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November News in Brief

01 November, 2010

♦  The OPC Foundation and the MTConnect Institute are co-operating to develop a set of standards – called MTConnectOpcUa – that will ensure interoperability and consistency between MTConnect specifications and OPC specifications, as well as manufacturing equipment, software and other products that implement the standards. OPC Foundation president Tom Burke says the collaboration will provide the infrastructure to revolutionise interoperability for all manufacturing technologies.

♦  TT Electronics has won a contract to develop micro-inverter and power electronics modules for use in in-wheel motors being developed for hybrid and electric vehicles by UK-based Protean Electric. The rugged modules, to be built by TT in Austria, are designed to withstand water, dirt, shocks and vibration.

♦  FDT Technology – which allows any fieldbus, device or sub-system software tool to be integrated in lifecycle management tools – looks likely to be adopted in standards issued by the ISA (the International Society of Instrumentation) and ANSI (the American National Standards Institute). Last year, it was approved as an international standard (IEC 62453).

♦  US–based membrane switch specialist Pannam Imaging has developed a patented circular switch technology that mimics the light actuation behaviour of capacitive switches, but can be operated using gloves. The SimScroll switches are said to be cheaper than capacitive switches.

♦  The Austrian semiconductor specialist SensorDynamics has developed a failsafe inertial measurement system that detects angular rates and acceleration in three axes and transmits the data wirelessly to a receiver up to 150m away. The system can be used to detect motion wirelessly or to avoid connectors and cabling.

♦  ON Semiconductor has announced a combined stepper motor driver and CAN transceiver device which can control multiple similar motors on one bus. The space-saving 1Mb/s ANIS-30523 device offers seven step modes from full-step to 32 micro-steps and can provide programmable peak currents up to 1.6A.

♦  Performance Motion Devices has produced a motion control chip which can capture real-time variables such as encoder position, motor commands and position errors and store them in on-board buffers for later retrieval and analysis. The 58000 series Magellan Motion chip can monitor up to 64 variables and send the data via RS-232/485, CANbus or parallel ports.

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