July News in Brief
º Profibus International has released a new version of the Profisafe profile which describes the conditions for the safe transmission of data via wireless LANs and Bluetooth. Version 2.4 of the profile specifies the security issues involved in configuring wireless components for secure cyclic data exchange.
º US chipmaker Microchip Technology has released free source code for sensorless field-oriented control of permanent magnet synchronous motors which will run on its Motor Control dsPIC digital signal controllers. The company says the development will help to cut motor energy consumption, and allow costly Hall Effect or optical sensors to be replaced by low-cost shunt resistors.
º CAN in Automation (CiA) is organising a one-day seminar in Manchester, UK, on November 13 to provide an overview of the CANopen higher-layer protocol. It says the event will help engineers and systems integrators to judge whether CANopen is suitable for their applications.
º Colorado-based UQM Technologies has developed a 150kW peak (100kW continuous) permanent magnet propulsion system for automotive applications. The high-efficiency system delivers peak torques of 650Nm (400Nm continuous). UQM has also won a $750,000 two-year contract from the US Air Force to develop further an advanced silicon carbide motor controller and to convert a pick-up truck to all-electric operation using the SiC modules.
º AMI Semiconductor has announced a pair of single-chip stepper motor drivers that will allow engineers to eliminate the need for switches, Hall sensors, and other components in a variety of applications. The chips can drive two-phase stepper motors with currents up to 1.6A, and offer micro-stepping down to 1/32 steps.
º The IEC has published a new edition of its IEC 60947-1 standard for low-voltage switchgear and controlgear. Changes in the fifth edition include new materials to support EMC (electromagnetic compatibility) tests, and an annex covering digital I/Os for compatibility with PLCs.
º Danaher Motion has established a Web-based SynqNet Interest Group to educate and inform engineers about its SynqNet motion networking technology which, it claims, is the most widely used motion network, with more than 270,000 axes running worldwide. Membership is free.
º A Toyota hybrid petrol-electric vehicle has won a 24-hour endurance race in Japan, competing against conventional vehicles – thought to be the first victory of its type for a hybrid. As well as 4.5-litre V8 engine, the Supra HV-R hybrid has two 10kW motors in its front wheels and a 150kW motor driving the rear wheels. Energy regenerated during braking is stored in a quick-charging capacitor.