Plant Automation
Snake-like robot helps first responders with search and rescue efforts by maneuvering into tight spaces and accessing difficult-to-reach areas. Courtesy: Carnegie Mellon University/RIA
Plant Automation May 13, 2019

Top 5 Plant Engineering articles May 6-12

Articles about Product of the Year winners, robotics research and development, working with engineering quirks, using lean methods, and energy project savings barriers were Plant Engineering’s five most clicked articles from May 6-12. Miss something? You can catch up here.

By Chris Vavra
The April PMI, produced by the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) fell 2.5 percentage points in April to 52.8%. Courtesy: Bob Vavra, CFE Media
Plant Automation May 1, 2019

PMI stumbles to 2 ½-year low as border concerns emerge

On 10th anniversary of manufacturing rebound, the purchasing manufacturers' index (PMI) falls to 52.8%.

By Bob Vavra
PLCs, PACs
A controls and automation upgrade to this traverse winder included eight Siemens S120 Vector drive systems to uncoil, slit, and recoil copper. Six Siemens S120 Servo drive systems were used for traversing. Courtesy: Electronic Drives & Controls Inc.
PLCs, PACs December 13, 2018

Controls upgrade boosts machine productivity 40%

Machine running speed nearly doubled with greater product control, quick ROI.

By Chuck Dillard
Standards
The use of propane tanks for its forklift fleet is part of Graphic Products’ overall forklift safety program. Courtesy: Propane Education & Research Council
Standards May 16, 2019

Fueling forklift safety

Company’s choice of propane one part of its best practices

By Jeremy Wishart
System Integration
Devon MacNeill Guglietta, P.E., is senior automation engineer, GlaxoSmithKline, and among winners of Engineering Leaders Under 40 in 2018. Previously she worked at Applied Control Engineering Inc. Courtesy: Devon MacNeill Guglietta
System Integration April 24, 2019

Career advice for engineers: Work with the quirks

Engineers can excel by working with what makes them unique, rather than fighting against personality traits others might consider quirky.

By Devon MacNeill Guglietta, P.E.
Wireless
Courtesy: CFE Media
Wireless May 18, 2019

Securing electric substations

Researchers at Georgia Tech have discovered that side channel signals and bolts of lightning from distant storms could one day help prevent hackers from sabotaging electric power substations and other critical infrastructure.

By Gregory Hale
Sensors, Vision
A soft-actuating robot gripper and a collaborative conveyor system enable safer human-robot interaction. Courtesy: Shuttleworth, LLC/RIA
Sensors, Vision May 6, 2019

Fenceless safety methods embrace human-robot interaction

Human-robot collaboration (HRC) is becoming more common, but humans still need to be aware of their machine counterparts. Companies have developed techniques to make it easier for humans and robots to safely interact and improve plant floor productivity.

By Tanya M. Anandan