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Drive safety monitor can cut machine downtime

The German sensor manufacturer Sick has announced a safety device designed to monitor machine movements rather than simply initiating shutdowns, thus reducing unnecessary downtime. The FX3-MOC Drive Monitor – part of Sick’s Flexi Soft modular safety control system – can monitor multiple axes.

Expanded drives family adds new capabilities

At the recent SPS IPC Drives show in Germany, ABB announced several extensions to its ACS880 family of industrial drives including: higher power ranges for cabinet-built versions; high-power single-drive module packages; increased protection (IP55) for wall-mounted single drives; and the capability to control synchronous reluctance (SynRM) motors.

Comms system simplifies motor starter installations

Eaton has developed a multi-function electronic motor starter which offers integrated control via its SmartWire-DT communication and connection technology. It says that the combination will make it easier and faster to connect starters to automation environments, as well as minimising wiring.

Integrated smart motor is ‘one of the smallest’

The German motor-maker Faulhaber has collaborated with the Swiss motion controls specialist Technosoft to produce one of the world’s smallest smart motors for speed and position control. The motor-drive uses EtherCat communications and supports the CAN–over–EtherCat protocol.

CPUs link Simatic and EtherCat worlds

Vipa, the German controls company owned by Yaskawa, has developed a pair of EtherCat master controllers which also have built-in Profibus masters, thus allowing them to link the Siemens Simatic world to EtherCat networks and technologies.

Single-cable distributed servodrives ‘can save 80%’

Kollomorgen claims that a new distributed servodrive technology, which uses a single hybrid cable to link IP67-protected servo controllers near a motor to central power modules located in switchgear cabinets, can cut costs by more than 80% by saving cabinet space and simplifying the cabling.

Integrated PM motors deliver high power densities

The German manufacturer Baumüller has integrated a range of permanent magnet synchronous motors, previously used as part of its powerMela system for mobile drives, with its b maXX 5000 controllers to produce efficient 80kW and 140kW drives with high power densities, suitable for use in restricted spaces.

Servodrives are '25% cheaper than rivals'

A new range of servodrives from the German manufacturer Metronix has been designed to be about 25% cheaper than comparable European drives. The company has achieved this using various techniques, including embedding features that would usually be provided using expansion slots. It has also split the electronics across two PCBs, thus reducing the number of layers needed and allowing single-sided component mounting.

IE4 PM motor package will pay for itself in two years

At the recent SPS IPC Drives show in Germany, Yaskawa was demonstrating a package of a permanent magnet (PM) motor and a matching inverter which, it says, operates with a higher efficiency than the proposed IE4 level and will pay for itself in about two years through increased energy savings compared to an IE2 motor-and-inverter combination.

Next-generation drives offer 3ms scan times

Mitsubishi Electric has previewed its next generation of general-purpose VSDs (variable speed drives) at the SPS IPC Drives show in Germany. The company also showed a new 690V addition to its earlier FR-A700 series.

‘Revolutionary’ encoder adapts to any shaft size

The German sensor manufacturer Baumer has developed a “revolutionary” magnetic encoder technology that provides precise angular and speed measurements from large shafts of almost any diameter.

Microdrive is ‘the smallest with a built-in HMI’

The Brazilian drive technology and motor manufacturer WEG has launched a mini frequency inverter which, it claims, is the smallest to incorporate an LCD HMI. The CFW100 inverter, which made its debut at the recent SPS IPC Drives show in Germany, has a built-in micro-PLC that supports IEC 61131-3 programming, making the drive suitable for simple applications such as swimming pool pumps, small fans and special-purpose machines

Passive harmonic filter ‘exceeds active filter efficiencies’

The Canadian power quality specialist Mirus International has announced a high-performance harmonic filter that, it claims, matches the performance of active front-ends (AFEs) and is at least 2% more efficient than active harmonic filters (AHFs). It adds that the Lineator HP (high performance) filter is also free from the high-frequency harmonics and noise issues associated with inverters used in active systems.

Microdrives include autotuning sensorless vector mode

At the recent SPS IPC Drives show in Germany, Parker Hannifin unveiled a new family of microdrives aimed at speed or torque control applications in the power range 0.2–15kW. It claims that the AC10 drives, which come in five frame sizes, are among the smallest of their type, and offer functions normally associated with higher-specification drives.

‘World’s most popular PLC’ enters a new generation

Mitsubishi Electric has unveiled a new generation of its FX compact PLC, with the claims that it is three times faster, and will cut running costs and energy consumption. At the recent SPS IPC Drives show in Germany, the company also launched a new version of its high-end iQ series modular PAC (programmable automation controller), which can control up to 192 axes and is said to cut development, maintenance and operating costs.