EC: I/O Expansion device

Network integration - Wireless I/O: I/O Expansion is modular I/O from FreeWave Technologies that provides universally configurable I/O and the industry's best measurement accuracy to new and existing wired and wireless process automation systems. This is a Control Engineering 2012 Engineers’ Choice finalist.

November 18, 2011

I/O Expansion from FreeWave Technologies is the newest solution for process automation, process optimization, and condition-based monitoring. Every I/O Expansion device is designed, manufactured, tested, and tuned from -40 to 75 C at FreeWave Technologies’ facilities in Boulder, Colo., to provide the most reliable remote I/O solution available. Modular expansion and universal I/O channels are at the core of I/O Expansion’s technological differentiators. The modular design makes configuration, installation, and future upgrades a snap.

The universal I/O channels allow users to train on one device and use it in any application. These Expansion modules snap directly to I/O radios or serial I/O communication modules without any additional mounting hardware or expansion backplanes. When connected to I/O radios, users can build long-range SCADA networks with distributed, expandable, wireless I/O and provide communications with distributed controllers. Alternately, users can use wireless I/O to create field networks to extend the reach of RTUs and PLCs. When connected to a serial I/O communication module, users can add expandable I/O directly to existing communications infrastructure such as licensed, unlicensed, and cellular and satellite wireless communications. Also, users can add expandable I/O to a PLC or RTU at any point in the future. Selectable EIA 232, 422, 485, or two-wire 485 interfaces support almost every device.

Universal channels provide unique differentiators to competitive I/O solutions and technologies. These channels can be configured to analog input, analog output, digital input, digital output, or sensor power. The industry’s most accurate measurement circuit takes readings from 1 V to 5 V, 0 V to 10 V, and 4 mA to 20 mA sensors without the need for external sense resistors. The maximum reading error for universal channels configured to analog input is 0.10% from -40 to 75 C. Paired with FreeWave’s diagnostics and configuration software, Tool Suite, I/O Expansion provides more data with less work.

FreeWave Technologies

Return to the list of the 2012 Engineers’ Choice finalists.