EC: EP1816-3008 EtherCAT Box

Network Integration — Signal Conditioning, Diagnostics: The EP1816-3008 EtherCAT Box from Beckhoff Automation is a feature-packed I/O solution with built-in tilt monitoring in longitudinal and transverse directions. This is a Control Engineering 2015 Engineers’ Choice honorable mention.
By Control Engineering October 20, 2014

Beckhoff Automation EP1816-3008 EtherCAT BoxThe EP1816-3008 EtherCAT Box from Beckhoff Automation is a feature-packed I/O solution with built-in tilt monitoring in longitudinal and transverse directions. This compact, IP 67-rated measuring device has two integrated 3-axis acceleration sensors and 16 digital inputs. The easy-to-install I/O module for harsh environments can be used to implement cost-effective acceleration and angle measurement directly in the field, outside of protective electrical cabinets.

A typical application for the 3-axis acceleration box is vibration and shock/oscillation monitoring of machines, plants, and buildings. For example, vibrations of robot arms can be precisely monitored with no great effort via the acceleration measurements. For wood sawing machines, an EP1816-3008 mounted on the work table enables reliable monitoring of the saw-blade angle adjustment through fast signal acquisition over EtherCAT.

When compared with the conventional combination of sensors and separate data sampling devices, the compact and robust EtherCAT Box solution is more cost-effective and easier to install and integrate. In addition, the signals are available directly in the main control system rather than being managed with stand-alone measurement solutions. As another key differentiator, the two sensors, which are arranged at 90-degree angles, make the EP1816-3008 a redundant measuring system, which can be reliably verified by the controller.

The EP1816-3008 EtherCAT Box features two integrated 3-axis, 16-bit acceleration sensors with resolution options of ±2, ±4, ±8, and ±16 g. The sampling frequency is 1 to 5 kHz. These MEMS (micro-electronic mechanical systems) are based on forked silicon structures, which have movements or vibrations that result in a capacitive change and a corresponding signal value.

Beckhoff Automation, www.beckhoffautomation.com