilities of LBT's linear mixing system and the biggest need in the general solid-state lighting (SSL) market, standard wall dimming control.

In order to meet strict Energy Star requirements, LED fixtures must have dimming capabilities. LED fixtures can be designed with the LB4 LED Controller inside, fixtures can be screwed into standard housings and brightness can be controlled using an existing dimmer. Users can have control characterised to mimic traditional incandescent bulbs or customise to a linear or logarithmic function if desired.

Alrad Introduces GigE Vision Line Scan Camera

Alrad Imaging has announced the introduction of the E2V Diviina-LM1 GigE Vision line scan camera, which incorporates the 1,024, 2,048 and 4,096-pixel line scan sensors. The Gigabit Ethernet interface provides cost reductions at the machine vision system level, as well as multi-cast capabilities and enhanced ease of use, according to Alrad.

Typical applications for the Diviina-LM1 are web inspection - for example, in wood, paper or metallurgy applications, parts inspection and sorting - for example, in textile or food industries, plus general machine inspection applications.

CNC Router Reduces Time To Market

A manufacturer of personal care products has saved money by switching to a low-cost computerised numerical control (CNC) router that can produce point of purchase displays internally. The manufacturer employed contractors to produce displays but there were delays in getting new designs to retailers and the cost of producing them was continually rising. The company made the decision to create its own displays and searched for an inexpensive, yet easy-to-use router that had the capability to produce plastic and wood components to high levels of accuracy.

It opted for the Isel router, which has allowed the company to design and create new display designs in a single day. Isel's router has features readily found in more expensive machines such as ball screws and servo motors. This manufacturer is saving money on its outgoings and can now turn on immediately to meet the ever-changing design demands of the retail market. Ball screws have a few key advantages over racks: they don't ha…

Dragon Runner Robot Supports Military Troops

Qinetiq has been awarded a contract to supply almost 100 Dragon Runner robots, associated spares and technical services to support of current military operations in Afghanistan. Dragon Runner is a small, rugged robot that weighs between 10-20kg depending on the chosen configuration. It can be carried by a soldier in a backpack and is robust enough to operate in rough terrain to help protect troops.

The variant selected by the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) is equipped with a manipulator arm to assist with the disarming of improvised explosive devices, but the Dragon Runner platform can also be configured for a variety of other reconnaissance and surveillance operations. The robot is also able to operate in sewers, drainpipes, caves and courtyards. Already being deployed, the Dragon Runner has the ability to send video footage back to the operator at a safe distance, thereby enabling troops to assess a situation prior to moving forward or entering a structure, potentially safeguarding liv…

Weld Controller Manages Three Transformers

Merlin Control Systems has developed a version of the PWC8 range of weld control units that is suitable for multiple transformer machines, or more complex DC machines. The PWCx3 controller features three independent control circuits in one printed circuit board with the facility to individually control three transformers, which can be on the same phase or on different phases of the mains supply.

This offers a more compact, easier to use and less-expensive means of controlling multiple transformer welding machines. Different configuration options are standard for this controller, so the same unit can also control a three-phase or polyphase DC machine at a much lower cost than is usual for this type of machine, according to Merlin.

As with all Merlin weld controllers, versions are available for simple manual operation and setup, or for communication with a higher-lever PLC-based control system. Different program sequences are available to suit spot, projection, seam and butt welding machi…

DTS System Monitors Power Cable Temperature

Lios has supplied its DTS system to a renewable energy company for monitoring the temperature of two medium-voltage power cables coming from a wind turbine towards the substation. All asset condition-monitoring data from the controller is linked in real time by means of the Modbus communication protocol to the operator's Scada system.

The company said that by using DTS it has a better control over the thermal cable conditions, thus over the load of the power cables, meaning it can utilise its assets more economically.

TEC Unveils Rapid-Prototype Machines At ACTE

Technology Education Concepts (TEC) will be demonstrating a 3D printer and a tabletop prototyping factory at the 2009 Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) Convention. The RapmanUSA is a rapid-prototyping/rapid-manufacturing machine that allows access to manufacturing technologies that were previously limited to expensive machines. A budget-friendly kit contributes towards the teaching and learning of engineering and mechatronics as students can build the machine themselves.

The Rapmanpro, the expanded commercial version of the RapmanUSA, allows businesses to manufacture test products in-house. With the option of multiple heads and up to two colour plus support material printing, the Rapmanpro allows schools and universities to plug in the machine, load inexpensive ABS material and start manufacturing. RapmanUSA is designed to allow assembly by students - granting full understanding of mechanical assembly, electronics, manufacturing processes and more - who can then imm…

Imatek Installs Second 100KJ DWTT In Korea

Imatek has successfully installed a DWT40-100 drop weight tear tester (DWTT) at Hyundai Steel in South Korea. This follows the installation of a similar high-capacity machine at Posco Steel in Korea in 2004. Both machines provide impact energies of up to 100,000 joules. Although the DWTT test is typically used to measure the fracture characteristics of steel used in the construction of steel pipe for the gas-and-oil industry, Hyundai will also use the new machine for performing tests on steel used in ship-building applications.

Hyundai's steel products are used globally in applications such as railway lines, bridge-support mechanisms and power-transmission towers. Hyundai Steel operates three production facilities in South Korea and one in China, from which it produces about 10 million tons a year. The use of higher-grade steels in the oil, gas and manufacturing industries is creating the need for a new generation of specialist impact testers. Imatek offers a range of DWTT systems …

Rittal's PSM Measures Power Consumption Per Socket

Rittal has extended its Power System Module (PSM) range to allow the power consumption of individual servers and peripheral hardware to be measured per socket. New plug-in modules for PSM rails record the individual currents for each socket and show the power consumption of the devices connected, via three coloured LEDs on the right-hand side. A second LED on the left-hand side of the outgoing slots provides an overview of the overall power of the module.

The presentation logic is automatically adjusted to the mounting position to rule out any misinterpretation. Colour coding follows the traffic-light principle: green LEDs indicate that other equipment may now be connected safely; amber indicates increased current on the module and that before any other equipment is connected its installed load needs to be examined; red indicates that another consuming device would trigger the overloading of the power supply. Values can also be viewed on a digital display, enabling administrators to im…

OEMDynamics Enhances Linear Belt Drive

OEMDynamics, a division of Animatics, has announced enhanced features on the HLD 60-H3 actuator. Due to its harmonic principle, the H3 belt achieves a gear reduction equivalent of up to 40:1 without the need for a gearhead, which means it takes up less space and weighs less.

The HLD60-H3 can achieve lengths greater than 3m without attributable losses in performance and can therefore be used in a wide range of applications. The actuator features a sturdy and seamless magnetically retained seal strip and meets European Machinery Directive 2006/42/EC.

Aaxeon Releases Managed Media Converters

Aaxeon has announced the release of the latest models in its Optolinx line of media converters. The FCN Series converters are stand-alone managed media converters that allow users to connect an Ethernet twisted-pair network to an optical-fibre network. The FCN Series is fully compliant with IEEE 802.3, 802.3u, 802.3ab and 802.3z standards. Users can manage and monitor real-time operation status via SNMP or a web management interface. The installation and operation procedures of the FCN Series of media converters are said to be simple and straightforward. Key features include: compliance with IEEE 802.3 10BaseT; compliance with IEEE 802.3u 100BaseTX; compliance with IEEE 802.3ab 1000BaseT; compliance with IEEE 802.3z 1000BaseX; store and forward switching mechanism; auto-negotiation in TP port; auto cross over for MDI/MDIX in TP port; supports flow control; supports jumbo frame 9K bytes; supports link alarm; supports loop-back test; supports selectable ISP Ethernet tag type; supports …

Insert Couplings Provide Electrical Isolation

A series of silicone insert couplings from Sterling Instrument features electrical isolation and no backlash. These metric couplings, identified as the S54HSAM (clamp type) and S5PSAM (set screw type) Series, are stocked in five different bore sizes ranging from 6mm to 16mm. These couplings have aluminum hubs with either set screws or clamps for fastening to shafts.

The insert is silicone 40 ShA. Operating temperature ranges from -50C to +150C. They range in length from 26.5mm to 57mm and their maximum speed is 5,000rpm. The couplings can be used in various applications and are able to accommodate tight or skewed connections. Quotes, online orders, available stock and 3D CAD model downloads are available from the company's website.

QTC Catalog Features More Than 16,000 Components

Quality Transmission Components (QTC) has announced the availability of its free Q470 catalogue. This 352-page catalogue contains more than 16,000 off-the-shelf standardised components for use in MRO, RandD and production applications. The catalogue has six chapters and provides specifications of the complete product offering of timing pulleys, timing belts, bushings, belt clamping kits, roller chain sprockets, roller chains, diametral pitch gears, belt and chain tensioners, sonic tension testers and planetary gearheads.

Chapter one details the company's offering of metric and inch bored timing pulleys made from carbon steel, nylon and aluminum in AT5, AT10, T2.5, T5, T10, HTD3, HTD5, HTD8, MXL, XL and L profiles. Chapter two contains details of fibreglass-reinforced neoprene timing belts in AT5, AT10, T2.5, T5, T10, HTD3, HTD5, HTD8, MXL, XL and L profiles, as well as belt clamping kits for GT2, GT3, GT5 and GT8 profiles and sonic tension testers. Chapter three shows more than 100…

Sullair Unveils Redesigned 200hp Compressors

Sullair Corporation has announced the redesign of its 200hp compressors, which feature the company's single-stage rotary screw air end. These compressors are offered with a choice of constant-speed-drive models (LS-200S) or constant-speed drive with variable capacity control (VCC-200S and VCC-250S). These 200hp compressors have capacities ranging from 457acfm to 980acfm and pressure ranges from 100psig to 175psig.

The variable-speed-drive (VSD) model, V-200S, with capacities of 576acfm to 967acfm, completes the compressor offering. These compressors have flange-mounted motors and air ends to provide positive alignment and to extend bearing life in both. Variable capacity control is achieved with Sullair's spiral valve technology. Part-load capacity and efficiency can produce energy savings up to 17-30 per cent.

The V-200S compressor with a VSD achieves further part-load and full-load energy savings. These Sullair compressors are available with or without sound-attenuating enclos…

Pepperl+Fuchs Announces Remote I/O Systems

Designed to facilitate the connection of traditional input and output signals onto a bus network, Pepperl+Fuchs has introduced the LB/FB remote I/O systems. LB/FB systems support general-purpose or intrinsically safe applications with modules that can be mixed and matched on the same backplane. These systems facilitate connection to Profibus DP, Modbus and Foundation fieldbus for all traditional signal types, including discrete, analogue, frequency and temperature.

Redundancy for the communication interface and power supply ensures high reliability. 'Anyone using a traditional intrinsic safety barrier can benefit from LB/FB remote I/O systems, as they allow barriers to be pushed into Division 2 and Zone 1 hazardous areas,' said Brian Traczyk, Pepperl+Fuchs product manager. 'These remote I/O systems are also suitable for upgrades and expansions and can be beneficial when devices such as thermocouples or RTDs do not have a fieldbus interface,' he added.

LB/FB remote I/O sy…

Yokogawa Enhances Production Control System

Yokogawa Electric Corporation has announced the release of Centum VP R4.02, an enhanced version of the company's integrated production control system. This version of Centum VP has been enhanced to help Yokogawa's customers improve productivity. It includes a more intuitive human machine interface (HMI) and strengthened consolidated alarm management. For increased reliability, a Foundation fieldbus engineering function is provided to improve reliability and allows full use of the intelligent capabilities of field devices.

Centum VP R4.02 features closer linkage with Yokogawa's latest safety instrumented system - version R2.03.00 of the Yokogawa Prosafe-RS SIS. It is now possible to operate and monitor this system and the Centum VP production control system through the same HMI. This linkage between the two systems is said to improve safety and efficiency. Enhanced consolidated alarm management functions incorporated in version R4.02 include the ability of alarm engineering …

Huntsman Exhibits Materials At Productronica

Huntsman Advanced Materials has announced it will be exhibiting at Productronica 2009, from 10 to 13 November at the Munich Exhibition Centre, in hall A4, booth 469. Huntsman will exhibit the latest materials developments for electrical applications in the automotive, telecommunications, lighting and general industry sectors. Visitors to Huntsman's booth can find out more about the latest additions of Probimer 77 White to the extensive Probimer 77 'solder resist' range.

It has a white gloss surface and can be used as a reflective background for LED applications. Other brands such as Araldite systems and Probimer solder masks, which provide protective solutions for the build, structure and assembly of printed circuit boards and for the encapsulation, insulation and bonding of electrical and electronic products, will also be on display.

Cobham Software Performs Lightning Strike Tests

Cobham Technical Services has announced that its Opera electromagnetic design software has been used in an aircraft lightning strike simulation project. Lightning strike tests of a helicopter at Eurocopter's Donauworth facility have verified the accuracy of finite element analysis techniques for characterising the electromagnetic behaviour of complete and custom-cabled modern aircraft structures constructed using advanced composite materials.

The exercise was performed using the Opera software as a final element of the company's work for the ILDAS (In-flight Lightning Strike Damage Assessment System) project. Simulation of the ILDAS tests highlighted how finite element techniques can generate accurate models of complex assembled airframes and simulate the effects of lightning strikes rapidly - in around a day on a standard office PC - to help developers evaluate and optimise lightning protection measures during the design cycle. The industry's current certification against …

ITT Field-Attachable PCCs Join Down-Hole Cables

ITT Interconnect is offering modified versions of its Field Attachable Power Connectors that can be used in place of splices for joining down-hole power cables for electric, submersible pumps. According to the company, BIW Power Cable Connectors (PCCs) can save significant rig time, increasing efficiency and lowering costs.

The field-attachable ITT PCCs can be used to join round and flat downhole cables up to AWG 1. Installation of the PCCs is similar to that of existing ITT BIW field attachable connectors. The use of PCCs in place of splicing can save up to three hours of rig time. The BIW Power Cable Connector has been engineered to perform reliably in harsh hydrocarbon environments, with robust internal components housed in heavy-duty steel for long run life.

Outer connector bodies have been designed with the smallest possible size profiles, yet retain their mechanical strength. Mid-joint protectors for 4.5, 3.5, 2.875 and 2.375in tubing sizes provide mechanical protection for instal…

Waldmann LEDs Provide Directional Lighting

Waldmann Lighting has introduced the Slim LED, designed to provide powerful, directional lighting for areas where there is no space for traditional luminaires. It is suitable for integration into a range of machinery and equipment, and eliminates the need for separate task lighting. Typical applications include sheet-metal sawing/drilling, packaging, automation, textile and image processing plants.

Impact and vibration resistant, the rugged IP67-rated Slim LED can be connected directly to a 24V source and is available in lengths from 196 to 1176mm, with the ability to adjust the direction of each LED light source, providing customised floodlighting to suit each application. With its highly efficient LED light sources, Slim LED also offers energy savings with a lamp life of 60,000 hours - equivalent to six years at maximum light output when running 24 hours per day.

The lamps are available in a choice of wattages from 3.6 to 28.8W and can be supplied in an optional wide-beam version with…

WEG Motors Drive Brazilian Theme-Park Attractions

WEG motors, inverters and soft starters are allowing the safe operation of equipment at the Beto Carrero World theme park, located in Santa Catarina, Brazil. Most of the equipment at the BCW uses WEG motors, inverters and soft starters for its motive power. For example, electric motors provide the drive functions for the rides and attractions. WEG products are also used on water pumps, compressors and other ancillary equipment.

Hugo Loth Neto, the operations director of Beto Carrero World, said one of the main problems was the development and assembly of the drive centre of the big wheel. He explained: 'It has four motors, each one of 7.5HP. 'Another challenge was the development of the Water Empire project, with six motors of 150HP in the water pumps, a wet transformer of 1,000kVA and a dry one of 1,500kVA.

'In addition, the latest attraction of the park, the rollercoaster Firewhip, also relies upon WEG equipment: it has a static AC/DC converter of 130kW 380V, with a DC m…

Pitch Gears With Intelligent Shaft Sealing

Simrit has developed a radial-shaft seal system featuring a leakage sensor that allows for telediagnosis of the shaft seal and automatically sends a signal when the seal's wear limit is reached. With the help of these intelligent shaft seals, Wittenstein alpha has maximised the service life and service intervals of its pitch gears for rotor adjustment. Pitch gears are key components in wind turbines around the world.

They are used to adjust the pitch of the rotor blades, which in turn changes the aerodynamic efficiency of the turbine. Thanks to pitch gears, wind turbines can be operated at the optimum pitch until the rated power of the generator is reached. If the maximum generator torque is exceeded, the speed is adjusted by changing the pitch of the rotor blades. If performance remains constant, pitch gears allow wind turbines to operate continually at the optimum operating point.

One pitch gear per rotor blade is attached directly to the hub by screws. Wittenstein alpha has optim…

Accelerometers Obtain Hazardous-Area Certification

Wilcoxon Research has announced an additional intrinsically safe certification in accordance with IECEx requirements for six general-purpose accelerometers. The six accelerometers were approved for use in Class I Zone 0 hazardous areas. Tom Smith, vice-president of sales and marketing, said: 'These vibration sensors were previously approved as intrinsically safe by certifying agencies recognised in the US, Canada and Europe.

'Condition monitoring is growing in popularity across the world and the IECEx certification will help us better serve customers in other regions,' he added. Six general-purpose accelerometers, with a sensitivity of 100mV/g and a +5 per cent sensitivity tolerance, were certified as intrinsically safe in accordance with the requirements of the IECEx standards. The standard top-exit model is the 786A-IS.

The standard side-exit model is the 787A-IS, which is also available with a metric M8 mounting stud (model 787A-M8-IS). The 780A-IS is a compact sensor. Th…

Pam-Comfort Helps Renault Design New Seat

Renault has used ESI's Pam-Comfort system for the preliminary design of a new seat. ESI's Pam-Comfort software offers a scalable and customised solution dedicated to virtual manufacturing and virtual testing (static and dynamic) of the soft parts of a seat. Virtual seat prototyping consists of several chained simulated steps ranging from seat manufacturing and occupant static seating, to occupied seat NVH (noise and vibration), where the stresses resulting from each step are needed for the next one.

The chaining is necessary to accurately predict the behaviour of the seats under numerous loading conditions (trimming, dummy loading, various human anthropometries and vibrations) and for various design changes (materials and shape). At Renault, where the full virtual seat prototyping methodology is being deployed, an important step after the preliminary design of a new seat is the virtual testing of the dynamic comfort performance using Pam-Comfort.

To accurately predict seat comfo…

DS Refrigerant Dryers Reduce Energy Consumption

Boge has brought out a range of energy-saving refrigerant dryers. The DS series features components used in compressed-air drying. Optimally dimensioned components assure reliability and efficiency, even in the most demanding conditions. The DS series dryers also constantly adapt to changes in ambient and volume flow to ensure dry compressed air is always delivered.

At the same time the intelligent heat-exchanger system creates a lower pressure drop when compared with conventional systems. This low-pressure drop means that the compressor generation pressure can be reduced, with each 1 bar pressure reduction translating into a six per cent energy saving. By ensuring the lowest possible pressure loss, a high level of energy efficiency can be achieved.

As the energy consumption of the compressor is greater than the dryer, these savings have a much larger impact and so increase the efficiency of the compressor. It is estimated that over a five-year operating period the purchase price of a c…

Kistler Offers Sensitive And Robust Torque Sensors

Kistler's piezoelectric torque sensors have a wide measuring range and are adaptable to match most configurations, making them suited to manufacturing-process monitoring. The sensors are available with measuring ranges of 1, 10, 25, 200 and 1,000Nm and all are suitable for torques from approximately 0.001Nm.

The torque sensors are supplied calibrated for 100 and 10 per cent of the measuring range with additional calibration ranges available as an option. Installation is flexible as each sensor has an end flange with four or six threaded mounting holes and a centring seat for precise coaxial installation. A central hole allows a shaft to pass through the sensor.

The high sensitivity, rigid construction and compact dimensions of the sensors make them particularly suited to monitoring applications in assembly processes and product testing where rotary movements are involved: typically screw, bolt or nut tightening to specific torque; rotary potentiometer and switch testing; and screw-c…

Web Videos Teach How To Use Amplicon Products

Amplicon has announced a new online video initiative to help customers configure and commission the company's products and technologies. The video scheme is designed to shorten the learning curve for new products and provide a helping hand. The short videos will also provide generic technical information on cellular communications, industrial Ethernet, wireless LAN and other industrial electronics subjects.

Among the videos available at the company's website is 'GPRS and 3G Communications', in which Amplicon discusses cellular connectivity and highlights the compelling business case for using 3G routers. 'Windows XP - Dead or Alive?' describes Microsoft's plans for the future of the industrial market's favourite software.

'Benefits of Using PXI for Test Systems' explains what makes the PXI platform the preferred choice for modern test systems. The Moxa W5340 product demo shows how to set up the W5340 to give Scada measurements over cellular networ…