Manufacturing and construction driving growth in Vietnamese automation and control systems market, says report

Despite slowdowns in certain industries, Vietnam’s automation and control systems market is witnessing stable growth, according to a report by Frost & Sullivan.

Robust expansion in the manufacturing and construction sectors plus increased foreign direct investment, growing end-user need to optimize processes and improve efficiency, and development of special economic zones are factors fuelling growth.

Nonetheless, barriers to market entry are high. To succeed in a fiercely competitive ecosystem, automation vendors must embrace new technologies, such as Internet of Things, collaborate with developers of machine-to-machine technologies, and become one-stop integrated solution providers.  Continue reading Manufacturing and construction driving growth in Vietnamese automation and control systems market, says report

Government incentives driving growth of Malaysian automation and control systems market, says report

malaysian factory robot
A factory in Malaysia. Picture courtesy of The Malay Mail Online

Government incentives and adoption of new technologies are driving the growth of the Malaysian automation and control systems market, according to a new report.

The Malaysian automation and control systems market, one of the biggest for suppliers, is stable and growing, says the study by Frost & Sullivan, which projects the market to be worth more than $409 million in the next four years.

Government incentives to aid manufacturing and infrastructure spend, as well as an established end-user base of sophisticated automation systems, are driving growth in the region.  Continue reading Government incentives driving growth of Malaysian automation and control systems market, says report

PLC vs PAC: Similar but not the same

arnold machine

By Zach Arnold, founder, Arnold Machine

Programmable logic controllers, or PLCs, and programmable automation controllers, or PACs, are similar as they both perform the same essential functions. But with modern technology, their differences are becoming more blurred. 

The most notable difference between PLCs and PACs is their programming interface. PACs are more intricate, using C or C++. PLCs on the other hand, are programmed using ladder logic.

These programming differences create distinctions in the architecture and capability between the two computers.  Continue reading PLC vs PAC: Similar but not the same

Continental demonstrates ‘Cruising Chauffeur’, its vision of autonomous driving

continental cruising chauffeur 2
Continental’s Cruising Chauffeur autonomous vehicle

Continental has showcased its “Cruising Chauffeur”, an self-driving car platform which provides an insight into the company’s vision of the future of what it calls “highly automated driving” on highways.

Highly automated driving on highways is no longer just a dream, says the company, but now a reality.

Continental started testing systems for automated driving on public roads back in 2012 in Nevada, and was the first automotive supplier to receive the state’s license to test automated vehicles.  Continue reading Continental demonstrates ‘Cruising Chauffeur’, its vision of autonomous driving

Neousys launches ARM-based IoT gateway

neousys igt-20

Neousys Technology has launched an industrial grade ARM-based gateway, which it calls IGT-20.

The company says unlike System on Module (SoM) that’s commonly provided as a barebone component, IGT-20 is based on AM3352 from Texas Instrument’s Sitara AM335x family and will be shipped as a ready system pre-installed with Debian.

The industrial nature of IGT-20 means it is in compliance with common industrial certifications such as CE/FCC, shock and vibration.  Continue reading Neousys launches ARM-based IoT gateway

Kollmorgen and VH Vertical Packaging realise new potential with a separate labeler

The art of reduction: the packaging machines from VH Vertical Packaging have a simple structure

By Jens Depping

A Dutch packaging machinery manufacturer has now developed a labeller as part of a retrofit with servo-drive technology based on 48 volts.

This is designed as an optional module for the company’s own vertical packaging machines on the one hand and as a functional enhancement for retrofitting older machines of well-known producers on the other.

The combination of the new 48 volt DC Servo Motor low voltage from Kollmorgen and a motion control solution from SigmaTek makes it possible for the labeling module to be integrated easily into new machines or for existing machinery to be retrofitted.  Continue reading Kollmorgen and VH Vertical Packaging realise new potential with a separate labeler

Smart tool dispenser systems finding their way into industrial settings

Thomas Dicks, head of e-business and marketing at Lerbs
Thomas Dicks, head of e-business and marketing at Lerbs

Smart automatic vending machines are becoming increasingly widely used in industrial settings, according to Bedrunka+Hirth

The German company supplies what it calls “intelligent consumable and tool dispensers” which have hi-tech features such as ID card and PIN code verification access management.

B+H says the machine knows exactly who is allowed to receive a measuring device and when it must be calibrated. It logs the number of times when a milling cutter was taken out and knows when the stock is running out.  Continue reading Smart tool dispenser systems finding their way into industrial settings

Honeywell says its newest PLC dramatically reduces integration costs for industrial plants

honeywell controledge plc

Honeywell Process Solutions has launched the latest version of its ControlEdge Programmable Logic Controller.

This release, combined with Honeywell’s Experion distributed control system, provides a “significant reduction” in integration efforts and project costs as well as increased security and availability through enhanced cyber security for industrial facilities, says the company.

The PLC is used in a variety of balance of plant applications, such as equipment and device level control.  Continue reading Honeywell says its newest PLC dramatically reduces integration costs for industrial plants

Pepperl+Fuchs launches new Ethernet IO modules

pepperl+fuchs io module
EtherNet IO modules offer IO-Link sensor/actuator connections, function across multiple protocols, and are supplied with 16 A via the M12 power plug

Pepperl+Fuchs has launches new Ethernet IO modules with multiprotocol functionality and M12 power plugs which are now also with integrated eight-way IO-link master.

The new Ethernet IO modules support all common Ethernet protocols, such as Profinet, EtherNet/IP, and EtherCAT, in a single device.

The integrated IO-Link master function allows comprehensive diagnosis and parameterization. 

The L-coded M12 power plug provides a current of up to 16 A and reduces installation costs.

Modules with an integrated logic function can tackle autonomous applications, completely replace control panels, or deal only with status messages. Continue reading Pepperl+Fuchs launches new Ethernet IO modules

Got milk? How a Swiss company builds filling and packaging systems for milk, coffee and other products

swiss can machine matic127TwinFP_01 crop
A piece of equipment manufactured by Swiss Can Machinery

Scaled technology and functioning interfaces are essential for Swiss Can Machinery, which is why the company’s filling and packaging systems have a modular design throughout, and why it uses a product program with a scaled structure for the drive technology. 

The filling and packaging systems at Swiss Can Machinery – which was established by brothers Marc and Michael Grabher – shows how this objective can be achieved.

The company turns to stainless steel motors for the actuators; for example, when these systems are used for filling and packaging pharmaceutical products.  Continue reading Got milk? How a Swiss company builds filling and packaging systems for milk, coffee and other products

Baumüller and Lemo to partner on building brand new bag machine

Lemo and Baumüller
Norbert Scholz, managing director of Baumüller (left), and Willi Fenninger, managing director and owner of Lemo, seal their partnership for the new film bag machine at Interpack 2017 in Düsseldorf, Germany

Baumüller, a drive and automation systems manufacturer, has received an order from Lemo Maschinenbau to design a cost-optimized, efficient and sustainable foil bag machine that also affords the manufacturer maximum flexibility and quick commissioning in the production process due to its modular structure.

Baumüller says its engineering specialists were able to meet Lemo’s requirement for modularity and a work cycle increase with the help of a new automation concept.

Among other things, a modern and streamlined drive and control architecture was used for this purpose. This means an integrated fieldbus system, minimum number of devices and a reduced control structure.  Continue reading Baumüller and Lemo to partner on building brand new bag machine

Control Techniques enhances Unidrive M drives

General Purpose drives - nidec

Control Techniques has enhanced its range of Unidrive M general purpose variable speed drives.

The range, launched earlier this month, now offers much improved setup and installation methods, says the company.

Parameter settings on the drives are more accessible; users will now find information relating to each parameter on the front of the unit, while the keypad has been laid out in a way that makes setup easy.  Continue reading Control Techniques enhances Unidrive M drives

Cognitive technologies and AI poised to transform all manufacturing sectors, says Frost

ibm ai

Partnership, collaboration, and technology investment crucial for growth opportunities, says Frost & Sullivan’s industrial automation and process control team 

The Internet of Things and data analytics are transforming the manufacturing space, and data is the new currency.

Currently, human intervention is needed for logical and reasonable decision making. However, with the rise of cognitive technologies, machines will be empowered to detect constantly changing manufacturing scenarios and respond in real time with minimum human intervention.

To be successful, manufacturers need to invest in artificial intelligence technology to improve plant efficiency and productivity, and build partnerships and collaborations that drive data-driven intelligence.  Continue reading Cognitive technologies and AI poised to transform all manufacturing sectors, says Frost

RoboMotion and SoTec demonstrate cloud robotics solution using Kuka Agilus

Industrial automation integrator RoboMotion and software company SoTec have demonstrated a robotics solution which enables users to control an industrial robot through their smartphones.

The two companies say they have developed an integrated solution which enables “robot control from the cloud”, and used the system to control an industrial robot made by Kuka.

The solution essentially eliminates the need to use a programmable logic controller, or PLC, which is basically a computer attached to robotics and automation hardware systems to program and control their movements.  Continue reading RoboMotion and SoTec demonstrate cloud robotics solution using Kuka Agilus