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MIT researchers have developed a machine learning approach that can affect the energy generated during fusion reactions, with implications for reactor design.
A new method uses optics to accelerate machine-learning computations on smart speakers and other low-power connected devices.
Future networks have the potential to reduce the environmental impact of industries that consume high levels of energy, but the industry needs a holistic energy saving solution to maximize the benefits and create real impact.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is driving digitalization when it comes to transforming the engineering sector.
North Carolina State University researchers learn that network pruning can adversely affect the performance of the model at identifying certain groups.
MIT researchers have developed a technique that enables AI models to continually learn from new data on intelligent edge devices like smartphones and sensors, reducing energy costs and privacy risks.
A blueprint for creating algorithms that more effectively incorporate ethical guidelines into artificial intelligence (AI) decision-making programs has been developed.
Understand the strengths and weaknesses of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) versus control theory, particularly model predictive control (MPC) for improving process and manufacturing applications and operations.
Engineers use artificial intelligence (AI) to magnify domain expertise and significantly cut time to end user.
More powerful and cost-effective computing combined with advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) are helping predictive maintenance to detect anomalies, which predicate a maintenance action when needed. Edge computing brings decision-making and intelligence as close to the process as possible.
While similar, artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) deep learning and neural networks have specific tasks and roles.
Achieving sustainability at the edge looks different for every organization. There are key steps to help narrow down which path to take to reach those sustainability goals.
Artificial intelligence (AI) can be used to enhance worker productivity by gathering information about their work performance and turning it into actionable data.
Artificial intelligence (AI) and automation have raised concerns about humans being replaced by machines in manufacturing, but the truth is they will add better and more meaningful jobs for humans.
Federated learning is a collaborative method for training a machine-learning model that keeps sensitive user data private.
Software-based artificial intelligence (AI) can be used to give robots abilities that allow them to straddle the flexibility gap between small batch manufacturing and high-volume automation.
Researchers at Caltech and Harvard have developed a way to use machine learning to further improve the aircraft design process.
North Carolina State University researchers have developed an approach to federated learning that allows them to develop accurate artificial intelligence (AI) models more quickly.
Cornell University are trying to provide self-driving cars with the ability to create “memories” of previous experiences and use them in future navigation. See video.
Modern technologies enable the application of artificial intelligence (AI) to machine and operational process data to gain better insights.
MIT researchers have developed an artificial intelligence chip that is stackable and reconfigurable, for swapping out and building on existing sensors and neural network processors.
A project in Japan used artificial intelligence (AI) to autonomously control a chemical plant for 35 consecutive days.
Unsupervised ML is designed to act on unlabeled data using algorithms that excel at identifying patterns and pinpointing anomalies in data ranging from condition monitoring and performance testing to cybersecurity and asset management.
A neural network approach captures the characteristics of a physical system’s dynamic motion from video, regardless of rendering configuration or image differences.
USC Viterbi researchers have developed a neural network that can model a high-performing new material using machine learning (ML) techniques.
Researchers have developed and demonstrated a ‘self-driving lab’ that uses AI and fluidic systems to advance understanding of metal halide perovskite (MHP) nanocrystals, which could be used to improve many different materials.
Georgia Tech Technology is pursuing 30 quick-turn research projects that touch on key priority areas such as internet for the future, capabilities at the edge, and optimized application experiences.
The speed of adoption and the potential benefits of combined artificial Intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT) technologies in the industrial sector could lead to many positive benefits.
Secure, granular data processing, connectivity, and communication in the field create a foundation for large-scale IIoT according to a company with a Control Engineering Engineers’ Choice Award product.
When considering industrial edge computing, look for a zero-touch, secure and automated platform, designed and built for edge environments. Seek self-protecting and self-monitoring features and built-in application virtualization with fault tolerance, according to a company with a Control Engineering Engineers’ Choice Award product.
A technique developed by North Carolina State University researchers uses compression to drastically reduce the size of data transmissions, creating additional opportunities for artificial intelligence (AI) training on wireless technologies.
Purdue University researchers have developed a way that could let computer chips rewire themselves to take in new data like the brain does, helping artificial intelligence (AI) to keep learning over time.
Cornell researchers are training physical systems to perform machine-learning computations such as identifying handwritten numbers and spoken vowel sounds.
Even in industry, branding and personality play a role
Rice University scientists are using machine-learning techniques to streamline the process of synthesizing graphene from waste through flash Joule heating.
North Carolina State University researchers have developed a technique called MonoCon that is designed to improve the ability to identify 3D objects using 2D images.
Important optimization algorithms that are designed to solve large-scale problems such as supply chain logistics can be boosted from 2D materials.
Articles about embedded systems, automated pressure testing, the 2022 SIY winners, PLCs' role in automation and no-code robotics were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from January 3-9, 2022. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Machine learning (ML) applications are evolutionary by nature, so it is important to understand how they work and keep looking for new ways to apply them to deliver an automation advantage.
Fully exploit the potential of robotics with AI
USC Viterbi researchers have developed an efficient and sustainable hardware device for artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) applications.
The Artificial Intelligence of Things (AIoT) can integrate different types of data and information to give manufacturers a better picture of how everything works in facilities. See four AIoT factors responsible for smart factory growth.
A machine-learning model developed by MIT researchers could enable robots to understand interactions in the world in the way humans do with artificial intelligence.
An oil and gas original equipment manufacturer (OEM) uses edge computing for integrated data and control to maintain the safety and integrity of drilling facilities.
C code is provided and explained for creating event-driven applications for embedded systems, and simulating a task-manager application.
Articles about Engineers' Choice finalists, finite-state machines, AI shortcuts, nanotube-based sensors and SCADA and automation were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from November 22-28, 2021. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Rice University computer scientists have discovered an inexpensive way for tech companies to implement a rigorous form of personal data privacy when using or sharing large databases for machine learning.
University of Missouri engineers are hoping to enhance artificial intelligence (AI) by using simulated environments.
A method developed by MIT researchers forces a machine-learning model to focus on more data when learning a task, which leads to more reliable predictions.
Purdue University and physIQ announced the co-development of a viral detection algorithm for smartwatches, which can be used to detect COVID-19 and more.
University of Missouri engineers are collaborating with researchers at University of Chicago to design the material
Augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) are being increasingly used by manufacturers and are incorporating them into their overall strategy according to a GridRaster study.
The Digital Twin Consortium is developing AI and IoT enabling technologies and propelling them across manufacturing.
Bosch announced a collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) to further research in spatial computing to design and demonstrate an architecture for extended reality (XR) applications in the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) context.
A Louisiana State University-Penn State research team is using machine learning (ML) to developer a smarter approach to ionic separations which could improve water treatment, resource recovery and energy production.
Indiana University will be a principal organization in two new National Science Foundation Artificial Intelligence Research Institutes.
Artificial intelligence (AI) techniques are helping control and maintenance effectiveness, and an application demonstration shows how process simulation and machine teaching builds AI-based controllers to resolve industry problems, as shown in an Oct. 21 Virtual Training Week course.
A machine learning platform developed by University of Michigan researchers detects and quantifies radiation-induced defects instantaneously and could be extended to interpret other microscopy data.
Get help for finite-state machine programming for embedded systems using C programming language.
Researchers have discovered quantum material for artificial intelligence (AI) systems could mimic basic forms of learning found in the sea slug, which could help create better hardware.
The MIRAI controller enables robots more precise and complex performances
Enabling access to machine learning algorithms in easy-to-use advanced analytics applications accelerates insights in process data. A specialty chemical manufacturer used ML tools to predict over 90% of quality deviations and save more than $500,000 per year in quality downgrades.
3D digital twins and augmented reality (AR) can help manufacturers better understand places that are often dangerous for a human to access.
A Purdue university survey found Indiana manufacturers are willing to use artificial intelligence (AI) and data-driven initiatives to improve their facilities, but actually getting there remains a hurdle for many.
The AI Institute for Intelligent Cyberinfrastructure with Computational Learning in the Environment (ICICLE) and AI Institute for Future Edge Networks and Distributed Intelligence (AI-EDGE), will each receive a total of $20 million over five years from the National Science Foundation (NSF). See video.
Recent $30 million growth round led by Zeev Ventures and Insight Partners, with participation from Spider Capital and UpWest
Edge computing makes sensors smarter to use in many manufacturing applications. See five manufacturing use cases for edge processing and three edge computing benefits.
Penn State University researchers received a grant to develop the artificial intelligence (AI) of the player avatar in the popular video game "Minecraft" and make it smarter and able to plan.
Humans and collaborative robots may be sharing some of the same goals and manufacturing spaces soon as autonomy and robot technology continue to advance.
Researchers are using artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to help design high-performance steels that can be used in a variety of applications.
Engineers at CU Boulder have combined advanced computer simulations with artificial intelligence (AI) to try to predict how electronics, like the transistors in a cell phone, will fail.
Artificial intelligence (AI) applications in Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and edge computing provide advantages for real-time decisions and smarter actions in the field. See advice on edge computer selection and tools for building Artificial Intelligence of Things (AIoT) applications.
Model developed by MIT researchers could help predictive virtual models become standard practice in engineering, which integrates data and decision making.
Specialized software is available in order to explain different artificial intelligence (AI) models, which can help explain machine learning (ML) approaches.
North Carolina State University researchers have developed a method for controlling how artificial intelligence (AI) systems create images, which could help in applications such as autonomous robotics and AI training.
Artificial intelligence (AI) should make production more flexible while also automating logistics and quality control processes, but safety concerns remain.
Northwestern University and University of Hong Kong researchers have developed a brain-like computing device that is conditioned to associate light with pressure.
Rice University and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, researchers introduced are using machine learning predict the evolution of microstructures in materials, which could change how items like batteries and other structures are made.
Edge computing links on-the-floor devices and the cloud and pre-processes data for use. Four common edge computing mistakes are highlighted.
The Center for Artificial Intelligence Foundations and Engineered Systems (CAFE) at Penn State University is designed to further foundational and applied artificial intelligence (AI).
AI2-THOR version 3.0 adds active object manipulation to its testing framework and studies more than 100 visual physics-enabled rooms. See video.
MIT researchers propose a method for finding and fixing weaknesses in automated programming tools and computer code the way humans do.
A computational framework has been developed tool to evaluate a material’s suitability for harsh conditions and high-temperature applications such as gas turbines for jet engines and electrical power generators. See video.
Case study: Used equipment had functional controllers, typically legacy programmable logic controllers (PLCs), and others had defunct PLCs or no automation at all. Edge controllers and input/output (I/O) devices helped integrate the equipment into a cohesive system, which led us to make an edge controller the central focus.
A virtual laboratory can be used to determine the artificial intelligence (AI) tools best suited for addressing various chemical synthesis challenges and it could be used for other applications.
Articles about the top 5 VFD parameter changes explained, evolving control systems, free PLC programming software for education, more were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from March 15-21, 2021. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Articles about the evolution of control systems with artificial intelligence, top 5 VFD parameter changes explained, 2021 Engineers' Choice Awards, and more were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from Feb. 22-28, 2021. Miss something? You can catch up here.
The Artificial Intellience of Things (AIoT) can offer many potential benefits for edge and cloud computing applications for manufacturers.
Flexible computing, contextual data and modular architectures will change the face of control systems and improve overall plant performance, helping to lower risk from retirements.
Cover Story: Can artificial intelligence (AI) prove to be the next evolution of control systems? See three AI controller characteristics and three applications.
Analytics and machine learning (ML) are the norm in manufacturing and can help users get better, more actionable data. Two examples are highlighted.
Neuromorphic computing, which is designed to emulate the self-organizing and self-learning nature of the brain, could help enable Big Data and artificial intelligence (AI) applications.
Variability controlled with artificial intelligence (AI) software. A digital twin-based AI optimizer was deployed to run alongside advanced process controllers (APCs). Results include a 1% increase in mill production throughput with annual topline impact of $3-4 million for the mine. See 4 objectives for recurrent neural networks and self-adaptive tuning.
Emerging developments that will become reality with machine learning part of everyday operations
A neural network has been developed with flexible algorithms, called "liquid" networks, which allow the network to learn and adapt to new data inputs on the job.
Articles about wastewater surveillance tracking, COVID-19 infections, using IIoT for a more energy-efficient pump environment, top 5 VFD parameter changes explained, and more were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from Jan. 18-24, 2021. Miss something? You can catch up here.
MIT researchers offer insight on the challenges and potential of artificial intelligence (AI) and how they will change the nature of work.
A more practical approach is needed for the every-day decisions that keep operations running effectively and artificial intelligence can help food manufacturers improve overall maintenance.
Digital twin technology such as immersive field simulators (IFS) can help companies narrow the skills gap by offering a training environment that offers an accurate replica of the world they inhabit with virtual reality and mixed reality tools.
A machine learning model that can accurately predict the hardness of new materials has been developed, which can help scientists find superhard materials for energy production, aerospace and other applications.
AI at the plant floor’s edge empowers machine builders to increase production quality and efficiency
Largest U.S. rotary heat-treating facility modernizes controls and automation with tight database integration.
It’s time to tackle the “known unknowns”
An open-source annotated database of more than 58,000 3D mechanical parts has been designed to help researchers apply machine learning to those parts in actual machines.
Articles about changes for advanced process control, how augmented and virtual reality can reduce manufacturing skills gap, SCADA, HMI and MES projects, and more were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from Nov. 2-8, 2020. Miss something? You can catch up here.
A cloud dashboard that communicates project analytical insights to stakeholders; 3D modeling technology and a machine learning platform provide a visual comparison to the underlying building information management (BIM) model (digital twin).
Control Engineering's most clicked articles in October 2020 included stories about heated face masks designed to filter coronaviruses, 2021 Engineer's Choice finalists, using human and artificial intelligence with digital twins, and more. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Cornell University researchers are developing machine learning and blockchain tools to better understand and support the global supply chain, whose vulnerabilities were exposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
A Purdue team has entered a cooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation (NSF) to create an augmented and virtual reality experience prototype called Skill-XR to reduce manufacturing's skills gap.
Quantum machine learning could help researchers discover faster and more economical ways of treating COVID-19 than the current methods used for drug discovery.
Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) can offer many benefits for manufacturers and provide positive outcomes with optimization, predictive maintenance and more. See four initial steps to every machine-learning project.
Collaborative robots use artificial intelligence (AI) to increase usefulness in dynamically changing workspaces. Cobot factory applications can create more space between workers, lowering COVID-19 risk for manufacturers while increasing throughput.
Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), artificial intelligence (AI), user interface technologies such as augmented reality and virtual reality can help the form and function of digital twins to improve training, operations and outcomes.
Edge computing allows engineers to use lower costs to develop newer applications such as shop-floor data analysis and quality prediction. Artificial intelligence (AI) improves the efficiency and accuracy of plant operations.
When other methods fail, AI is a critical finding and solving tool
Combining feature normalization and feature attention modules into a single module called attentive normalization (AN) improved deep neural networks' performance.
A computational model that can be used to identify the best allocation plans for distributing COVID-19 test kits to hospitals, clinics, and relevant state agencies has been developed by North Carolina State researchers.
More knowledge is needed for use of artificial intelligence (AI) for machine learning (ML) applications. Here’s help for AI and ML in manufacturing. See four ways to improve artificial intelligence, machine learning education.
Control Engineering's most clicked articles in August 2020 included stories about edge computing and IIoT, PLCs, digital transformation, COVID-19 developments, personal protective equipment, automation, SCADA, and more. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Improving the process of patching code in vulnerable embedded systems is a major cybersecurity concern because much of the code currently running is vulnerable to hackers.
The artificial intelligence (AI) is expected to show strong growth in all world regions in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic according to ARC Advisory Group research.
Combining the potential of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) devices with the processing power of edge computing, automation solutions and analytics is giving manufacturing production data more value. See five ways to make edge IIoT deployment more effective.
Artificial intelligence (AI) can support intelligent functionality for manufacturers by helping the system sense, understand, perform and learn.
With the rise of 5G in manufacturing, effective edge computing requires consideration of industrial PCs (IPCs) at the edge.
In the future, all materials scientists and chemical manufacturing companies will have access to machine learning tools to enhance their R&D.
Siemens Large Drive Applications delivered a drive train, which includes artificial intelligence and machine learning to Deer Park Refinery located in Houston, Tex., one of the nation's largest refineries.
Researchers are developing a cyber-physical system (CPS) that improves agriculture production by constantly monitoring fields at near single-plant resolution, predicts productivity and helps farmers manage their water and fertilizer use.
University of Michigan researchers are designing a cloud-based system that will analyze infection and testing supply chain data to better organize the logistics of COVID-19 testing.
Artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics have the ability to move forward in manufacturing thanks to advances in machine learning, better decision-making and increased efficiency.
Researchers at Rice University present energy-saving designs for data-intensive computer processing with machine-learning algorithms that can improve energy efficiency.
MIT engineers have designed a brain-on-a-chip made from tens of thousands of artificial brain synapses known as memristors, which could enhance the develop of portable AI devices.
A Purdue University data science and machine learning professor has developed OPTIMUSCLOUD, which is designed to give cloud efficiency to organizations and users for data-intensive situations like the COVID-19 pandemic.
University of Michigan researchers are leading a project to develop virtual copies of nuclear reactors with digital twins, which could enable smarter maintenance for current reactors and more automation for advanced reactors.
Researchers have developed a method that combines Big Data and machine learning to selectively design gas-filtering polymer membranes to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve the next generation of batteries.
Purdue University engineers have created hardware that can learn skills using a type of AI currently running on software platforms.
MIT researchers have developed an automated AI system for training and running certain neural networks that also cuts down the pounds of carbon emissions involved.
Article about COVID-19 impacts, robotics and bluetooth smart phone signals helping fight the coronavirus pandemic and more were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from April 13-19, 2020. Miss something? You can catch up here.
A machine learning algorithm developed by MIT researchers combines data from COVID-19’s spread with a neural network to assess the impact of quarantine measures and predict when infections will slow down in each country.
University of Michigan startup Arbor Biosciences is providing free kits to capture the genetic code of COVID-19 (coronavirus) to better understand how the disease became infectious and prevent future outbreaks.
MIT Professor Aleksander Madry strives to build machine-learning models that are more reliable, understandable and robust.
It is becoming a reality that artificial intelligence (AI) are starting to change the traditional role of the control engineer. There are some benefits, but there also potential barriers to its adoption in the industrial environment.
Researchers at USC are making 3D printing software by using artificial intelligence and machine learning to reduce error, which will benefit manufacturers and medical device companies.
Four experts in diverse aspects of artificial intelligence have joined Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute as part of the Artificial Intelligence Research Collaboration (AIRC), which is looking to expand AI and machine learning research.
Technology advances ranging from better autonomous vehicles to smarter machines will help relieve the effects of an aging agricultural workforce and a shrinking supply of workers.
Augmented reality (AR) wearable technology can provide workers and companies real-time information about conditions on the plant floor to make everyone safer.
Georgia Tech researchers are using 3-D printers to trap cancer cells, which could advance the goal of personalized cancer treatment by allowing rapid and low-cost separation of tumor cells circulating in the bloodstream.
A team led by researchers at Stanford and the University of Massachusetts Amherst have developed an algorithm that could help robots, self-driving cars and other intelligent machines safeguard against undesirable outcomes like racial and gender bias.
A researcher at the University of Wisconsin is developing better control algorithms for autonomous systems that provide safety guarantees while maintaining those systems’ performance.
MIT researchers have designed a model that demonstrates an understanding of some basic “intuitive physics” about how objects should behave, which could improve artificial intelligence.
MIT and Toyota researchers have designed a model designed to help autonomous vehicles determine when it’s safe to merge into traffic when the view is obstructed.
Researchers at Texas A&M University are working to bring artificial intelligence (AI) to the construction industry, which has the lowest productivity rate of any manufacturing industry.
Researchers are working to accelerate the use of new technologies in emergency response by developing an adaptive mixed-reality learning platform designed to help first responders to perform their jobs safely and effectively.
North Carolina State University researchers are proposing a framework that would allow users to understand the rationale behind artificial intelligence (AI) decisions, which would improve transparency and move away from black box systems.
University of Michigan researcher are using machine learning algorithms for alloy design to predict how they will behave when mixed together, which could accelerate the search for better alloys that could be used in turbine engines and nuclear reactors.
A University of Michigan aerospace engineer is working on high-fidelity simulations for an experimental propulsion system called a rotating detonation engine, which could help supercomputers better simulate complex physics as well as create more efficient aircraft engines.
Future automation safety will involve machines that learn. Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) advances can prompt robots and other industrial machinery to learn from a massive pool of safety-related data to make today’s manufacturing applications safer than they’ve ever been.
New artificial intelligence (AI) software will contribute to the creation of more competitive sensor systems. Using ambient intelligence and a mix of AI tools will advance AI technology effectiveness. Hybrid AI can help with automation, manufacturing and robotics.
Duke University electrical engineers are using machine learning to design dielectric metamaterials that absorb and emit specific frequencies of terahertz radiation, which could create new, sustainable types of thermal energy harvesters and lighting.
A West Virginia University chemical engineer is tapping into artificial intelligence (AI) to prolong the lives of power plant boilers.
Northwestern Engineering researchers have developed two new algorithms that can infer the topology of a network by observing the behavior of the individual nodes (such as neurons) in real time, which could help improve swarm robotics, which use collaborative manipulation to work together.
The artificial intelligence of things (AIoT) is creating great value for manufacturers and other companies by combining the internet and AI.
Sensor companies are creating a detection system that can sense a vehicle’s environment better than human eyesight through a combination of camera, radar, and light detection and ranging (LiDAR) sensors.
Researchers at the University of Washington used machine learning to develop a system that monitors factory and warehouse workers and tell them, in real time, how risky their behaviors are.
Safety is paramount with collaborative robots and they can be made safer with machine vision and artificial intelligence technology.
Companies should be looking to benefit from the potential of technologies such as artificial intelligence and edge computing for business success and competitive advantage.
United Electronic Industries’ DNA-RTD-388, DNR-RTD-388 and DNF-RTD-388 boards are 8-channel, RTD simulators are based on actual switched resistors and will precisely duplicate the behavior of the RTDs simulated.
MIT researchers have developed a system that lets nonspecialists use machine-learning (ML) models to make predictions for medical research, sales, and more.
MIT researchers have developed a photonic chip that uses light instead of electricity and is process massive neural networks more efficiently.
Machine learning and other advanced technologies are embedded in advanced analytics software to empower engineers and other experts.
North Carolina State University researchers have developed AOGNets, a framework for building deep neural networks that uses a compositional grammar approach to extract useful information from raw data.
MIT researchers have developed an autonomous control system that “learns” the steering patterns of human drivers as they navigate roads in a small area, using only data from video camera feeds and a simple GPS-like map. See video.
The MIT-Air Force AI Accelerator, will conduct fundamental research directed at rapid deployment of artificial intelligence (AI) innovations in operations, data management, cybersecurity, and vehicle safety.
North Carolina State researchers have developed a framework for deep neural networks that allows artificial intelligence (AI) systems to become better at performing previous tasks by learning from its prior actions.
Texas A&M University researchers have been awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to research data mining to optimize decision making in the software brain.
North Carolina State University researchers have developed a technique that reduces training time for deep learning networks without sacrificing accuracy.
Rice University engineers have developed faster techniques to model atom-flat materials for bottom-up design.
Researchers have developed a battery testing technique that could help bring new designs to the market more quickly and enable more efficient batteries for electric vehicles and other applications.
MIT researchers have developed a method using machine learning to reveal optimal growing conditions to maximize taste and other features.
Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning can use the information from robots and machines to help improve safety standards by learning what was done in the past and applying it to future situations.
MIT researchers have developed an algorithm that designs optimized machine-learning models up to 200 times faster than traditional methods.
Hannover Messe 2019 will focus on how artificial intelligence and machine learning impact manufacturing.
Researchers at MIT and Microsoft have developed a model that identifies instances when autonomous systems have learned from examples that may cause dangerous errors in the real world.
Researchers at Stanford University are leveraging machine learning to help find engineering materials more efficiently.
Researchers at Stanford University have developed spin-orbit torque technology designed for data-intensive computing applications like artificial intelligence and machine learning (ML).
Vancouver, B.C., Canada; Cleveland, O.— Intrinsyc and Pioneer-Standard Electronics announced Feb. 9 that they're collaborating to provide integration services and software/hardware solutions that will advance customers' development of Internet devices and information appliances based on Intel's StrongARM microprocessor.
Huntsville, Ala.— When used with Elumen's (Cary, N.C.) VisionStation, Intergraph's SmartPlant Review 4.2.1 displays 3D models with a full color, 180-degree field of vision for virtual dynamic walkthroughs and design reviews. SmartPlant designs, viewed using VisionStation, help users navigate, review, and manipulate engineering design, construction, retrofit, and maintenance displays as l...
Embedded vision systems leverage unique technology to help applications ranging from aerospace to robotics to logistics and transform machines into intelligent systems.
Oceaneering announced it entered into a contract with Subsea 7 to supply an umbilical and flying leads for Shell's deepwater Vito development in the Mississippi Canyon area of the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.
While autonomous navigation is still in its early stages, there have been many technological breakthroughs.
Embedded vision applications has the ability to quickly generate visual data, and it is being used at all stages of the supply chain.
Embedded vision systems have the potential to transform how imaging and vision technology and will push the boundaries of what's possible with machine vision technology.
The meaning of an embedded system varies depending on the application; system integrators, end users, and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) may have different views.
Infrared and thermal imaging solutions have become widely available, they've become widely utilized and have become cheaper overall. They bring a number of advantages over visible imaging solutions for certain applications.
Edge, fog, and cloud applications demand increased computing power in industrial environments using embedded controls; COM Express (Type 7) offers more and faster Ethernet connections and more throughput.
Top 5 Control Engineering articles September 25 to October 1: Differential pressure flowmeters, choosing sensors, IoT evolution, more
Articles about a greenfield plant, securing your automation system, open- and closed-loop control, IoT and maintenance, and IIoT's acceptance in manufacturing were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from September 25 to October 1. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Top 5 Control Engineering articles July 24-30: Computing and data storage chip, control system automation, integrator advice, more
Articles about a 3-D computing and data storage chip, control system automation tips, integrator advice, and PLC programming and advice were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from July 24-30. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Top 5 Control Engineering articles June 12-18: NEC changes, control system automation, 2017 Salary and Career Survey, more
Articles about seven NEC changes, control system automation missteps, the 2017 Salary and Career Survey, networking used at CERN, and integrator advice were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from June 12-18. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Top 5 Control Engineering articles May 22-28: Salary and Career Survey, future IIoT systems, graphical programming platform, more
Articles about the 2017 Salary and Career Survey, the future of IIoT systems, graphical programming platforms, sensors and signal conditioning, and easy electrical design were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from May 22-28. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Top 5 Control Engineering articles March 6-12: PID learning, control system programming, Engineers’ Choice, more
Articles about PID learning, standardized control system programming, the Engineers' Choice winners, multi-platform fluency, and ladder logic were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from March 6-12. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Several companies are working on artificial intelligence (AI) solutions for the machine vision industry that will allow AI to think more like humans by employing deep learning techniques and other functions that humans use to develop their brains.
Motion control, motors: Festo modular servo press kit YJKP provides an excellent price/performance ratio for extremely precise press-fitting systems with its high level of repetition accuracy. Simple, cost-effective and quick to install. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Finalist.
Network Integration — Ethernet switches: IEEE802.3az energy efficient, cost effective, industrial grade SE300 monitored switches remotely monitor and analyze network status supporting Modbus/TCP and SNMP simultaneously for full read control to IT and control engineers. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Finalist.
Network Integration — I/O systems: Software-configurable, the 5-channel SIO4.E Ethernet module is a powerful enterprise IIoT enabler with military-grade, embedded cyber security. Multi-concurrent protocol translation simplifies aggregation/integration of production data with enterprise applications and strategies. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Finalist.
Network Integration — Signal conditioning: microBlox uB31 conditions and converts a low-level dc voltage field input signal to a scaled 0 to 5 V or ±5 V output. The uB31 has filtering for low-band applications. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Finalist.
Network Integration — Wireless products: The SmartSwarm 351 Modbus eavesdropper recognizes and extracts data from existing Modbus SCADA systems, transforms it into actionable information, and presents it to IT systems without disrupting the Modbus Master. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Finalist.
Power — Energy, power protection, UPS: Eaton's 9PX 2-3 kVA UPS provides reliable and efficient backup power. Its quick installation, advanced battery management and remote communication capabilities make it an ideal solution for engineers. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Winner.
Software — Applications: The Rockwell Software Quality Management application is an out-of-box, comprehensive, quality-management solution that allows manufacturers to easily model and enforce their plants' in-process quality regimens. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Winner.
Software — Control design: The Rockwell Software Studio 5000 development environment has three new applications: Architect, View Designer and Application Code Manager. These additions reduce the need for multiple tools when developing automation systems. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Finalist.
Hardware — Data acquisition: Memograph M RSG45 Data Manager is a compact device that can serve as a data acquisition/analysis system for small process control applications. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Finalist.
Hardware — Handheld test, measurement, calibration: Fluke Condition Monitoring is a system of rugged voltage, current, temperature, and power sensors that can be moved from assets to asset and left in place for continuous monitoring. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Finalist.
Machine & Embedded Control — CNCs, board-level products: Acromag's AcroPack PCIe-based mezzanine modules deliver maximum I/O density when used with AcroPack carrier cards for PCIe or VPX buses. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Finalist.
Machine & Embedded Control — PLCs, PACs, industrial PCs: Rexroth’s IndraControl XM 22 programmable logic controller uses Intel 1.3 GHz ATOM Processor and onboard Sercos automation bus to create a functionally complete and scalable control system. This is a Control Engineering 2017 Engineers’ Choice Awards Finalist.
Dell Technologies announced the completion of the acquisition of EMC Corporation for $67 billion; the merger creates a family of businesses designed to provide infrastructure for organizations looking to expand their digital network and information technology (IT) assets.
Advantech's IDS-3118W is an 18.5-in. multi-touch open frame monitor is designed to meet end users' needs for multiple embedded applications.
Information integration ensures that the right information gets to the right persons, automated systems and devices in time to make the right decisions. Implementers of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and Industrie 4.0 platforms understand that effective information integration is required for intelligent and highly competitive manufacturing.
Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) promotes intelligent devices and systems by sharing information and awareness among systems and the humans that use them. Integrated networking, security, cyber security practices and technologies help enable these connected systems. Learn from industry experts.
With the growing number of controller choices available to automation engineers, separating the chaff to find the best device for a particular application can be difficult.
Engineers and plant managers face a constant barrage of choices that affect the day-to-day operations and the bottom line for plants.
Machine & Embedded Control - PACs, PLCs: PLC Logic is a pluggable smart relay system that that enables logic capability in a small package, making it ideal for simple control applications in small spaces. This is a Control Engineering 2016 Engineers’ Choice Awards Winner.
Machine & Embedded Control - PACs, PLCs: The Simatic ET 200SP open controller is the first controller of this type to combine the functions of a PC-based software controller with visualization, PC applications and central I/Os in a compact device. This is a Control Engineering 2016 Engineers’ Choice Honorable Mention.
Machine & Embedded Control - CNCs, board-level products: The Sinumerik 808D Advanced is a compact, user-friendly, panel-based CNC used for basic turning and milling applications. This is a Control Engineering 2016 Engineers’ Choice finalist.
Process Control Systems: Centum VP R6 is the latest enhanced version of Yokogawa’s distributed control system. This is a Control Engineering 2016 Engineers’ Choice Honorable Mention.
Network Integration - Network hardware: The NE870 is a high performance layer 3 industrial Ethernet switch and firewall that supports ABB's Redundant Network Routing Protocol (RNRP). It is used in control system client server and controller networks. This is a Control Engineering 2016 Engineers’ Choice Honorable Mention.
Machine & Embedded Control - CNCs, board-level products: The IndraMotion MTX micro is the first compact CNC system to have high-performance 5-axis interpolation, giving equipment builders a single, cost-effective yet powerful platform for standard turning, milling, drilling, grinding and gear-cutting machinery This is a Control Engineering 2016 Engineers’ Choice Awards Winner.
In the late 20th century industrial companies viewed process automation combined with a few monolithic applications as the norm for plant operations. But many companies are now experimenting with - or already pursuing - new approaches that take advantage of intelligent connected products coupled with potent software and analytics.
Data Translation's DT7816 is a real-time ARM-based data acquisition module designed for use in embedded applications and an open-source Linux platform as well as interfaces for USB host and client.
Lion Precision's CPL230 is a precision capacitive displacement sensor system that features up to six sensors in a small space and is designed for embedded OEM applications and has a differential output that for situations where output connections must traverse longer distances through machines.
Choosing embedded controllers among others requires considering the application. Embedded system design software helps control designers to program once and port to many types of controllers.
Modern manufacturing execution systems (MES) can deliver the flexibility to enable manufacturers to define the solutions that meet their strategic needs. MES is what you make it: Define the MES functions needed, use standards, consider modularity, and integrate controls with MES and MES with enterprise resource planning (ERP), as needed.
Closing servo-motor loops with feedback devices improves performance, but care must be taken with design and installation. Closing the loop improves monitoring, measuring, and control—even when outside forces cause deviations to the desired setpoint. A one supplier system should be considered first, with escalation to a custom system only when off-the-shelf systems cannot meet performance demands.
National Instruments' phasor measurement unit (PMU) hardware platform for the NI Grid Automation System is designed to gain better insight into grid health so operators can tailor measurement solutions to meet their specific needs.
Sealevel's SeaPAC R9-8.4 features a reduced instruction set computing (RISC) computer as well as 128 MB RAM and 256 MB flash memory for embedded systems.
Machine & Embedded Control — Machine Vision, Barcode Readers: The DS1000 3D sensor optimizes product quality by providing three-dimensional inspection of your products and includes industry-leading Cognex vision software with a powerful 3D toolset. This is a Control Engineering 2015 Engineers’ Choice award winner.
National Instruments' CompactRIO software-designed controller integrates embedded technologies from Intel and Xilinx and is supported by LabVIEW 2014 and NI Linux Real-Time and is designed for harsh industrial environments.
National Instruments' NI SOM is a module designed to enable design teams to deploy complex embedded systems for high-reliability applications and features a complete middleware solution and has a Linux-based real-time operating system (ROTS) integrated.
Schneider Electric's InTouch Machine Edition is an HMI software product designed to be operable on embedded versions of Microsoft Windows operating systems and enable users to access the information they need to improve plant operations and lower total cost of ownership (TCO) in real time.
Improved navigation and an enhanced search engine are featured on the site.
Triangle Research International Inc. (TRi) is supplying original equipment manufacturers with the brain of its top-of-the-line PLC in a small CPU board called SmartTILE (TRi Integrated Logic Engine), so OEMs can optimize their equipment with less time and effort.
FDI Cooperation announced the first public release of the FDI Usability Style Guide and a preview release of the Field Device Integration (FDI) developer toolkit, which together, will make it possible for automation suppliers to prepare for developing FDI-compatible products and host systems. The announcements were made at the 2014 ARC Forum.
The P-Series PLC on a Chip by Divelbiss can be added to any embedded application and features an advanced programming tool to monitor the program. It included Ethernet communications.
Embedded telematics systems from original equipment manufacturers (OEM) currently dominate China's automotive telematics market, generating sales of 1.5 million units in 2013, according to an IHS report.
AutomationDirect's Point of View software is designed to developed SCADA, HMI, and OEE projects and supports three types of remote application viewers and has 19 communications drivers.
Advantech's APAX-6572 integrates computing, control, and communication into an open system architecture that is designed for factory-wide DA&C as well as unit operations.
The EOS-4000 by Adlink Technology offers speedy, high-resolution performance in industrial automation and medical imaging applications.
Process Control Systems: ProSoft Technology provides migration solutions designed to minimize system downtime with features including monitor mode, allowing users to test and debug the new PlantPAx configuration while the legacy DCS is still on. This is a Control Engineering 2014 Engineers’ Choice finalist.
Software - HMI software: FactoryTalk View 7.0 HMI software offers more efficient alarm management, simplified installation, improved user experience, and integrated data sharing in a wide range of production environments. This is a Control Engineering 2014 Engineers’ Choice award winner.
The rise of interactive communicatons has transformed the automotive industry in the last decade with infotainment becoming a big selling point for automotive companies.
Microchip PIC microcontroller system on a chip integrates 16-bit ADC, 10 Msps ADC, DAC, USB, and LCD: Microchip PIC24FJ128GC010 family provides intelligent analog and very low power for portable medical and industrial applications. See system on a chip photos and diagrams.
RDM 12.0 by Raima is designed for embedded, real-time, memory, and mobile applications and includes feature like database cursors, shared memory protocol, and three new native data types.
Control Engineering Europe talked with Ted Masters, president and CEO at HART Communication Foundation, offers views on how and why the HART protocol will stay relevant for the next 20 years.
With automation becoming more flexible, smaller lot sizes can make it practical to profitably automate what previously was considered only for hand assembly. Modular, flexible embedded PCs, programmable with one software platform, can lower the entry point for when to automate.
Cover story on system design: Smarter project designs result from system integration and planning, collaborative software tools, systems-driven engineering, and agile, integrated programming. Descriptions and links follow.
Integrating hardware and software into embedded systems can be complex. Keep it simple when choosing and working with software design tools to shorten design, development, testing, implementation, and upgrades. The right tools can speed development and enhance quality along the way, resolving issues earlier in the design cycle.
In this Automation System Integration blog post, Anthony Baker learns that the lack of data about how a system has been operating can create a moving target after an upgrade.
Application Update: Bag-in-box food packaging machines from Pattyn Packing Lines embrace modular concepts, adaptability, ease of maintenance, reliability, high ease of operation, and universal high-performance control systems.
Application uses Beckhoff CX1010 Embedded PC with directly connected EtherCAT Terminals; Beckhoff EL7041 and EL7031 stepper motor terminals control the stepper motors.
Hardware - HMI, operator interface, thin-client: Advantech's TPC-1251SR is a 12.1 SVGA 1000 NIT high brightness LCD, Intel Atom CPU fanless Touch Panel Computer. This is a Control Engineering 2013 Engineers' Choice Award winner.
Sr. Mechanical Engineer, U.S. Dept. of Defense - BS Mechanical Engineering, University of Maryland; MS Mechanical Engineering, University of Maryland
TechAmerica Foundation's report indicated a net gain of 100,000 jobs in the high-tech industry in the first half of 2012, a 1.7 percent gain. Three of the four sectors included in the report showed employment growth.
Automation providers cover the "maintenance and service" relationship in three basic ways. Learn the five basic legal clauses, starting with payment.
Automation engineering Inc. is shipping the next generation modular design of its flagship CMAT (Camera Module Align, Assembly, and Test) camera module active alignment platform.
The National Instruments FPGA-based control system, NI Single-Board RIO General Purpose Inverter Controller (GPIC), helps with Smart Grid power electronics commercialization, specifically, the rapid deployment of advanced, field-reconfigurable digital energy conversion systems.
Advantech offers new platforms that reduce noise and manage temperature.
Advantech's ARK-1120 is a fanless embedded system powered by an Intel Atom N455 processor designed for compact spaces and factory automation applications.
Embedded systems are more tightly integrating hardware, and software and mobile devices are more a part of embedded system design teams’ considerations, according to a National Instruments report discussed Feb. 27 at Embedded Systems World in Nuremberg, Germany.
Cortus announces the expansion of its product range to include a total of four 32-bit embedded microcontroller cores.
Machine and embedded control – PACs: The NI cRIO-9082 system delivers the highest processing power of any CompactRIO product and is ideal for performing complex signal processing and control within applications such as rapid control prototyping, advanced motion control, and machine vision. This is a Control Engineering 2012 Engineers’ Choice honorable mention.
Motion control – Servo drives: The Junma servo system from Yaskawa America provides a cost-effective alternative to stepper technology allowing for increased throughput with minimal commissioning effort. This is a Control Engineering 2012 Engineers’ Choice award winner.
Motion control: The Universal Rack Roller Pinion System from Nexen provides high positional accuracy for medium-load motion control applications. This is a Control Engineering 2012 Engineers’ Choice finalist.
I+E Technician, Kinder Morgan CO2 – United States Navy/Marine Corps experience; AS Electronic Technology, Barstow College; BA Business Admin, Colorado Technical University, Concentration: IT
National Instruments cRIO-908x system is NI's first multicore CompactRIO with an Intel Core i7 Processor. Also announced at NIWeek are the smallest NI single-board RIO Devices. These products expand the NI RIO advanced control and monitoring platform with higher-performance and smaller form factor targets.
Machine-to-machine technologies are moving into new markets and making machine processes and network connections more efficient.
10 tips for making rugged control systems include knowing the end user of the product, how the product will be used, and operating conditions. Which are the most important attributes, and which one requires the most careful consideration?
Microchip Technology provides microcontrollers with low-power capabilities, Powercast harvests energy to power wireless sensors, and STMicroelectronics demonstrates a chip for a smart power design to reduce electronic components’ energy consumption.
STMicroelectronics demonstrated next-generation smart power technology, said to enable significant power consumption decreases in electronic systems for manufacturing, hybrid-electric-vehicle chargers, power conversion, medical equipment, and consumer and other devices.
Microchip's Bluetooth Evaluation Kit enables flexible wireless communications development with a wide range of 16/32-bit microcontroller and digital signal controllers.
TMEIC GE will automate 30 Konecranes automated stacking cranes for a new port in Khalifa, Abu Dhabi, UAE with an initial capacity of 2 million TEU.
Icon Labs’ Floodgate-Packet Filter can improve cyber security protects medical devices, industrial control systems, other networked devices from Denial of Service and other Internet attacks.
This paper presents sufficient conditions for stability of unstable discrete time invariant models, stabilized by state feedback, when interrupted observations due to intermittent sensor faults occur. It is shown that the closed-loop system with feedback through a reconstructed signal, when, at least, one of the sensors is unavailable, remains stable, provided that the intervals of unavailability satisfy a certain time bound, even in the presence of state vanishing perturbations. The result is first proved for linear systems and then extended to a class of Hammerstein systems.
Kontron COM Express starter kit features Altera Cyclone IV GX FPGA and two HSMC boards.
Software - HMI software: InduSoft Web Studio v7.0 is a truly unique development and runtime software that incorporates all the tools users need to create SCADA HMI applications, dashboards and OEE interfaces. This is a Control Engineering 2011 Engineers' Choice (EC) Honorable Mention.
Machine and Embedded Control - PACs: Beckhoff Automation, CX5000 Embedded PC. Embedded PC (PAC) with rugged magnesium housing for automation and motion control. This is a Control Engineering 2011 Engineers' Choice (EC) Honorable Mention.
Expansion of graphical software programming for FPGA, an expanded I/O module line, and three new reconfigurable I/O chassis deliver advances for high-speed cabled, wireless buses.
MathWorks says TÜV SÜD certifies Simulink PLC Coder for development processes that must comply with IEC 61508-3 and IEC 61511-1. With this certification, engineers looking to develop high-integrity control systems can streamline the certification of industrial controllers programmed using IEC 61131-3 structured text generated by Simulink PLC Coder With Simulink PLC Coder.
SeaPAC R9-8.4 from Sealevel Systems combines a powerful RISC-based human-machine interface (HMI) with a bright 8.4-in. TFT LCD to create a wide-temperature, ruggedized, flat panel computer. It has an industrial, LED backlight for longer life compared to CCFT backlit flat panels and -30 °C to +70 °C operating temperature range. This is a North American edition April Product Exclusive.
Two Technologies Hydrus Luna RFID, an ultra-rugged and powerful hand held computer designed for long-term daily operation in the harshest working conditions.
Manufacturing IT: C# .NET community can now leverage distributed data management, object persistence
programming, control software, embedded control
New are streaming capabilities for signal processing and video processing in Matlab, nonlinear solvers, and expanded Simulink support for large teams designing complex systems.
New product generates IEC 61131 structured text, helping machine builders use model-based design to create mechatronic systems, including those based on Rockwell Automation PLCs/PACs. Simulink PLC Coder generates source code in structured text format from Simulink models, Stateflow charts, and Embedded MATLAB code, and then uses an integrated development environment (IDE) from an industrial automation vendor to compile the code and run it on a PLC or PAC.
Automation applications get support for 256 axes of distributed motion control and up to 2,016 points of distributed I/O.
QTERM-G58 HMI chosen by ATA Defense Industries to remotely control systems.
Pre-integrated automation: Programmable automation controllers and embedded systems from National Instruments (NI) provide advanced control, measurements, and machine vision within one.
Allen-Bradley 1200M, 1500M, 1700M, and 1900M industrial monitors are designed for harsh manufacturing settings, the company says. The new monitors are said to integrate seamlessly with any Rockwell Automation non-display industrial computer to create a visualization, maintenance, control, or information computing solution.
SafeRTOS was developed to ease the path to certification, bringing the benefits of off-the-shelf software to applications with safety implications or certification requirements. Certification packs are tailored to IEC 61508 SIL3, FDA510(k) Class III, and EN62304.
The Arkema Chemical plant in Crosby, TX, is the site of a multi-vendor wireless field-device installation using ISA100.11a devices and networking infrastructure. This video shows how the system was configured and installed in this brownfield installation under the guidance of the ISA100.11a Wireless Compliance Institute.
Cables minimize capacitance, improve common mode current containment.
Developers of smart screen HMIs can achieve industrial-grade reliability and real-time performance by using both Flash and C/C++ components. Design of a building automation system provides an example.
Additional module enables Messaging Services for enterprise connectivity
Stealth.com Inc. has released the new model WPC-500F, a waterproof rugged, small footprint, fanless computer for environments where ordinary computer hardware won't survive. This rugged embedded PC is completely water-tight, surviving liquids, chemicals, dust and dirt intrusion, meeting IP67/NEMA 6 environmental specifications.
GE Fanuc to split: GE gets the software, services, embedded systems and control systems businesses. Fanuc will take the CNC business.
Fanuc to reinforce industry-leading CNC portfolio; GE to continue global investment in industrial automation and process control systems, software solutions and embedded computing.
New CNC system uses an RTOS for Windows to gain multitasking capability and real-time determinism.
New connectivity improves communication, expands networking choices.
New automated guided carts at a major carbonated-beverage producer cost half of typical automated guided vehicles and yield major benefits.
Industrial networks options are many. If modifications are desired beyond the commercially available industrial network, suppliers offer commercial products that support protocols. In some cases, open source options may be a more viable option. Probably due to the cost of commercial products, many companies decide to start developing their own protocol stack.
National Instruments announced LabView 2009, the latest version of its graphical system design software platform. With more than 100 new or enhanced features, the software lets engineers use virtualization technology to reduce system cost and size, streamline algorithm design and deployment to embedded systems with real-time math, deploy distributed custom measurements across vast physical hard...
See how accelerometer and software make images in the air; harvest power with a device smaller than a cellphone; many wireless demos, including application hosting.
Vendors are increasing depth, breadth of application support available to customers. See product highlights, pictures.
Enterprise software giant SAP claims its new business intelligence solution makes mining through mountains of corporate data almost as easy as Googling the location of the nearest pizza parlor.
The tough economic climate has negatively impacted just about every business sector, from real estate to retail, and services to manufacturing. Unfortunately, the lackluster market simultaneously also is stimulating growth of another disheartening trend: corporate fraud. Over the past year, fraud has grown in depth and breadth, becoming more widespread, and increasing in volume and value.
Matrox Imaging announced an authorized integrator program in North America. Learn more about the benefits to customers and system integrators and link to other articles on machine vision and system integrator programs.
Organizations involved in the creation of standards for embedded design are taking several different approaches to support virtualized system development (VSD). Support is crucial, but how to do you choose? Here’s a guide.
The Infinite Power Solutions' new module provides continual power to wireless sensor nodes and other micro-systems when used with energy harvesting.
Engineering in balance - read more comics.
Embedded Systems Conference 2009 (ESC) product introductions include new controllers, wireless connections, board-level products, modules, and developer tools, among others to make system integration easier. See photo. Link to air-hockey-playing robot video.
If you have difficulty seeing the registration form, please click here.
Qualifying projects can get Real-Time Innovations' implementation of the Object Management Group's DDS software and free training. See photo.
The three-year competition gives engineering students the opportunity to design and build advanced vehicles with next-generation automotive technologies while gaining valuable hands-on learning experience with the latest automotive engineering tools and techniques. Graphical design software, embedded control systems, prototype and simulation tools are used.
Microcontroller provider acquires Australia-based provider of development tools for embedded systems.
Wahl Instruments introduces its DST500 temperature indicator, and the DSX500 transmitter thermometers. These new digital RTD (resistance temperature device) thermometers use high precision measurement technology and feature a 1 in. high LCD numerals for long-distance readability. Available in a variety of standard and custom-built probe configurations, the design includes a MIG standard tapered...
Effective network security is most successful when it is built up using a layered approach. Here we review common technologies and challenges for secure remote access, and examine one commercial device-based approach.
The following products were introduced in 2008, and participated in the Control Engineering Engineers' Choice Awards competition.
Enhanced automation architecture for the Trans Alaska Pipeline System provided capability to remotely operate the system, incorporating Modbus TCP in its industrial Ethernet network technology. See diagram.
Discrete SensorsR-Gage QT50R Sensor Banner Engineering The QT50R Sensor employs radar technology to detect close and long-range presence of moving or stationary objects. The technology was originally designed to track freight traffic within the Betuwe Route—an underground tunnel connecting Holland and Germany—where harsh conditions made other sensing technologies ineffective. The QT50R solves a broad range of challenging indoor or outdoor applications, reliably detecting moving or stationary targets, such as cars, trains, trucks and cargo.
Today, there are more than 25 Ethernet-based industrial communication systems that co-exist in the market. Vendors of industrial devices need to create solutions to optimally support multiple RTE (real-time Ethernet) protocols within a single hardware platform, and that can be field-upgraded to support new versions of existing protocols, or even completely different protocols, without replacing...
The Jan. 12, 2009, posting in the Control Engineering Ask Charlie blog is the 100th in the series, answering questions from readers. The automation tutorial blog covers discrete control, motors, drives, sensors, motion control, machine control, embedded systems, and other areas.
The Industrial Automation Group of Advantech has introduced ADAM-5202, a 2-ring AMONet module with up to 128 communication slaves and support of distance communication up to 100 meters. It has an operating temperature range of 0 to 50 °C (32 to 140 °F) and a surge protection of 10 kV. The transmission speed supports 2.
Industrial applications are often associated with harsh, demanding environments. Facilities and key computing equipment may be located at remote sites where there is little or no protection from severe weather conditions. Computers that are not designed to tolerate harsh conditions face significant limitations in how they can be used in industrial applications. Typical industrial standards call for an operating temperature range of 0 to 40°C.
Embedded control systems vary from temporary data acquisition and control systems running experiments to “brains” for standard mass-market products. Embedded control systems also range in complexity from telecommunications switching systems to alarm clocks. Different applications have different requirements, with several form factors available to meet them.
Matrox Imaging added frame grabbers, Dalsa Corp. added machine vision cameras, and Cognex invites manufacturing professionals to its free machine vision seminars.
Not long ago, building a digital control system for a real-time application was relatively simple. You started with whatever real-time operating system (RTOS) you were most enamored with, selected a microcontroller that was 1) supported by that RTOS, and 2) had price, performance, I/O features, and memory that met your application needs.
New systems and software and a new report on the Asia Pacific PLC market top the embedded controller news. Hughes Telematics has opted for Wind River's Linux Operating System to aggregate all vehicle data in one interface. Green Hills Software supports Intel Atom Processor N270, while cognec AG has unveiled a new module in its COM Express line based on the N270. See photos.
During the spring semester, I had the opportunity to teach a real-time control development course. Our target area was automotive systems, and I wanted to take students through a complete cycle of development from prototyping to deployment on an embedded system. The ultimate task for the students was to develop a real-time air flow controller for an engine using actual mass air flow (MAF) sens...
Control Engineering senior editor Charlie Masi recent tackled this question in his blog, “Ask Charlie.” Masi says: “This question combines the unrelated concepts of smart instruments and predictive maintenance. The smart instruments (sometimes also called “smart sensors”) concept is a hardware-architecture strategy.
Part of the USBField product line from Amphenol, new USB 2.0 connections for harsh environments feature mechanical strength and need no tools. The locking system uses a screw thread and incorporates an anti-uncoupling system to provide high levels of resistance to vibration and impact Sheaths are reinforced with double shielding and are self-extinguishing and halogen-free (UL94-V0).
At its annual user conference (NIWeek), National Instruments released LabVIEW 8.6 and announced 10 new WiFi and Ethernet data acquisition (DAQ) devices, extending NI measurement hardware and software to wireless remote monitoring applications. The company also showcased a partner-designed system being used by Chinese engineers to conduct structural health research on seven megastructures, incl...
IT professionals say they’d find value in having a tool to support their corporate governance requirements. Of those recently surveyed, 82 percent say governance has gained importance in the past three years, with the majority saying they would find value in using IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) processes to manage compliance.
Two new SBCs have higher speeds and easier programming: Men Micro supports multiple Intel processors; National Instruments has RIO devices targeting embedded control and data acquisition. See photos (and more Legos)....
Rabbit Semiconductor will present a free how-to guide on ZigBee mesh networks and embedded devices.
New Autodesk Inventor software (see photo) helps users visualize, understand and control assembly relationships and constraints in digital prototypes of complex machines and workcells, providing….
The National Instruments “How-To Guide for Most Common Measurements” is a centralized resource for obtaining information about making common sensor and signal measurements. Each of the following sections covers the operating principle for the corresponding signal/sensor and offers guidance on how to make that measurement. The purpose of this document is to help you get to your measurements quickly. If you would like to read the more detailed theory behind these measurements, visit the NI Sensor
Read and hear more about each development from interviews conducted in advance of the July 15 and 16 announcements.
Most industrial processes include continuous elements and event-based elements. These processes are described as hybrid in that the process can be continuous locally, but event-based or discrete at a higher level. To model such a system requires combining continuous dynamics and event-based dynamics. See more diagrams, equations, and development projects...
New controllers promise increased performance, higher processor speed and improved Ethernet throughput.
Development tools providers rush to support extreme-multicore device.
Checkpoint Systems , a specialist in identification, tracking, security, and merchandising solutions, reports a definitive agreement to acquire OATSystems , which offers RFID-based application software and middleware to its client base in retail, consumer products, consumer electronics, manufacturing, life sciences, and the aerospace & defense industries.Checkpoint and OATSystems offer complementary merchandise protection and inventory management applications that strengthen their combined presence in these markets.“With this acquisition, Checkpoint is redefining the scope of Shrink Management," says Rob van der Merwe, CEO, Checkpoint, "to help retailers and their suppliers migrate more easily with our Evolve Electronic Article Surveillance platform to Electronic Product Code RFID. As our industry moves to a common EPC standard, [we] will now be able to offer solutions that enable retailers and their supply chains to gain deeper inventory visibility, further reducing shrink and increasing bottom-line profits by enhancing on-shelf merchandise availability for consumers.”.
Major revision to Freescale’s cross-platform integrated development environment makes it easier to learn, use, and support.
Eder GmbH Deutschland , which sells, leases, and services agricultural machinery and forklifts, will use Lawson M3 Enterprise Management System to meet strong growth within the Eder group of companies.Eder’s legacy system could no longer support its requirements, and the company determined that further in-house development of its enterprise software systems would be too expensive. In addition, Eder wanted a solution that offered a new business model for communicating more efficiently with business partners.Eder selected Lawson for its industry-specific offerings, as well as compatibility with Eder's existing IBM System i platform. Another benefit is the implementation support that Lawson offers through its local partner Terna , based in Germany.Eder will use M3 in conjunction with other software solutions for CRM, payroll, and operational data collection.“We were looking for a highly integrated solution that would cover our key business areas,” says Peter Eder, managing partner, Eder GmbH.
Microsoft announced Windows Embedded Standard, the operating system intended to be the next generation of Microsoft Windows XP Embedded.
In the next few years, the hybrid control systems approach combined with the statechart programming model will gain popularity; plan now to learn more.
Haydn Povey, senior product manager at embedded processor designer ARM, points out: “People are moving from PLCs to high-end microcontrollers as their control algorithms become more complex.” According to David Pursley, applications engineer for Kontron, changes in the engineering community also fuel a trend away from traditional control technology: “In the last two or three y...
The traditional process for designing embedded machine control systems typically involves multiple stages of development that each requires specialized electronic design automation (EDA) tools such as state-diagram and flowcharting tools, SPICE circuit simulation, board layout and routing, control design tools, finite element analysis (FEA), C and VHDL languages, multiple target-specific compilers, and human-machine interface (HMI) tools.
Over the last few years control systems have undergone drastic technological enhancements. Where the classic approach of using microcontrollers as a Programmable Logic Controller – PLC – was industry standard in the past, today’s machine control is based on PC technology adopted for the harsher environments found in industrial applications. By applying this technology onto a machine control system a great variety of PC features is now embedded within the actual control.
Austal USA has chosen to implement IFS Applications, a fully integrated enterprise software system, to support its growing ship manufacturing business.
Multicore embedded computing was a major development at the conference, held April 14-18 in San Jose. (See product photos.) Recently, companies have started developing software that....
The Small Form Factor Special Interest Group (SFF-SIG), led by embedded computer integrator WinSystems, announced an interconnect specification.
Korsnäs AB makes the specialty board and papers used in packaging liquid and food products. Papermaking at the moment is an intensely competitive industry. In fact, Korsnäs says competition within its carton board segment is higher as a result of imports from low-cost countries like Brazil and Chile, the weakened state of the U.
Microsoft Corp. has announced .NET Micro Framework Version 2.5 to provide developers and device-makers with support for Web Services on Devices compatible with the implementation built into Windows Vista and supported by the other Windows Embedded platforms. Devices can discover and communicate with Windows-based PCs or other devices on the network with no user configuration.
Non-volatile flash memory has played a large role in enabling the performance we see in today’s microprocessors and computers. To store data, flash memory relies on controlling electrons stored in a transistor’s gate circuit. Flash provides attractive read-write speeds with reasonable power consumption.
Air suspension system maker ContiTech reported that a custom suspension system it built for of the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) research airplane turned in an outstanding performance in the first test flight using sensors and controls. The air suspension system ensures vibration-free operating conditions for the world’s largest infrared observatory telescope, t...
The year 2007, as expected, was a successful year for the entire Russian economy. High oil prices and high domestic political motivation for investment ensured fairly good growth rates in most industries. Investors strove to use the favorable situation to the fullest extent and build future-oriented businesses.
A new open frame chassis for embedded system test and debugging lacks side or back walls around the card cage area for easy access.
Beckhoff Automation CX1030 Embedded PC, with a 1.8 GHz Intel Pentium M processor, is the most powerful device in its family.
The European Union hit Microsoft with an 899-million euro (1.34 billion U.S. dollars) fine on Wednesday, alleging that the company has ignored the EU’s long-standing request to provide competitors key software at a fair price.
To provide automation and control applications with the most powerful PC-based controllers possible, Beckhoff Automation announced its new CX1030 Embedded PC. The DIN rail mounted computer is equipped with a 1.8 GHz Intel Pentium M processor and is the most powerful device in the Beckhoff Embedded PC family, at present.
Hewlett-Packard and Unilever have signed a seven-year extension to an outsourcing agreement under which HP is managing Unilever’s global technology infrastructure. Terms of the $675-million extension call for HP to provide an infrastructure designed to quickly adapt to the changing needs of Unilever's business.
IBM has launched Compliance Warehouse for Legal Control, an integrated offering that is claimed to combine software, hardware, and services to enable organizations with multiple legal and compliance mandates to reduce cost, complexity, and risk.
Manufacturers and retailers have long sought a method of tracking products through their lifecycles—to ensure only authorized returns and in-warranty work—without infringing on consumer privacy concerns. One company finally offers the technology to do just that.
The IR5000 open path hydrocarbon gas detector from General Monitors features an expanded distance range of 130 m, providing increased versatility in an open path gas detection system. Accurate single gas detection beam technology improves accuracy, reduces drift, and raises immunity to false alarms.
A fledgling company called IPextreme has come out with a new business model for distributing semiconductor intellectual property to the fabless semiconductor folks. It's best characterized as Amazon.com for semiconductor IP. The new company helps developers at the low-footprint end of the embedded-system industry create their own highly integrated system-on-chip ICs.
development solution for Applied Micro Circuit Corporation’s Power Architecture 405EZ embedded processor
Implementation of new automation products should show robust growth.
Cincinnati, OH – The Industrial Automation Group of Advantech has released the UNO-2176 Intel Pentium M 1.4 GHz/Celeron M 1.0 GHz embedded automation computer that supports a pre-configured Microsoft Windows XP Embedded OS and Microsoft Windows CE 5.0 images with optimized onboard device drivers.
Misumi USA plans to conduct two Configuration Technical Seminars in February. The identical seminars, one of which is to take place at the Hilton Concord Hotel in the San Francisco Bay area of California on Feb. 5, 2008, and the other at the Crowne Plaza San Jose/Silicon Valley in Milpitas on Feb. 6, 2008, are entitled “Designing a better machine faster with the configurable component." Both will start at 11 a.m. and last until 3 p.m.
Dallas, TX – Texas Instruments announced five new families of MSP430F2xx high-performance microcontrollers, claimed to be the industry’s lowest-power 16-bit general purpose microcontrollers (MCUs). They provide a direct upgrade path for corresponding devices in the company’s MSP430F1xx generation of ultra-low-power MCUs, with software and pin compatibility, twice the performance, twice the battery life, and increased memory, TI says.
Tempe, AZ — Phoenix Display International Inc. (PDI) has released a line of sunlight-readable 5.7-inch TFTs with QVGA (320 x 240 pixel) resolution. The sunlight-readable 5.7 in. QVTA TFT module provides improved contrast, color saturation, and response time over CSTN products. PDI also offers 5.7 in. QVGA as a standard transmissive module with or without a touchscreen.
Hoffman introduces the new CableTek Management System, a versatile, uniquely designed system that provides support for cable bundles and individual cables in standard 19-inch data racks and simplifies moves, adds, and changes (MACs). This system is said to offer Horizontal and Vertical Cable Managers in a variety of sizes and allows simple transitions from horizontal to vertical systems, optimizing storage capacity, reducing cable expenses and increasing time efficiency.
Santa Barbara, CA — Patriot Scientific (PTSC) in Carlsbad, CA, is looking for significant embedded systems or microprocessor technology in which to invest. The company says it has developed significant intellectual property, which it began licensing to a number of major microprocessor and other embedded-system companies during the 1990s, resulting in income in the tens of millions of dollars per year to invest in new businesses and technology.
To increase processing power in some of the smallest DIN rail mounted Embedded PCs available, Beckhoff Automation introduced its CX9010. In its basic configuration, the device includes CPU, internal flash memory, main memory (RAM), NOVRAM as non-volatile memory and one switched Ethernet port with two external RJ-45 interfaces. Additional Compact-Flash, DVI/USB or serial RS-232 / RS-422 / RS-485 interfaces are available.
Austin, TX—Original equipment manufacturers will benefit from a new pair of products for the embedded controller OEM market, introduced today, Nov. 27. In a departure from National Instruments’ past market focus, NI is targeting OEMs with new products based on the NI CompactRIO line of high-performance data acquisition and control systems. The NI cRIO-9072 and cRIO-9074 CompactRIO systems give engineers and machine builders a solution for rapidly deploying industrial machines at high volume.
Reading Gen 2 passive tags affixed to printer assemblies, the system cut safety stock 17 percent.
Acces I/O Products, Inc. has introduced Model USB-DA12-8A. The board features eight independent 12-bit digital-to-analog converters (DACs) and broadly configurable arbitrary waveform generation (ARB) capabilities. The module can be used in any PC or embedded system with a USB port. Features include single-ended and differential outputs for increased noise immunity, ARB status and control signal...
Connections are catching on, creating more business for Harting’s 110,000 ft2 North American facility here and other manufacturing and assembly sites in Europe and Asia. The desire to make reliable connections more quickly is feeding demand, including power, pneumatics, and industrial communications, such as industrial Ethernet hardware, managed and unmanaged designs, inside, in-between, and outside enclosures.
Green Hills Software announced their plans to add support for CANopen, IEEE 1588, EtherNet/IP and Profinet protocols to the company’s royalty-free RTOS running on Freescale Semiconductor’s embedded microprocessors and microcontrollers.
Beckhoff Automation unveiled two new solutions which enable OEMs to create more powerful, more precise and higher performance machines, helping packaging machine builders, users, and system integrators. The eXtreme Fast Control (XFC) Technology is an optimized control and communication solution for I/O response times of 100 microseconds or less. CX9010 is a DIN rail mounted, EtherCAT-ready PC, which comes fully installed with TwinCAT automation software.
While acknowledging the SaaS model has become an attractive selling point for e-sourcing solutions, Emptoris CEO Avner Schneur is more excited about the new supplier performance management capabilities the company's new SaaS-based platform offers.
When Sumiya Donna Imam took over as manager of industrial market development at Freescale Semiconductor, she told Control Engineering that her first task would be to determine the forces driving adoption of embedded systems by developers of industrial control systems. We invited her to present this exclusive report summarizing her research.
Today, an e-business audit can have greater impact on a company than a financial audit. So says nuBridges, which researches changes in legislation that effect e-business. nuBridges also develops solutions that meet and exceed mandates across the retail, manufacturing, health-care, and financial services industries.
Spotlighting longevity, durability and impact on the industry, Honeywell celebrated the 75th anniversary of its Micro Switch technology with a gathering of employees, executives and media at its facility in Freeport, IL. The day included a historical review of sensors and switches and tours of production facilities.
A new RFID software tool kit supports EPCglobal’s new Low Level Reader Protocol standard.
Solution showcased at this year’s Embedded Systems Conference in Boston (Sept. 18 – 21, 2007) shared several common themes: more powerful processors, increased efficiency, and lower power consumption.
Microsoft's Senior Vice President Brad Smith said the EU's insistence on penalizing Microsoft raises concerns about the protection of trade secrets. He also questioned whether the EU is consistent in considering perceived monopolies, since companies like IBM, Apple, and Google control large portions of their respective markets in Europe.
The buy will establish Flextronics as a supplier and partner for the medical industry.
A new mini imager features 3-megapixel imaging to extend bar code imaging technology to the highest resolution available for data tracking. Microscan Systems launches the Quadrus MINI 3, claimed to be the world’s only mini imager able to decode tiny, high density codes of less than 3 mil. The manufacturers in printed circuit board assembly and semiconductors require ever smaller parts and...
Taking a different approach to master data management (MDM) and related data governance issues, start-up Purisma, asks, why not put all this into an appliance? “Other [MDM] solutions force you to reengineer your systems to point to a single golden copy in one repository—an approach that can take years to accomplish,” claims Bob Hagenau, Purisma's VP of products.
Keithley Instruments’ model 2100 6½-digital USB digital multimeter is a high precision, low-cost USB-based instrument ideal for a wide range of production test, burn-in, and manual and semi-automatic R&D applications in bench, portable, or small system measurement configurations. It features precision 10 V dc accuracy of 39 ppm, 6½-digit resolution at a measurement rate of 5...
Unisys will deliver JasperSoft-certified business intelligence (BI) consulting services to organizations looking for professional reporting and data analysis functionality, giving users a full range of BI capabilities. The JasperSoft business intelligence suite delivers production reporting, interactive reporting, data analysis, and data integration.
The statechart model of computation is arguably the most functionally descriptive model of system behavior. State-charts give programmers a high-level design tool with powerful scalability through programming concepts such as hierarchy, concurrency, and events. The statechart programming model is especially useful for designing complex systems that must respond to a variety of events, such as e...
Besides cutting down on theft, new technology from NXP Semiconductors and Kestrel Wireless will aid in cheaper, simpler, “greener” packaging and retail display.
Taking a different approach to master data management (MDM) and related data governance issues, Purisma, a new start-up, asks, why not put all this into an appliance?
Ratio thermometer from E Instruments Group is monochromatic, allowing it to make accurate measurements through glass, vapor, particles, and other obstructions. IRtec Rayomatic 100 has accuracy of ±0.75% and response time of 38ms. Thermometer features both analog and digital outputs through the same 4-20mA two-wire current loop and adjustable emissivity, temperature span, and response ...
Atalum Wireless S.A announced the market launch of GREENtool 1.5, a single tool to both commission and maintain ZigBee networks.
Early computer systems were manually programmed using physical switches to configure the address, data and control lines of the machine. To enter data into memory, each instruction was converted into bit patterns and then the appropriate address, data and command switches were set based on these patterns.
Cepoint Networks’ iS900 iSCSI NAS storage/time server system with GPS or atomic time synchronization features is expandable to 18 TB and is designed with embedded GPS, IRIG (inter-range radio international group) timing, or precise atomic time generator or receiver that enables synchronized, precise back-up timing for organizations with geographically disparate storage locations that need to be all backed-up at a precise time.
Pentek Inc. released the newest version of its SystemFlow real-time recording and development software for its family of RTS systems.
SecureCore from Phoenix Technologies is reported to be the most advanced core system firmware available today to support unified extensible firmware interface v2.0 (UEFI 2.0) and legacy BIOS implementations and drivers.
One technology steadily gaining in popularity was well-represented at the Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) in April: wireless networking, especially in the form of ZigBee (IEEE 802.15). The ZigBee Alliance had an eight-company pavilion and there were 21 other Alliance members scattered over the show floor.
A new breed of microprocessors is delivering unprecedented performance at lower power and clock speed, with greater power efficiency levels. 'Multi-core processor,' as the term suggests, provides more than one execution core for the processor—without increasing semiconductor package size, power consumption, or cost.
Imsys Technologies, an established manufacturer of processors, modules and tools for embedded applications, announced a development platform for the IEEE 1588 Precision Time Protocol.
One of the themes at the Embedded Systems Conference (April 3-5, 2007) was the ubiquitous nature of broadband LAN technology. Machine builders and designers of vehicle control systems are gaining new options for small-space, high data throughput networking.
Linux is the operating system of choice for a growing number of new device software projects.
Embedded System Development for Machine Control Using a Single, Automated Graphical Programming ToolChain and Programmable Automation Controllers (PACs)
San Jose, CA —If any one issue stood out as commanding the greatest share of mind for attendees and vendors at the Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) here in San Jose, CA, last week (April 3-5, 2007), it has to be 'interconnectedness.' That is, the ability of embedded control devices, from the lowliest sensor to enterprise-level integrated systems, to link rapidly, robustly and flexibly together. It's not just networking per se, although the buzz surrounding Zigbee, USB, Ethernet, and other physical layer standards was quite high. The general issue of how to pass digital signals between embedded-system components seemed to come up in nearly every conversation. Freescale Semiconductor dropped the first rock into the proverbial pool by introducing a semiconductor device intended to solve the 'last mile' problem for broadband wide-area-network (WAN) communications by making fiber-to-the-home economical.
Expanded line of Allen-Bradley Bulletin 1489 circuit breakers from Rockwell Automation helps meet circuit protection through enhanced connection capabilities and easier product installation.
As more devices and systems get woven into the fabric of our networkedworld, the scale and the complexity of integration is growing at a rapidpace. Our existing methodologies and training for system software design,rooted in principles of object-oriented design, that worked superbly forsmall scale systems begin to break down as we discover operational limitswhich requires frequent and unintended redesigns in programs year overyear.
Christensen Display Products Family of industrial displays feature a hardened resistive touchscreen technology option with a thin glass film bonded to the front user surface to provide protection against surface wear. A layer of hardened backing adds strength to protect from frontal impacts. New models are interchangeable with existing units with no need for hardware or software interface changes.
Dallas, TX —AT&T jumped into sensor-based network and radio frequency identification (RFID) services, Tyco Electronics showed an extended family of RFID products, and Motorola demonstrated closed-loop RFID hardware and software technologies. These were among developments at the 5th Annual RFID World conference and exhibition here, March 26-28, 2007. As RFID use continues to expand beyond manufacturing, those on the plant floor can benefit by lower overall technology costs, advancing integration and services, as well as from continuing standards developments. AT&T expanded with three sensor-based network services covering mobile resource management, RFID asset visibility, and managed passive RFID solutions.
GPS2056 receiver module for OEM electronic systems from DeLorme is based on the STMicroelectronics STA2056 GPS receiver chip.
October 31, 2006 TECH TIP OF THE WEEK: Network PLCs for complex control applications Increasing use of automation in industry has led to the need for communications and control on a plant-wide basis with programmable controllers, computers, robots, and CNC machines interconnected. Any such piece of equipment capable of communicating on a network is called a 'node.'Networks can take three basic forms. With the star form (figure), nodes are each directly linked to a central computer, termed the host or master, with the nodes being termed slaves. The host contains the memory, processing and switching equipment that enable terminals to communicate.
Albuquerque, NM —The rugged RES-110 Layer 2 and 3 managed Ethernet switch is said to be an outstanding modular package optimized to meet challenging performance and thermal requirements in harsh environments, including military, industrial, or extreme commercial applications, suggests GE Fanuc Embedded Systems , a leading provider of embedded military and commercial solutions. The switch provides Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet connectivity. RES-110 features an innovative wiring harness said to reduce wiring weight, volume, and complexity, making it ideal for integration into ground and airborne vehicles and other rugged Ethernet applications. Compliant with the MIL-STD-810E specification, the RES-110 is designed to operate under high temperatures, shock, and vibration conditions. “The RES-110 is another piece in our distributed architecture design for military and commercial applications.
Engineered Software Inc . has released its Pipe-Flo Professional 2007 program, used to design and simulate operation of fluid piping systems. This new version is the first major update since the 2005 release.
The United States must act now to improve its competitiveness and prevent the loss of high-tech jobs, says IEEE-USA’s incoming president John W. Meredith, P.E. Meredith, a product development engineer with Agilent Technologies, says the engineering profession “is in a continuing struggle to deal with the effects of global competition.
VT201RMX display from VarTech Systems is tailored for harsh environments.
RoHS-compliant Koiled Kords from Whitney Blake Co. come in light, medium, and heavy-duty selections for applications in the electronics industry.
Vita Executive Director Ray Alderman explained the organization's policy at the Bus & Board show in Long Beach, CA. Long Beach, CA —Vita, the VMEbus Trade Association, and its standard-setting body VSO made some history at the Bus & Board show in Long Beach, CA in January: By a 35-to-2 vote with 12 abstentions, VSO adopted a policy that requires any holder of intellectual property included in a new standard to which it is a party to reveal early in the process any patents (issued and pending) that have an essential bearing on the new standard, along with the maximum fee and royalty schedules. Those fees and royalties cannot then be increased, and must be applied in a non-discriminatory manner. Failure to disclose patents in a timely way can result in the offending company being required to license the intellectual property for free.
Model USB-IIRO4-2SM USB embedded data acquisition modules from Acces I/O Products incorporate four optically isolated digital inputs, four Form C (SPDT) electromechanical relay outputs, and two RS-232, -422, -485 serial communications ports in a small, rugged enclosure.
National Instruments CompactRIO is a small rugged industrial control and acquisition system powered by reconfigurable I/O (RIO) FPGA technology for ultrahigh performance and customization. NI CompactRIO incorporates a real-time processor and reconfigurable FPGA for reliable stand-alone embedded or distributed applications, and hot-swappable industrial I/O modules with built-in signal conditioning for direct connection to sensors and actuators.
Jerome 471 ultra low-level mercury vapor analyzer from Arizona Instrument LLC detects, measures, and reports levels of mercury vapor for environmental and industrial spill and clean-up level assessment.
M12 eurofast cordsets from Turck protect against abrasion, cuts, water, oil, and impact and are suited for automotive stamping plant and welding environments.
GreenLine 8000 portable gas analyzer from E Instruments Group LLC is a multifunctional unit said to meet most environmental monitoring needs.
ZigBee 2006 specification and the first four platforms supporting this wireless technology standard are now available to the public, according to the ZigBee Alliance. The organization released the latest specification to members in September. The move brings to 34 the total number of ZigBee compliant platforms OEMs can use to develop product designs.
Software-only implementation of the IEEE 1588 precision time protocol (PTP) from Real-Time Systems GmbH reportedly eliminates the need for hardware-based time-stamping and delivers possible accuracies of ±5 ìs or better.
A Control Engineering news story “Small, remote-controlled robot searches to destroy explosives” (CE, September, p.38) should have said that the Technical Solutions Group is a sector of Applied Marine Technology Inc. (AMTI). www.amti.net
QVP metal keyboard with integrated trackball from MGR Industries is designed to withstand heavy use, abuse, harsh weather, and environments where fluids are common.
Model 6821-422 digital receiver board with high-speed A/D and installed FPGA dual-channel digital downconverter is the newest member of Pentek’s GateFlow installed-core products.
B&B Electronics acquired Advanced Embedded Systems (AES), a designer and developer of wireless solutions for the industrial market. AES, based in Phoenix, AZ, will become part of B&B Electronics' engineering and technical group in Ottawa, IL. The acquisition provides B&B Electronics with in-house wireless design expertise, enhancing the company's research and development capabilities, the companies said.
Baton Rouge, LA —VTPC320 all-in-one display and computer from VarTech Systems features a 32-in. screen, with 42-in.- and 47-in.-screen models to be released soon. Suited for a variety of automation and digital signage applications, the unit has standard loop-through capability and can be used as a central command center.
Houston, TX —Visitors to ISA Expo 2006 are invited to spend time at 'Innovation Alley,' a place to see and experience emerging technologies. This feature is described as an attempt to communicate the adventure of technology and relay the excitement, innovation, and joy of building something where nothing before existed. Attendees are encouraged to experience Innovation Alley and meet technologists who are pushing the limits.
Washington, DC— Legislation pending before the U.S. Congress "would admit foreign computing and engineering workers in numbers much greater than historical trends or casual assumptions about future employment levels," a recent study shows. The research was commissioned by IEEE-USA and conducted by Georgetown University . The August report from Georgetown's Institute for the Study of International Migration concluded that the estimated number of new high-tech visas available under the "Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2006" (S.2611) over the next 10 years could be 1.88 million.
IndraMotion MLC controller-based motion control system from Bosch Rexroth Corp. is designed for packaging machines with centralized or distributed architectures and a maximum of 16 axes per controller.
SAP-certified NLink product suite from Junot Systems Inc. now includes a new auto-documentation module that produces Microsoft Visio-driven graphical views of configured interfaces, supports OPC unified architecture, and has improved hierarchical browsing of OPC DA and HAD services and support for ISA-95/B2MML.
The MicroCal PM 200 from E-Instruments is portable and housed in a protective case for use in plant environments. New portable process pressure calibrator from E-Instruments aims at supporting instrumentation engineers and quality managers with instrumentation in the lab and field. The MicroCal PM200 reports extremely high accuracy of The PM200 offers many useful features and capabilities: • • • • • • • • Control Engineering Daily News Desk Peter Welander , process industries editor.
A Analog Devices Inc . aims to simplify the task of selecting, evaluating, and implementing direct digital synthesis (DDS) semiconductors for applications such as test and measurement equipment, and wireless and satellite communications. Using parametric data to mathematically model the general behavior of a selected DDS IC, the free tool allows designers to enter the desired operating conditions, evaluate the quality of the circuit's sine wave, and view the resulting harmonic images.
Microchip Technology Inc. is optimized for embedded monitoring and control applications.
Two 15-in. touchscreen monitors from Planar are said to deliver a lower price-point for a variety of applications. PT1520MU features a sturdy deskstand that allows the monitor to be tilted from 0 to 90°.
Educational opportunities in late September and October include more than 15 U.S. automation-related conferences, shows, and expositions. These include Get on the Fast Track to Fieldbus, 15th annual Embedded Systems Conference Boston, Assembly Technology Expo 2006, SANS Institute 2006 Process Control and SCADA Security Summit, Schneider Electric Initi@tive 2006, Emerson Global Users Exchange, ...
DAP 840 board and DAPstudio software combine to form a development and runtime package that provides a real-time product in a Microsoft Windows-based product.
Exsys Corvid development tool and expert system software based on artificial intelligence now offers enhanced multi-language features and an improved interactive user inter-face.
Ti50 and Ti55 FlexCam thermal imagers are said to offer 320 x 240 pixel resolution, leading thermal sensitivity, and a 5-in.-high, bright LCD.
Automation Panel 800 is equipped with a 15-in. XGA display with touchscreen and includes individual expansions for function keys, electromechanical keys, and the E-stop function.
The term "form factor" in the context of industrial circuit boards, single-board computers (SBCs), and embedded control cards refers to the shape and physical size of these products. However, exact terminology is elusive in practice. Other terms are too often interchangeably used to convey the notion of a board-level product form factor.
Selecting the proper air conditioner for an indoor industrial enclosure is not necessarily difficult, but requires some basic information about operating conditions, according to ITS Enclosures . For indoor uninsulated metal enclosures, the following formula may be used to estimate cooling needs. BTU/hr = ( Watts x 3.413) + (1.25 x area in ft sq x DT) Watts is the total heat load inside the enclosure (sum of all heat-producing equipment). Area is the total exposed surface area of the enclosure in square feet. DT is the difference in temperature between the maximum expected degrees F temperature outside the enclosure and maximum desired temperature in degrees F temperature inside the enclosure. ITS Enclosures offers the Proair Series CR air conditioners with NEMA 12 approval on all models; CE certification; and a unique condensate management system evaporates moisture from the enclosure and eliminates drain tubes, buckets, and wet floors. The series is functionally tested and uses environmentally safe refrigerant.
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RFH Series refractometers are said to require only a few drops of solution to take a measurement and feature user-friendly operation.
Matrox Nexis integrated image acquisition subsystem features two remote camera heads with a dual camera control unit (CCU) and frame grabber on one PC/104-Plus card.
Waltham, MA and Hampton, NH —The merger of Thermo Electron Corp. and Fisher Scientific International Inc. will reportedly create “the leading provider of laboratory products and services in the high-growth life, laboratory, and health sciences industry.” A joint announcement made by the companies last week said both boards of directors unanimously approved a definitive agreement to combine the companies in a tax-free, stock-for-stock exchange. The new company will be called Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc.
Phoenix, AZ —SlimTouch keypad products from White Electronic Designs Corp. now carry the UL mark of approval from Underwriters Laboratories. The keypads reportedly are designed to create the light touch of capacitive touch switches at a fraction of the cost. SlimTouch keypads from White Electronic Designs Corp., said to simulate the experience of a capacitive touch switch, now carry UL approval.
Schott is expanding its production of glass tubing for display screen backlights.
RTI distributed data management (formerly SkyBoard) v. 3, among those products shown at Embedded Systems Conference 2006, is intended for real-time distributed applications that require high-performance and highly available database access.
Burr Ridge, IL— Tyco Electronics’ Global Application Tooling Division (GATD) announced that it has collaborated with 21-year-old Graphic Solutions International LLC (GSI) to provide a unique RFID Inlay assembly system. It will assemble semiconductor chips, surface mount devices and printed batteries onto a continuous web of printed antennas, adding radio frequency identification (RFID) capability to tags and labels. To meet the customer’s exacting specifications, Tyco Electronics provided a reel-to-reel system that allows GSI to mount flip chips, surface mount devices (SMDs), and printed batteries on a continuous web of printed antennas and conductive traces. The system is capable of high-speed mounting of electronic components on a 6,000-ft-plus (1,800-m-plus) roll of 20-in.
Myriad industrial network options are only exceeded by the styles and brands of rugged connectors—designed to protect the points linking measurements, logic, actuation, and points in-between and beyond. Robust network connector design can vary by network type (fieldbus, device bus, sensor bus), application, industry (such as electronics, robotics, or nuclear), manufacturer, and standards ...
MicroCal 20 documenting process calibrator is designed to ensure that measuring and test equipment are compliant with quality calibration standards.
A new test measurement resource is available from ISA, the Instrumentation, Systems, and Automation Society. Fundamentals of Test Measurement Instrumentation targets those who want to learn to design test measurement systems.
At Embedded Systems Conference Silicon Valley, Atmel Corp. announced its AP7000 family of high-performance, 32-bit digital signal controllers (DSCs), the first based on the company's high-throughput AVR32 core—claimed to consistently outperform competing 32-bit cores in industry benchmarks for performance and code density.
"Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) is now "old enough to vote, soon old enough to drink," was an introductory remark at the keynote presentation of this high-tech event catering to the needs of embedded systems developers and engineers. Indeed, ESC has come of age as it completed its 18th annual presentation, April 3-7, 2006, at the McEnery Convention Center in San Jose, CA.
The embedded version of Windows XP is a componentized version of the well-known Windows XP Professional operating system. Instead of everything being wrapped tightly into a single package, XP Embedded breaks the OS down into more than 10,000 individual components, allowing developers to create systems that have the functionality and familiar features of XP.
San Jose, CA — Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) Silicon Valley was alive with the latest embedded system developments and products during its April 3-7, 2006, run here. Perhaps it was the new location at San Jose’s McEnery Convention Center that instilled a fresh outlook on the 18th edition of this annual high-tech event catering to the needs of embedded systems developers and engineers. Unchanged for ESC was its synergistic combination of “how-to” technology sessions, design seminars, and tutorials on the Conference side—numbering 290 this year—plus an Exhibition featuring the latest products from leading companies. Some 300 companies participated on the show-floor. Event keynoter on April 4 was Dean Kamen, entrepreneur, technology advocate, and inventor of the Segway Human Transporter, among other accomplishments.
The Asia-Pacific region's largest oil company, PetroChina Co., has selected Honeywell Inc. to implement a planning system project at 11 of its refining and petrochemical facilities throughout northern China. Honeywell will install an Advanced Planning System (APS) to help PetroChina optimize crude oil selection, production distribution, and plant production.
OMRON Corp. has developed a new electronic control antenna technology that it claims to be the first of its kind* that’s embedded in UHF-band RFID reader, improving RFID-tag reading performance—a patent is pending. UHF offers significantly greater communications range than other frequency bands. Consequently, use of UHF RFID systems for full product traceability has seen tremendous growth in logistics industries, mainly in the United States, but also in other parts of the world.
Research Triangle Park, NC — ISA , the Instrumentation, Systems, and Automation Society, has released a fully operational, free online demo of its Certified Automation Professional (CAP) learning system. System is a comprehensive CAP exam preparation and professional development tool. Program combines printed textbooks with online review and testing tools to provide automation training. Learning system includes comprehensive print materials, including seven textbooks covering the CAP body of knowledge and the seven technical topics covered on the exam. A second component of the system is an online learning module that focuses on review and testing.
Gass-2040 gas analysis sampling system from Perma Pure can be stack mounted to prepare difficult sample gases for analysis at the source. Gass-2040 gas analysis sampling system from Perma Pure prepares demanding gas samples for analysis, removing acid mists, coalescable liquids, water, and particulates without altering the concentrations of analyte gases. A stack mounting option reportedly increases accuracy and reduces costs.System transforms wet, hot, dirty gases into dry, cool, clean samples for continuous emissions monitoring.
“A Comprehensible Guide to Controller Area Network,” by Wilfred Voss, has recently been published by Copperhill Technologies Corp . This book is claimed to be the most thoroughly researched and most complete work on CAN technology. CAN, a serial network technology that was originally designed for the automotive industry, is now a popular bus in industrial automation and other applications.
Beijing, China —The Asia-Pacific region’s largest oil company, PetroChina Co., has selected Honeywell Inc. to implement a planning system project at 11 of its refining and petrochemical facilities throughout northern China. Honeywell will install an Advanced Planning System (APS) to help PetroChina optimize crude oil selection, production distribution and plant production. “The Honeywell APS system will have a widespread positive impact on our entire operation,” said Gu Xuejing, deputy general manager, Department of Technology and Information, PetroChina Co.
Lattix Inc. has just announced that it has joined the Eclipse Foundation—an open-source community chartered to implement an extensible development platform for building software applications. Lattix will serve as an "Add-In Provider" member of the foundation and is committed to deliver its Lightweight Dependency Models (LDM) approach for managing the software architect...
Touchscreen mechanics Click here to learn more.
XE900SX10 miniature surface-mount, 900-MHz transceiver adds wireless communications to any OEM system for machine-to-machine applications.
Global Display Solutions Ltd . (GDS), a designer and manufacturer of industrial displays, is opening a new facility in China early this year. Plant is the latest move in GDS’s global restructuring, manufacturing, and business development investment to support its accounts and growth in China. GDS (Suzhou) is in Wujain Fenhu Economic Development Zone on the Shanghai border.
eXtremeDB integrates with I-Logix’s Rhapsody, a unified modeling-language-based Model-Driven Development (MDD) environment, to generate faster time-to-market of high-quality embedded applications that require embedded data management.
Industrial NEMA 4X (IP66) workstation, equipped with a flat panel LCD and sealed keyboard and pointing devices, is designed to withstand extreme conditions that require washdown. Optional panel PCs, installed embedded computer systems, or video extenders (CAT 5 or fiber optic) are available. Series meets many harsh environmental applications requiring NEMA 4x watertight and corrosive protection.
Scottsdale, AZ — Giant Industries Inc. experienced a fire at its 62,000-barrel-per-day Yorktown, VA, refinery in late November 2005, with most damage impacting the gas plant supporting the fluid catalytic cracker, and also affecting other units’ piping and instrumentation cables. Property insurance, with a $1 million deductible, together with business interruption insurance was expected to cover much of the repair cost and commercial impacts The company plans a two-phase restoration to be completed by the end of first-quarter 2006, operating about 40,000 barrels daily until then.
Houston, TX —According to Industrial Information Resources, Inc. , other problems in the pharma-biotech industry haven’t deterred its capital investment. It now has nearly 300 capital projects in North America that are slated to start construction this year—in the aggregate it totals over $13 billion. Major projects are no longer limited to big pharmaceutical companies as the biotechnology sector is on a growth trajectory.
The MathWorks and Aspen Technology Inc. announced that the two companies are offering a co-simulation link between their products, Simulink and Aspen Dynamics. The link, available as a Simulink block within Aspen Dynamics, enables engineers to use model-based design to develop embedded controllers for complex chemical processes.
LabView 8 introduces distributed intelligence—a suite of new capabilities for engineers and scientists to use to design, distribute, and synchronize intelligent devices and systems. National Instruments' release also features a new project-based environment for developing and managing large-scale applications and the latest in Express technology for simplified instrument control.
Lehigh Valley, PA —Air Products and Chemicals Inc. has brought a new air-separation plant online in Tangshan, Hebei Province, China, supplying oxygen, via pipeline, to Guo Feng Steel (part of the Xinfeng Group) and nearby Fufeng Steel. Moreover, the plant produces 300 metric tons/day of liquid products to support other customers in that area of northern China, further expanding product capacity to meet the region’s growing liquid-product demand. Air Products has been supplying liquid oxygen to the Xinfeng Group since 1999.
Norwalk, CT — In first-quarter 2006, according to BusinessWire, ABB will sell its Houston, TX-based Operator Training Simulation business (OTS) to Societe de Realisations en Systemique Industrielle (RSI) , a subsidiary of IFP Investments. “We will continue offering operator training simulation systems to the marketplace as part of ABB’s more comprehensive industrial-automation portfolio,” said Roger Bailey, vice president of ABB and head of its North American Process Automation unit. We believe we can best meet our customers' unique needs by partnering with companies such as RSI.” “We are excited about our acquisition of ABB’s OTS as it strengthens RSI’s leading position in the operator-training-and-simulation market,” said Philippe Vacher, RSI’s Chief Executive Officer. “RSI is committed to provide ABB customers with outstanding service support worldwide.” RSI provides simulation products and services including operator training simulation to the oil-and-gas, hydrocarbon processing, and petrochemical industries.
A new technology is helping reduce “squint factor,” the problem of viewing monitors exposed to high ambient light conditions. V-Bond from VarTech Systems is a solid, transparent bond that optically couples the front cover glass or touchscreen directly to the face of a display, all but eliminating the reflection from the two internal layer interfaces. The technology is said to make degradation of monitor displays from poor lighting conditions a problem of the past. The material reduces reflective loss by two-thirds, compared to a separate cover glass, with no special treatment to the outer surface.
The MathWorks and Aspen Technology Inc . announced that the two companies are offering a co-simulation link between their products, Simulink and Aspen Dynamics. The link, available as a Simulink block within Aspen Dynamics, enables engineers to use model-based design to develop embedded controllers for complex chemical processes. The companies claim that linking Aspen Dynamics, which is said to provide dynamic simulation of chemical processes, and Simulink, a simulation platform for control design and embedded system development, allows engineers to use nonlinear chemical process simulations to design, prototype, and evaluate advanced control strategies.
Belt clip lets an operator attach any hand-held box to the clip for hands-free operation by simply drilling two holes. Clip is made of ABS plastic with a UL94-HB flammability rating. Standard colors are black or light gray; other colors and modifications available on request. Compact, ergonomically designed device is 1.
The global market for wearable computing and communications systems is expected to reach more than $270 million by 2007, according to a recent study by VDC Corp. Sales are expected to grow more than 25% annually, based largely on the sale of customized solutions to the core market segments of warehousing and transportation. Wearable computing and communications global market is expected to reach more than $270 million by 2007, according to recent research by VDC Corp. Worldwide shipments and forecasts for general-purpose computing/communications wearable systems are projected to increase from $133.7 million in 2004 to $271.7 million by 2007.
GasBadge Plus provides low-cost personal protection from dangerous levels of carbon monoxide, hydrogen sulfide, oxygen, nitrogen dioxide, or sulfur dioxide.
U-Gage line of ultrasonic sensors now includes chemically resistant models. Chemical protection is achieved from a factory-installed Teflon flange and film coating bonded over the sensor transducer to seal against gases and vapors.
Microchip's new products include 22 general-purpose MCUs (PIC24 family) and 27 DSCs (dsPIC33 family)-available in 64-, 80-, and 100-pin thin quad, flat pack (TQFP) units. With embedded system designers facing increased challenges—on-time project delivery while hitting cost goals, responding to new customer/marketing demands, and providing product differentiation—welcome relief may be at hand via new 16-bit microcontroller (MCU) and digital signal controller (DSC) families recently announced by Microchip Technology Inc . A total of 49 devices comprise the introduction.
Ohm-Stat RT-500 resistivity/resistance meter reportedly offers many benefits of a high-end device such as the Ohm-Stat RT-1000 but at lower cost.
GE Fanuc Embedded Systems Inc., (www.gefanuc.com/embedded) a unit of GE Industrial, has purchased the multiprocessor PowerPC product line from DNA Computing Solutions Inc. Included in the deal are the VS/VE750, VQG4, and Nexus I VME boards; WingSpan software suite of optimized signal, image, and vector processing software libraries; and VxWorks and Linux board support ...
Charlottesville, VA — GE Fanuc Embedded Systems Inc. , a unit of GE Industrial, has purchased the multiprocessor PowerPC product line from DNA Computing Solutions Inc. Included in the deal are the VS/VE750, VQG4, and Nexus I VME boards; WingSpan software suite of optimized signal, image, and vector processing software libraries; and VxWorks and Linux board support software. Jeff Garwood, president and CEO of GE Fanuc, called the move a “key extension of our hardware and software product line.
End-users, system integrators, and manufacturers with interest in industrial networking equipment, components, and enabled devices will be among those participating at upcoming industry events, such as Assembly Technology Expo, International Robot & Vision Show , an industrial Ethernet control seminar, 2005 IEEE 1588 Conference, PTA-2005 Moscow, ISA Expo 2005, Fieldbus Foundation End User Seminar—Focus on Biotech, Life Science Applications, National Manufacturing Week 2006, and others. A Lapp invitation to the Sept. 27-29 Robot and Vision Show near Chicago connected to an interesting graphic of how 20 Lapp products can be used in manufacturing. (Click into the graphic to see more closely.) The products include rugged cords, cables, conduit, connectors, and flexible tracks.
Accu-Sort Systems Inc. reports it recently installed a Fast Tag In-Motion automated RFID and barcode system at Schering Plough Corp.'s distribution center in Memphis, TN. Fast Tag reportedly will help the distribution center with new RFID compliance standards outlined by Wal-Mart and other retailers.
Efforts to control noise and vibration ina wide range of mechanisms and devicesinevitably require the use of passiveacoustical materials. To achieve the greatestperformance per dollar requires notonly the correct choice of materials, butalso an understanding of how they work,and of how and where to install them.
Kerk Motion Products offers the LR Series linear rail system, designed for light-load applications where minimal frictional drag, long-wear life, and low cost are primary concerns.
In, out, and about HMI: LED drives, alphanumeric displays, surface-wave touchscreens, multifunction keyboards
Among the new HMI-related products making their way to market this month are two white LED drivers, a six-in-one visual display/performance management tool, a 31-in. surface-wave touchscreen, and a compact-size mulitifunctional keyboard.
Embedded system designers are always on the lookout for graphics controllers that provide flexibility to configure application-specific functions in field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs).
In-Sight 1721 wafer ID reader, available in September, tracks semiconductor wafers through the manufacturing process.
Sunlight-readable display solutions that address outdoor monitor needs include traditional passive backlight options, transflective displays that reflect ambient light out of the display, and a hybrid solution that combines transflective and passive enhancements.
Fayetteville, AK—Omron Electronics LLC reports that it’s a sponsoring member of the newly opened Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Research Center at the University of Arkansas.
Wonderware reports that its industrial automation and information software was selected by Thales to provide station management systems at 150 London Underground stations. These facilities are maintained by Metronet, which will use the systems to manage passenger communications and monitor the stations.
New Orleans, LA—GE Fanuc realigned its organization to better meet customer needs while striving to triple its revenue over the next few years.
Downers Grove, IL; Eisleben, Germany—Contemporary Control Systems Inc. (CCSI) reports that the Weidmüller Group has acquired a majority interest in Heyfra Electronic GmbH (HEG), a longtime CCSI business partner.
FastFact real-time performance monitoring system is a complete stand-alone hardware and software solution for real-time/full-time production and process monitoring.
A comprehensive calibration and support plan for test and measurement equipment is now available from Fluke Corp.
Rockwell Automation has announced enhancements to modules within its batch processing software, RSBizWare Batch.
At Embedded Systems Conference-San Francisco in March, Enea Embedded Technology announced that it would offer later in 2005 an “enhanced” Asymmetric Multiprocessing (AMP) solution with integrated load balancing for its OSE real-time operating system (RTOS).
Electronic industry operations should consider value of making quality an automated, closed-loop function. By Georgi Nickolov Stoilov, Technical University, Branch Plovdiv, Bulgaria
Palo Alto, CA—To better concentrate on its core technologies and repurchase shares, Varian Inc. reports that it has sold its electronics manufacturing business to Jabil Circuit Inc. for $195 million, pending a post-closing working capital adjustment.
The 17th edition of Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) concluded today on several notes of success.
Among offerings from Texas Instruments (TI) at Embedded Systems Conference (ESC)-San Francisco (March 8-10, 2005) were the first three members of a new digital signal controller (DSC) family that combine real-time performance of DSPs with integrated peripherals and microcontroller ease-of-use.
San Francisco, CA—Xilinx Inc. is exhibiting the latest advances in its embedded processing ecosystem in more than 25 different product demonstrations and technical conference papers by Xilinx (Booth #1525) and other companies at the at the Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) 2005, March 6-10 at the Moscone Center.
At Embedded Systems Conference (ESC)-San Francisco (March 8-10, 2005), Kontron will exhibit its newest RISC processor based E²Brain computer-on-module (CoM), among other products.
Offerings from Macraigor Systems LLC at Embedded Systems Conference (ESC)-San Francisco (March 8-10, 2005), will include added capability for the company’s debug software when used with its OCDemon family of products.
A range of Super Flat Profile (SFP) touchscreens and two 17-in. LCD rear-mount touchmonitors are among the latest offerings from Elo TouchSystems Inc., a business unit of Tyco Electronics.
HCV 3-way high-pressure steel ball valves come standard with through-mounting holes on all sizes through 1 in. and are available with SAE, NPT, or BSPP thread configurations from ¼ in. to 1½ in. Valves are designed for a wide range of applications, including mobile plant and industrial equipment.
Santa Barbara, CA—Green Hills Software Inc. reports that it has filed a federal antitrust lawsuit to stop Wind River Systems Inc. from reportedly abandoning their mutual customers. Green Hills adds that Wind River also recently sued it allegedly to force termination of a 99-year cooperative agreement between the companies.
January 14, 2005 Highlights Sponsored by Lantronix Avoiding data collisions on Ethernet networks is a major concern for engineers, especially in applications where real-time data transfer is critical. This article examines how data is transferred on Ethernet and how it can be managed for synchronization and time slicing at the microsecond level using Ethernet Powerlink. Real-time Ethernet data management To achieve predictable timing on Ethernet networks, collisions need to be avoided. Moving from shared Ethernet (many devices on one network segment) to (fully) switched Ethernet (only two devices on a network segment) seems to be a promising solution.
PC/104 line expands to include four new serial cards designed for wide temperature operation for the industrial, transportation, COTS, and medical markets.
Intellipoint SXRNT Series RF admittance point level switch conforms to IEC 61508-2, Sec. 7, 4, 3, 1 1999 FMEDA standards for Safety Integrity Level instrumentation (SIL).
The move from proprietary to open standards communication technology, the increasing need for information driven by e-Commerce, supply chain management, Internet connectivity, more, more, more, faster, faster, faster……but is the data secure?
Advantech Corp. reports that its Industrial Automation Group's FPM-3170 17-inch Color SXGA TFT LCD Flat Panel Monitor supports resolutions up to 1,280 x 1,024 pixels, while its multi-scan function supports SXGA, XGA, VGA, and VGA text-mode settings. FPM-3170 provides 250 cd/m2 luminance, and it also has auto-recognition of input signals from VGA, DVI-D, Video and S-Video.
Cosmos 2005 software is the upgrade of SolidWorks' advanced design analysis capabilities, such as non-linear analysis and drop testing. Cosmos 2005 consists of CosmosWorks, CosmosFloWorks, and CosmosMotion, and features more than 100 user-driven enhancements, such as updated interfaces, simplified analysis processes, and tighter integration with SolidWorks 3-D mechanical design software.
Woodhead Industries Inc. reports that it has expanded its Brad Harrison family with a new Ultra-Lock connector system, a new series of distribution boxes and cordsets based on an innovative "push-to-lock" operating principle. Users simply push down to connect Ultra-Lock components, and pull up to disconnect them.
Burlington, MA—Circor International Inc. recently agreed to acquire the remaining 40% interest in its Chinese joint venture, Suzhou KF Valve Co. Ltd. (SKVC) for $6.75 million from its partner, Suzhou Valve Factory.
The embedded software market had a year of "transition" in 2003 from the previous two years’ "global economic challenges"—with general improvements likely to come—according to a Nov. 2004 Venture Development Corp.
Linear interpolation and circular interpolation applications may call for a slow down around corners with a small radius or discontinuities in the vector path. There are two methods to achieve this slow down. The first is to have the user/application on host perform the path and generate a local speed to each vector segment.
This paper is an abstract for the “Backlash Compensation Methods” on-line tutorial. The complete tutorial with audio can be viewed at: http://www.galilmc.com/training/webconf.html. This course discusses the subject of backlash and offers some methods for compensation.
MicroSAM on-line process gas chromatograph features miniature size, valveless live injection with software-adjustable injection volume, maintenance-free column switching and electronic pressure control, and accurate measurement results by multiple parallel micro-detectors.
QNX Software Systems recently accepted an offer to be bought by Harman International Industries Inc., which makes Harman Kardon, JBL, and Becker audio speakers and other products. QNX reports that the acquisition will accelerate its growth, and help it become the preferred operating system for advanced embedded applications.
Chicago, IL—B&R reported at a recent press conference that more than more than 20,000 Ethernet Powerlink nodes have been successfully deployed in series machines and embedded systems during the past two years.
JD Series Keylock switches feature maximum current rating with resistive load of 4 A at 125 V ac or 2 A at 250 V ac.
Seminars, workshops, and tutorials are all on the agenda for the upcoming Measurement Science Conference scheduled for Jan. 17-21, 2005, in Anaheim, CA.
Highland Heights, KY; Tinley Park, IL—To provide technology-enabling systems, General Cable Corp. and Panduit recently announced an alliance, and will soon introduce their new PanGen structured cabling solutions for diverse network infrastructure requirements.
SMD 0603 ultra-bright LEDs come in a range of six colors in dimensions of 1.6 mm by 0.8 mm and a low height profile of 0.6 mm.
Actiris350 coordinate measurement machine (CMM) is a multi-purpose quality control system used to check dimensional and geometric accuracy on a range of parts.
eXtremeDB version 2.3 memory embedded database system now has an option to write database changes into a transaction log on persistent media, combining the performance of an in-memory database with the persistence of a conventional disk-based one.
Said to be industry’s first complete, single-chip 10/100 Mbps Ethernet device for end-node connectivity, 16-bit MC9S12NE64 microcontroller replaces more complex multi-chip offerings.
Austin, TX—To reduce system complexity and design costs, Freescale Semiconductor Inc. introduced what it reports is the industry’s first complete, single-chip, 10/100 Mbps Ethernet device at its first Embedded Connectivity Summit, Oct. 4-6, at the Hilton Austin Hotel.
Thermo Electron Corp. recently completed its acquisition of InnaPhase Corp. for approximately $65 million in cash, subject to a post-closing adjustment. InnaPhase's more than 100 employees supply laboratory information management systems (LIMS) for pharmaceutical and biotechnology markets, and expects revenues of approximately $26 million in 2004.
Boston, MA—Bsquare introduced a packaged, security-focused service, Secure JumpStart, for device makers at the recent Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) 2004.
Metal Max connector encapsulates an RJ45 connector in a new metal housing.
Worldwide shipments of embedded Linux operating systems, add-on components, and related services are expected to grow at a 22% compound annual growth rate from $65.2 million in 2003 to $118.5 million in 2006, according to "2004 Embedded Software Strategic Market Intelligence Program" by Venture Development Corp.
Palo Alto, CA—Worldwide revenues from magnetic sensor components and modules/subsystems are projected to increase 10-11% per year from $746.6 million in 2003 to more than $1.56 billion in 2010, according to “World Magnetic Sensor Components and Modules/Subsystems Market” by Frost & Sullivan.
Upgrades to two control application and simulation software packages include MatLab 7 and Simulink 6.
UniCal Series handheld calibrators meet the needs of instrumentation engineers and quality managers in laboratory and fieldwork.
Recently announced by Acrosser U.S.A. Inc.—an ISO-9001 certified embedded platform service provider for OEMs—is the bundling of Microsoft Windows CE .net image with the company’s AR-B1551 embedded PC-104 single-board computer (SBC).
Enea Embedded Technology—a subsidiary of Enea Data AB, based in Stockholm, Sweden—just announced what it calls "the first integrated software platform for high-availability telecom and datacom systems that combines embedded Linux with a hard real-time operating system [RTOS]."
Cincinnati, OH—Advantech Corp. reports that its Industrial Automation Group has released a 17-inch, color SXGA, TFT LCD, flat-panel monitor, FPM-3170, designed for industrial applications.
Metso Corp. reports that it's planning to layoff or outsource as many as 1,300 employees at its Metso Paper division's Nordic and North American operations to reduce expenses and regain profitability. Approximately half of the job cuts will consist of layoffs, while the other half will include outsourcing and "actions comparable to outsourcing.
DAQ24USB-5V is the newest member of the DAQ24USB digitizer family.
Upgraded Ethernet TCP/IP programmable fieldbus controller Series 750-841 has double the data memory of the previous version, a multi-task operating system, and the ability to complete on-line programming changes.
There's no question that board- and chip-level control products are shrinking in physical size, while continuing to add embedded functions. It's part of a natural progression to smaller, portable, more functional devices and gadgets desirable in the commercial and consumer world. The trend extends into industry, as well, where original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) face continual demands to re...
Columbia, MD—Airbee Wireless and Link Plus Corp. have formed a strategic partnership for co-developing new products around the emerging ZigBee (IEEE 802.15.4) wireless standard.
Everett, WA—Intermec IP Corp. has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Rockville, MD-based Matrics Inc. that relates to Intermec's radio frequency identification (RFID) patents.
McLean, VA—Shipments of industrial laser equipment and systems for North America and U.S. exports shot up 40% to a total of $122.7 million in the first quarter of 2004 (1Q04) compared to 1Q03, according to new research by the Laser Systems Product Group (LSPG) of the Asso-ciation for Manufacturing Technology (AMT).
SID 2004: Touchscreen technology, full-color system-on-glass, touch application among conference highlights
A new vibration-based touchscreen technology designated as "breakthrough" by its developer, and a full-color "system-on-glass" input display, were among notable highlights at the Society for Information Display international conference, symposium, and exhibition, held in Seattle, WA, last month.
Nicolet Antaris IGS FT-IR multi-component gas analyzer provides research-grade performance, speed, and sensitivity in a package designed for industrial environments and many industry-specific gas analysis needs.
Saline, MI—Monroe PMP, with the support of its partner, Saline Lectronics, recently acquired the net assets of Xycom Automation Inc.’s VME business unit.
2600T safety transmitter is SIL2 certified according to IEC 61508 and TÜV approved.
Picking and placing parts has been common in pneumatics for many years. Devices typically apply one of two principles to do the picking: Venturi or Bernoulli. A vacuum generator based on the Venturi principle creates a low pressure in a suction cup. The difference between the low pressure created by the Venturi and atmospheric pressure presses the part into the suction cup.
Atlanta, GA—More open systems have created “plug and plague concerns,” says Stephen L. Thomas, associate project engineer for Olin Chlor Alkali Products, during his presentation at ABB's Automation World conference on April 21.
Innovative, high-tech products were in the hunt for Best-of-Show Awards at "electronicaUSA with Embedded Systems Conference 2004.
San Francisco, CA—RadiSys Corp. launched its new Endura SH845GV long-life, Intel 845GV ATX board at the recent “electronicaUSA with Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) 2004” at the Moscone Convention Center.
Business.Flex PKS suite of software solutions delivers production performance improvements for process industries. Release 130 unifies business goals and production automation to improve decision-making and execution, helping users achieve more reliable operations and increased manufacturing flexibility and business optimization.
San Francisco, CA—Silicon Motion Inc. is showing how it supports many operating systems and CPUs by exhibiting reference platforms from AMD, Antelope, Applied Data Systems, Intel and Renesas during “electronicaUSA with the Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) 2004.”
San Francisco, CA—Green Hills Software Inc. announced at “electronicaUSA with the Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) 2004, Mar. 29-April 1 at the Moscone Convention Center, that its velOSity real-time microkernel, the foundation of its Integrity real-time operating system (RTOS), is now available independently.
Your legacy Westinghouse WDPF needs to be replaced but you can not afford the high cost, the high risk, and lengthy downtime.
San Francisco, CA—To simplify control and monitoring for industrial, optical networking and automotive applications, Analog Devices Inc. (ADI) introduced its ADuC702x precision analog microcontroller on March 29 at “electronicaUSA with Embedded Systems Conference” (ESC).
Technolgy Update from Invensys Foxboro Replacing the Aging Process Automation System: Finding the Best Option
Today, for a variety of reasons, tremendous pressures are building that will require plant managers to update their aging automation systems during the next decade. Defining the need for and exploring alternative approaches to the modernization of manufacturing systems is the subject of this report.
Minnetonka,MN—To produce one product that can support wired and wireless networking, Digi International has launched its Digi Connect Wi-ME and Digi Connect Wi-EM, which it reports are the industry's first fully customizable, secure, 32-bit, 802.11b, wireless, embedded modules.
Irvine, CA—Lantronix Inc. has launched its new WiPort wireless embedded device server, which it reports is the first to offer both IEEE 802.11b wireless and wired Ethernet connectivity in one compact, integrated module.
Dates for the 50th International Instrumentation Symposium have been announced by ISA, the Instrumentation, Systems, and Automation Society.
ViscoLab 450 viscometer measures viscosity in laboratory environments, in one of 10 ranges from 0.5 to 10,000 centipoise with an accuracy equal to ±1%.
San Jose, CA—Cypress Semiconductor Corp. recently introduced its WirelessUSB LR device (CYWUSB6935), which is a low-cost, 2.4 GHz radio system-on-a-chip that delivers up to 50 meters or more of wireless connectivity for commercial and industrial applications.
VeriColor high-resolution color verification and identification system is designed to reduce color errors in manufacturing assembly and sorting operations.
Methode Electronics Inc. recently reported that it intends to take an after-tax charge of up to $0.12 per share during its remaining 2004 fiscal year. This charge will include approximately $1.8 million for costs associated with Methode's recently completed merger to eliminate its Class B stock and the unsolicited tender offer for its Class B stock, and up to $2.
Rising costs of software development should not come as a surprise, but its impact on the automotive sector from 1999 through 2002 is an eye opener. Software now accounts for more than one-third of total automobile production costs, according to a Venture Development Corp. (VDC) worldwide survey of automotive embedded developers published in October 2003.
Marathon Technologies Corporation, a developer and supplier of fault and disaster tolerant solutions for Microsoft Windows platforms, has announced that Fujitsu Limited will include Marathon's patented Endurance Virtual FTserver software in its Intel-based Primergy server line.
Louisville, KY—Sypris Solutions Inc. recently bought a manufacturing plant in Morganton, NC, from Dana Corp. for about $22 million, and will begin furnishing Dana with drive train components as part of an eight-year supply agreement accompanying the purchase.
SpacePC 4200 CPU fanless 5x86 class PC/104-Plus processor board is based on the 32-bit AMD Elan SC520 microcontroller.
Industrial laser shipments for North America and U.S. exports were down approximately 10% to $86 million in the third quarter of 2003 (3Q03) from the same period a year earlier, according to recent research by the Laser Systems Product Group (LSPG) of the Association for Manufacturing Technology (AMT).
MVS-8501 frame grabber, part of the MVS-8500 series, provides the high-speed acquisition capability of the MVS-8504 in cost-effective single-channel architecture that supports up to four multiplexed cameras. Designed for next generation high-speed analog cameras that use progressive scan CCD sensor technology, the unit is backward compatible with standard-speed analog-interlaced and progressive...
Industrial Application Server (IAS), version 1.5, from Wonderware is an application delivery platform built on the ArchestrA software architecture. IAS offers new enhancements that provide more capable FactorySuite A2 solutions, which enable increased performance, robustness, upward scalability, high availability, improved alarm and system management, and object validation.
Sioux Falls, SD; Madison, WI—Raven Industries Inc. announced that it has acquired substantially all assets of privately held Fluent Systems LLC for approximately $1 million in cash.
Sunnyvale, CA—Ultimodule Inc. recently introduced its portfolio of modular hardware and software building blocks that accelerate time to market for embedded systems.
General Cable Corp. announced Oct. 28 that it is closing its manufacturing facility in Taunton, MA. This 131,000 square-ft plant employs 77 people, and produces bare copper strand and PVC jacketing compounds. It supplies these products to General Cable's other manufacturing facilities, which produce a variety of wire and cable products, primarily in the company's Indu...
Anyone using National Instruments (NI) LabView software should consider downloading free thermocouple calibration software that NI spokespersons say improves the accuracy of thermocouple measurements by as much as 400%.
SpectraHub spectrometer/detector interface is compatible with all Acton Research detection systems.
Determining that a control system works before you build it seems like a contradiction. At best, it represents a considerable challenge. Years ago—when the industry was young—you could build a prototype, try it out, make modifications, try them out, and so on. Today, this approach generally falls short for three main reasons.
Fluid Components new GF03 Flowmeter achieves the accuracy, range, and resolution required to meet air pollution regulations, but costs up to 50% less than alternative technologies.
Germantown, WI—Wago recently introduced its Ethernet TCP/IP programmable fieldbus controller (PFC), part number 750-841, which features 100 Mbps Ethernet, IEC-61131-3, and open architecture software interfaces and protocols.
114 Series Compaxx beacons are light-duty, PLC-compatible signals less than 4-in. tall for either surface or conduit mounting. Designed to fit in all kinds of locations, the signals are sold individually or in convenient six-pack containers. Available in steady-on or flashing incandescent or xenon strobe, the units feature a NEMA 4X enclosure and come with a shatter-resistance, polycarbonate le...
SM 3000 paperless videographic recorder features up to 36 recording channels and IP66/NEMA 4X environmental protection. Suitable for a wide range of process applications, including food preparation, beverage, chemicals, water and wastewater, facilities, and more, the recorder can be mounted in harsh environments and hose down areas.
Lake Forest, CA—To add support for Microsoft’s Windows Server 2003 operating system and Stratus’ ftServer hardware, Wonderware released Sept. 25 its new FactorySuite A2 Industrial Application Server, version 1.5 which is built on the ArchestrA software architecture.
Boston, MA—Aonix released its Perc 4.1 platform on Sept. 15 at the Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) Boston 2003. Perc 4.1 is a Java virtual machine that provides a pacing agent and profiling tools that gives developers accurate, real-time control of their applications.
Video games simulate characters, environment, and storylines of many movies to maximize revenue related to your latest cinema experience. These include "Finding Nemo" and "The Matrix," among many others. Software applications simulate the controls and manufacturing environments of projects to maximize revenue connected with your latest automation experience.
Computer-based simulations abound in the 21st century. The most familiar examples are just for fun—video games, animated toys, amusement park rides, and the like. But simulations can serve a serious purpose in the manufacturing world as well. The functions of a proposed control system can be tested with a simulated plant, allowing mistakes to be identified in a cost-free virtual world.
The single-board computer (SBC) has its roots in the need for application-specific computing power in the control industry. Early designs go back 20 years or more. And although the designs were often based on the idea that an SBC could be just that—a single-board device—board-level component size, power requirements, and the need for expanding systems options often made SBCs only ...
Salt Lake City, UT; Amaro Udine, Italy—Parvus Corp. and EuroTech SpA announced Aug. 21 that they've merged to capture more market share for embedded computer products and system integration services and become a global leader in products for embedded PC/104 computers.
Twinsburg, OH—Pepperl+Fuchs recently announced that it has acquired the Enclosure Protection Systems (EPS) division of Bebco Industries.
Standard flat panel display series now includes a 28-key, legendable membrane keypad and is available in 12.1, 15, 18.1, and 20.1 in. sizes.
Model RH101 hygro-thermometer includes a built-in, non-contact infrared (IR) thermometer. IR portion provides measurements ranging from –58 to 932 ºF (-50 to 500 ºC) in locations that are difficult or unsafe to reach.
National Instruments— Greatly Reduce Your Control System Development Time National Instruments LabVIEW Real-Time graphical development software and Compact FieldPoint hardware can help you reduce your control system development time. Learn how easy it is with the combination of National Instruments software and hardware to create reliable and deterministic control applications that you can deploy as distributed or stand alone systems. To take an online tutorial or request a product guide click here: click here ASIC versus FPGA issues Hot-swappable controller for cPCI applications Partnering on high-density cPCI serial card: Kontron, Comtrol Think about embedding a PLC board Worth reading: How to streamline embedded designs' Control Engineering resources ASIC versus FPGA issues Application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs) and field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) present alternative design approaches for embedded control designers. Each approach offers tempting tradeoffs: ASIC advantages include high-performance features, lower power usage, and robustness of a custom chip product, which come at a price due to the associated upfront costs. However, ASICs require longer development times and also commitment to a specific chip design or target application without the luxury of reprogramming. On the other hand, FPGA's strong suit is design flexibility.
Texas Instruments- New Development tools for Embedded ControlTI's TMS320C2000(tm) DSP controllers provide the ultimate combination of MCU peripheral integration, C efficiency and ease-of-use with the performance of TI DSPs. New Development Bundles for the TMS320F2812 DSP Controller These bundles simplify the design process and allow you to fully utilize the capabilities of the industry's highest performance, control optimized DSPs. New Enhanced TMS320LF2407 Tool Bundle This new development tool bundle gives designers a complete and cost effective way to take their designs to production and is the easiest way to fully evaluate and begin developing code for embedded applications.
Miami, FL—Socket Communications Inc. (Newark, CA) and Isochron Data Corp. (Austin, TX) announced May 5 that they're jointly developing and deploying Bluetooth solutions that allow wireless communications between pocket PCs and industrial equipment.
The technology basket that represents today's mix of "sensors" includes much more than the standard sensors to which we're accustomed. Wireless networking, intelligent systems, MEMS (microelectromechanical systems), MST (microsystem technologies), nanotechnology, biosensors, and others are firmly in the mix.
Raleigh, NC—To support complex embedded applications and provide familiar functionality, Vapid Software Inc. launched Mar. 31 its Vapid Log event logging system.
To complement its motion control portfolio, Agilent Technologies Inc. (Palo Alto, CA) has acquired exclusive rights to absolute encoder technology from Optolab Microsystems AG (Erfurt, Germany), a supplier of optoelectronic solutions. While its motion control products already include absolute encoders, Agilent plans to introduce new encoders later this year, based on Optolab's technology for use in industrial automation applications. GE Fanuc Automation North America Inc.
Though it seems like only yesterday the Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) was just learning how to walk, so to speak, the conference has now reached its 15th year. This latest "teenage" edition of ESC, featuring more than 300 exhibitors and a conference with 146 technical sessions presented by 90 industry experts, expects to draw more than 11,000 attendees to San Francisco's Moscone Conventio...
San Diego, CA - Eurotherm, Action Instruments Action Pak AP4003-0001 is a field configurable, socket mounted device capable of accepting any three-wire potentiometer input from 100 to 100,000 ohms and providing a 0-10V, 0-5V, 0-20mA, or 4-20mA dc output.
Chicago, IL—Digi Connect 50 device server, exhibited by Digi International Inc. (Minnetonka, MN) at National Manufacturing Week 2003, uses the NET +50 NetSilicon processor to provide complete external network connectivity that can be customized for specific applications.
About 68% of companies expect to grow more in 2003 than in 2002, according to a new survey by National Manufacturing Week (NMW) 2003's organizers Reed Exhibition Cos. (Norwalk, CT), with results analyzed by AMR Research (Boston, MA). "This is more optimism than we've seen in doing these surveys in the past year and a half," said Bill Swanton, AMR's vp and research fellow, at...
Rockville, MD - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced Feb. 3rd it would withdraw its recently released 21 CFR Part 11 electronic copies guidance draft.
Santa Clara, CA—Transmeta Corp. launched Jan. 6 its new, energy-efficient Crusoe Special Embedded (SE) processors for x86 embedded applications, including industrial automation and scientific instrumentation.
Pasadena, TX— ClearView On-Line Color and Haze Analyzer measures liquid petroleum fuels in a side stream or directly in the pipeline, providing simultaneous color and haze determinations continuously and completely on-line. Using a single measurement probe, the device monitors ASTM, Saybolt, or APHA Platinum Cobalt scales, in addition to Colonial Haze.
LTM-8201C and LTM-8203C temperature and humidity monitoring and control systems are said to provide low-cost, standalone solutions for up to 32 input points connected on one to three data lines.
Austin, TX; Jacksonville, FL—CMX Systems and Cygnal Integrated Products launched Dec. 3 an Embedded Ethernet Reference Design, which features the CMX-MicroNet TCP/IP stack and Cygnal's C8051F124DK Development Kit.
Tucson, AZ - NewMonics has released PERC 4.0, a development platform for complex embedded systems.
Akron, OH— Model DI-1000TC instrumentation modules are designed for temperature measurements using thermocouples. Intended for all temperature measurement, from controlled laboratory to acrid heavy industrial environments, the devices feature channel-to-channel isolation and support time synchronization of measurements that ensures that readings taken simultaneously are, in fact, simulta...
Phoenix, AZ - New options will soon be available from Motorola for embedded systems that require high performance microcontroller (MCU) and digital signal processor (DSP) functionality with integrated Flash memory.
St. Paul, MN - Lion Precision, a supplier of capacitance sensing technology, announced the formation of a new product group specializing in inductive displacement sensing technology.
Nine members of the Open DeviceNet Vendors Association (ODVA, Boca Raton, FL) released new DeviceNet-related products and described solutions on Oct. 1 at ODVA's 8th annual Global Networks 2002 conference and annual general meeting.
San Jose, CA and Pittsburgh, PA - Ampro Computers Inc. announced October 14 the immediate availability of a certified, production-quality Linux distribution from TimeSys for its PowerPC ISA- based EnCore PP1 module.
San Jose, CA-The Embedded Systems Academy (ESAcademy) announced October 14 availability of MicroCANopen, an entry-level, minimized CANopen implementation. CANopen is a high level networking protocol based on the Controller Area Network.
Chicago, IL - The Water Environment Federation marked its diamond anniversary at the WEFTEC 2002 Annual Conference and Exhibition.
Livermore, CA and Salt Lake City, UT - parvus Corp. announced September 26 that it has helped Sandia National Laboratories develop a portable Linux cluster computer system based on commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) PC/104 technology.
San Leandro, CA- OSIsoft announced Oct. 1 the second release of its Embedded Component Historian Object (ECHO), which is a database technology for time-series data archiving. This latest version introduces four new capabilities: online backup and restore functionality; support for archiving BLOBs and BSTrs; CFR 21 Part 11 compliance documentation; and an OPC server interface.
Phoenix, AZ - Motorola Inc.'s Semiconductor Products Sector is now offering a range of low-gravity (g)inertial sensors (also called accelerometers), ranging from 1.5g to 8g.
San Jose, CA— TorqueMate Plus is a flexible torque analyzer with 5 V dc capability to seamlessly interface with new technology brushless rotary transducers. Torque and angle readouts from pulse tools with strong vibrations can now be accurately recorded and analyzed. It also quickly identifies the correct range of any smart-enabled transducers, thus adding plug-and-play ease of transduce...
In this issue: CSIA's white paper defines system integrator market CSIA adds membership category for start-up integrators Vintage paper machine gets fresh start with new PC-based controls Profibus seminars for integrators offered free-of-charge Lockwood Green presents advice on working with integrators ABB, software and integrator partners combine robotics and AGVs Reference design speeds development of CAN and Ethernet-based embedded systems Control Engineering plans October webcasts on manufacturing productivity Search database of more than 1,000 system integrators, eight ways CSIA's white paper defines system integrator market A recent white paper published by the Control System Integrators Association (CSIA, Exton, PA) traces the history and helps define the system integration field and its participants. The 26-page report, 'CSIA White Paper: The Market for Control System Integrators,' was prepared for CSIA by Walt Boyes, of Spitzer and Boyes LLC. The document reports that data collected by CSIA indicates that the market for control system integration considerably larger than previously believed. CSIA estimates that the worldwide gross revenues for professional control system integrator companies is $12 billion per year, based on the 2,200 companies that meet CSIA's definitions and qualifications as control system integrators.
While attendance and exhibitors at some major tradeshows have decreased in recent years, organizers of this year's International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS 2002) reported July 3 that their event is within a couple of percentage points of selling out in all nine of its pavilions.
Mansfield, Mass.— Axeda Systems announced July 1 the immediate availability of release 1.5 of its Axeda Access application, a component of the Axeda Device Relationship Management (DRM) System. This solution provides secure, Internet-based remote desktop sharing between service and support specialists and remote computers installed at customer sites. Axeda Access 1.5 expands the supported platforms to provide access to devices running any version of Microsoft Windows and popular versions of the UNIX operating system, including Sun Solaris 8 and Linux. The release also enhances features including unattended operation, device access control, multiple concurrent user sessions, and provides performance improvements.
Embedded can mean almost whatever each definer states. Most people would equate embedded with small, but a Eurocard 6U size CompactPCI or VME computer platform often classifies as embedded. The term can also imply dedicated purpose, that is, a control system specifically designed for one application.
San Jose, Calif. The west coast edition of Sensors Expo 2002 featured numerous innovations on May 21-23. Advanced Embedded Systems (Marana, Ariz.) unveiled RT12-4204 wireless transceiver designed to link remote sensors to data acquisition inputs. Operating in the license-free ISM band at either 900 MHz or 2.
In this issue: Control Engineering in March and April Conferences and trade shows A little buggy Soft control automates turbine generator Steeplechase Software makes jump at NIA Is America moving from manufacturing? PC-based robots The merger urge Industrial information infrastructure Another dot com More products from National Industrial Automation Show Control Engineering in March and April Check out the best products of 1999 as chosen by the editors of Control Engineering in the March issue . Winners in the PC-based Control category included Iconics, Intellution, National Instruments, and Think & Do Software. Also in March, the product focus on PLCs revealed CE readers are moving toward smaller and smaller PLCs.
In this issue: Special Embedded Systems Conference Issue Plus Patents and lawsuits update Petri Nets and Grafcet for modeling discrete logic Spring Embedded Systems Conference In Ohio, we talk about spring as a time of 'breaking out,' meaning flowers, tree buds, little animals, and joggers. In San Francisco last week at the spring Embedded Systems Conference, attendees and new product announcements were what were breaking out. Once again aisles were filled with engineers looking for the latest products and technology trends, as well as soaking up information in the technical conference sessions. My overall impression was that almost all exhibitors were much more optimistic about business than last year.
In this issue: National Manufacturing Week Web Services Linux USDATA seminars National Manufacturing Week Next week is National Manufacturing Week, four trade shows in one venue. The trade shows are Industrial Automation, Plant Engineering, Design Engineering, and Industrial IT. Also included is a Motion Control pavilion.
The HMC line of heavy-duty rectangular connectors features simplified assembly and installation.
Feel like you're pedaling (and peddling) as fast you can without traction? How big is your automation budget? How big's your maintenance budget? Talk much with your chief financial officer about how automation can help meet and exceed business goals? Don't assume that others in the organization—in maintenance, operations, or finance—know the long-term benefits automation can bring ...
Austin, Tex. - As part of a strategy to assist embedded systems engineers develop fast, re-programmable embedded systems using cost-effective Flash memory, Motorola Inc.'s Semiconductor Products Sector is providing complimentary licenses of Metrowerks CodeWarrior tools for the HC08 Flash MCU family.
Santa Clara, Calif. - Datastick Systems Inc. has announced availability of Datastick Connection 2.0 and the alternative Datastick Connection Plus 2.0, the software component of the Palm-OS-based MyCorder DAS-1206 Data Acquisition System. The system allows users to take sophisticated scientific and industrial measurements in the field, record them, display them on a Palm handheld, and sync them at a later time to their desktop computers for analysis.
Printing and paper processing machines must not pull in more than one sheet of paper, carton or plastic at a time.
PureAire has developed a continuous monitoring system that detects and measures low levels of hydrogen in gaseous process streams.
Saline, Mich. - Xycom Automation Inc., a subsidiary of Pro-face America, announced March 25 that it has entered into a strategic OEM agreement with Motorola Computer Group, a part of Motorola Inc. This agreement allows Xycom to purchase, re-label, and integrate select Motorola 68K VMEbus products as part of a system solution for Xycom customers.
San Francisco, Calif. - There are many announcements with the first day of the Embedded Systems Conference at San Francisco's Moscone Center this week.
Cambridge, Mass. - SatCon Technology Corp. announced on Feb. 26 that its Semiconductor Products business unit introduced a new high-speed, 5.7-gigahertz, radio frequency (RF) power amplifier for wireless large area network (WLAN) applications at the Wireless Systems Design Conference and Expo, Feb. 26-28, in San Jose, California.
Model 812FB gas alarm system consists of a single sensor, redundant gas detection control modules packaged in a NEMA 4X control enclosure.
Austin, Tex. - A new development tool kit from Metrowerks allows developers of Net services software applications to quickly and easily create Novell NetWare applications, NetWare Loadable Modules (NLMs) and device drivers using the popular CodeWarrior Integrated Development Environment (IDE) and tool set.
Chelmsford, Mass. - Brooks Automation Inc., a supplier of tool and factory hardware and software automation solutions for the global semiconductor industry, announced December 14, 2001 that it has completed the purchase of Zygo Corp's Automation Systems Group.
Beaverton, Ore. and Poway, Calif. - TenAsys and Annasoft announced an agreement in which they will work together to provide a combination of deterministic, hard real-time control with Microsoft Windows operating systems.
Poway, Calif. - Annasoft is offering special promotional pricing on the Windows XP Embedded Configuration Kit through February 28.
Alameda, Calif. - To provide integrated networking and telecommunications solutions, Wind River Systems Inc. announced Dec. 5 that it will support Motorola's recently launched MPC8250 and MPC8241 processors.
Knoxville, Tenn. - Computational Systems (CSI), a unit of Emerson Process Management (Austin, Tex.), recently introduced its SpeedVue Model 430 laser speed sensor.
Northvale, N.J.— The Series SLEX/NW light/sightglass combination eliminates the expense of a second sightglass normally used in view the contents of a processing vessel in a hazardous classified location. The device supplies both lighting and the ability to view contents through a single unit, reducing the cost of installation.
Stamford, Ct.— The PTC-20 Series is reportedly designed to provide the correct timer for the users' applications. The series is divided into three models. These include the PTC-21 base unit, the PTC-23 high performance model that offers advanced features, such as dual setpoints and 1 ms resolution, and the PTC-22 repeat cycle model that provides a repeat cycle (batch stop, batch co...
Camarillo, Calif. - phoenix|x-ray Systems + Services Inc. introduced the pcba|sentry, a new x-ray inspection system that fills the void between fast automated inline and offline semi-automatic or manual failure analysis systems.
Round Rock, Tex. - TouchSystems today announced the release of Apollo Open, an open frame TFT touch LCD.
Research Triangle Park, N.C. - Red Hat Inc. October 22 announced that Red Hat Linux 7.2 and Red Hat Linux Professional are now available in stores, through computer resellers, and direct from Red Hat.
A smaller but more focused Interkama closed its doors on 28 September having received nearly 40,000 visitors, including a large percentage from outside Germany.
Santa Cruz, Calif.— ST80-IS is a high-performance, noncontact thermometer with key features added to safely allow its use in dangerous, potentially explosive or flammable environments. This new model has received Factory Mutual approval as an intrinsically safe device. ST80-IS features a sealed battery compartment, distance to spot ratio of 50-to-1, -25 to 1,400 °F working tem...
Carlsbad, Calif.— RAMM 2000 provides maximum RF link performance when using 900 MHz or 2.4 GHz unlicensed links. The device eliminates costly and bulky RF coaxial cable that often contributes to poor performance and system reliability. A one-piece all-weather unit incorporates a high-gain 13-dBi low profile panel antenna and a high-performance 1 W (900 MHz) or 0.
Stamford, Conn.—Portable CL123 Multifunction Calibrator is said to be highly accurate for generating and measuring voltage, current, frequency, and temperature of type K, J, E and T (°C and °F) thermocouples. Among CL123's features are 4-20 mA (1 kV load, 24 V loop supply); 0-100.00 mV, 0-1.
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada —Maple 7, mathematical computational software, now features added support for web connections and new differential equation solvers. Supported platforms include Microsoft Windows, Macintosh, Linux, and Unix. Enhancements include complete units and dimensions management, plus a resource of hundreds of free application-specific examples, demonstrations, and "head ...
San Diego, Calif. -Model 4500 Series ultra-high accuracy thermometer is said to take metrology-level temperature measurement to the production floor, laboratory, and the field. System accuracy isatured functions of the Model 4500 are hold, °F/°C display, min/max readings, store, DT, and three-decimal place mode.
In this issue: Patent discussions Trade shows Introducing Entivity Siemens does PCs Best bosses look for allies 15 years of CAN Distributed control paper from Russia Siemens offers online training Cool products Sign up for our Technology Webcast Patent discussions Almost every discussion at the recent National Industrial Automation Show (part of National Manufacturing Week, March 5-8 in Chicago) eventually turned to patents. Primarily, discussion revolved around Schneider Electric's patent infringement lawsuit against Opto 22. Some discussed the other Schneider patents that involve OPC.
The Midwest version of this year's three Embedded Systems Conferences was held here on July 9-11. Though expected to end up smaller than the Sept. 6 - 9, 2001, event in Boston, attendees at Chicago's Navy Pier packed the aisles to discuss products and technologies. Keynoter and PC industry veteran, Robert X.
Minneapolis, Minn . - Designed for use in harsh environments, CA4080 Edge Sheet Detection Sensor provides a solution for such applications as automotive transfer and stamping presses. It provides a sensing range of 4 mm (0.16-in.) on sheet aluminum, 10 mm (0.4-in.) on cold rolled steel 1.6 mm (0.06-in.) or thicker, and 20 mm (0.8-in.) on flat stock.
Irvine, Calif. -Burkert recently constructed a standard diaphragm valve design using high purity materials, such as investment cast, forged stainless steel, or plastic, for use in pharmaceutical, food and beverage, biotechnology, cosmetics, semiconductor and other applications requiring sanitary services. When fitted with Burkert's TOP Control head, Burkert claims the valve provides precise proportional control.
Foxborough, Mass. -iDownTime is designed to provide real-time information about the causes and duration of production line downtime. iDownTime version 2.0 includes the ability to simultaneously monitor downtime events for multiple production lines and assigns each line a unique downtime detection model based on Mountain System's (Green Bay, Wis.) manufacturing execution system application.
Round Rock, Tex.— IndustraTouch, a compact, durable, all-in-one touch computer, is targeted for general industrial applications. IndustraTouch features a small footprint and easy integration into any application at a competitive price. IndustraTouch is a multimedia, Microsoft Windows-based, industrial touch panel PC System with a standard Celeron/ Pentium III.
GE Fanuc Automation (Charlottesville, Va.) recently formed partnerships with VMIC (Huntsville, Ala.) to develop embedded PC technology-based devices and with Marathon Technologies (Boxborough, Mass.) to sell its Assured Availability server solutions for Microsoft Windows environments. Krohne Inc. (Peabody, Mass.
San Francisco, Calif.— While many recent trade shows have drawn fewer exhibitors and visitors, this year's Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) initiated its new venue, San Francisco's Moscone Center, with packed aisles and people who actually attended the conference sessions. Linux continues to generate buzz, but the operating system is maturing with companies showing real products built ...
Like many in the embedded systems industry, industrial automation vendors have watched and waited for the validation of Java in their domain. At the top of the list of concerns are performance problems caused by simplistic implementations of the Java virtual machine (JVM) and garbage collection algorithm.
Vancouver, British Columbia., Canada -Building on its deviceCOM for Microsoft Windows CE and NT, Intrinsyc's new deviceCOM for Linux enables customers to use Windows at the enterprise level, while taking advantage of Linux benefits for embedded devices. Using Windows and Linux and bridging the enterprise and device levels, this represents a major step toward the development of multi-operating system solutions. Intrinsyc Software www.intrinsyc.com Added information Intrinsyc deviceCOM was originally developed to provide distributed COM services on Microsoft Windows CE.
RealPlayer | Windows Media.
RealPlayer | Windows Media.
RealPlayer | Windows Media.
Palatine, Ill. -Two new models of Modicon Momentum M1E processor adapter integrate an Ethernet port to network data acquisition, peer-to-peer communications, and I/O scanning. Five embedded web pages, usable with a standard web browser, read status and diagnostic information from the processor, extending Schneider's Transparent Factory architecture.
RealPlayer | Windows Media.
In the soft logic, automation, and embedded systems markets, users typically spend several hundred dollars on communications modules, which prevents high-volume implementation of communications and networking functions.To give users an improved, inexpensive solution, Synergetic Micro Systems (Downers Grove, Ill.
Year-end wrap-up stories provide closure. Prognosticators expound about what will be. Either direction can be fun...Leading news stories of 2001: I'd pick Control Engineering readers' abilities over any set of clairvoyants, soothsayers, and fortune-tellers...e-mail me your predictions for the top news stories of 2001 in automation, instrumentation, and control.
Solon, O. -Swagelok Tube Fitting is an advanced, patented technology designed to help installers make more consistent, leak-tight, high-performance tube connections instrumentation, industrial and hydraulic applications. Featuring a back-ferrule design engineered to hinge during installation, Swagelok Tube Fitting delivers greater sealing and gripping action and reduces the potential for improper installation and leakage.
Automation software integration within and among manufacturing sites is becoming more challenging with the increasing mergers, acquisitions, and ties from control into the rest of the enterprise.System integrators accustomed to working with software offer advice on moving from plant-floor to enterprise-wide integration across sites and through the supply-chain.
The Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) held its last visit here on Sept. 25-28 with exhibits packed into every available nook and cranny. Next year, ESC's West Coast incarnation will move to San Francisco's Mosconi Center on March 5-8, 2001. As usual, this eclectic mix of technologies showed off many hardware and software products bringing power to ever-smaller pac...
Ask a simple question and get a simple answer, right? That wasn't the case when Control Engineering polled readers on features they desired in a computer board. One question generated over 20 replies that included consistent, reliable operating systems, higher upgrade flexibility, scalable parallel processor, easy assembly, standardized structures, equipment and design support, small foo...
VenturCom Inc. announced Sept. 21 its acquisition of Phar Lap Software Inc. (also Cambridge, Mass.), developer of Embedded ToolSuite (ETS), consisting of Embedded Studio Express, a Visual Studio Add-In, and a 32-bit x86-based real-time operating system based on Microsoft's Win32 API.
Edax Portable Products, a division of Edax Inc., recently introduced its CT 2000 non-destructive x-ray fluorescence (XRF) scanner. Edax reports that CT 2000 offers the most sensitivity and accuracy of any XRF product to date.The company adds that recent advances in encapsulation and peltier cooling give CT 2000 unparalleled reliability and detection limits as low a...
Phoenix, Ariz. -Sequencia mTrack real-time software provides plant-level material management and tracking that can be tied to corporate material management systems, providing process industries with just-in-time, management, traceability, geneology for batch execution systems. The software is a component of Sequencia's Responsive Process Manufacturing Series (rpmSeries) suite. Sequencia.
Green Bay, Wis. -Mountain Systems has added Excel Add-in to the Proficy suite of software modules. Proficy Excel Add-in is a data extraction tool that allows the presentation of Intellution's Advanced Historian (AH) data in Microsoft Excel.
Atlantic City, N.J.— Developing and ensuring that flexible process automation designs are robust and perform as expected before submitting them for bids or beginning software development, can save tens of thousands of dollars in change orders, overtime, and extended project startup schedules. Spec-Soft's PFS-Definition software with validator provides users a modular, generic development...
Metso Corp.'s Neles Automation announced on May 16 a partnership with Aspen Technology Inc. (Cambridge, Mass.) to use the Aspen Manufacturing Suite within Neles' new process automation solution, nelesDNA (Dynamic Network of Applications). An open automation application environment, nelesDNA continuously networks process automation and information operations from t...
VenturCom Inc., a provider of software and services for Windows-based intelligent connected equipment (ICE), announced May 4 that it has acquired Chesapeake Bay Systems (Virginia Beach, Va.). Chesapeake Bay Systems provides consulting and development services that assist OEMs in bringing new products to market, specializing in Windows NT, Windows CE, QNX, and Hyper...
Freeport, Ill .—DCP50 1/16-DIN programmer offers software option that requires no communications card, allowing cost-effective configuration. Parameters for temperature, pressure, flow, and level are provided. Typical applications include ovens, kilns, furnaces, environmental chambers, and processing machinery.
Component Object Model (COM) is the de facto standard for handling objects in desktop PCs and is how Microsoft implements many of its Windows system interfaces. COM provides a complete language-independent object model, and a simple programming model that is widely used and well understood. Distributed COM (DCOM) extends this programming model to the network, bringing location-independe...
Monroe, N.C. —Stargate O-Port through valve handles high solids flow media in process applications with high temperature, high shock or aggressive flow media. The blade passes through the valve body at both ends, sealed by a rope/guide combination. No foreign material can get trapped between the blade and seat so the valve always sets and seals well.
Responding to the rising tide of interest in using the Linux operating system for embedded applications, representatives from dozens of embedded technology firms announced formation of the Embedded Linux Consortium (ELC), a vendor-neutral trade association dedicated to the advancement of Linux-based solutions in embedded applications.
Carpentersville, Ill. -HP7 Series watertight, contactless switches now include a mechanical detent. These momentary pushbutton switches use Hall Effect sensor technology for long switching life without contacts and are IP68 rated.
Loveland, Colo.— Working unattended for up to 60 days at a time, SP 510 samples water every two minutes, measuring water hardness colorimetrically. When hardness exceeds a predetermined limit, the unit triggers an alarm. An integrated relay can also trigger automatic softener regeneration eliminating guesswork, risk, and cost of volume calculations.
Applied Microsystems Corp. (AMC, Redmond, Wash.), an innovator in software development solutions, and bSquare Corp. (Bellevue, Wash.) have agreed to cross-reference each other's products. The firms will provide across-the-board, one-stop shopping for development of Microsoft Windows CE- or Windows NT-based intelligent computing devices.
Comtrol Corp. (Minneapolis, Minn.) and Steeplechase Software Inc. (Ann Arbor, Mich.) announced Nov.
Irwindale, Calif .-The MM55plus from NDC Infrared Engineering, was developed for online -monitoring of moisture, fat, and protein - it is easier to setup, use and maintain than instrumentation of this traditionally been , the company claims. It features a unique, pre-calibrated, high-precision, optical system, which means the instrument, can be installed directly onto the process line to be fully operational within a few hours. Maintenance effort and cost of ownership have been reduced with a range of automated referencing, sampling, batch averaging, and communications functions.
Cleveland, O. -Integra Series Model 2700 multimeter/data acquisition system combines the functionality and high channel count of a datalogger with the accuracy, convenience, and traceability of a true six and a half digit DMM for the price of a higher-end PC plug-in board hardware. The Model 2700 provides 80 differential channels in a high-performance, half-rack system.
In Livermore, Calif., early in the next decade, a "science factory" with an astounding array of control technologies will aim up to 192 lasers at one point, another step toward using lasers to "ignite" fusion. The blast of energy aims to fuse hydrogen isotopes of deuterium and tritium into helium nuclei—with energy output higher than energy input.
ABB USA Inc. (Norwalk, Conn.) announced Sept. 1 that it recently received a $66 million order from the U.S.
Austin, Tex.—Version 3.2 of the DeltaV scalable process system released by Fisher-Rosemount Systems, extends the systems capablilities to meet the needs of more users, while also solving problems they may have faced with other, older systems. The release includes easy-to-use advanced control using fuzzy logic and patented autotuner technology, an integrated batch historian, and a new OPC ...
Want to banish the "magic" from machine vision integration and pay less? Machine vision systems today reflect commercial microprocessor advancements as well as software enhancements to make systems easier, more powerful, and less expensive. The power of Intel's Pentium microprocessor with MMX (multi-media capability) has allowed many suppliers to leverage commercial technology that is les...
Fremont, Calif.— Elo TouchSystems Inc. has announced the first Universal Serial Bus (USB) compatible touch monitors that are pre-configured in the Microsoft Windows 98 operating system for instant operation in a plug-and-touch environment. These new products may be added to existing systems or networks by plugging them into the computer without the need for loading separate devices drivers.
To help users avoid Christmas-like "some assembly required" hassles when buying PC controls, Xycom Automation (Saline, Mich.) is bundling soft-logic control with traditional PC hardware. In a discussion with Control Engineering at National Manufacturing Week, Tom Gross, Xycom Automation's ceo, says the remade firm will deliver control products tested to work together, ...
Cumming, Ga.— AUTOMATIONdirect.com has introduced the WinPLC starter kit, featuring Think & Do software release 5.0 and the WinPLC embedded PC control hardware platform. According to the company, the Think & Do software release 5.0 is the first PC control package to support the Windows CE operating system, as well as Microsoft Windows NT.
Chicago, Ill. -- National Industrial Automation Show (NIAS), part of National Manufacturing Week (NMW), March 15-18, included the following announcements: Industrial Ethernet association forms In an effort to clear confusion surrounding use of Ethernet in industrial applications, Mike Justice, president of Synergetic Micro Systems (Downers Grove, Ill.) has formed the Industrial Ethernet Association. To start, the user and vendor trade group will use www.industrialethernet.com as a clearinghouse for technical information, including an Ethernet terminology white paper; online discussion forums and published standards also are planned on the website.
Harrisburg, Pa.— Z-Pack High Speed Generation 3 offers 6- and 10-row versions of backplane connectors with contacts on a 2.5-mm pitch, yeilding up to 60 or 100 contacts per 25 mm. To support high-speed rates, the connectors offer a 50-ohm controlled impedance and a dual-microstrip configuration with an integral ground plane built between each row of contacts.
I enjoyed the "4-20 mA Transmitters, Alive and Kicking" article in Control Engineering, October 1998 (p.109). It was informative and well presented.Danny Thomas Lents, research analyst, Southwest Research Institute, San Antonio, Tex.
Kanata, Ontario, Canada— QNX Software Systems Ltd. (QSSL) has introduced QNX RTOS support for the Independent Computing Architecture (ICA) from Citrix Systems Inc. With the ICA software client for QNX, users see and work only with the application's interface; the application executes 100% on a Citrix WinFrame or MetaFrame server.
Lincoln, Neb.— Pro II X 3A is a 3A-approved capacitance probe for food-grade applications. It can be used in liquids, solids, and slurries. RF interference is eliminated by operating at below RF range. The probes hold calibration of better than one picofarad over a temperature range of –40 to 185 °F.
San Jose, Calif.— Cell Computing Inc. and VenturCom announced the availability of their new Windows CE board support package (BSP) for the Cell CardPC micro-motherboard. It lets embedded system designers design applications using the Microsoft Windows CE operating system and the industry's smallest Intel Pentium motherboard.
Itasca, Ill.— Fluoroseal "FE" Severe Service Plug Valve is designed for use in critical chemical processing applications with toxic and lethal services. The valve includes live loaded secondary and tertiary stem seals to eliminate fugitive emissions through the stem seal. Tested in the laboratory and field, "FE" valve is said to exceed the requirements of the U.
With year 2000 less than 355 days away, your facility and business should be well underway with software accessment and remediation efforts.Major manufacturers have to communicate the Y2K message to a number of audiences: employees, shareholders, and customers. While messages may differ, internally and externally, if adequate plans aren't in place, the majority of post-2000 communications...
Palo Alto, Calif. —Jupiter-MM boards supply up to 50 W to mobile PC/104 embedded systems. Input voltages are 8 to 30 V dc with output provided directly to PC/104 bus connectors as well as an auxiliary connector for external tapping. Both dual output (+5, +12) and quad output (+5, +12, –5, [-12]) versions are available.
Hamilton, Bermuda, and Harrisburg, Pa.— In a classic white knight-to-the-rescue scenario, Tyco International Ltd. stated Nov. 23 it plans to buy AMP Inc. for at least $11.3 billion—apparently saving AMP from the clutches of a four-month hostile takeover bid by Allied Signal. Assuming it's trading between $60 and $67 per share, Tyco will trade .
GSE Klieverik BV (the Netherlands) recently selected Steeplechase Software's PC-based control software as the standard control solution for its dispensing systems. The company formerly used a DOS-based control system for its paint dispensing systems, but found it wasn't flexible and cost-effective for its customers.
Exton, Pa. —New magnetic inductive proximity switch mounts outside a pneumatic cylinder detecting a ring magnet on the piston. This solid state sensor is typically more reliable than commonly used reed switches. The switch can be used with any pneumatic cylinder with a nonferrous body. This IP 67 three-wire dc device has a 300 mA current rating with short circuit, overload, and reverse p...
The CAN in Automation (CiA) international users' and manufacturers' group says of the 24 million Controller Area Network (CAN) chips sold in 1997, about 75% were applied in automotive applications. About 6 million CAN nodes were installed in general automation applications, mainly in industrial control devices, and 80% of the chips sold were used in Europe.
Emerson, N.J. —The Personal Surveyor features gloved-hand one-button operation, and a high contrast digital display, temperature, alarm settings, short-term exposure limits, time-weighted averages, maximum- minimum- and current-gas readings are easily viewed. Personal Surveyor is suitable for confined entry monitoring in Class 1, Division 1, Groups A,B,C,D areas.
A new North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) replacing the U.S. Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) system has been published and is now available from the federal superintendent of documents. This system will allow business marketers to classify customers and prospects by industry type.
Sometimes it's fun to imagine what the world might have been like if John von Neumann had a room full of Crays or if Galileo had the Hubble telescope. On a somewhat smaller scale I wonder what my own career might have been like if I'd had something besides machine code back in the days of designing embedded control systems for microwave ovens, simple RTUs, and steam-driven chiller packages.
Houston, Tex. —UV Fluorescence allows the 9000S analyzer to measure high and low (1 to 10 ppm) sulfur contents, and nitrogen in a single device with a single sample injection. The UV method reportedly offers more stability than coulometry, better sensitivity than X-ray, and greater range than tape without its consumables or waste disposal issues.
Made2Manage Systems Inc. recently paid about $3.4 million in cash and issued 91,000 shares of stock to acquire California-based Bridgeware, which provides advanced planning and scheduling (APS) software and related services to manufacturers in North America, South America, and Europe.
There can't be many people who would mention smell as an important feature of paper. Yet for Enso Paperboards, a Finnish manufacturer of Performa (a paperboard used in food, candy and tobacco applications), controlling sensory properties is crucial because "off" smells could taint customers' products.
Ann Arbor, Mich.— AAT2000 features a 17.7-in. flat-panel display in a complete industrial computer system that offers the same viewing area as a 20-in. CRT. In comparison to a 20-in. system, however, the AAT2000 weights only 35 lb while the average 20-in. system is 85 to 100 lb. Depth of the unit is less than 8 in.
Anaheim, Calif.— SmartWorX is a new Microsoft Windows NT-based suite of intelligent systems software for managing and optimizing dynamic processes. Included in the suite are SmartWorX Alarm manager; SmartWorX Knowledge Developer, which adds intelligence to standalone or embedded systems; and SmartWorX Expert Optimizer, which standardizes operating practices to constantly target and achie...
Embedded systems are popping up in so many products and industries that even developers are struggling to keep up with the field's fast-multiplying implementations.To help engineers stay on top of these changes, the Embedded Systems Conference, March 31 to April 2 at Chicago's Navy Pier, introduced many new products for the control industry.
Voyager SDK, a software toolkit for building Internet access into TV set-top boxes and other embedded systems, won the prestigious "Prix Fournisseur RTS" on Jan. 16 here at the Real-Time Systems Exhibition (RTS). Developed by QNX Software Systems Ltd. Inc. (QSSL), Voyager SDK competed against products from many other companies including Motorola, Integrated Systems, an...
GroupIPC, an association of 40 Industry Pack (IP) and PCI Mezzanine Card (PMC) makers, distributors, and end-users seeking to increase awareness of mezzanine modules, is holding a joint pavilion and tutorials from Feb. 18-20 at Embedded Systems '98 in Sindelfingen, Germany.
Westbury, N.Y.— LPTek's new line of computer boards is specifically designed for data acquisition, control, and measurement through the parallel port. All boards can be embedded in the user's system, or they can come packaged in the TMC port. In embedded systems, the LPTek data bus permits configuration of add-on cards as a mezzanine bus, so up to 16 boards in any combination can be stan...
Tustin, Calif.— Industrial Vortex System (IVS) is a flow measurement device consisting of an injection-molded sensor and transmitter system. It uses vortex-shedding technology to provide versatile and cost-effective measurement and transmission of flow rates. In the system configuration, the integral transmitter features a bayonet-style twist-lock mounting design for easy display panel a...
Demand for automated assembly systems and related subsystems in North America is expected to increase to $4.5 billion by 2002, according to a recent market study by Advanced Technology Advisors (ATA). The report, "North American Market Demand for Automated Assembly Systems," states that demand will increase for assembly systems, electronic parts placement, assembly r...
VentureCom Inc. recently announced its support for Intel's Pentium processors for embedded applications through Microsoft's CE/PC program. As part of the CE Quick Start Program, VenturCom will provide a platform support package that enhances delivery of Microsoft Windows CE operating on Pentiums in embedded solutions.