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Keep the Train Running!

The maintenance department at Blank Park Zoo (www.blankparkzoo.com) in Des Moines, Iowa was looking for a cost-effective way to keep their train running safely. The train ride is part of the 49-acre park which includes almost 1500 animal …

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Automating Hazardous Gas Delivery

When a highly flammable, toxic and corrosive gas delivery system for semiconductor production tools became unreliable, Headway Technologies contracted with system integrator KCC Software for the needed upgrades. KCC Software’s experience and expertise led to the successful replacement of a …

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The Halloween Box

In every haunted house, you’ll find automated props: chairs that rock on their own, slamming doors, rattling chains, drawers opening and closing as if by some supernatural force. These “tricks” enhance the “treat” of getting the life scared out of …

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Keeping the Lights On In Jamaica

Power generation facilities typically operate for decades, so it is not uncommon for the automation systems to become obsolete and difficult to support. This was the case at the Maggotty Hydroelectric Plant operated by the Jamaica Public Service (JPS) Company …

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DIY Pneumatic Saw Clamp

Many years ago my father was working on a new shop behind his house. The insides were left for us to finish. We needed to build work benches, shelves and racks. To save money, he bought the longer 2×4 sized …

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Riada Solves Difficult Packaging Problem

When selecting the right shampoo, what factors do you consider? Scent, ingredients, cost? How about packaging? That’s right, packaging. For the follicly-challenged, like myself, packaging may be a real decision maker. After all, luster, sheen and volumizing abilities are kinda …

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Pneumatic Success at Ridgeline Machine

Ridgeline Machine made extensive use of pneumatics when building a low-cost, small-footprint, portable traymaker to replace a manual process for one of their customers.

Ridgeline Machine Design, LLC (RMD), founded in 2012, is primarily a packaging machinery producer, and the …

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Converting a Mill/Drill and Installing a VFD — Issue 33, 2015

Several years ago I purchased a Wadkin lathe made in England in late 1964. It is equipped with a very special motor that is 220V, three-phase and 50Hz. Because of the special design of the motor, it has a long …

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Portable Water Treatment Platform Removes Phosphorus Economically

A trailer-mounted water treatment process controlled by a Productivity2000 PLC has recently been developed at the University of Idaho. Professor Greg Möller, in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, along with engineers from the College of Engineering have teamed …

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The Bulgarian Bat Detector — Issue 32, 2015

During my years working as an Automation Systems Integrator, I occasionally get projects that are different from the normal industrial, process and manufacturing systems. I was recently asked to develop the controls for a museum exhibit to simulate a bat’s …

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