NMW 2003: Schneider web enables power, control equipment
Chicago, IL—To help simplify information sharing in industrial and commercial applications, Schneider Electric (Palatine, IL) has extended its web-enabled products to include power distribu-tion equipment. Introduced under the umbrella name 'Transparent Ready,' the new power distribution equipment has embedded web servers and direct Ethernet connectivity.
Chicago, IL— To help simplify information sharing in industrial and commercial applications, Schneider Electric onference on March 3 at National Manufacturing Week (NMW) 2003.
Schneider Electric also announced two more Transparent Ready product developments at NMW 2003. First, the Real Time Publish-Subscribe protocol from Real Time Innovations Inc. has been incorporated into Transparent Ready's automation architecture for distributed communications. Second, the firm introduced Altivar 58 TRX, a new Ethernet-ready ac drive.
Schneider reports that it pioneered web-enabled power and control equipment in 1997, when it says that it introduced the world's first programmable logic controller (PLC) with a built-in web server. Since that time, Schneider has expanded its Transparent Ready products to include PLCs, ac drives, power management products, and now power distribution equipment. All incorporate free and open standards, such ad Ethernet, Modbus TCP/IP, and other Internet technologies to provide a common communications platform for the company's power and control equipment.
Transparent Ready power distribution equipment will be offered worldwide. In North America, Transparent Ready capabilities are available across the company's entire range of assembled power distribution equipment, including its Powerzone 4 low-voltage switchgear; Master-Clad medium-voltage switchgear; Motorpact medium-voltage motor control centers; Model 6 low-voltage motor control centers; and QED 6 switchboards.
'The industrial and commercial worlds are moving rapidly toward Ethernet as the primary net-work for sharing information among all parts of the enterprise,' says Geoff Walker, Schneider's U.S. marketing director for automation and control products. 'By embedding Ethernet connec-tivity and web servers into our equipment, we've made it easier to gain actionable information from power and control equipment to improve operating performance.'
Schneider adds that it's the only industry supplier with Ethernet-ready equipment for both power and control applications, which makes it easier to compare information in real time from power and process systems. This connectivity simplifies troubleshooting of equipment failures and proc-ess variations, and increases productivity. The embedded web server in Transparent Ready power equipment helps organize and present real-time metering data from intelligent devices, such as circuit breakers, relays and power monitors. Thanks to affordable web technologies, power system information is instantly available to authorized users via any PC on the network, or even across the Internet, from any standard web browser.
'Transparent Ready power distribution equipment will help customers get to critical power sys-tem information any time from anywhere. No more walking around the facility or out to the equipment just to read some meters,' says Steve Larson, Schneider's segment marketing man-ager. 'Transparent Ready power distribution equipment connects to a customer's network just like any PC or printer.'
In addition, adding Real Time Publish-Subscribe to Schneider's technology platform provides many-to-many deterministic communications, synchronizing distributed applications and assuring global availability of reliable information for automation systems. This open protocol, which is also the basis for the Interface for Distributed Automation network may subscribe to it without requiring source or destination addressing.
Real Time Publish-Subscribe is an extension to Schneider's Modbus TCP/IP protocol, adding new and important features to Transparent Ready automation products. These include Premium and Quantum programmable logic controllers; Momentum Ethernet I/O; and Connexium Ethernet hubs and switches.
Control Engineering Daily News Desk
Jim Montague, news editor