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22 May, 2018

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Rockwell accuses two companies of infringing patents

12 August, 2016

Rockwell Automation has filed a complaint with the US International Trade Commission (ITC) alleging that the Taiwanese controls manufacturer, Advantech, and 3S-Smart Software Solutions, the German developer of the Codesys automation software, are infringing one or more of eight of its US patents covering industrial control systems.


Industrial Ethernet cable sales growing faster than 17%

11 August, 2016

The global market for industrial Ethernet cables is expanding with a CAGR of more than 17%, and will be worth $941m by 2020, according to a new study by Technavio. Although copper cables still dominate – with a market share of more than 77% in 2015 – fibre optic cables are the fastest-growing technology, due to their ability to operate at gigabit speeds over long distances and to withstand radio and electromagnetic interference. They are the preferred technology in the oil and gas, and pulp and paper industries.


Chinese firm takes control of German robot-maker, Kuka

08 August, 2016

In a controversial deal, the Chinese appliance manufacturer Midea has acquired almost 95% of the shares in the German robot-maker Kuka.


Nidec pays $1.2bn for Emerson’s motors and drives businesses

02 August, 2016

The acquisitive Japanese motor-maker Nidec has agreed to pay $1.2bn in cash for Emerson Electric’s Motors & Drives and Electric Power Generation businesses. The acquired operations include the Welsh-based drives manufacturer Control Techniques and the French motor- and generator-maker, Leroy-Somer. A key driver for Nidec is a desire to reduce its current dependence on its small precision motors activities.


GE and Microsoft join forces to put Predix on the cloud

12 July, 2016

GE and Microsoft have announced a partnership that will make GE’s Predix platform for the industrial Internet available on Microsoft's Azure cloud for industrial businesses. The move marks the first step in a strategic collaboration between the two companies that will allow customers to capture intelligence from their industrial assets and take advantage of Microsoft’s enterprise cloud applications.


Koch backs AC Kinetics to deliver ‘third era for drives’

12 July, 2016

Koch Minerals – a subsidiary of the $115bn US conglomerate Koch Industries – has entered into strategic agreements with the US motor control software developer, AC Kinetics, to commercialise its software that runs on existing VFD (variable-frequency drive) hardware and is claimed to achieve energy savings of up to 50%, while maintaining performance in both steady-state and dynamic operation. The terms of the agreements have not been revealed.


Will Emerson sell Leroy-Somer and CT to a Chinese buyer?

11 July, 2016

Two Chinese companies and a private equity group are among the potential bidders for Emerson Electric’s Motors and Drives business, according to a report from the Reuters news agency. Emerson announced last year that it was exploring “strategic alternatives” for the business, which includes the UK-based drives-maker Control Techniques and the French motor manufacturer Leroy-Somer, as part of a plan to streamline its portfolio and to drive growth. Reports suggest that Emerson wants to sell the business – potentially worth around €1bn – within the next few months.


Drives lab will help users to test combos of motors and VSDs

15 June, 2016

ABB has set up a test laboratory at its drives factory in Helsinki, Finland, where customers can have their own motors tested with ABB’s variable-speed drives (VSDs) to verify their impact on performance and energy consumption.


US motor-maker buys gearmotor specialist to offer motion packages

13 June, 2016

The US motor manufacturer, HTI Technology, has acquired the fractional horsepower gearmotor producer, Klauber Machine & Gear (KMG), for an undisclosed sum. HTI plans to combine its own expertise in AC and DC motor and drives systems with Klauber’s technology and expertise in AC and DC gearmotors, to offer application-engineered motion packages.


Siemens stalwart will run ABB's automation and motion division

13 June, 2016

ABB has appointed Sami Atiya to be the new president of its Discrete Automation and Motion (DM) division, succeeding Pekka Tiitinen, who is returning to his home country to be managing director of ABB in Finland.


German suppliers aim to simplify the ordering process

09 June, 2016

At the Hannover Fair, SEW-Eurodrive, Festo and Sick announced a joint initiative designed to make it easier for their customers to do business with them. They say that the Esis (Easy Supplier Integration Services) scheme will cut the time and costs of processing orders, as well as increasing reliability and integrating better with customers’ own IT systems.


ZF sets up industrial gearbox business

09 June, 2016

The German engineering giant, ZF, best-known as an automotive supplier, has set up an industrial drives business based on the large gearbox operation of Bosch Rexroth which is acquired last December. The ZF Industrieantriebe business, which employs 900 people in Germany and China, made its public debut at the recent Hannover Fair. The business will supply modular drive, winch and swing gearboxes for industrial applications and mobile machines.


Motion control sales slumped in 2015, but are starting to recover

07 June, 2016

The global market for motion control hardware suffered a 10.6% decline during 2015, with total revenues amounting to $10.4bn, according to the latest research from the IHS Motion Controls Intelligence Service. But the analyst suggests that the market will gradually return to growth starting this year.


David Brown and Santasalo merge to create a global brand

07 June, 2016

David Brown and Santasalo – two mechanical power transmission companies owned by Clyde Blowers Capital – have merged to create David Brown Santasalo, a global industrial gearbox business with more than 1,000 employees, 5,000 customers, seven manufacturing plants and 23 service centres on six continents.


In-wheel motor production gets going in China

23 May, 2016

Protean Electric, which develops in-wheel electric drive systems for vehicles, is to start manufacturing its motors in Tianjin, China, during the second half of 2016, and to build a factory on a permanent site by the end of 2017. The in-wheel motor technology incorporates power and control electronics, and is claimed to increase fuel economy by up to 30%. Protean has an engineering base in the UK, as well as US and Chinese operations.


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