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Emulation software tests controls before they are deployed

Rockwell Automation has released emulation software for its ControlLogix 5580 family of controllers which allows engineers to test control code in a virtual environment before deploying the hardware. It says that the FactoryTalk Logix Echo controller software will save time and costs for machine designers, optimise machine performance, and reduce time-to-market.

Battery-free vibration sensors can check all machines in a plant

Fluke Reliability has announced a battery-free wireless system for monitoring machine vibrations, that can help to identify potential faults before breakdowns occur. The “set-and-forget” Fluke 3562 Screening Vibration Sensor system can connect up to 1,000 sensors to a single gateway and can operate continuously, even in hard-to-reach places.

Live machine safety dashboard promises improved uptime

The German-sensor maker Sick has announced a safety monitoring service that generates live visualisations of one or more machines, allowing users to monitor the status of their safety processes in real time. The Safety Machine Analytics software can help to investigate the causes of stoppages and eliminate them, as well as providing longer-term analyses to help improve maintenance and productivity.

Device adds safety functions to tablet-based HMIs

The HMI manufacturer Idec Apem has developed a device that converts tablet computers into industrial HMIs with hardwired emergency stop (e-stop) buttons and safety functions. The HT3P Safety Commander is designed to address the growing use of tablets in industrial automation settings.

System monitors condition of conveyor belts in real time

ABB has launched a digital condition-monitoring technology for conveyor belts that allows users to track speed, misalignment, damage, thickness and wear, slippage and the temperature of their belts in real time. The ABB Ability condition-monitoring service, which is aimed mainly at installations at mines and processing plants, helps to anticipate maintenance, avoid unplanned downtime, and improve belt reliability and lifetime.

Codesys-based motion controller eases programming

The Taiwanese automation supplier Delta has announced a series of compact, mid-range motion controllers based on the Codesys development environment. The AX-308E controllers, which can handle up to eight EtherCat servodrives, as well as inverters, remote I/O modules and third-party devices, are said to reduce programming times.

‘Unique’ servomotors ‘are 50% smaller and cost 70% less’

A US motor manufacturer has announced a range of compact integrated servomotors that, it claims, offer the performance of high-end industrial servos at the price of quality stepper motors and controllers. Philadelphia-based IQ Motion Control says that its Fortiq BLS42 motors are 50% smaller and cost 70% less than traditional industrial servomotors.

Device can implement CIP Security even on older systems

Rockwell Automation has announced a device that allows industrial companies to implement the CIP Security protocol on most devices on a network, helping to protect their operations – even when using older systems. The Allen-Bradley CIP Security Proxy device works with EtherNet/IP-compliant devices to provide security for an entire network.

Edge platform helps manufacturers to develop analytics

Emerson has announced an industrial edge platform designed to help manufacturers accelerate their digital transformation projects. The PACEdge platform simplifies application development by bringing together open-source tools in a flexible, integrated and secure platform for machine data and analytics.

Smart industrial AI camera is first to use powerful new module

Adlink Technology, the Taiwanese edge computing specialist, has launched the first smart camera to use a new Nvidia module which is claimed to perform more than ten times better than its widely-used predecessor. The AI-based Neon-2000-JNX camera eliminates the need for complex integration of image sensor modules, cables and PCs. The compact, rugged all-in-one device is designed to simplify the deployment of smart cameras and to speed up time-to-market.

Split roller bearing handles bigger loads and lasts much longer

The UK bearings manufacturer, Bowman International, has developed a split roller bearing (SRB) that, it claims, offers substantially higher radial and axial load capacities than rival products, as well as increasing bearing lives by up to five times

Network tester checks cables and diagnoses switches

Fluke Networks has announced an instrument that simplifies troubleshooting when building or maintaining networks, including analysing the speed-handling capabilities of Ethernet cabling. The LinkIQ Cable+Network tester combines switch diagnostics with cable measurement technology to enable installers, systems integrators and others to troubleshoot network cables or to connect Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) devices to a network.

Engineering platform will be easier to use and more efficient

At the recent online version of the Hannover Fair, Eplan previewed its forthcoming Eplan Platform 2022, due to launch soon on a subscription basis. A new user interface with ribbon technology and a dark mode is claimed to improve ease of use, while a new 2D graphic module and central device management optimise performance.

Camera with onboard deep learning tackles difficult apps

Sick has launched its first machine vision camera with a pre-installed deep learning app, making it easy to create custom inspections of complex or irregular-shaped goods, packaging and assemblies, especially those that have previously defied automation.

Condition-monitoring system ‘boosts plant performance by 10%’

At the 2021 Hannover Fair, Siemens has announced a smart condition-monitoring system that uses machine learning to detect and prevent machinery problems at an early stage, thus cutting maintenance costs and downtime, and boosting plant performance by up to 10%.