EC: NI CompactRIO
Machine and Embedded Control - PACs: National Instruments, NI CompactRIO. The new NI cRIO-9025 embedded real-time controller is a new addition to the NI CompactRIO platform that provides a more rugged -40 to 70 C deg extended temperature operating range along with a higher performance processor which makes it ideal for industrial and embedded engineers prototyping and deploying advanced monitoring and control systems. This is a Control Engineering 2011 Engineers' Choice (EC) Award winner.
The new NI cRIO-9025 embedded real-time controller is part of the high-performance and reconfigurable NI CompactRIO advanced monitoring and control platform. The controller works with any of the existing CompactRIO reconfigurable chassis, which include field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) that are programmed using the NI LabVIEW 2010 graphical system design platform. Using LabVIEW and CompactRIO, engineers quickly can implement custom analog and digital control loops, along with high-speed signal processing algorithms to meet their advanced measurement and control application needs.
The NI cRIO-9025 features an industrial 800 MHz real-time Freescale processor running a VxWorks RTOS for deterministic, reliable real-time applications and contains 512 MB of DDR2 RAM and 4 GB of nonvolatile storage for data storage. The controller also provides dual Ethernet ports for network programming and communication, USB and RS232 ports for removable storage and connection to peripherals and dual power supply 9-35 V dc inputs. The cRIO-9025 controller is programmed with the LabVIEW Real-Time Module, which includes hundreds of built-in functions for signal processing, control, advanced mathematics, simplified interfacing to the reconfigurable FPGA and more. Additionally, LabVIEW provides the ability to take existing C code or text-based models and run them embedded on the NI cRIO-9025 real-time controller.
In addition to an extended operating temperature range, the new CompactRIO controller is available with conformal coating. This coating is a specially formulated thin film material applied directly to circuit boards within the cRIO-9025. It provides an impermeable seal to protect circuitry from humidity, moisture, mold, mildew, fungus, dust and corrosion caused by exposure to extreme environments. Application areas in which conformal coating can provide protection include marine, railway, automotive, factory monitoring, fuel cell testing and oil and gas refining.
For more, see www.controleng.com/awards.
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Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey