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13 July, 2024

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Energy-saving VSDs will make their debut at Drives Show

10 March, 2022

The Brazilian drives and automation manufacturer WEG is launching a new generation of simple, space-saving, high-performance VSDs with advanced energy-saving, overload and safety functions. The CFW900 drives, which can be used with either induction or PM (permanent magnet) motors, will make their first large-scale public debut at the Drives & Controls Show in Birmingham, UK, in April.


Low-cost Scara robot brings automation to new sectors

07 March, 2022

Igus has added a Scara (selective compliance articulated robot arm) robot to its Low Cost Automation (LCA) family of robots and other devices that are designed to boost the productivity of tasks such as electronic assembly and laboratory work, while keeping costs down. The drylin Scara robot, priced upwards of £3,000, joins the existing delta, multi-axis and gantry linear robots in the LCA range, designed to perform basic high-speed, low-payload automated tasks.


New-generation VSDs support output frequencies to 599Hz

07 March, 2022

Fuji Electric has launched a VSD (variable-speed drive) with a maximum output frequency of up to 599Hz, supporting applications that need high-speed rotation and minimal speed and torque variations. The Frenic-Mega G2 drives have autotuning functions that allow them to be used with almost any type of induction or synchronous motor, using sensor-based or sensorless vector control.


Six-pulse VSD brings smart functions to more applications

01 March, 2022

Rockwell Automation has announced its first six-pulse drive to support its TotalForce technology, which combines high-performance motor control, advanced self-monitoring and a digital platform to deliver faster, more precise and more responsive AC drives. The technology has been incorporated in the new PowerFlex 755TS drives which, Rockwell claims, will help to cut unplanned downtime and to get motors running faster.


5µm-resolution distance sensor is based on air flow

21 February, 2022

A novel sensor, just announced by ifm, uses air flowing through a nozzle to measure the distance between the nozzle and a workpiece to a resolution of 5µm – about one-tenth the thickness of a human hair. The SDP110 air-gap sensor’s maximum measuring range is 400µm.


Pillow block bearing designs are inspired by nature

21 February, 2022

The German engineering plastics specialist igus says that design of a new range of pillow block bearings is based on the structure of trees. Flattened radii, like those found at a tree’s base, ensure maximum strength against mechanical stresses. According to the company, the lubrication- and maintenance-free plastic housings are a real alternative to cast-housing bearings.


Voice control comes to industrial applications

21 February, 2022

A German communications specialist has developed a technology that allows industrial processes to be controlled using spoken commands, in a similar way to consumer voice-activation technologies such as Alexa and Siri. Dresden-based Voice Inter Connect expects its vicControl embedded voice control system to be particularly useful in applications where work processes make control difficult, or gloves are needed.


Four-axis controller promises high performance

04 February, 2022

Trio Motion Technology has launched a high-performance controller for stepper or pulse and direction servodrives with motion control of four axes. The panel-mounting MC404-Z is primarily aimed at OEMs that need fast and accurate motion performance as well as cost-optimised machine builds. The controller enables I/O extension through CANbus and can also integrate directly with common PLC and HMI protocols via a built-in Ethernet port.


Sensor warns of fires in control panels before they occur

28 January, 2022

Schneider Electric has developed a sensor that continuously analyses gases and particles inside control panels and switchboards to give an early warning of overheating cables before a fire breaks out. The PowerLogic HeatTag sensor detects invisible, yet hazardous, transformations that occur in cable insulation – including PVC, XLPE and EPR types – typically at temperatures between 170°C and 200°C.


IoT-based lubrication monitor ends need for regular checks

27 January, 2022

Schaeffler has developed an automated lubrication system for rolling bearings that, it claims, eliminates the need for route-based checks. The company says that the Optime C1 system means that maintenance personnel will no longer have to spend time on scheduled inspection runs, or deal with complicated tables or software to plan relubrication routines. Instead they will be able to focus on targeted maintenance in response to automated notifications from the system.


Plug-and-play system simplifies condition monitoring

26 January, 2022

Sick has launched a simple plug-and-play system for condition monitoring and preventative maintenance of sensors, machines, processes and plants. Called the Monitoring Box, it can show live status or historical analyses, helping to improve operating efficiencies and make maintenance more effective.


Remote maintenance gateway cuts the need to travel to sites

26 January, 2022

Omron has announced a DIN-rail-mounting industrial gateway that can be installed in control panels to provide remote access for real-time servicing of industrial equipment without needing costly, time-consuming site visits.


Multi-role signalling light towers ‘will define the future’

21 December, 2021

The German signal tower manufacturer Werma has announced a new generation of towers that, it believes, will define the future of such systems. The whole cylindrical surface of the eSign towers is made up of multi-colour LEDs and can be programmed to perform a variety of roles including alarm signalling, access control, fill level displays, faults, stock information and building security alerts. Various signalling modes can be produced using multiple colours, brightness levels and lighting effects. The towers can also optionally produce acoustic warnings using 10 different tones.


Modular multidrive’s footprint is up to half the size of rivals

13 December, 2021

Inovance Technology Europe – the European arm of one of China’s largest drives manufacturers – has announced an AC multidrive system designed to meet the needs of European OEMs for flexible, scalable multidrives in a compact footprint. The modular MD800 system can supply up to eight drives from one rack with a single rectifier, sharing energy through a common DC bus. Innovance claims that its footprint is up to 50% smaller than traditional single-drive modules.


Pocket-sized tool is ‘first’ for testing live fibre optics

30 November, 2021

Fluke has announced what it claims is the first handheld tool for performing live tests on fibre optics and identifying polarity issues and failed transceivers. The FiberLert tool detects invisible near-infrared (850-1625nm) wavelengths used in fibre-optic communications to troubleshoot cables, ports, polarity and transceiver issues.


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