Northern Illinois University partners with AutomationDirect for new student lab

As automation changes, educators need to maintain pace in the classroom to produce well-qualified graduates. To support this effort, Northern Illinois University (NIU) has unveiled the AutomationDirect Automation Laboratory in its Department of Technology. AutomationDirect’s donation of $100,000 over four years also makes it possible to name a term professorship.

11/01/2008


As automation changes, educators need to maintain pace in the classroom to produce well-qualified graduates. To support this effort, Northern Illinois University (NIU) has unveiled the AutomationDirect Automation Laboratory in its Department of Technology. AutomationDirect’s donation of $100,000 over four years also makes it possible to name a term professorship.

NIU’s Department of Technology, which has more than 400 students, evolved from vocational education and is now a component of the College of Engineering and Engineering Technology (CEET). The new lab will aid student in programs such as electrical engineering technology, manufacturing engineering technology, and industrial management and technology.

AutomationDirect has a working relationship with about 15 schools and continuing education centers, but this is the first time it has a named a lab and created a professorship. The company is also actively involved with education at the primary school level with local robotics team sponsorships and as a kit-of-parts sponsor of the FIRST robotics program.

Today, CEET has almost 1,500 students and 36 labs. The AutomationDirect Laboratory is one of four labs named in 2008, said Promod Vohra, dean of the NIU College of Engineering and Engineering Technology, with other newly named industry partners including Harley-Davidson and Baxter. “We want to be engaged in economic development of the region, and create graduates that can fare well in a global environment,” he said.

The laboratory supports departmental courses on programmable logic controllers and automation. Professors teach PLC programming, as well as how to integrate components such as sensors, switches, and output devices with the PLC. As a final project before graduation, student teams are required to design automation systems that sort parts in an application that integrates a vision system, PLCs, sensors, and pneumatics.

www.ceet.niu.edu/tech

www.automationdirect.com





The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
A new approach to the Skills Gap; Community colleges may hold the key for manufacturing; 2017 Engineering Leaders Under 40
Doubling down on digital manufacturing; Data driving predictive maintenance; Electric motors and generators; Rewarding operational improvement
2017 Lubrication Guide; Software tools; Microgrids and energy strategies; Use robots effectively
The cloud, mobility, and remote operations; SCADA and contextual mobility; Custom UPS empowering a secure pipeline
Infrastructure for natural gas expansion; Artificial lift methods; Disruptive technology and fugitive gas emissions
Mobility as the means to offshore innovation; Preventing another Deepwater Horizon; ROVs as subsea robots; SCADA and the radio spectrum
Power system design for high-performance buildings; mitigating arc flash hazards
Research team developing Tesla coil designs; Implementing wireless process sensing
Commissioning electrical systems; Designing emergency and standby generator systems; Paralleling switchgear generator systems

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

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
The maintenance journey has been a long, slow trek for most manufacturers and has gone from preventive maintenance to predictive maintenance.
Featured articles highlight technologies that enable the Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies to get data more easily to the user.
This digital report will explore several aspects of how IIoT will transform manufacturing in the coming years.
Maintenance Manager; California Oils Corp.
Associate, Electrical Engineering; Wood Harbinger
Control Systems Engineer; Robert Bosch Corp.
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
click me