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25 January, 2020

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IP67 protection opens up new uses for ABB’s smallest, fastest robot

10 January, 2020

ABB has announced an IP67-rated version of its smallest and fastest industrial robot – the IRB 1100 – as well as a matching IP54-protected controller. The IP67 protection will allow the robot to be used in applications that generate dust, water and debris, such as polishing, wet grinding, buffing and deburring.


‘World’s tiniest’ safety scanner fits in spaces others won’t go

07 January, 2020

Sick claims that its latest safety laser scanner is the world’s smallest. The 8cm-high nanoScan3 has been designed for easy integration into machines such as AGVs (automated guided vehicles), mobile platforms and service robots. It can also be built into stationary equipment for hazardous point, area and access protection.


All-in-one precision platform is ‘the future of motion control’

06 January, 2020

At the recent SPS exhibition, Aerotech unveiled a new control platform which, it says, contains all of the components needed for precision machine control. The Automation1 platform is aimed, in particular, at the growing markets for precision machinery in which process controls need to be linked closely to motion controls. It promises faster motion and settling times, improved position stability, and enhanced contour accuracy.


Engineering platform migrates to the cloud, cutting need for PCs

03 January, 2020

At the recent SPS show in Germany, Beckhoff announced that users of its TwinCat engineering and runtime products will, in future, be able to use them directly in the cloud. The new TwinCat Cloud Engineering service will give them an easy way of engineer TwinCat systems and controllers without having to use a local PC.


‘Singular controller’ handles robots, drives and I/O systems

03 January, 2020

At the recent SPS exhibition in Germany, Yaskawa announced a machine controller that can handle robots, servodrives, inverter drives and I/O systems. When used with the company’s Sigma-7 servo systems, the MP3300iec RBT “singular controller” can supervise 32 real axes as well as up to eight robots.


Edge appliance targets car-makers and their suppliers

02 January, 2020

Rittal and two of its sister companies in the Friedhelm Loh Group – German Edge Cloud and IoTOS – have joined forces with Bosch Connected Industry to launch an edge computing appliance that will allow manufacturers to extract extra value from their production data. Called Oncite, the appliance is an open IIoT platform combined with an edge cloud datacentre.


Wireless gateway sends real-time motor data to the cloud

02 January, 2020

The Brazilian motor-maker WEG has developed a wireless gateway that allows motor users to monitor the condition of any number of machines in real time, and to plan their maintenance accordingly. The gateway is an enhancement of the Motor Scan module that WEG announced last year.


Eight-axis micro-PLC is ‘one quarter the size of others’

29 November, 2019

At the recent SPS show in Germany, Mitsubishi Electric unveiled its smallest and most powerful compact PLC to date – a multitasking device with a CPU module said to be a quarter the size of a previous models. Despite its diminutive size, the FX5UC Micro PLC can perform positioning and advanced motion control functions for up to eight synchronised axes, eliminating the need for dedicated controllers that would increase hardware and maintenance costs, programming time and equipment footprints.


OPC UA over TSN portfolio ‘makes batch-size-one real’

25 November, 2019

ABB’s Austrian subsidiary B&R Automation is using this month’s SPS show in Germany to launch a slew of products and technologies that support the open, real-time OPC UA over TSN (Time Sensitive Networking) protocol. It says it will be one of the first manufacturers to offer a comprehensive TSN portfolio, including PLCs, bus controllers, Ethernet switches and industrial PCs, and that these components will help to make economical batch-size-one production a reality.


Combined motion controller and drive saves space

25 November, 2019

Siemens has announced a space-saving device that combines a Simatic S7-1500 controller with motion control and safety functions, with a Sinamics S120 drive system. It says that the resulting Simatic Drive Controller will make it easy to implement powerful, compact and flexible automation systems especially in multi-axis applications such as packaging, printing and textile machines.


Servodrive can run without a controller, cutting costs

22 November, 2019

Rockwell Automation has announced a servodrive, motor and cable that can operate without needing a controller. The Allen-Bradley Kinetix 5100 servodrive has multiple control modes, supporting a wide range of high-speed, low-power motion control applications. It can be used by itself, or with a Micro800 or Logix controller, allowing OEMs to choose how to apply it in their systems.


Wireless vibration monitor predicts machine failures

22 November, 2019

Emerson has announced a low-cost, easy-to-deploy vibration sensor that analyses data from rotating equipment to identify failure modes and prevent potential problems. The AMS Wireless Vibration Monitor incorporates a triaxial sensor that captures data in three dimensions to generate a picture of the machine’s condition. It can be used to monitor motors, pumps, fans and other critical equipment to reduce downtime and achieve more reliable operations.


Drives uses on-board PLCs for predictive maintenance

22 November, 2019

The German drives-maker Nord has developed a condition-monitoring technology that uses PLCs built into its frequency inverters and motor starters to pre-process data which can then be used for predictive maintenance, avoiding the need to perform maintenance at fixed intervals.


Electronic solenoid interlock is ‘the world’s smallest’

21 November, 2019

The German machine safety specialist Schmersal has developed an RFID-based solenoid interlock which it claims is the world’s smallest. Measuring 119.5 x 40 x 20mm, the AZM40 interlock is ideal for small safety doors and flaps.


New generation of smart motor sensors ‘double performance’

28 October, 2019

The German sensor-maker Sick has unveiled a second generation of smart motor sensors for servodrives that support its Hiperface DSL single-cable feedback system, with the claim that they represent a “step-change” in resolution and dynamic performance. The EDS 35 single-turn and EDM 35 multi-turn encoders incorporate a newly-developed optical system with dual-channel scanning that achieves 24-bit resolution per single-turn revolution, and a 12-bit mechanical gear design that enables up to 4,096 revolutions for the multi-turn system.


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Birmingham 2020The next Drives & Controls Exhibition and Conference will take place in Birmingham, UK, from 21-23 April, 2020. For more information on the event, visit the Show Web site

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