Drives and Controls Magazine

Bluetooth controls drives without wires

01 January, 2002

Bluetooth controls drives without wires

ABB is developing a system that uses the Bluetooth wireless data transmission technology to control and monitor variable speed drives. At the recent SPS/IPC/Drives exhibition in Germany, it demonstrated a prototype which was being used to set up, read and write parameters, and perform diagnostics on a drive located several metres away.

The technology, which is still being developed, will allow users to program and monitor their drives from a laptop or handheld PC up to 20m away. In a pilot project in Finland, the Bluetooth system is being used to communicate with a drive for a ship`s rudder.

The Swedish encoder-maker Leine & Linde has co-developed an encoder which uses Bluetooth to transfer readings to remote PCs without wiring. Working with a Swedish Bluetooth specialist, Free2Move, Leine & Linde has developed a system that can transmit data up to 10m unaided, or 100m if an amplifier is used. The signals can be picked up by nodes on a local area network running around a plant, and fed to a PC for analysis and storage. The technology, which is expected to go on sale this Spring, will be available in the UK from Schaevitz Sensors.