Industrial Automation News

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GlobalSpec: DirectU2 Industrial Automation
October 15, 2009
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AutomationML: the XML for Automation

AutomationML: the XML for Automation Born in the German car industry and nourished in German technical universities, this vendor-neutral format for sharing engineering data has been published as an open standard. Its goal is to provide a unified exchange between the engineering tools that span the modern factory chain: from CAD systems used in the design through the commissioning of automation systems, to the ongoing operation of plant production equipment. An important new advantage AutomationML brings is the possibility of virtual commissioning — running the automation system in a simulation, and then taking advantage of the bidirectional data flow between the designers and the automation controllers.

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LabVIEW 2009 — Do More with Industrial Measurements and Control
National Instruments

LabVIEW 2009 — Do More with Industrial Measurements and Control LabVIEW 2009 introduces the integration of the NI SoftMotion Module and SolidWorks 3D CAD software delivering a design environment that enables faster machine development while minimizing risk through digital prototypes. Learn more about LabVIEW 2009 and download the evaluation software, at no cost!

"Seaworthy" Wi-Fi Ethernet Serial Servers

B&B Electronics Manufacturing Co. Inc.

'Seaworthy' Wi-Fi Ethernet Serial Servers Wi-Fi Ethernet Serial Servers, from B&B Electronics, easily connect RS-232, RS-422, RS-485 devices to IEEE 802.11b/g networks with exceptional data security. Read how the Vlinx™ ESR41xW series is used by an ocean engineering and surveying contractor as a cost-effective alternative to stringing cable through the tight quarters of ocean-going vessels.

When Was Your Last Automation Equipment

ATS Automation Tooling Systems, Inc.

When Was Your Last Automation Equipment Audit? Maybe you've never had one. But you could raise your OEE with a simple phone call. The Technical Services Group from ATS performs audits across North America. Call to discuss how to raise your Overall Equipment Effectiveness. 519-653-6500 ext 2808 or

Lumex Extreme Temperature LCD Technology

Lumex, Inc.

Lumex Extreme Temperature LCD Technology Lumex InfoVue™ Extreme Temp LCDs are designed for displays required to function under the most strenuous conditions, with temperature ranges from -40 C to +85 C. Ideal for Industrial Controls applications, these Extreme Temp Custom LCD Modules provide consistent display performance despite extreme heat or extreme cold conditions.

Cooling Technology . . .
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Air Movers with Short Lead-times
McLean Cooling Technology

Air Movers with Short Lead-times Don't wait months for your fresh air cooling product. McLean has a broad selection of air movers in stock or available in weeks. Choose from rack-dimensioned fan trays, Type 12 filter fans, centrifugal blowers, and DC- and AC-powered impellers. Learn more at McLean Cooling Technology.

Machine Control . . .
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Don't Blow Up the Process

Don't Blow Up the Process We've all heard of the Ziegler-Nichols method of PID tuning for industrial controllers, but there are some serious caveats — the most important one being wide oscillations that could destroy the process. This Control Engineering article discusses a less risky procedure called the "relay test" which restricts the amplitude of oscillation to safe levels.

Compact CNC

Compact CNC The Sinumerik 828D numerical control is capable of working with every type of CNC programming used around the world. The efficient controller, designed for companies exporting machine tools to the global market, brings modern PC and cell phone technology to the compact machine class for the first time.

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Dealing With Different Industrial Ethernets

Dealing With Different Industrial Ethernets Altera devised a solution to meet the challenge of interfacing with different high speed, real-time industrial Ethernet protocols such as Profinet, EtherCAT, and Ethernet IP. Industrial Ethernet designs can be configured around a single field programmable gate array. This video demonstrates the approach in a motor control application.

If you find this subject interesting, subscribe to the GlobalSpec e-Newsletter, DirectU2 The world of Data Acquisition.

"Liquid Lens" Sees All

'Liquid Lens' Sees All It's billed as the first barcode imager that can read any mark at any distance, at any speed in any environment, thanks to advanced imaging technology. This includes liquid lens autofocus and zoom optics that can read anything from 50 mm (2 in.) to 500 mm (20 in.) and beyond.

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Basic Dual Pressure Sensor
All Sensors Corp.

Basic Dual Pressure Sensor The Basic Dual Pressure Sensor (BDS Series) is two sensing elements in one package. The BDS Series can sense an absolute and pressure source simultaneously, providing two independent millivolt outputs. Dual design minimizes mechanical and pneumatic interface complexity. Parylene coating for harsh media is available.

• Request Sample

High-performance IR Camera
Rice Camera Technologies

High-performance IR Camera The IRC-320 is a high quality infrared camera providing a spectral response from 8-14um (LWIR). This camera features 12 bit output over GigE or Camera Link and an NETD: </= 80mK.

An ideal choice for applications such as quality control or high-end observation systems.

Contact us for more information.

Precision Fixed Location Kinematic

Hitek Hardware, Inc.

Precision Fixed Location Kinematic Components Precision kinematic components are availible from Hitek Hardware, Inc. Selections include stainless steel press-in cones, flats, and vee slots. These parts can be combined with Hitek's threaded stainless steel balls, precision ball ended very fine thread stainless steel adjustment screws and threaded bronze collets, plain or locking. See selection here.

Controls and Automation Systems

Bricmont, Inc.

Controls and Automation Systems Bricmont offers a wide range of control systems to the manufacturing and processing industries. From simple single-loop control to sophisticated PC-based systems, they integrate hardware and software from many different sources to build the most effective and efficient system possible for your needs.

Motors & Drives . . .
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Monitoring Wind Power in Spain

Monitoring Wind Power in Spain The Spanish wind power company Iberdrola Renovables has a good handle on the more than one million real-time variables monitored at its energy operations center in Toledo. ARC Informatique's PcVue software allows operators to track data from remote wind farms in detail. The scheme facilitates early diagnosis of potential problems and rapid corrective action.

Motor, Drive Landscape Changing

Motor, Drive Landscape Changing "Never has the case for energy efficiency been so compelling," one ABB engineer is quoted in this ControlDesign piece. New features in motors and drives that promote energy conservation are highlighted. Motors, for example, can now interface directly with machine intelligence, enabling them to take instructions.

Instruments, Sensors & Networking . . .
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Measuring Really Bad Stuff

Measuring Really Bad Stuff Talk about foul wastewater: the effluent from this Belgian metals refining plant near Antwerp had so much sulfuric acid and other toxins it destroyed the pH sensor every two or three days. After tiring of making manual measurements, the company opted for an Emerson sensor with a "poisoning resistance kit."

New Touch Technology

New Touch Technology Touch-sensitive switches are important for human-machine interface devices on the factory floor. Illinois Tool Works has developed trapped acoustic resonance as a means to embed multiple switch points into a steel plate up to 12 mm (0.5 in.) thick. It works well under wet conditions or in apps requiring a definitive touch.

For more on this subject, subscribe to GlobalSpec's e-Newsletter, DirectU2 The world of Sensors & Switches.

Focus On . . .
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2D/3D Profile Measurement Made Simple
Bytewise Measurement Systems

2D/3D Profile Measurement Made Simple Use CrossCheck™ high resolution laser profile sensors to measure part height, width, angle, radius/diameter, location, thickness, and more. The software verifies dimensional tolerances, outputs Pass/Fail trigger alerts and analog control loops to ensure part tolerance. Purchase the CrossCheck starter kit for $7,449.00.

We offer a "30 Day No Risk Evaluation."

Tire Handling
Omni Metalcraft Corp.

Tire Handling For almost 30 years, tire manufacturers and automotive assembly plants alike have turned to Omni Metalcraft Corp's. Automotive Project Team for innovative and dependable conveying systems. Our team's commitment to exceptional customer service, project and timeline management, engineering excellence, and quality manufacturing will assure the successful outcome of your project.

Careers & Commentary . . .
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Walking the Plant

Walking the Plant With centralized control systems there is less emphasis on the "old school" practice of walking around the factory floor and observing what is going on. To save cost, plants are pulling out local dials and gauges. But these old-fashioned human interfaces can be important to provide a degree of safety and a fallback position. Occasional use of local displays just seems to be good engineering practice.

Diversions . . .
Desktop Supercomputer Blows the Competition Away

Desktop Supercomputer Blows the Competition Away Think of the memorable experience your computer gaming friends could have if they got their hands on this just-released SGI desktop supercomputer, called the Octane III. It can house up to 10 dual-socket, Quad-Core Intel® Xeon® processors (that's 80 cores) and one terabyte of memory. The only barrier might be the $7,995 price tag.

Share Your Thoughts . . .
About This Month's Topic

About This Month's Topic A "Use By" Date for Semiconductors?

Just about everything that's manufactured wears out and has to be replaced. What about semiconductors, which are installed everywhere, including safety-critical devices? Should they have expiration dates?

Join the discussion...

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October 15, 2009 - Volume 5 Issue 15
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Past Issues of this eNewsletter
Volume 5 - Issue 18 - 12/03/2009
RISC Single Board Computer Offers Unmatched I/O; Compact Digital Torquemeters; Controls and Automation Systems; Feeding and Cutting Components; Moving Six Legs at a Time; Performance Driven Automation Systems; Tough As Nails; ControlNet Ring over Fiber
Volume 5 - Issue 17 - 11/19/2009
Designed for Your Needs; Power DIstribution Equipment PDU's; Latest Smallest 3.5 in. Disk Size SBC; New Patent Pending In-slot Winding Technology; Custom Mechanical Motion Systems
Volume 5 - Issue 16 - 11/05/2009
MGate Adds Intelligence to EIP/DF1 Gateways; Connectors that Increase Plant Production; Square Drive Reaction Torque Transducers; Small PC's Completely Sealed LCD PC; Feeding and Cutting Components; Data Runs Amuck at Wastewater Plant; 1/2 inH2O Millivolt Pressure Sensor; MEMS Gyro Sensors Replacing FOGs; Precision Fixed Location Kinematic Components; Buy CoilBoss Retractile Coil Cords and Bulk Cable Online; Auto Tuning PID Temperature Controllers; DEPRAG 3-HP Turbine Angle Grinder; System Integ
Volume 5 - Issue 15 - 10/15/2009
LabVIEW 2009 - Do More with Industrial Measurements and Control; 'Seaworthy' Wi-Fi Ethernet Serial Servers; When Was Your Last Automation Equipment Audit?; Lumex Extreme Temperature LCD Technology; Air Movers with Short Lead-times; Basic Dual Pressure Sensor; High-performance IR Camera; Precision Fixed Location Kinematic Components; Controls and Automation Systems; 2D/3D Profile Measurement Made Simple; Tire Handling
Volume 5 - Issue 14 - 10/01/2009
SDN-C DIN Rail Power Supplies; RTDs and Thermocouples to Improve Plant Performance; Lose the PLC with All-in-one HMI Plus Control; Tough As Nails; Itasca ships solenoid coil bobbin process automation line; Drive Screws Robotically Where Operators Can't; DSCA33 True RMS Input Signal Conditioners; ARCA Redefines Enclosure Technology!; Network-critical Physical Infrastructure for Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Systems; Sony GigE Cameras and Industrial Automation; Easily Connect PLCs/PACs wit
Volume 5 - Issue 13 - 09/17/2009
Bearingless Torquemeters Without Critical Installation Constraints; Sony GigE Cameras and Industrial Automation; Auto Tuning PID Temperature Controllers; Preventing Holes in Donut Production Schedule; 25 Years and New Product Catalog; Lanner Rugged Computing Platforms - Built Tough; NIR-SWIR InGaAs Camera; Sleek, Modular, Snap-On DIN Rail Mount Controllers; Finite Capacity Scheduling at Your Fingertips; Easy, Fast Wiring of Marshaling Cabinets; DIN Rail Signal Conditioners - DR7 Series; OPTIMISE
Volume 5 - Issue 12 - 09/03/2009
Industrial Universal PCI for Optimized Performance; ProSoft Technology Wireless POINT I/O Adapter; RISC Single Board Computer Offers Unmatched I/O; Small PC's Completely Sealed LCD PC; Network-Critical Physical Infrastructure (NCPI) for Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Systems; ARCA Redefines Enclosure Technology; Weartec Plus for Harsh Environments; Time-saving Integration; WC302 Automatic Wire and Tubing Cutter; Custom Mechanical Motion Systems; Providing Innovative Document Handling Solu
Volume 5 - Issue 11 - 08/06/2009
PPT Vision Uses Microsoft ActiveX Platform for Machine Vision Applications; Overcome Device Commoditization, Restore Profit Margins; Accu-Set Automation Machinery; Intelligent Simultaneous Digitizer Doubles as PAC; Robust Plant Data Repository Software Solution; Northwire's EnduroFLEX XM and CRXM; Lose the PLC with All-in-one HMI Plus Control; Compact Digital Torquemeters - A True Breakthrough
Volume 5 - Issue 10 - 07/02/2009
Top Equipment Manufacturing Expo in China; Automated Solution for Your Foxboro I/A; System Integration, Process Evaluation, Improve; BitFlow Announces New Neon-CL2 Camera Link Frame Frabber; Snapshot about our FlexPlus Controller; Northwire's EnduroFLEX XM and CRXM; Air Valve Simplifies Solutions for Packaging Industry; Sleek, Modular, Snap-On DIN Rail Mount Controllers
Volume 5 - Issue 9 - 06/18/2009
Factory Direct Sales; IT Happens! Now What?; PID Auto Tuning Temperature Controllers; Catch N Count Parts Handing and Sorting Systems; Commercial Automation; Modernization
Volume 5 - Issue 8 - 06/04/2009
Express 2-Day Cylinder Shipping Program; Compact Digital Torquemeters - A True Breakthrough; Industrial USB Solutions for Rugged Reliability; Achtung! CIP Survivable Photoelectric Sensors; Transparent Covers Added to ARCA Line; New P3 Linear Motor Actuator; New Long Range 900 MHz Wireless Ethernet Module; Comprehensive solutions in Industrial Microscopy; Tough as Nails; UV Luminescence Sensor with Calibration Function