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Rugged drive can be mounted on or near motors

WEG has developed a rugged decentralised drive, designed to be mounted on a motor’s terminal box, or nearby. The IP66-protected MW500 inverter (based on WEG’s CFW500 VSD) is said to simplify commissioning, installation and start-ups, and to cut cabling and cabinet costs.

Automation suite helps to program multi-axis projects

The German drives specialist Stober has unveiled a software tool for programming multi-axis applications using its MC6 motion controller. The AS6 Automation Control Suite is based on the Codesys 3.5 system and incorporates motion control and PLC functions. It supports the IEC 61131-3 programming languages and includes a robot command set.

General-purpose drives reach their third generation

At the recent SPS IPC Drives show in Germany, the Welsh drives-maker Invertek unveiled the third generation of its general-purpose Optidrive family of drives. Available in four frame sizes covering ratings from 0.37–22kW, the Optidrive E3 can control IE2, IE3 and IE4 permanent magnet and synchronous reluctance motors.

Advanced PLC targets demanding applications

At the recent SPS IPC Drives in Germany, ABB announced a high-performance, multi-processor version of its AC500 PLC, aimed at demanding machinery and motion automation, control and communication tasks. The AC500 PM595 Machinery Controller incorporates a 1.3GHz processor with four 32-bit RISC processors, an embedded double-precision floating-point processor, 16MB of user program memory, and an array of communications interfaces.

Flexible servodrives can be used ‘in almost any application’

ABB has announced a three-phase AC servodrive platform that can be used – without needing any extra hardware – in almost any application, from centralised control to intelligent stand-alone motion systems. The flexible MotiFlex e180 drives are suitable for high-power and continuous machinery and motion control applications using a variety of communications and motor feedback technologies.

Automation platform integrates motion with an industrial PC

Bosch Rexroth has combined a PLC-based motion logic system with a Windows PC, allowing machine-builders to run PC software on the same platform as real-time motion control. It says that the new IndraMotion MLC controller will open up new applications by integrating Web-based technologies, high-level languages, Ethernet-based communications and Windows applications.

Multi-axis PAC has built-in APIs for advanced controls

Delta Electronics has announced a PAC (programmable automation controller) with integrated motion control functions, which supports EtherCat and DMCNET communications. The MH-1 Series PAC has built-in application-specific APIs which are said to make it easier to implement CNC, robot and IEC 61131 controls.

Reporting software alerts users via their smart watches

Schneider Electric has released a new version of its Wonderware SmartGlance mobile reporting software with new functions that include support for wearable technologies, such as smart watches. The 2014 R2 version of the software is claimed to make it easier for users to monitor, visualise and analyse real-time plant and industrial process data via mobile devices.

Servodrive integrates safety via Ethernet/IP

Rockwell Automation has announced a servodrive that uses the Ethernet/IP network for machine safety functions. The Allen-Bradley Kinetix 5500 with integrated safety is based on the company's Kinetix 5500 servodrive and offers the same high-speed coordination for demanding motion applications.

Smart camera in a vision sensor format ‘sets new standard’

Datalogic has announced a smart camera which, it claims, sets a new standard in machine vision by providing advanced smart camera functions in an embedded vision sensor form factor. The modular P-Series camera uses interchangeable embedded lenses and illuminators that can be mounted and replaced in the field.

Disconnect switch simplifies designs for global panel-builders

Rockwell Automation has announced a universal visible-blade disconnect switch that will help panel-builders to meet global standards, including UL, CSA, CE and CCC. Initially, the Allen-Bradley Bulletin 1494U disconnect switch is available in 30A, 60A and 100A ratings, and will be extended up to 600A next year.

Maintenance-free industrial UPS has no batteries

Panduit has launched a maintenance-free uninterruptible power supply (UPS) that backs up industrial managed Ethernet switches using ultra-capacitors instead of batteries, thus eliminating the main cause of conventional UPS failures. The company says that its Industrial Network UPS will lower the risk of downtime due to battery failures by 39%, as well as doubling the return-on-investment and cutting the cost of ownership by 50-70% compared than conventional UPSs.

Gateway links IO-Link devices to industrial Ethernet

Comtrol has announced a device which, it says, combines the benefits of IO-Link sensor communications with EtherNet/IP and Modbus TCP industrial Ethernet protocols. The IO-Link Master 4-EIP Master connects “smart” IO-Link sensors and actuators to factory networks, while shielding PLC programmers from the complexities of IO-Link. It is said to result in simpler EtherNet/IP and Modbus TCP interfaces, cutting system development times and installation efforts.

Device converts existing wires into Ethernet rings

Phoenix Contact has announced a device that uses existing copper wires to create redundant Ethernet ring structures with data rates of up to 15 Mbps for two-wire operation or 30Mbps for four-wire operation. The device also enables Ethernet communications over distances of up to 20km, instead of the usual limit of around 100m.

Motion controller and EtherCat master handles 64 axes

The Israeli controls manufacturer ACS Motion Control has announced its most powerful line of motion controllers and EtherCat masters to date. The SPiiPlusEC controllers expand the capabilities of the company’s earlier SPiiPlus controllers and EtherCat network managers.