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SPS IPC Drives 2015 exclusive show report

03 January, 2016
used to define up to eight switching points. There are variants optimised for operating distance, speed, precision and small size.

Siemens announced a condition-monitoring system for mechanical components such as motors, fans and gearboxes, which takes the form of an expansion module for its S7-1200 PLCs and is based on its SM 1281 condition monitoring module. Up to seven modules can be combined, each connected to four vibration sensors and a speed sensor. The system can detect mechanical damage at an early stage.

New from Turck is a rugged laser sensor for detecting distance changes as small as 1mm over a range of 25–300mm. The Q4X sensor can handle black objects on black backgrounds, as well as reflective items. A built-in LED display simplifies set-up and viewing. As well as bipolar outputs, the IP67/68/69K sensors have an IO-Link interface for easy parameterisation and diagnostics.

Turck is also offering IO-Link versions of its uprox3 inductive proximity switches that allow two separately adjustable switching distances, to provide early warnings. Initial offerings include an M12 variant with a switching distance of up to 6mm, and an M18 version with a switching distance of up to 10mm.


Belden used the SPS IPC Drives show to launch several new ranges including: compact I/O modules that meet EtherNet/IP and Profinet specifications; a family of compact, customisable wireless access points; cellular routers that combine routing, security and remote access functions in one box; a Gigabit Ethernet switch that supports Power-over-Ethernet; and unmanaged Ethernet switches designed to send data over long distances.

B&R Automation has developed a remote maintenance system for diagnosing and maintaining machinery and equipment. With SiteManager installed on a machine, service technicians can access it from anywhere in the world, via an encrypted VPN connection and a gateway. Integrated digital I/O can be used, for example, to connect a key switch that must be actuated to allow access for maintenance. A firewall protects against unauthorised access.

The Ethernet Powerlink Standardisation Group and the OPC Foundation announced at SPS that they are working on a specification that will result in open interfaces between their technologies. They plan to integrate communications from the sensor layer to the ERP layer without needing any interfaces.

Harting was promoting a wireless condition monitoring system designed to overcome the problem of monitoring rapidly moving or rotating objects. A new version of its Embedded Transponder Base (ETB) can acquire analogue measurements independent of the field bus and supplier, and transfer them without wires or batteries. The ETB also monitors environmental conditions such as temperature, which can be used to optimise the process.

Hilscher and Nexcom have collaborated to develop an Internet of Things (IoT) gateway that can be used to connect PLCs to cloud platforms. The Nexcon NIO/Hilscher netIOT gateway supports Modbus TCP/IP and RTU, Profinet, Profibus, Ethernet/IP and OPC UA and has software designed to simplify network configuration. At SPS, Hilscher and Nexcom were using the gateway to send field data from a Siemens PLC to the IBM Bluemix cloud platform.

HMS Industrial Networks was showcasing a family of Ethernet/IP linking devices that allow users to connect serial, Profibus or Modbus TCP devices to Rockwell ControlLogix or CompactLogix PLCs. The linking devices (below) can be configured from inside Rockwell’s Studio 5000 software. The devices can be mounted close to connected machines, allowing connections to be established via a single Ethernet cable instead of several network-specific cables.

New from Kübler is a low-maintenance slip-ring for transmitting Ethernet signals. The 120mm-diameter SR120 slip-ring has a modular design allowing it to be expanded up to 20 channels. An

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