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February 1, 2007 - Volume 3 Issue 2
In this issue...
Spec Search
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Industrial Automation
products and services.
Industry Trends & Events . . .
America's Top 50 Automation Companies

America's Top 50 Automation Companies These are the top 50 automation companies to watch, the movers and shakers of industrial automation and process control, listed according to their 2005 sales figures. Published annually by Control Magazine, this year some of the selection criteria have changed. The magazine has re-written the rules, and collaborated with the ARC Advisory Group to provide a more accurate snapshot of the North American market. The project is becoming more difficult for two reasons: first, the lines between traditionally regarded factory automation, process control, and batch control have blurred. Second, most of the companies are global players who don't report North American revenues separately.

Spotlight On . . .
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Sola/Hevi-Duty
The 24 V Extreme Environment Field Power Supply

The 24 V Extreme Environment Field Power Supply The new SCP-X DC power supply from Sola/Hevi-Duty delivers consistent 24 V field power from a machine-mountable 4.7 in. x 7 in. x 1.8 in. IP67-compliant package. It eliminates bulky, central architecture and greatly simplifies I/O device cabling.

CUI Inc
High Quality Encoder Line with Extensive Options

High Quality Encoder Line with Extensive OptionsCUI's panel mount optical encoders are perfect for applications where precision control is important. Dozens of options include 25-250 PPR, detent/non-detent, with/without push switch, single/dual shaft, sleeve/ball bearing, multiple connector/mounting types, 3.3 and 5 V models, etc.

Siemens Energy & Automation, Inc. /
Industrial Sys

Safety — Uncover the Competitive Advantage

Safety — Uncover the Competitive AdvantageSiemens Energy & Automation, Inc. announced the launch of "SAFETY: Uncover the Competitive Advantage." The safety events will be held in movie theaters in 45 cities across the U.S. beginning January 23, 2007. The movie provides a big-screen approach to the education and tools needed to turn machine safety into a competitive advantage.

EZAutomation

Cost Effective PLCs from EZAutomation

Cost Effective PLCs from EZAutomationThe new EZPLC, starting at $111 with $19 digital I/O and $99 analog I/O, provides expansion for up to 2000 I/O, comes with RS-232/422/485 and options for Ethernet, Devicenet, and Profibus.

More info...

Machine Control . . .
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Questions and Discussions | Learn More | Search by Supplier/Spec | The Engineering Web®
Multi-Axis Machine Control

Multi-Axis Machine Control Festo is taking a major plunge into the world of electric automation with its new series of integrated multi-axis controllers. The digital drives are fully integrated solutions that include control, logic, and I/O, all programmed with the IEC 61131-3 CoDeSys software platform, and configured with a new tool called ServoWire Pro.

Today's Breed of Industrial Computers

Today's Breed of Industrial Computers Industrial computers come in sizes ranging from small handhelds and rugged notebooks, to the rack-mounted computers for shop floor use. Today, they share a growing list of common features including higher processing speed and denser memories, improved energy efficiency and longer battery life, and the ability to support a range of wired and wireless networking options. [Access to originating article may require a quick registration.]

Information & Intelligence . . .
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Questions and Discussions | Learn More | Search by Supplier/Spec | The Engineering Web®
Intelligent Sensors for Valve Positioner Control

Intelligent Sensors for Valve Positioner Control Called the "vision of the future," an intelligent sensor package for a pneumatic solenoid valve contains a Hall effect sensor to measure the valve's exact position and pressure sensors to capture the inlet, differential, and exhaust pressures during the seconds of operation. The package provides an array of diagnostics, with maintenance improvement implications.

The "How-to" Sensor Buying Guide

The 'How-to' Sensor Buying Guide This 12-step sensor checklist takes the novice (and even some seasoned veterans) through the stages needed for buying a sensor to measure physical properties such as temperature or pressure. Some vendors provide sketchy specifications and definitions of terms and others may omit critical parameters, so the buyer needs to be informed.

Accent On . . .
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Mencom Corporation
EtherLink E45V3
 

EtherLink E45V3The featured new Ethernet product is the Etherlink V3 Field Wireable Plug. It is also available in the Etherlink V1 Field Wireable version.

Both offer female receptacles paired with a male plug with Cat 5 cable, a 110 punchdown block, or another female receptacle. Additionally, field wireable female receptacles are offered.

More info...

Control Technology Corporation
Blue Fusion Model 5300:
High Performance Programmable Automation Controller

Blue Fusion Model 5300: High Performance Programmable Automation ControllerThe Blue Fusion 5300 automation controller's small size, advanced functionality, built-in Web server, and modular construction make it ideal for industrial applications requiring compact and expandable control. Interchangeable modules handle analog, digital, motion, and networking requirements. The new tightly integrated QuickBuilder™ graphical desktop environment simplifies configuration, programming, and troubleshooting.
More info...

B&R Industrial Automation Corp.
Industrial PCs — Performance Without the Price

Industrial PCs — Performance Without the PriceB&R's Industrial PC line APC620, designed with the industrial environment in mind.
• Fan-less
• Pentium M processors
• Scalable design
• Drive up to eight displays simultaneously
• Hard disk with expanded temperature range.
Contact us today! sales.us@br-automation.com

Baldor Electric Company
Ethernet-Compatible Three-Phase AC Motor Drives

Ethernet-Compatible Three-Phase AC Motor Drives The new drives from Baldor Electric Company — the MotiFlex e100 range — can be used in both centralized control and distributed "intelligent drive" scenarios for example, in both cases with substantial savings in the electrical power components typically required. The new drives complete Baldor's range of Ethernet Powerlink products for motion control.

Motors & Drives . . .
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Are Efficient Motors the Most Reliable?

Are Efficient Motors the Most Reliable? Like energy efficiency tags on consumer appliances, new motor efficiency classifications (Eff1, Eff2, etc.) help industrial customers recognize the difference between motors. However, Steve Ruddell, ABB GM for motors and drives in the UK, is concerned that classifications might also be taken as a measure of machine reliability, which could lead to incorrect usage.

Practical Aspects of Servo Drives

Practical Aspects of Servo Drives The most precise and the most advanced motion control engine of today is the servo motor, but the technology must be well tuned to produce accurate and reliable results. This article is a collection of "tips" for the motion control designer, ranging from rules-of-thumb for inertia loads to sophisticated tuning algorithms.

Networking & Communications . . .
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Questions and Discussions | Learn More | Search by Supplier/Spec | The Engineering Web®
The Right Terminations for Industrial Networks

The Right Terminations for Industrial Networks Some of the biggest problems encountered with industrial networks involve the connectors at the end of the fieldbus or industrial Ethernet line that connect individual nodes to the system. The first line of defense is to secure the connections with proper industrial connectors. The second is to ask what protection do they need.

A Firewall for Industrial Controllers

A Firewall for Industrial Controllers Today's IT security products can't be used with industrial controllers or computers because they are designed to protect servers or large groups of PCs that independently run their own antivirus or host firewall software. Control devices such as PLCs, and DCS need to have their own firewall protection. A newly designed security solution can protect individual modules.

Focus On . . .
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Lapp USA
Reduced Diameter VFD Cable
with UL and CSA TC Approval

Reduced Diameter VFD Cable with UL and CSA TC ApprovalOLFLEX® VFD Slim is a reduced diameter, shielded motor supply cable for variable frequency drives. This cable has a specially blended PVC jacket that is TC-ER approved for both UL and CSA standards for 600 V. It is also approved for 1000 V by UL AWM and is c(UL) CIC and CSA AWM FT4 approved.

Advanced Control Systems Corp.
MCB-4B Four-Stepping Motor Driver/Controller
 

MCB-4B Four-Stepping Motor Driver/Controller The MCB-4B is an integrated stepping motor controller/driver board capable of controlling four motors simultaneously. The MCB-4B is capable of driving and controlling any four, six, or eight lead stepping motor with phase currents of up to 3 Amps/phase. The board operates in various modes, executing a high level instruction set. More about Advanced Control Systems Corp.

Careers . . .
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Dice
A Better Job Search by Design

Dice: A Better Job Search by DesignDiceEngineering.com offers thousands of quality engineering jobs at top technology and engineering companies. Find jobs in your area of expertise.

Search now. Go Here

Do Process Engineers Study the
Right Topics?

Do Process Engineers Study the Right Topics?Why is there such a large disconnect between process control as taught in the university and what is actually practiced in industry? Part of the problem is filled by having working engineers receive additional training, such as the courses that ISA offers. The best suggestion is that students need to have more hands-on training.

Diversions . . .
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A Robot That Can Run
A Robot That Can Run
For the first time in North America, Honda recently displayed its advanced ASIMO humanoid robot at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, and one of the amazing new tasks it can perform is to run like a human at about 4 mph. Honda says it wants to develop a robot capable of assisting those who lack full mobility and for working in environments dangerous for humans.
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