Drives and Controls Magazine
Fixed-mount imager checks for thermal problems and fires

Flir Systems has announced a fixed-mount temperature sensor that combines thermal and visible cameras in a small, affordable package. The AX8 sensor can be installed in tight spaces to perform continuous, automated monitoring of the temperatures of critical electrical and mechanical equipment. It can also be used to detect fires.

Condition monitoring integrates with machine controls

Rockwell Automation has announced a low-cost, condition-monitoring system for monitoring and protecting machinery that integrates with control systems. Instead of operating independently, the Allen-Bradley Dynamix 1444 system uses Rockwell’s Integrated Architecture system to assess equipment health, to predict potential issues, and to help avoid damage to critical machinery.

Device stops cylinders precisely at intermediate points

Festo has announced a module that can be positioned anywhere along the stroke length of a pneumatic actuator to create stops where they are needed. A “unique” follow-through function is claimed to allow faster cycle times after such stops.

All-in-one HMI-PLCs offer new screen sizes and dense I/Os

Unitronics, the Israeli manufacturer of integrated controller-HMIs, has announced several extensions to its range including:

Side-by-side modular drives save cabinet space

At next month’s SPS IPC Drives show in Germany, Siemens will be launching a second generation of its Sinamics G120 modular drives with significantly higher power densities than before. The new drives can be mounted side-by-side without derating, reducing not only space requirements but also the cost of the control cabinets.

Machine controller simplifies semi applications

Omron has announced a machine controller that is aimed at simplifying semiconductor industry applications and cutting development costs and lead times.

Modular blocks will slash software development ‘by 67%’

At next month’s SPS IPC Drives trade show in Germany, the Austrian automation manufacturer B&R will unveil a modular engineering software system that, it claims, will cut the time needed to develop the application software for new machines and systems by an average of 67%, as well as reducing service and maintenance costs.

Track-mountable breaker comes with worldwide approvals

E-T-A Circuit Breakers claims to have produced the first track-mountable electronic circuit-breaker with physical isolation that comes with worldwide approvals. The ESS31-T mechatronic breaker provides overcurrent protection against overloads and short-circuits when the current in a 24V DC control circuit exceeds the current-carrying capacity of the conductor or the rated value of a component.

Energy monitoring system ‘costs 30% less’

The French manufacturer Socomec has developed a modular energy measurement and monitoring system which, it claims, can be implemented in a quarter of the time of rival metering technologies, and at a cost that is 30% lower.

IE4 motors can replace low-efficiency machines directly

At next month’s SPS IPC Drives show in Germany, Siemens will be launching two ranges of IE4 “super premium” efficiency induction motors that are around 14% more efficient than IE1 machines and 3% more efficient than IE3 motors.

Three-axis servodrive can slash cabinet space by 69%

The Austrian manufacturer B&R Automation claims that a three-axis servodrive that it is launching at next month’s SPS IPC Drives show in Germany will be the most efficient servodrive available with integrated safety functions. The Acopos P3 drive has a power density of 4A per litre of space, and a sampling time of just 50µs for the entire controller cascade, resulting in “previously unobtainable dynamics and precision,” according to B&R.

Microcontroller will offer safety functions for the same price

At next month’s SPS IPC Drives show in Germany, Siemens will be unveiling significant additions to its Simatic family of industrial controls, including failsafe versions of its basic S7-1200 controllers which, it says, will be unique in offering safety functions for a similar price to a standard microcontroller.

Micro-PLC is ’70 times faster and 10 times smaller'

California-based Maxim Integrated Products has announced a modular micro-PLC platform with a footprint that, it claims, is 10% the size of traditional PLCs, as well as needing 50% less power and running much cooler. The company also claims that the PLC’s digital outputs can process data 70 times faster than traditional designs, allowing faster production throughputs.

Tool bridges gap between IR cameras and thermometers

Flir Systems has released a device that, it says, will bridge the gap between single-spot infrared thermometers and thermal cameras. The TG165 Imaging IR Thermometer allows users to see invisible heat patterns, to measure temperatures and to store images and measurement data.

High-speed vision system has two USB 3.0 ports

National Instruments has announced a compact, high-speed vision system with two high-bandwidth USB 3.0 ports, making it compatible with low-cost USB3 Vision cameras. The NI CVS-1459RT system is based on a quad-core Intel Atom processor and synchronises with automation devices to trigger camera and lighting devices via onboard I/O.