Thursday, December 27, 2012


Diversified industrial manufacturer Eaton Corporation has launched a new compact PLC which supports intelligent and modular automation concepts with local PLCs and various communication interfaces such as SmartWire-DT, CANopen, RS232, RS485 or Profibus and Ethernet. The new XC152 provides a cost effective solution for all high performance PLC applications with a need for interface flexibility.

The XC152 runs on the Windows CE 5 operating system and the CPU is implemented with a 32-bit 400MHz RISC processor. In addition to a 64MB internal memory (OS, program, data), an SD slot is provided for external storage. A Run Stop switch, Ethernet interface and USB Host are also included.

The PLC is provided with either a CANopen (master/slave) or Profibus (DP/MPI master) interface with an optional SmartWire-DT master device also available. The compact PLC with WEB/remote server features an RS232 and/or RS485 interface depending on the communication interface variant. The following variants are available on request: XC-152-E3-11 SmartWire-DT, RS232; XC-152-E6-11 SmartWire-DT, CAN, RS485; XC-152-E8-11 SmartWire-DT, DP, RS485; XC-152-D6-11 CAN, RS485, RS232 and XC-152-D8-11 DP, RS485, RS232.

The XC152 PLC offers users from the modular machine building sector with standard automation solutions benefits such as high performance (with the CoDeSys-based xSoft-Codesys-2 programming system 2, programmable as a PLC in accordance with IEC61131-3), compact design (100mm x 155mm x 40mm HxBxT) and a wide range of communication options.

With the SmartWire-DT option, the I/O level is integrated directly into the switching devices enabling the PLC to access the digital and analogue data directly from the control circuit device right through to the circuit-breaker. Gateways and I/O level are no longer needed allowing the creation of flexible, streamlined automation solutions with fewer components and little engineering outlay. Eaton calls this concept Lean Automation. As an alternative to a combined HMI/PLC, cost efficient modular solutions today use a high-performance PLC like the XC152 together with an external HMI. This solution is future proof as any application extensions and/or modifications can be implemented more easily and more flexibly. The Ethernet terminal allows direct access, visualisation and data transparency – for which users can use either the WEB visualisation on the XC152 or the remote server. Thanks to the platform concept, successful solutions and existing know-how can always be recycled several times over.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Industrial networking is becoming increasingly important for many users, even down to the micro PLC level. The new FX3U-ENET-ADP Ethernet adapter is positioned as a cost-effective means of providing access to FX3 Series PLCs on an Ethernet network.

The FX3U-ENET-ADP is packed with useful and time-saving features, such as a built-in data monitor utility providing PLC information on a web browser page, SNTP time setting, MC Protocol communications, and detailed network diagnostics built into GX Works2.

If you need TCO reducing, best-in-industry servo performance with an EtherCAT Master controller over CoE, the MR-J3 servo amplifier series now offers the 'MR-J3-A-RJ158' with 'MR-J3-T04' servo solution. This solves the need to achieve high performance and accurate control in combination with the high precision MR-J3 series servo motors, all over an EtherCAT network.

The MR-J3-xxA-RJ158, offered as part of the MR-J3 family, is an AC servo drive designed to provide users with connectivity to Mitsubishi Electric high-performance servo amplifiers over EtherCAT communication. It connects with the MR-J3-T04 unit that is part of the required construct for the EtherCAT solution, and also houses the EtherCAT interface RJ45 connectors. With this solution, Mitsubishi Electric offers connectivity to EtherCAT master controllers over CANopen or CoE protocols along with the CiA402 drive profile application communication. The drive can run control modes including position, speed and home position. The new line is designed for packaging, material handling, textile, machine tooling, printing and automotive applications, and leverages Mitsubishi Electric's best-in-class servo amplifier performance. Enterprises that require the open EtherCAT network can now connect with the MR-J3 series' machine analyzer and simulation, advanced gain search, vibration suppression control and auto tuning functions, among others. Mitsubishi Electric will offer the EtherCAT amplifier with a capacity ranging from 100W to 22kW. These amplifiers will be able to drive the MR-J3 servomotors, which are equipped with built-in absolute high precision 18bit (262,144 pls/rev) standard. In addition to being compact and offering superb controllability, certain models also allow for up to 350 percent torque overload during acceleration and deceleration periods.


The L Series is Mitsubishi's newest controller line, donning an innovative and easy-to-expand rack-free design. The single-CPU architecture includes built-in Ethernet and Mini-USB interfaces, a SD/SDHC memory card slot for program storage and data logging, and 24 I/O for positioning and high-speed counter functions. The enhanced CPU also includes a CC-Link V2 Master/Local station for connection to the powerful open field network. All other power supply, extension I/O, motion, positioning, high-speed counter, serial communication, and networking module options are added on as necessary. Accessories include a two-color illuminated display unit for monitoring and troubleshooting, and a bus end-cover with error terminal relay. The compact size, easy expandability, networking capabilities, and multitude of built-in high-powered functions makes the L Series ideal for both stand-alone machines as well as networked stations in larger applications. The L Series is fully supported by iQ Works software suite, which brings all the benefits of MELSOFT Navigator network configuration setup, System Label and structured programming, and dedicated GT16 screens for troubleshooting and maintenance.

The L Series PLC now offers single and dual-axis positioning modules in both open collector (LD75P1 & P2) and differential driver options (LD75D1 & D2). These new positioning modules are capable of a wide range of positioning capabilities. The complete lineup of positioning modules provides a cost-effective solution for OEMs looking to expand current machines, design machines with low axis count, or standardize low-to-high end machines on the same controller platform.

Since 1974, Mitsubishi Electric Automation has worked with machine tool builders in the Americas to install Computerized Numerical Controllers (CNCs). We have recently installed our 84,000th CNC, which translates to an average of six CNCs per day over 38 years.

"Our CNCs run the best machines in the world, the result of engaging top manufacturers and then working with them to optimize performance and functionality," said Steve Dumont, vice president of technical service and support, Mitsubishi Electric Automation. "Thanks to our advanced capabilities, user-friendly intuitive interface and fast set-up, our customers have realized reduced production costs and improved machine efficiency. They also have access to Mitsubishi Electric's global service and support network to ensure machine uptime and performance."

Mitsubishi Electric Automation CNCs are used in a wide range of applications including machine tools; vertical, horizontal and 5-axis machining centers; multi-turret, multi-spindle, turn mills; and multi-system Swiss-type turning centers. Industries using Mitsubishi Electric automation products include aerospace, agriculture, automotive, construction, defense, medical, energy and renewable energy, and telecommunications.


Mitsubishi adds a new dimension in control and computing with the introduction of a new industrial computer for the iQ Platform, the WinCPU. This fully functional industrial computer mounts directly on the iQ backplane to seamlessly integrate the flexibility of a computer with the iQ Platform. The WinCPU belongs to the iQ PC category of products and enables large amounts of data to be easily shared across multiple CPUs and disciplines (Sequence, Process, Motion, CNC and Robot). This new solution is designed to meet the ever-changing landscape of many end user facilities and the demands of high-tech machine builders.


The iQ Platform combines several key automation disciplines including the ability to integrate an industrial PC and its environment on this hardware platform. The iQ PC (WinPC) is design to compress your hardware architecture and manage your automation system while taking full advantage of benefits of a PC. This flexible solution is ideal for a wide range of applications including many non traditional machine designs. Users can leverage all the benefits of each discipline and merge them into a seamless control system that far exceeds any control expectation.

Key Features:
  •     Integration of multiple technologies in a single platform
  •     High-speed communication and data sharing over the backplane
  •     Embedded Windows software architecture
  •     Solid State PC hardware architecture

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Rockwell Automation has released two new features in Allen-Bradley IntelliCENTER software – IntelliCENTER Integration Assistant and IntelliCENTER Energy – to accelerate the configuration time and enhance end users’ data-driven energy decisions.

With IntelliCENTER Integration Assistant, users can seamlessly integrate their IntelliCENTER Motor Control Centers (MCCs) into their Rockwell Software RSLogix 5000 programming software. This feature reduces programming time by automatically adding the Allen-Bradley CENTERLINE MCC devices to the RSLogix 5000 I/O tree. In addition, Integration Assistant also takes advantage of existing premier integration features to automatically create controller tags and IP address configuration in RSLogix 5000 software, reducing errors and the time it takes to configure the intelligent devices.

IntelliCENTER Integration Assistant enables faster installation and commissioning time, providing real-time, device-level information and higher productivity. “Manufacturers expect intuitive software packages that work together,” said Paul Krause, IntelliCENTER product manager, Rockwell Automation. “Integration Assistant enables customers to take advantage of information already in IntelliCENTER software and load it into RSLogix 5000, the premier controller programming software on the market. This makes commissioning faster, and results in time and cost savings.”

IntelliCENTER Energy offers a pre-configured setup of FactoryTalk EnergyMetrix software for intelligent motor control devices in the MCC, including variable speed drives, overload relays and SMCs. In addition, users can view energy consumption at the device level directly from IntelliCENTER software. With IntelliCENTER Energy, it becomes easier to monitor and manage energy usage in the industrial facility for cost savings, and allows for easy integration of IntelliCENTER MCCs into plantwide energy-management systems. IntelliCENTER Energy gives users the information necessary to make fact-based decisions to help them optimize energy usage, improve equipment performance, and even predict equipment failure.

“Powered by FactoryTalk EnergyMetrix software, IntelliCENTER Energy builds on the monitoring and diagnostic functionality that is currently offered in IntelliCENTER software,” said Krause. “This feature allows manufacturers to remotely monitor energy at the load level – where the devices are consuming energy – rather than at the utility level. This device-level information helps them implement the best energy decisions and can lead to energy savings.”

Rockwell Automation has introduced the Allen-Bradley Kinetix 5500 servo drive, Kinetix VP low-inertia (VPL) servo motor, and single-cable technology as an integrated motion solution on EtherNet/IP that is more compact, easier to use and simplifies system wiring.

“Machine and equipment builders are challenged with making smaller, more complex equipment in a shorter design cycle and at a lower price point,” said Mike Schweiner, Kinetix product manager, Rockwell Automation. “Our new single-cable Kinetix motion solution gives machine builders a proven solution for both servo and induction motor control on a single development platform that will result in less design time and cabinet space with improved power density and efficiency.”

The Kinetix 5500 servo drive joins the Kinetix 350 and Kinetix 6500 drives to provide users with more options to match motion control needs. Integrated motion control on EtherNet/IP eliminates the need for a dedicated motion network, reducing cabling by up to 60 percent and removing the need to create gateways to get information to or from secluded networks. Additionally, the Kinetix VPL motors new winding technology and DSL encoder, connected with the smart-cable technology, allows power transmission and feedback communication to and from the Kinetix 5500 drive to take place on a single cable. This further simplifies application design and limits points-of-failure for improved reliability and uncomplicated maintenance.

Ideal for packaging, material handling or converting systems with more than six axes, the Kinetix 5500 and Kinetix VP drive-motor system does not require discrete power rail or additional accessories, so machines can be scaled up as needed. Optimally matched motor and drive ratings uses half the energy of comparable solutions, while still providing 125 μsec loop closure for maximum performance.

The Kinetix 5500 drive is the first Kinetix drive designed with an external common AC/DC bus connection system. It reduces hardware requirements and allows for seamless scalability, using a single platform for either single-axis or multiaxis systems. The Kinetix 5500 drive also has the ability to control both servo and induction motors, provide best–in-class power density that reduces the size of the drive and cabinet space required by up to 50 percent, and simplify machine maintenance by minimizing the need to fuse or use contactors. Additionally, the system can be optimized to balance power use and lower energy needs because of its unique ability to share power across multiple drives. The Kinetix VPL servo motor uses the same proven magnetic core as the Allen-Bradley MP-Series servo motors.

The Kinetix 5500 drive is supported by the recently released Rockwell Software Studio 5000 integrated engineering environment and can be used with the Integrated Motion Encoder on EtherNet/IP to provide a feedback-only axis solution for Allen-Bradley ControlLogix 5570 and CompactLogix 5370 programmable automation controllers. A feedback-only axis allows the motion application to synchronize efforts with other portions of a machine or line for more efficient production.



Rockwell Automation has extended the ratings of its Allen-Bradley PowerFlex 755 AC drives to 1500 kW/2,000 Hp, completing the power range of the PowerFlex 750-Series portfolio and providing customers with a wide selection of options and features. The high-power drive builds on the application flexibility and common user experience of the PowerFlex 750-Series, giving heavy industries a new option for advanced power control.

The PowerFlex 755 drive is well suited for a wide variety of applications ranging from simple variable speed and variable torque control to the most demanding systems requiring constant torque control. Target applications include fans, pumps, mixers, compressors, conveyors and extruders, as well as applications for the oil and gas, tire and rubber, refining, metals and mining industries.

“We designed the PowerFlex 755 drives with ease-of-use in mind, and expanded its power range to deliver this user experience to a wider range of applications,” said John Cherney, global product manager, Rockwell Automation. “Whether an application demands one or 2,000 horsepower, the way users interface with any PowerFlex 755 frame is nearly identical. This commonality helps to simplify operation, from configuration and integration to maintenance and troubleshooting.”

The latest frame extension delivers the enhanced control capabilities of earlier high-power models, including features, such as 400/480/600/690 volt ratings and N-1 technology. With N-1 technology, users can configure the PowerFlex 755 high-power drive to utilize one, two or all three of its power structures. This gives the redundancy and advanced control needed to effectively manage load changes, protect equipment, and keep the drive up and running in the event of a power failure. The common DC-bus option allows users to connect the PowerFlex 755 AC drive to a DC-bus configuration, which takes advantage of different drive cycles to share energy. Using a common DC-bus system helps increase system performance and reduce loss – ultimately improving the application’s energy efficiency.

Like all PowerFlex 755 drives, the latest frame size includes an embedded Ethernet port and multiple option slots, so users can tailor the drive to their application. Option modules include I/O, feedback, safety, additional communications and auxiliary power supply. In addition, a convenient rollout design allows easy access to the drives for fast installation and maintenance. The drive’s converter and control pod can remain in the unit while the inverter is rolled out, so control wiring can remain intact. The drive is suitable for standalone applications, and features a real-time clock that provides data-logging and enhanced diagnostics.

The power-range extension is one of several enhancements to the PowerFlex 755 drive designed to provide application flexibility. Additional features and benefits available include the following floor-mount drives and dual-port EtherNet/IP option module.

Friday, December 14, 2012

OMRON Healthcare Co., Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of OMRON Corporation announced that its i-Temp digital thermometer (model MC-670-E) wins Reddot Design Award (*1), in the category of Product Design 2008.

Reddot Design Award is recognized as one of the top three renowned design competitions (*2) in the world and awarded by Nordrhein Westfalen Design Center in Germany since 1955. Each year many entries are submitted from throughout the world for a variety of industrial products. There are three different categories for the awards: ‘product design’, ‘communication design’, and ‘design concept’. The entries are reviewed and evaluated according to the nine criteria such as degree of innovation, functionality, formal quality, ergonomic consideration and environmental friendliness to honor excellent and outstanding designs. In 2008, total of 3,203 submissions were made from 51 countries throughout the world, and 676 products were selected as the winners.

Our award-winning thermometer, i-Temp (MC-670-E) is the European version of the model MC-670, which was launched in Japan in November 2004. Sharing many features with MC-670 - a flat tip that allows users to hold it comfortably in the armpit, a large, easy-to-read LCD and a sleek body that fits easily in the hand - i-Temp was released in Europe, the Middle East and Africa in October,2007. i-Temp was highly regarded by the judges for its easy-to-read large LCD, innovative and functional design and its high quality for users of all ages. i-Temp also won the ‘iF Design Gold Award’ in 2007.

Reddot gala award ceremony will be held on June 23, 2008 in the Essen Aalto-Theater. The award-winning products were exhibited in Reddot Design Museum from June 24 to July 27, 2008 and will be preserved there permanently thereafter.

OMRON Corporation (TOKYO: 6645, ADR: OMRNY) today announced that, in cooperation with Hitachi, Ltd., it has achieved compatibility between its V750 series UHF RFID reader/writer and Secure RFID Protocol. Additional security functions provided by the protocol will be available as an option beginning in July 2008.

Secure RFID Protocol was developed through the Secure Electronic Tag Project led by Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), with Hitachi as a core partner, from August 2006 to March 2007. The protocol provides enhanced security functions including communication distance control, which restricts the communication range of tags, and reading prohibition, which limits access to tags through password authentication, while maintaining compatibility with the UHF RFID international standard ISO/IEC 18000-6 Type C. A Secure RFID Protocol-ready IC developed by Hitachi, “µ-Chip(mu-chip) Hibiki,” is already on the market.

RFID in the UHF band (860MHz to 960MHz) realizes longer communication ranges among passive-type tags and conducts faster and more diverse data processing as compared with HF band (13.56MHz) systems. Prompted by major retailers in the USA, UHF RFID systems are increasingly being used around the world in areas ranging from manufacturing, distribution and logistics to stores, offices, public services and amusement/sports facilities. However, in open systems shared by multiple companies, one company’s unique data (embedded on a tag) could easily be passed on to other companies along with shared data. The fact that all companies in an open system can read and alter all the data on tags is becoming an obstacle to the utilization of RFID systems.

To date, Omron has developed a number of RFID reader/writers, inlays and tags mainly focusing on the HF and UHF bands. Omron’s products are designed not only to comply with common standards, but also to easily incorporate new functions and advanced technologies developed in response to market needs. By readying the V750 reader/writer for Secure RFID Protocol, Omron acknowledges that protecting company and product information is critical to increasing the use of RFID in distribution and logistics. In Japan, feasibility studies and trials of secured RFID systems are increasingly being carried out by book and home appliance distribution chains, and Omron intends to proactively participate in those studies.

New functions can be added to the V750 reader/writer by updating or supplementing its firmware. Secure RFID Protocol will be separated from the standard functions provided by the current product, and will be offered as an option to be added upon request. The protocol will be ready for the Japanese version of the V750 reader/writer in July 2008; other versions will be provided based on the protocol’s popularity in other countries.

The Secure RFID Protocol-ready V750 reader/writer can be seen at the Hitachi Group and Nissei Limited booths (West 10-53 and West 13-11, respectively) at the 3rd RFID Solutions Expo (RIDEX), being held at Tokyo Big Sight from May 14-16, 2008.

Yo Nakajima, General Manager of Hitachi’s Security Smart ID Solutions Division, offered the following remarks on the V750 reader/writer: “Hitachi welcomes the start of sales of interrogators that support the Secure RFID Protocol. The protocol has been developed with partners aiming to realize functions that fulfill needs for UHF IC tags in Japanese industry. We believe this protocol will expand worldwide and become the optimal UHF IC tag air protocol in the distribution and logistics area. We are expecting full-scale diffusion and market expansion of secured IC tags, triggered by sales of Omron’s V750 reader/writer. Hitachi will also keep making efforts to promote the protocol, and by so doing contribute to realizing a securer, safer and more comfortable society with all of our partners.”


OMRON Corporation (TOKYO: 6645, ADR: OMRNY) today announced the release of three new products, the SYSMAC CJ2 programmable controller, EtherNet unit for CS/CJ series and CX-One FA Integrated Tool Package version 3.0, to markets. All of these products support EtherNet/IP for industrial use.1

The Company also announced the release of NS-series NS-V2 programmable terminals that have been upgraded to support EtherNet/IP.

These products help to reduce the TCO in designing and developing production equipment for immediate startup with quick delivery, as well as equipment that requires greater complexity and higher speed in control operations.

Products released today include the following models:
  •     SYSMAC CJ-series Programmable Controller CJ2 CPU Units
  •     CJ2H-CPU68-EIP and four other models
  •     EtherNet/IP Units for CS/CJ-series Programmable Controllers
  •     CS1W-EIP21 and CJ1W-EIP21
  •     NS-V2-series Programmable Terminals
  •     NS12-TS01B-V2 and 25 other models (system version upgrade)
  •     CX-One FA Integrated Tool Package Version 3.0
  •     CXONE-AL01C-V3 and 11 other models
With current international competition, manufacturing sites for key production industries, such as automobiles, semiconductors and liquid crystal and plasma displays, demand 1) immediate equipment startup with large capital investment in the first period, 2) fast additions and changes in production models, volumes and line compositions after the equipment is in operation, and 3) meeting traceability and other global requirements for quality, safety and environmental needs. These demands require even greater amounts of quality data along with faster accumulation and processing of production management data.

Manufacturers of special equipment and machinery must flexibly respond to these rapid changes, cope with the increase in management data resulting from improved device functionality and performance, and achieve control with greater performance and accuracy with more precise production processes. These manufacturers are actively introducing control devices for open networks, standardization and specifications that allow the development of control systems with greater speed and precision and enable stable worldwide product procurement.

All the new products marketed by OMRON support EtherNet/IP, a global standard industrial protocol promoted by the ODVA.2 In addition to the convenience of universal Ethernet, EtherNet/IP can be used for both information and control networks. Data links are faster (30 times faster, according to OMRON’s own research) and the data communications capacity is larger (nine times the capacity, as above). These features make the products ideal for production equipment that will require increasingly larger capacity and higher speeds in the future.

The SYSMAC CJ2 CPU units feature large capacity and a built-in EtherNet/IP-compatible multifunctional Ethernet port. The program capacity of 400K steps is 1.6 times the capacity, while the 832K words of data memory is twice the capacity of previous OMRON products. In addition, the CJ2 CPU units are ideal for devices that require high speed and high precision with both faster speeds for executing special instructions, such as overseeing processing and floating-point math, and increased speed for immediate refreshing of basic I/O.

Also, less design time is required because PT screen data and PLC programming can be developed in parallel with improved tag access through EtherNet/IP for full access to memory in the CJ2 CPU unit from an NS-series programmable terminal.

The CX-One FA Integrated Tool Package that supports the SYSMAC CJ2 CPU units and the NS-V2-series PTs also supports EtherNet/IP. This provides an environment for setting up the all layers of FA networks, and allows users to set up both SYSMAC CJ2 CPU units and NS-V2-series PTs from the same software package.


FPCs (flexible printed circuits) are used in a wide range of applications, including mobile devices. Recently, there has been an increase in the use of FPC connectors with impact-resistant backlock mechanisms for mobile devices such as cellular phones, MP3 players, and notebook PCs. In addition, demand is strong for smaller FPC connectors to meet the need to reduce mounting space inside devices accompanying the trend toward smaller and thinner devices. 
 OMRON Corporation (TOKYO: 6645, ADR: OMRNY) today announced plans to release the XF3C, a low-profile FPC connector with a pitch of only 0.25 mm, in early September. The XF3C represents a 20% reduction in footprint compared to previous OMRON connectors. In response, OMRON developed the XF3C connector, which has a pitch of 0.25 mm, a depth of 3.8 mm (when locked), and a footprint approximately 20% smaller than that of previous OMRON connectors, which had a 0.3 mm pitch. Within its 0.85 mm height, the connector contains the contact structure for both the upper and lower contacts, eliminating the need to differentiate between them and in turn contributing to the standardization of connectors.

OMRON Corporation (TOKYO: 6645, ADR: OMRNY) today announced the release of two new products in its SYSMAC CJ2 series of programmable controllers, CJ2 CPU units and basic I/O units, to markets.

Model numbers are as follows. CJ2H CPU units: CJ2H-CPU68, CJ2H-CPU67, CJ2H-CPU66, CJ2H-CPU65 and CJ2H-CPU64. Basic I/O units: CJ1W-ID212, CJ1W-ID233, CJ1W-OD213 and CJ1W-OD234.

OMRON's industrial automation business (OMRON IA) developed the SYSMAC CJ series to meet customer demand for high-speed programmable controllers, which has increased as manufacturing industry equipment becomes more complicated and the work of fabrication more minute. In developing the CJ2H CPU units released today, OMRON IA reexamined not only the CPU's processing power but also the interface with the units to be connected, offering customers total improvement of system throughput. In addition, the company plans to release a succession of high-speed, high-performance units including analog and positioning units, starting with the basic I/O units released today.

The processing power of the CPU unit, the interface between it and other units, and the response performance of each unit have been improved, making the unit useful in improving system throughput.
  •     Input interruption response time is approximately two times faster than before. Will not miss split-second changes.
  •     The minimum time for interruptions at fixed intervals is approx. two times faster than before, enabling more precise control.
  •     A special high-speed unit has been installed to allow immediate refreshing, allowing response times up to seven times faster than before.
  •     The ON/OFF response time of the basic I/O unit is approx. four times faster than before, and that of the analog unit is approx. 12 times faster than before.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Weidmuller announces an addition to the Industrial Ethernet Portfolio with new serial to Ethernet converters. Providing a simple and reliable method for integrating serial port devices into industrial Ethernet networks, Weidmuller’s serial/Ethernet converters help maintain existing automation components while upgrading the overall infrastructure.

Weidmuller’s New Converters include two ports, which are universally compatible with RS-232, RS-422 and RS-485, allowing virtually any serial terminal device to be connected. The Ethernet interface of the devices supports a broad spectrum of operation modes such as TCP Server, TCP Client, UDP, Real COM, RFC2217, Reverse Telnet, Pair Connection and Ethernet-Modem – designed-in versatility that guarantees network software compatibility. In addition the converter's user friendly web interface can be used to configure all of its functions.

Weidmuller’s serial/Ethernet converters feature an integrated relay output, which can be used to alert administrators when there are Ethernet problems or when there have been changes to the serial signals and current connections. This enables service technicians to react more quickly to emergencies. Two built-in Ethernet switch ports help reduce costs, as there is no need for an additional switch to daisy chain ports or extend the network via the Ethernet line.

Weidmuller’s serial/Ethernet converters are ideal for use in harsh industrial environments, and offer extended surge voltage protection for the serial connections, Ethernet ports and power supply. Robust screw-type terminal blocks ensure the power supply and serial connectors are reliably connected. Redundant DC power supply inputs (12-48 VDC) and low power consumption provide safety and reliability. Weidmuller’s serial/Ethernet converters have an extensive temperature range of -40° C to +75° C as well as cULus and Hazardous area approvals.

Weidmuller is the leading provider of solutions for the transmission of power, data and control signals in industrial environments. The company develops, produces and sells industrial electronics, network infrastructure components and connectivity solutions such as Wireless Solutions, Industrial Ethernet, Relays, Power Supplies, I/O modules, printed circuit board connectors, terminal blocks and complete DIN Rail assemblies. The Weidmuller group has a strong international focus with manufacturing and sales locations in over 70 countries.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The PICMG, a leading standards organization for the communications, industrial and embedded computer industries, recently announced the successful completion of the “MicroTCA Conduction Cooled” testing. The MTCA.3 subsidiary specification of MicroTCA targets to defense and aerospace applications with extreme requirements for vibration, shock and temperature range based on MIL-STD-801. The goal was to show that the card edge connector system meets the stringent environmental requirements for the target markets. The test was performed by the independent testing and research company Contech Research.

In the test setup, a backplane equipped with HARTING MicroTCA connectors featuring con:card+ technology was used. After completion, the HARTING connector is now the first and currently the only MicroTCA connector recommended for a Conduction Cooled MicroTCA system. This test shows, that the MicroTCA hardware standard can be used in harsh environments and is also an viable alternative platform for industrial and transportation applications. The MTCA.3 specification is expected to be finalized end of this year. The final test results can be obtained freely at PICMG’s website.

Three new har-mik® Bellows SMC female right angled connectors complete the HARTING portfolio.

HARTING’s Miniature D connectors in 1.27 mm pitch, the so-called har-mik® series, are a must in various cable-to-board applications where space saving and high data transfer rates are demanded. HARTING has expanded the har-mik® Bellows SMC portfolio of female right angled connectors with the addition of three new variants with 20, 50 and 68 poles respectively.

Fielding the complete har-mik® Bellows SMC connector range from 14 to 68 poles, HARTING is offering customers a perfect solution, as the connectors can be terminated in the same solder reflow process as all other board mounted SMT components. The connectors are available in suitable tray or reel packaging, which are fully compatible with the various handling equipments of an automated assembly line.

Drawing on the bellows mating technology, HARTING’s har-mik® Bellows SMC connectors are the perfect choice for applications requiring repetitive plugging and blind mating.

HARTING is introducing the first managed Industrial Ethernet switches with Fast Track Switching technology at SPS/IPC/DRIVES in Nurnberg. The devices will be presented at the fair stand in an actual PROFINET network. Experience the advantages of determinism in conjunction with Conformance Class B and openness according to Standard IEEE 802.3-based Ethernet protocols.

Two 10-port switches are joining the FTS switch product family: the FTS 3100-A with 10 copper ports and the 3082-ASFP with 8 copper ports and 2 slots for SFP modules. The switch detects PROFINET real-time frames and accelerates them in a cut-through method. They are always given priority for transmission, and therefore always take precedence over non-real-time frames. As a result, automation data reach their destination on time, regardless of the remaining network load – guaranteed every time.

The integration of the PROFINET stack makes the switch a PROFINET Conformance Class B Device, which, like other automation devices, can be planned and configured with automation tools. Numerous alarms and diagnoses from the PLC can be received, for example, for voltage monitoring or linkchange of ports. Optionally, the PLC can also process an important status message such as "Link down" via input data.

And of course the FTS switches also support functions such as VLANs, RSTP for redundant topologies, LLDP for topology display and all common management functions. Visit our stand at the fair and see for yourself how Fast Track Switch makes PROFINET calculable, allowing it to guarantee the greatest availability in a network.

HARTING has pushed the envelope in the development of plug-in connectors for AdvancedTCA and MicroTCA. The new HARTING AdvancedMC plug connector replaces the card edge with gold pads for AdvancedMC and MCH modules. This has created again a two-piece plug-in connection with considerably improved contact reliability.

The new version of the plug-in connector is mounted onto the basic side of the AdvancedMC module, optional with the help of an automatic pick-and-place machine. Usually, the plug-in connector is soldered by way of the "pin-in-hole-reflow" process, but is now also suitable for wave soldering. As an alternative solution, HARTING offers a version for the assembly on the bottom component side (extended side).

The improved HARTING AdvancedMC plug supports data transmission rates up to 12.5 Gbps. Instead of the card edge, the connector now defines the interface and therefore allows the selection of PCBs with a thickness beyond the specified range. The design of the insertion tongue reduces the insertion force.

HARTING AdvancedMC plug reduces manufacturing process costs

The HARTING AdvancedMC plug connector also helps to reduce the manufacturing costs of AdvancedMC modules. As the PCB does not have to be equipped with gold pads, for example, users are able to save quality control costs and only require a simple hole array.

HARTING is offering a special plug-in connector for MCH modules to MTCA.0 that can be used to transmit signals from one PCB via two vertically stacked insertion tongues.

Monday, December 10, 2012

HARTING's new har-flex connector series is a space-saving, rugged and flexible PCB connector for the widest range of board-to-board and board-to-cable applications. In addition to straight connector models, the product family also includes compatible insulation displacement connectors, along with angled models.

In order to offer PCB designers the greatest possible flexibility for using increasingly size-conscious and cost-intensive PCB resources, HARTING has a flexible solution on hand in the har-flex. Based on a 1.27 mm grid, the har-flex product family offers customers all even-numbered models from 6 to 100 pins. For mezzanine applications, the series has straight models in four different stack heights that allow parallel PCB distances between 8 and 13.8 mm to be bridged.

har-flex connectors offer process advantages

The har-flex connector family in SMT technology is delivered in tape & reel packaging. 100 percent coplanarity testing and standard fitting with so-called pick & place pads guarantee a simple, fully automatic and reliable assembling process.

With the complete har-flex product family, HARTING is offering diverse solutions for all board-to-board applications that need a space-saving connection with the rigorous combination of simple, automatic and efficient fabrication and the highest quality requirements.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

At the Bahrain Grand Prix, Team McLaren Mercedes unleashes its redesigned racing machine: the MP4-21. The team has revamped the next evolution of last year's fastest Formula One car with a new Mercedes-Benz V8 engine and completely redesigned 90 percent of the car's components - relying on Henkel products and technologies for the perfect blend of design flexibility, structural stability and aerodynamic efficiency.

As the Formula One season kicks off, racing fans have their eyes on Team McLaren Mercedes and its completely new car. Covering a good mileage and achieving competitive lap times in the 2006 pre-season tests, the car seems as well-adapted to this year's new FIA regulations as it was last year: In a 2005 Formula One season marked by sweeping constraints on engines, tyres and aerodynamics, the Team McLaren Mercedes MP4-20 quickly emerged as the fastest car on the circuit, taking 10 of the last 15 chequered flags.

This year's regulations place a further cap on top speeds, compelling changes in the cars' structure and aerodynamics. Replacing last season's V10 engines, this year's V8s make stronger engine vibrations a key factor for engineers - and make Henkel's Loctite(r) brand adhesives all the more mission-critical for Team McLaren Mercedes. A broad range of Loctite adhesives with different chemistries are used to cover the diversity of constraints on the new engine, a Mercedes-Benz FO 108S V8.

With less horsepower in the back, aerodynamics play an even greater role in the drive for competitive edge, compelling modifications throughout the carbon-fibre bodywork that makes up 80 percent of the car. Henkel brand products such as Frekote(r) and Hysol(r) provide the team the design flexibility and structural stability they need in bodywork construction, helping quickly realize modifications such as the new car's smaller air intakes and lowered nose. As an Official Supplier of Team McLaren Mercedes, Henkel has supported McLaren Racing throughout the 16-month R&D effort that went into the new car, consulting on the best-suited products to meet the new engineering challenges.

One of Henkel's recent innovations was even used in the 2005 race car's rear suspension. Following engineering challenges early in the season, Terocore(r) structural foam helped to strengthen the carbon-fibre wishbone that replaced the previous steel construction in the later part of the season. The team turned to Henkel for a solution that would not add significantly to the car's weight but that could withstand the intense heat and strong vibrations from the engine. Launched five years ago, Terocore is a staple of road car production, improving the resistance of conventional structures by up to 500 percent without adding significant weight. It proved to be the ideal solution from its very first application in Juan Pablo Montoya's car for the Monza Grand Prix: Starting in pole position, Juan Pablo went on to win the race.

"Henkel has played a key role in the continuing evolution of our Formula One cars, providing the technological and engineering innovation we need to overcome design challenges and achieve the ultimate in performance," said Martin Whitmarsh, CEO, Formula One, Team McLaren Mercedes. "Our success is fuelled by strong partners like Henkel who share our will to win and whose products and expertise we can rely on."

Throughout a 12-year association that began with Henkel's Loctite(r) brand, the diversity and number of Henkel brand products and technologies applied in the car's construction has grown. Today there are more than 100 applications of Henkel brand products throughout the MP4-21 race car.

"Formula One racing offers the ultimate proving ground for Henkel's products and technologies and we are proud to be contributing to continuing innovation at Team McLaren Mercedes," said Jochen Krauter, executive vice president, Henkel Technologies. "With the Henkel logo's positioning on the MP4-21's rear wing, our sponsorship offers an optimal platform to increase awareness of the Henkel brand."

Henkel signed an agreement to sell its rubber-to-metal bonding chemicals business to US American Lord Corporation.

Henkel KGaA is in the process of selling to Lord Corporation its business with chemicals for bonding rubber to metal and other substrates. This Henkel Technologies business has so far been a non-core technology within the portfolio and should not be expanded. To date, Henkel has concentrated primarily on the European market with this activity. Since the automotive industry, the major customer in this segment, requires global service, Henkel decided to sell the business.

The sale and purchase agreement for the rubber-to-metal bonding chemicals business was signed by both parties on February 23. The transaction is still subject to outstanding closing conditions including the requisite antitrust approvals.

"The sale is the best strategic solution for all concerned", said Jochen Krautter, Executive Vice President Henkel Technologies. "The increasing globalization of customer operations demands a global presence in this highly specialized segment, and our current operating base cannot offer the kind of coverage required long-term."

Henkel and Team McLaren Mercedes have signed a new multi-year sponsorship deal. Henkel thereby extends its partnership that began in 1995 through the Loctite brand. From this year the Henkel logo will be more visible on the rear wing of the MP4-21 race cars.

Henkel and Team McLaren Mercedes announce the extension of their partnership for another multi-year period. Henkel will continue to be an Official Supplier, but from this year, the Henkel logo will move to the more visible top position on the rear wing end plate of the two MP4-21 racing cars. "On racing weekends, around the world millions of viewers stick to their TV screens, closely following the stars of the circuit. Thus Formula One is a great opportunity for us to reach important target groups who, whether they know it or not, interact with Henkel brands and technologies that make their lives easier, better and more beautiful everyday", explains Ernst Primosch, Vice President Corporate Communications.

Though Henkel's logo is highly visible on the Team McLaren Mercedes MP4-21's rear wing, its technologies and innovations work unseen behind the scenes. Nonetheless they determine a lot of the performance, endurance and reliability of the cars. Parts and materials are subjected to severe stresses and strains - be they excessive vibrations, varying thermal conditions, or mechanical shocks. Failure of any of these parts and materials is not an option. "Formula One is the ideal proving ground for us", says Jochen Krautter, executive vice president, Henkel Technologies. "As world market leader we can put our products to the test at the pinnacle of motor racing and at the same time demonstrate how they successfully perform even in extreme conditions."

The MP4-21 race car is strengthened by a broad range of Henkel's high-strength Loctite brand adhesives, securing everything from threaded bolts to wiring. Already in the design phase, engineers at McLaren Racing consult with Henkel to determine the best-suited products to meet the distinct demands of any particular application. In all, more than 100 different applications of Henkel products help the car hug the track and withstand immense G-forces, torsion levels, vibrations and shocks. Even the light-weight, sturdy carbon-fibre composite bodywork that makes up 80 percent of the MP4-21 is constructed using Henkel know-how. Here, products such as Henkel's Frekote B-15 sealer and Hysol EA9686 film adhesive give the team the flexibility they need in moulding the car's aerodynamic shapes.

Henkel is continually involved in the consulting process to determine which products are the best fit for the team's particular applications. For example last year Henkel was asked to enhance the performance characteristics of the racing car's wishbones. The answer to this particular issue came from Henkel's broad expertise in automotive applications: Terocore structural foam proved to be the ideal solution. The material is rock solid, once it is cured, but beforehand it can easily be applied. The foam's low density, lightweight characteristics made it possible to enhance the structural integrity of the racing car's wishbones, whilst only adding 76 grams to each one. When Juan Pablo Montoya raced for the first time with wishbones treated with Terocore at last season's Italian Grand Prix at Monza the extra weight wasn't much of a handicap: he not only started from pole position but also won the race.

With Henkel as an Official Supplier, Team McLaren Mercedes can draw on the complete resources of the world's leading supplier of adhesives, sealants and surface treatment products - with access to some 5,000 to 6,000 Henkel Technologies products used by leading manufacturers across all industries. "In Formula One racing, having the right technologies and partners is as integral as having the right drivers and team," explains Team McLaren Mercedes CEO Martin Whitmarsh. "Henkel is a leader in its field and brings to our program a broad range of expertise, new ideas and solutions that help us get an edge on the competition."

Continuing its sponsorship of the world's premier sports events, Henkel announced that Henkel of America, Inc. has extended its engagement in NASCAR stock car racing. In sponsoring North America's most popular racing sport, Henkel aims to create higher visibility for itself and its consumer products.

For the NASCAR Busch Series in 2006, Henkel of America, Inc. has signed a sponsorship agreement with Roush Racing, one of the most successful teams in NASCAR history, and driver Carl Edwards, who finished third in the points standings in the 2005 Busch Series season. Several Henkel brands will participate in the sponsorship of Edwards' No. 60 Ford Fusion, including Dial(r) soap, Loctite(r) adhesives and Duck(r) tape. Henkel will be a primary sponsor for 14 races and a major associate sponsor for 21 races in the 2006 season.

This year, Henkel is also an Official Partner of Roush Racing. Henkel will collaborate with the Michigan-based racing team on assembly and maintenance applications for the Edwards' Ford Fusion, providing them with Loctite(r) brand products. Loctite, Henkel's leading industrial brand, is a staple of many NASCAR team garages and is also used in Formula One racing in diverse applications on the Team McLaren Mercedes MP4-21.

"We're looking forward to a successful Busch Series season with Henkel as part of our team," said Jack Roush of Roush Racing. "Henkel's brands are established and well-known in the racing community, and we're delighted to have them on board. We hope to put the No. 60 Henkel Ford in victory lane a number of times this year."

"This is an exciting opportunity for Henkel to expand its NASCAR presence, and we're delighted to have partners of the calibre of Carl Edwards and Roush Racing," said Ernst Primosch, vice president and head of Corporate Communications, Henkel Group. "This sponsorship gives us the opportunity to connect with the millions of NASCAR fans who use our products every day, linking the Henkel name to our well-known product brands. It also serves as one of the most extreme proving grounds for the endurance and reliability of Henkel products such as Loctite."

Henkel - A Driving Force in the Racing World
Around the world, Henkel has an extensive commitment to motorsports. In 2004, the Henkel logo appeared for the first time on the rear-wing of the Team McLaren Mercedes race cars, thereby continuing the technical association with the team, which began in 1995 through the Loctite brand. As Official Supplier, Henkel provides a wide variety of innovative solutions to the team. More than 100 different applications of Henkel products have been incorporated into the Team McLaren Mercedes MP4-21 for its challenge in the 2006 FIA Formula One World Championship. In North America, Henkel's NASCAR sponsorships include several brands with Roush Racing and driver Carl Edwards. For the three-week, 10,000-kilometer 2006 Dakar Raid through gruelling desert terrain, Henkel provided each racing team with an essential mechanical emergency kit containing a wide range of adhesives, sealants, maintenance products, cleaners and bonding tapes.

Monday, December 03, 2012

Henkel will unveil its new Eticol borax- and zinc-free casein-based labeling adhesives at this year’s Brau Beviale in Nuremberg from November 13 to 15. The innovation is characterized by outstanding bonding power and, with a modified formulation, contributes to improved sustainability performance at bottling plants.

Eticol casein-based adhesives have proven their merit as a flexible bottle labeling solution employing water-based adhesives. The entire Eticol range is defined by exceptionally good bonding behavior on very moist and very cold bottle surfaces. Labels also adhere strongly to the bottle if condensation forms on the glass.

The Eticol product range is available in a number of variants, for example with high wet tack and outstanding ice-water resistance. The adhesives can be used in conjunction with labeling machines without difficulty, even at maximum speeds. Moreover, Eticol products have long exhibited excellent characteristics when the labels are removed in the bottle cleaner and they perform flawlessly in many plants worldwide.

Sustainable performance
The adhesive technology is based on natural polymers that are obtained from the raw material casein. Until now, some Eticol adhesives still contained borax or zinc in quantities far below the strict statutory limit values. The new Eticol products do not contain either of these ingredients at all. This has a positive impact on factors such as the wastewater produced by bottlers as well as the minimum shelf life and quality of the adhesives.

For bottlers, this innovation from Henkel contributes to enhanced sustainability and budget security.

By launching this next generation of labeling adhesives as part of its Eticol product range, Henkel combines innovation with sustainability leadership and continues its dedicated support toward the beverage industry.

Henkel was recently awarded the coveted “Prix de l’Innovation” by Europe’s leading manufacturer of vibration and sound dampening systems, the company Paulstra of the French Total Group. During a Supplier Day in Segré in France, Henkel received the innovation award for the switch from a nickel- and arsenic-containing phosphating pre-treatment to a product that does not have to be labeled as hazardous.

As the European market leader in vibration and sound dampening solutions, Paulstra’s portfolio ranges from standard to dynamic sealing systems to coded information for new mechatronic systems for use in the transport industry. For such applications, Henkel supplies products for surface treatment of rubber parts prior to bonding.

Phosphating, a special kind of surface treatment
Before further processing, the individual product parts have to undergo several cleaning and rinsing steps. Without the subsequent phosphating, it would be impossible to achieve adhesion between the surfaces of the different parts of the assembly. The product surfaces are prepared for bonding by dipping them in a bath with a temperature of 60 degrees Celsius. Phosphating is a process traditionally used to treat surfaces. The innovation award from Paulstra was for the development of a new product for pretreating rubber parts prior to bonding.

Presentation ceremony in Segré, France
Henkel Sales Managers Claude Senechal and Didier Guillet proudly stepped up to accept the “Prix de l’Innovation” for the switch to nickel- and arsenic-free products from Paulstra’s Purchasing Director Gaétan de la Rousserie during an award ceremony at the Supplier Day in Segré near Angers in France.

The Ford one litre Fox engine has received instant acclaim and will soon be manufactured across the globe. Designed at Ford’s Dagenham Diesel Centre (DDC), it has the highest output per displacement of any high volume production engine on the market with a power output of 124 hp. This radical and revolutionary engine will be standard in the Ford Focus and many other future models and includes many technological improvements including the use of Loctite 5900 room temperature vulcanising (RTV) silicone for sealing the highly stressed joints.

The powerful new Ford engine is small and more highly stressed than old designs. This is a common trend and one to which Henkel gasketing products have responded. To meet the need for a flexible product to accommodate the increased vibration, Henkel recommended its Loctite 5900 silicone for sealing oil pan and front cover joints on the Fox engine, a thixotropic black paste that when cured has excellent performance in engine oils. “The Ford design rules dictate that the walls of an engine block should be a certain thickness”, explains Tsunou Chang, Ford’s Liquid Sealing Specialist. “But progress comes out of challenging traditional ideas, and our designers had proved in studies that thinner walls were do-able. But that meant the RTV process had to seal the engine with reduced wall thickness and that presented Henkel with a challenge.”

Specially developed anaerobic adhesives
Also used on the Fox engine is Loctite 5182, an anaerobic gel adhesive. This has been modified specifically for Ford’s use for sealing cam caps. Sealant beads are small on this engine it is therefore essential that the gel is dispensed accurately and bubble-free to ensure no bead breaks occur, any inconsistencies could compromise engine sealing. As a result this product is now centrifuged during the production process to prevent such an occurrence.

Loctite 5182 was also a contender for the fuel pump cover seal on the Sigma engine manufactured at Ford Bridgend. This is a new Ecoboost engine that is also highly stressed and although Loctite 5182 proved the perfect choice for the small Fox engine, tests confirmed that a flexible anaerobic sealant would be needed for the larger Ecoboost. Swift development and testing processes ensued resulting in Henkel’s introduction of Loctite 5188, its new best-in-class product for anaerobic gasketing.

Liquid gasketing
Loctite RTV and anaerobic products create self-forming gaskets that provide a perfect seal between components, with maximum face-to-face contact, eliminating flange face corrosion. A low pressure seal is formed immediately on assembly, with full cure in 24 hours giving a joint that won’t shrink, crack or relax. These products are ideally suited to automatic dispensing, meeting Ford’s cycle time requirements with maximum repeatability.

Although the automatic application of the Loctite products involves similar capital expenditure to hard gasketing, it is their ongoing flexibility where substantial cost savings are found. “Engine variants have different bolt hole patterns and coolant routes with varying numbers of ports”, says Tsunou Chang. “One major benefit with RTV is that these variations can be easily programmed so that we can process different engines on the same production line. This simply isn’t viable with hard gasketing.”

Relaxed tolerances
Another benefit of Loctite liquid gasketing is that it will seal rougher surfaces and higher porosity , meaning that where tolerances allow, no secondary finishing is necessary. And this represents an important production cost saving. Also with the emergence of new aluminium alloys this is an important consideration as with Loctite RTV surface pitting isn’t an issue. By comparison hard gasketing carries a variety of more stringent Ford production rules with regard to surface finish and is therefore a much more demanding technology to use. Another plus point for RTV is reduced inventory over conventional gaskets.

Compression gaskets  need high clamp load and tend to relax under dynamic load and decrease in thickness, resulting in loss of bolt tension in the flange joint and the potential for leakage. Loctite gasketing materials require much lower clamping forces, do not relax, and therefore maintain clamp load. This has a positive effect on warranty.

Henkel’s relationship with Ford now spans forty years. It is Ford’s preferred single source supplier of industrial adhesives and sealants for engine production throughout the world. It’s a great accolade for this manufacturer of the Loctite brand and testimony to the performance of its products. But more than that it is the result of Henkel’s characteristic focus on customer support that allows companies such as Ford to continuously push the boundaries of technology and gain competitive edge.

In close cooperation with Henkel, the German start-up company Timber Tower GmbH implemented a pilot project that could herald a new era for the wind power industry.

Reaching up to the heavens to a height of some 100 meters, a wind turbine tower of spruce – the first of its kind – has now been built near Hanover in Germany. Yet no dowels, no nails, and no screws or bolts are used to hold this timber construction together. Instead, the support tower has been adhesive-bonded using a special process – with various wood adhesives of the Purbond brand manufactured and marketed by Henkel Industrial Adhesives. The associated turbine-generator set is due to be hooked up to the grid in December of this year.

The project offers great promise for the future because switching to wood raises the prospect of increased tower heights. From the point of view of the operator, this aspect is particularly interesting because, at an onshore site, every additional meter gained means roughly one percent more in revenue. As tubular steel towers are made by assembling massive rings that have to be transported under highway bridges, however, with this technology the ring diameter is always going to be a limiting factor. Hence, the maximum height of construction currently lies at 110 meters. Wood is a potential problem-solver here as the components can be moved with relative ease to the site where they are then assembled to create the larger-sized parts required.

Close cooperation with Henkel
As a renewable resource, moreover, timber is in many respects superior to conventional materials such as steel and concrete. The service lifetime alone of the new system is likely to be double that of conventional solutions, according to the new German start-up company TimberTower GmbH, which implemented this project in close cooperation with Henkel.

In a direct comparison, steel and concrete are prone to much faster fatigue development. Particularly under heavy strain, both materials lose much of their already meager elasticity, causing them to embrittle. And that is why wind turbines tend to be disconnected from the grid after around 20 years. Wood does not have this handicap. The structure-strengthening effect of the glue also helps, with the result that the TimberTower generator with its capacity of around 1.5 megawatts should be able to supply electricity to around 150 households in Germany’s Lower Saxony for the next 40 years.

20 to 30 percent cheaper to make
“The way we see it, a timber tower offers nothing but advantages,” says TimberTower’s General Manager, Holger Giebel. “It has greater stress resistance, can be built significantly higher and is 20 to 30 percent cheaper to make. The Purbond adhesive joints had to prove their suitability right from the start of the construction project, with each one duly receiving a certificate of worthiness from the DIBt, Germany’s institute of building technology.

Now a white waterproofing membrane has been placed around the octagonal, wooden outer shell to protect the tower from the elements. The massive cross laminated timber located underneath are bonded with Purbond. Bolts were only used in the initial assembly phase in order to secure the structure. Once the tower was complete, all the mechanical fixtures were removed and the stabilizing inner construction was then adhesive-bonded from the inside using an especially developed application technique involving the 2-component casting resin, Purbond CR 421. The adhesive penetrates deep into the pores of the wood and interconnects the cross laminated timber panels with the perforated steel plates. The timber tower weighs more than 90 metric tons, with the top-mounted gondola and rotor blades adding another 100 t.

“One of the most innovative projects in the history of wood”
“This wind turbine is one of the most innovative projects in the history of wood,” says Walter Stampfli, General Manager of Purbond. It is already looking like it won’t be the last, because the expertise that Henkel particularly has gained from this project is gradually gaining renown in the relevant engineering communities. Back in 2008, the first eight-storey timber building was constructed in London with Purbond adhesives, while the first ten-storey high-rise was built in Melbourne. And in Canada a construction project involving a 30-storey building is also in the offing.

“We have the most advanced adhesives for the manufacture of load-bearing timber elements and constructions able to meet the standard specifications applicable in virtually all countries,” says Stampfli, alluding to the development results achieved over the last two years. “Moreover, we can offer technical support wherever this is required and have established ourselves as an internationally recognized source of expertise for public authorities, standards institutions and approval agencies almost everywhere in the world. As a consequence, we are ready to roll on all kinds of projects.”

Purbond
Henkel acquired the Swiss company Purbond back in early 2011. Purbond is one of the world’s leading suppliers of polyurethane adhesives for load-bearing engineered wood applications and timber constructions. Since the takeover, the brand has continued to be managed as an independent business.

AVR-T32U4 is Arduino Leonardo compatible i.e. you can develop with Arduino IDE and at the same time Breadboard friendly.

With this board you can easily make your projects without soldering.

The T-shape board idea ws first invented by Ken Segler and we love it as it allow to feed your power supply to the breadboard too.

Today at 17.00 o’clock our local Bulgarian time (GMT+2) we will post on Twitter our question.

You have one hour to reply to our tweet with the correct answer.

At 18.00 o’clock we will count the correct answers and ask random.org to generate random number in range then anнounce the winner and ship the board by airmail next Monday.

A13-OLinuXino-MICRO release took us a while, but in this board to achieve low cost we removed the power management IC AXP209 and all references from Linux Kernel to PMU had to removed. Thanks to Dimitar Gamishev  and Linux-Sunxi.org for the hard work to make this happen!

AXP209 is necessary for tablets which operate on batteries as then Linux Kernel can run the processor at lower clock to reduce the consumption, but in A13-MICRO we decided to run always the processor at maximum speed as the board do not run from batteries and it uses less 2W power anyway.

A13-OLinuXino-MICRO specs are:
  •     A13 Cortex A8 1Ghz processor (1008 Mhz to be precise)
  •     256MB DDR3 memory
  •     VGA output 800×600 pixels resolution
  •     USB host
  •     USB-OTG
  •     micro SD-card for Linux boot
  •     Audio output for headphones
  •     LCD connector for A13-LCD7-TS
  •     GPIO connector
  •     UEXT connector you can see what you can do with UEXT in our other post for RPI-UEXT
  •     Console UART connector (for use with USB-SERIAL-CABLE-F)
  •     optional JTAG connector (not populated)
  •     optional UART0 connector (not populated)
Now small lot of so called “developer edition” is assembled and in stock. After A13-OLinuXIno and A13-OLinuXino-WIFI production we do not expect any surprises, but we decided to take is slower step by step instead to rush with big production run.

All UEXT modules are supported native through the UEXT connector on board, A13-LCDxxx can be connected also on top of the VGA output.

Some free boards will be shipped to selected developers from Linux-Sunxi community and for our forum members who contribute regullary to OLinuXino project.

Note: A13-OLinuXino-SD Linux image will not work with MICRO due to the PMU difference, we prepare A13-OLinuXino-MICRO-SD.

A13-OLinuXino-MICRO price starts from EUR 28 for OEM quantities (50+ pcs) and is EURO 35 for one pce.

A10-OLinuXino routing took 3 months but this is really monster board and instead in 6 layers as per Allwinner recommendations we routed it at 4, so we now will have to see if it will work at all as it doesn’t quite blindly following the official Allwinner routing.

Another experiment we are going to do it to see if A10 can work with 2GB RAM memory. We asked Allwinner if this is possible and the response was: yes it may be possible but we never try it as our market is low cost tablets and when the memory rise to 2GB the price is not low cost.

At Electronica we spoke to lot of memory suppliers, Memphis is partner we work for a long time and they offered us 4Gbit DDR3 memories to try to our boards.

If we succeed this will be the first A10 board with 2GB RAM.

Fresh out of the assembly line, our new A13-OLINUXINO-MICRO boards blogged today and we will give away one to somebody lucky.

Today at 17.00 o’clock our local Bulgarian time (GMT+2) we will post on Twitter our question.

You have one hour to reply to our tweet with the correct answer.

At 18.00 o’clock we will count the correct answers and ask random.org to generate random number in range then anнounce the winner and ship the board by airmail next Monday.