Automation Fair 2003: 14,000 celebrate Rockwell’s 100th birthday

Milwaukee, WI—An estimated 14,000 visitors attended Rockwell Automation’s 12th annual Allen-Bradley Automation Fair 2003, Nov. 18-20 at the Midwest Airlines Center.


Milwaukee, WI— An estimated 14,000 visitors attended Rockwell Automation 's 12th annual Allen-Bradley Automation Fair 2003, Nov. 18-20 at the Midwest Airlines Center. The fair was highlighted by numerous special events and displays celebrating the 100th birthday of Rockwell's Allen-Bradley brand name, as well as more than 100 exhibitors, 50 technical sessions, and 20 hands-on labs.

Don Davis, Rockwell's chairman and CEO, reported Nov. 17 at the fair's Global Media Summit that the company had $4.1 billion in total sales for fiscal 2003. Rockwell is expecting much of its future growth in safety, process solutions for hybrid industries, asset management, and information solutions. Davis projects that growing these areas within Rockwell's current customer base could generate $1 billion in revenue during the next three to five years. He added that Rockwell's businesses serving hybrid applications, such as pharmaceutical and food and beverage, grew at a 60% compound annual growth rate during 1999-2003.

Davis also noted a ''megatrend'' in industrial automation, which is integrating the control and information systems of manufacturers, customers and suppliers. Davis says Rockwell competes in this field with its Logix control platform and FactoryTalk manufacturing execution system.

In addition, Rockwell introduced a series of automation control hardware and software product at Automation Fair that are designed to help original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) meet increasing business and technology challenges. The new products help OEMs create more modular designs; reduce machine footprints; improve delivery cycles; increase performance; and meet environmental and safety requirements. These new products include:

  • Power Programming, which allows packaging OEMs to easily build efficiencies into their design process, using a new application development tool that significantly reduces the cost of bringing new applications online. The tool consists of machine control and axis routine templates, a template for functional specifications and sample program modules. It uses proven coding techniques based on best practices and conforms to PackML guidelines.

  • ControlLogix L61 and L62 processors are the latest additions to the Allen-Bradley L6x ControlLogix controller family, providing the memory, speed and processor capabilities needed to meet demanding plant-floor applications. The performance of a 1756-L6x controller is especially suited for high-speed motion and drive-system applications.

  • CompactLogix 1769-L35E is a cost-effective, networked machine controller in a small package. 1769-L35E combines the advanced scalability and modularity of the Logix platform with EtherNet/IP and Compact I/O connectivity to offer users a faster, more powerful small controller.

  • ControlLogix 1756-HYD02 hydraulics module is a two-axis hydraulics module that provides an linear displacement transducer (LDT) interface to the ControlLogix platform. This module is useful in the metal forming and saw mill industries, where hydraulics are used to control the vertical movement of multi-ton presses, or cut curved logs with minimal waste. By using 1756-HYD02, position control can be monitored and maintained within 0.001 in. The module can also be synchronized with other hydraulics modules, while leveraging the existing

  • MP-Series food-grade motors are designed for the rugged environments of food and beverage packaging and handling applications. MP-Series enable food and beverage OEMs to apply high-performance servo motors for improved product throughput, machine flexibility and precision. MP-Series are part of the Kinetix Integrated Motion solution.

  • PowerFlex 700 high-power ac drives are designed for OEMs and end-users, who want reliable motor control for high-power applications and cost-efficient options. Rockwell extended Allen-Bradley's PowerFlex ac drives to include new high-power ratings. The drives, which can be used for motor control applications from 200 to 1,200 horsepower, feature the modular design, robust performance and easy-to-use features that are common to the PowerFlex family.

  • RSAutomation Desktop is a Windows 2000 or .NET-server-based application that acts as a central repository for control system design data to help reduce rework and improve collaboration in automation design projects. The program allows users to create and reuse logic, HMI, documentation and other data types as templates from previous projects, helping reduce time to market and automation design costs.

  • RSTestStand is a cost-saving software package that streamlines the development and deployment of automation applications by allowing engineers to interactively develop and test control systems directly from their desktops.

Allen-Bradley Automation Fair 2004 will be held Oct. 27-28 in Orlando, FL.

Control Engineering Daily News Desk
Jim Montague, news editor

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