Automation & Control


Safety I/O module

CompactBlock Guard I/O is a safety I/O module with EtherNet/IP connectivity. The I/O module allows companies to use the EtherNet/IP protocol in conjunction with Allen-Bradley GuardLogix controllers or other safety PLCs that incorporate CIP safety protocol over EtherNet/IP. The I/O module detects failures at the I/O and field-device level while enhancing operator protection in applications such as robotics, point-of-operation, guard monitoring and remote control. It features an operating temperature range of -4 to 140 F and meets IP20 standards.

Rockwell Automation :

Master, slave I/O for Profibus DP

Profibus communication modules that are backplane-compatible with Rockwell Automation’s CompactLogix platform are available in two types. PS69-DPM is a Profibus DP master; PS69-DPS is a Profibus DP slave. Both modules are Profibus-certified, offer DPV0/V1 support and are configurable using the PROSOFT.fdt configuration software. The master module features include FDT asset management support and slave parameterization and acyclic messaging via explicit ladder logic message blocks. The slave module features CIP messaging support and a serial diagnostic interface.

ProSoft Technology Inc. :

Wireless mobile HMI

The SIMATIC MP277 IWLAN is a wireless mobile panel HMI that allows access to PLCs and wireless networks. The wireless HMI is designed specifically for the plant floor. The mobile panel has a 7.5-inch TFT touch display and 18 LED membrane keys for operator input. The unit can be enhanced with operator controls such as a key-operated switch, an illuminated push-button and a hand wheel. Its 6 MB of memory can be supplemented with a memory card for archiving recipe data.

Siemens Energy & Automation Inc. :

Simplified push-button spring clamp

Harmony spring clamp contacts and light modules for 22-mm pushbuttons are designed for efficiency and reduced installation time, reducing wiring time by 66%, compared with screw clamps. The spring clamp is designed to maximize installation simplicity and provide secure connections with excellent vibration resistance %%MDASSML%% without the use of tools. Upon installation, the lever position provides visual indication of a secure connection. The clamp accepts stranded or solid wires, with or without cable ends, and different wire sizes.

Schneider Electric :

Cameras for inspection, machine vision

The NI 17XX Series of smart cameras is designed with image acquisition, onboard processing and I/O capabilities directly on the cameras for embedded, automated machine vision and inspection applications. A smart camera returns inspection results instead of images, which would require external processing and analysis. Features include Sony CCD image sensors; embedded processors; built-in isolated I/O; dual Gigabit Ethernet ports with Modbus TCP support; an RS-232 port; and Vision Builder AI development software. A direct-drive lighting controller is available on some models.

National Instruments :

DeviceNet diagnostic monitor

The BradCommunications eNetMeter DN continuously monitors a DeviceNet network in a passive state, and provides feedback to an EtherNet/IP master, NetAlytix software, DLL interface, OPC server or a PC residing on Ethernet. Using high-speed network parameter sampling, the device captures information about overall network status, individual node status, detailed signal and shield parameter measurements, common-mode voltage and minimum/maximum/average values. The device can be used to diagnose DeviceNet network faults.

Molex Inc., Automation and Electrical Products Div. :

HMI/SCADA visualization software

Proficy HMI/SCADA %%MDASSML%% iFIX 5.0 supervisory control and visualization software is operating-system neutral, offers enhanced failover features and has a look and feel based on Microsoft Fluent User Interface, which uses the ribbon bar concept, allowing users to access frequently used tools. Features include discover and auto-configuration; graphic thumbnail support; custom scaling for analog data within database tags; and loadable blocks, which are specialized database blocks created based on customer requirements and input.

GE Fanuc Intelligent Platforms :

Compact controller for harsh environments

The Twido Extreme programmable controller with IP67 rating is designed for applications subjected to severe environmental conditions such as splashing water, oil, dust, vibration and shock. The controller resists extreme temperatures ranging from -40 to 230 F, and it protects against over-voltages and chemical and abrasive products. The controller uses three communication ports for distributed I/O, graphic touch screens, switches and sensors. The unit is powered with a 12 Vdc or 24 Vdc power supply and has 41 I/O points.

Schneider Electric :

Switch-mode power supply

The SITOP wall-mount vibration-resistant power supply meets IEC 68-2-27 “Basic Environmental Testing Procedures, Part 2”; IEC 60529 “Ingress Protection Rating”; and MIL-STD-810F, Method 514.5, vibration. The unit fulfills special requirements in harsh environments and is suitable for unconventional output voltages. The switch-mode power supply feature a wide input range, and compensates for extreme voltage fluctuations. An integrated Power Boost feature temporarily supplies up to three times the nominal current.

Siemens Energy & Automation Inc. :

Modular managed switch

The Stratix 8000 modular managed switch is an industrial managed switch that facilitates network convergence in manufacturing and IT organizations. The switch includes the Cisco operating system; Catalyst feature set and user interface; and easy setup and comprehensive diagnostics within the Integrated Architecture. Other features include removable CompactFlash, industrial environmental ratings and default configurations for industrial automation and Ethernet/IP devices.

Rockwell Automation :

Compact PAC for small applications

The CompactLogix L23 programmable automation controller is designed for small machine-level applications and offers embedded I/O and 512 KB of memory. The PAC extends benefits of the Logix Control Platform into smaller applications. Features include three packaged controller forms; integrated Ethernet/IP ports; preconfigured embedded I/O; advanced Integrated Architecture support features such as alarms and events, drive integration and Phase Manager; and use of a common database between FactoryTalk View and PanelView Plus.

Rockwell Automation :

Compact machine vision system

The In-Sight Micro is a complete vision system in a 30 x 30 x 60-mm package. EasyBuilder configuration software enables intuitive setup of difficult applications without programming or spreadsheets. The camera is designed to mount in very tight spaces on robots, production lines and machinery. The non-linear calibration tool allows mounting at angles of up to 45 degrees for hard-to-reach applications. Its VisionView 700 operator interface panel automatically detects vision systems and displays tiled views of up to nine systems.

Cognex Corp. :

Widescreen industrial LCD monitor

The SV-2400 panel-mount monitor is designed with a touchscreen interface. The all-steel-enclosed monitor has a NEMA 4/IP56 LCD front panel that withstands water, dust and dirt intrusions. The high-precision, 24-inch widescreen display is capable of running resolutions up to its native mode WUXGA of 1,920 x 1,200 pixels with both analog and digital input sources. Features include 16:10 aspect ratio, low power consumption, 250 nits of brightness, 160-degree viewing angles and 1,000:1 contrast ratio.

Stealth Computer Corp. :

IP67-rated Ethernet/IP I/O block

The BradControl HarshIO 600 eIP is an IP67-rated Ethernet/IP I/O block that connects industrial controllers to I/O devices in harsh environments. I/O blocks use standard M12 connectors %%MDASSML%% threaded or BradConnectivity Ultra-Lock %%MDASSML%% and can be machine-mounted. Features include a built-in two-port Ethernet switch with network speed auto-sensing and cable type detection; pushbuttons for IP addressing support multiple system configurations; built-in Web server; configurable I/O; PNP and NPN support; diagnostic LEDs; watchdog timer; and scrolling four-character status display.

Molex Inc., Automation and Electrical Products Div. :

SCADA visualization software

SIMATIC WinCC Version 7.0 SCADA visualization software has been adapted to Windows Vista. The alarm and trend display features allow users to run the export function from every control. Version 7.0 is compatible with older operating systems such as Windows XP Professional and Windows Server 2003. Other features include simplified language switching, high-performance analysis functions and an integrated MS SQL server database. The number of power tags has been doubled from 256 to 512, and from 1,024 to 2,048.

Siemens Energy & Automation Inc. :

Wireless infrastructure management

The ION R3 provides comprehensive integration and cohesive management of facilities’ wireless infrastructures. The system makes it possible to standardize and manage a common set of indicators across multi-vendor devices, including network throughput, availability, dropped packets and battery life. The system supports wireless devices from Siemens, Cisco and Emerson, as well as Apprion’s IONizers. Features include a user dashboard; enhanced events and alerts; enhanced video monitoring; real-time visualization; central network security dashboard; and universal device integration.

Apprion :

Remote scanner for DeviceNet

The BradCommunications SST remote DeviceNet scanner controls I/O devices connected to a DeviceNet network without the need of a local PC. DIN-rail mountable, up to 16 scanners can be connected to one Ethernet switch, which is then connected back to a PC residing on an Ethernet network, allowing users to remotely access diagnostic information on the scanners and the DeviceNet network. Features include backward-compatible DLL, diagnostic LEDs, unconnected message manager and support for all DeviceNet standard baud rates.

Molex Inc., Automation and Electrical Products Div. :

PAC for SIL applications

The GuardLogix L63S programmable automation controller offers multidisciplined control for SIL 3 safety applications. Design commonality and software compatibility are integrated to provide better information sharing, reduced training costs and faster programming and commissioning. The updated version of the PAC features firmware improvements, more memory and metal-forming instructions for press automation. It is designed to work across process, discrete, motion, drive and safety applications, as well as connectivity to plant-wide information systems.

Rockwell Automation :

Distributed I/O module

SIMATIC ET200S IM151-8 PN/DP CPU is an I/O module with CPU functionality and Profinet connection. The distributed I/O module supports real-time properties %%MDASSML%% real-time and isochronous real-time %%MDASSML%% and can control up to 128 I/O devices. The Profinet communication interface with three ports for linear bus topologies and programming device functions is onboard and can be expanded with a Profibus DP master module. The module is also available in a fail-safe version with 192 KB of RAM.

Siemens Energy & Automation Inc. :

Ethernet/serial modules

BradCommunications SST Ethernet/serial communication modules connect Allen-Bradley ControlLogix to Modbus networks. Each module has one Ethernet and two serial communication channels that act as independent Modbus TCP client/server and Modbus master or slave protocols. The module acts as a 1756 I/O module between the Modbus network and the ControlLogix backplane. The module also has a front-panel USB port for module startup if necessary.

Molex Inc., Automation and Electrical Products Div. :

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Annual Salary Survey

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

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