National Manufacturing Week 2001: All Four One

A new career expo, pavilions, and streamlined technical conference-plus thousands of exhibitors and visitors-will converge on Chicago's McCormick Place on Mar. 5-8, 2001, for the National Industrial Automation Show and National Manufacturing Week.


W hether you're sailing around the globe, cruising miles of tradeshow aisles, or running a manufacturing business, ease of navigation is crucial to survival and success. So, in response to input from former visitors to National Industrial Automation Show (NIAS) and National Manufacturing Week (NMW), organizer Reed Exhibition Co. (Norwalk, Conn.) has made some adjustments to improve this year's experience.

NMW 2001 At-A-Glance Name: National Manufacturing Week 2001
Areas: National Industrial Automation
National Plant Engineering
MRO & Mgmt.
National Design Engineering
National Enterprise IT
Dates: March 5-8, 2001
Place: McCormick Place, Chicago, Ill.
Exhibit hours: 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., March 5-7, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., March 8
Conference hours: 9:15 a.m. - 5:30 p.m., March 5-6
Career Expo hours : 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., March 6-7
Registration: Opens 7 a.m. daily for conference
Opens 8 a.m. daily for exhibition
Questions? Call 800/840-0678 or visit

The 2001 edition of the four-part event will be more closely organized around related product areas, and will ensure visitors know they can move freely among all four areas. In fact, the whole NMW 2001 event will emphasize its status as a unified show, instead of focusing on its four component areas, namely NIAS, National Design Engineering, National Plant Engineering MRO & Management, and National Industrial Enterprise IT.

NIAS is scheduled to include more than 250 exhibitors in 120,000 ft2 of exhibit space. Last year's event drew more than 15,000 engineers and technical professionals representing 21 process and discrete sectors of the $150-billion automation and control market.

Collectively, NMW is expected to include more than 2,000 exhibitors in 575,000 ft2 of space. Last year's show drew nearly 56,000 attendees.

Career Expo

One of the most significant new features at NMW 2001 will be the Engineering Career Expo, presented by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME, New York, N.Y.). Located in the grand ballroom at McCormick Place's south building, Career Expo will include representatives from 100 firms, and will allow NMW visitors to:

  • Meet recruiters and hiring managers;

  • Consider thousands of engineering job openings;

  • Submit resumes; and

  • Learn what skills and capabilities potential employers are seeking, which can aid future job searches.

Pavilions and halls

Several new and revamped pavilions and halls will highlight NMW 2001. These concentrated technology areas include:

  • Open Control Architecture (OCA)-sponsored by Lutze Inc. (Charlotte, N.C.), OCA pavilion unites all fieldbus supplier technologies for networking control components that conform to an open standard. It will demonstrate how users can reduce costs with open architecture-based hardware and software;

  • Motion Hall-newly relocated for maximum exposure on the main floor of McCormick Place's north building, Motion Hall showcases solutions and products from more than 100 motion, power transmission, electromechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, and control system suppliers;

  • Microsoft Partners-includes Microsoft-compatible manufacturing applications from independent software and service providers.

Two-day conference

This year's conference includes 52 targeted sessions in six tracks. ASME and NMW's overall sponsor, the National Association of Manufacturers (Washington, D.C.), are presenting three of the six tracks. The six tracks are:

  • Automation & Control-case studies and discussions on system integration and PC-based automation;

  • E-Tooling Manufacturing-presentations on e-commerce transformations, e-marketing tools, and supply-chain management; (See 'Cyperpage' for more details.)

  • Plant Engineering-topics include achieving zero maintenance downtime, technical management tools, and return-to-work solutions;

  • E-Business for Manufacturers-presentations and discussions on B2B solutions, supply-chain technologies, and the e-commerce revolution;

  • Design Engineering-sessions focus on risk assessment, property rights, and personal finance for engineers; and

  • Design for Manufacturing-topics include design for machining, conceptual design, and product design.

Besides the six tracks, the conference will include presentations by Microsoft Corp. (Redmond, Wa.) on Microsoft.NET, a new, Internet-based operating system designed to free users from the artificial constraints of computer hardware and corporate servers. William Fong, Microsoft's worldwide manufacturing industry manager, will present four sessions on Microsoft.NET for Manufacturing:

  • Plant Operations-web enabling process manufacturing and enabling end-to-end integration;

  • Automation & Control-web enabling discrete manufacturing to become faster, leaner, and more flexible;

  • E-Business Supply Chain Agility-integrating, orchestrating, and collaborating to achieve optimal results; and

  • Design Engineering & Collaborative Design-designing better products and bringing them to market faster.

Also, the day before NMW begins, winners of Control Engineering's Editors' Choice Awards will be announced and receive their awards at an invitation-only ceremony on March 4 at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Chicago. (See the winners on March 5 at

NIAS exhibits and products

Thousands of useful, innovative, groundbreaking products will be shown at NIAS during NMW.

Baldor Electric (Fort Smith, Ark.) will showcase linear stepping motors, mini and micro inverters, advanced motion control programming language and products, and a family of servo and positioning drives. Energy efficient ac and dc motors and drives through 1,500 hp will also be shown.

Banner Engineering 's (Minneapolis, Minn.) Rope-Pull safety switches-safety devices according to IEC 947-5-1 and VDC 0660, T220-are reportedly ideal for use along conveyor lines or around the perimeter of large manufacturing machines.

In-Sight ID Reader from Cognex Corp. (Natick, Mass.) is a self-contained, Ethernet-ready machine vision sensor for reading 2-D matrix and linear bar codes on parts. The device combines a high-performance vision camera with vision processing technology in one compact unit.

CrossNet from Crossbow Technology Inc. (San Jose, Calif.) is reported to be the first wireless sensor architecture that created wireless data communications to the Internet using the emerging Bluetooth communication standard. It has application in remote data acquisition, monitoring, security, compliance, actuation, data broadcast and logging, environmental facilities mapping, and machine performance monitoring.

Series X25 optical incremental encoders from Danaher Controls (Gurnee, Ill.) are intended for speed-feedback, cut-to-length measurement, and positioning applications in corrosive and/or explosive atmospheres. They are environmentally sealed and have cast aluminum housings. A stainless steel shaft and clear anodized housing provide corrosion resistance.

Junction, Tee & Cable system from InterlinkBT (Minneapolis, Minn.) is a fully connectorized fieldbus system that offers system-wide 'plug-and-play' convenience, allowing rapid changeover to a connectorized network.

Olflex 's (Fairfield, N.J.) 190 multi-conductor control cable is said to perform exceptionally well in harsh industrial environments, such as CNC machining centers, grinding machines, and bottling equipment. It is both UL approved and CSA certified.

Pepperl+Fuchs ' (Twinsburg, O.) more than 100 new photoelectric sensors will feature background suppression; miniature housings with diameters as small as 4 mm; harsh duty/1,200 psi washdown immunity for the food and beverage industry; clear-bottle detection; and color mark registration.

Model F150-3 vision sensor from Omron Electronics (Schaumburg, Ill.) offers dual-camera capability that allows users to perform two-camera inspections and measurements simultaneously.

Rugged Line I/O product family from Phoenix Contact (Harrisburg, Pa.) consists of I/O modules that combine a rugged zinc die-cast housing with single-channel diagnostics and an IP67 protected connection for either fiber-optic or copper network interfaces.

Turck Inc. (Minneapolis, Minn.) will introduce 18 AWG rugged armored cordsets constructed of metal-clad cable (NEC type MC). These armorfast cordsets are intended for use in harsh industrial environments and are completely clad with interlocking aluminum armor that provides bendable conduit-like protection.

BLIDC 3.5 and BLIDCB 3.5 printed circuit board plugs from Weidmuller (Richmond, Va.) are now available with insulation displacement connection (IDC) technology to shorten installation times and reduce costs. The compact 3.5-mm pitch plugs can connect cables quickly, without special tools.

For more suppliers, go to the Control Engineering Buyer's Guide .
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