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  • Is a Micro-controller a Practical Replacement for a PLC?

    Is a Micro-controller a Practical Replacement for a PLC?

    Since AutomationDirect is in the business of making automation hardware, including PLCs in all shapes and sizes, we’ve been watching the development of micro-controllers for some time. Indications are these devices can do all sorts of sophisticated functions, rivaling PLCs, …

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  • And the award goes to…

    And the award goes to…

    The 2017 Control Design Readers’ Choice Awards is in its 17th year and we are honored to be placed in the top 5 for many of our product groups. The Readers’ Choice Award is especially gratifying since it is an …

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  • New Software Adds Programming Efficiency

    New Software Adds Programming Efficiency

    While the correct selection of PLC hardware has a big effect on the success of any industrial automation project, the capabilities of the software programming platform should also be considered as the right software will enable quick and efficient coding. …

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  • Keeping Kids Engaged in STEM with AutomationDirect and Robotics

    Keeping Kids Engaged in STEM with AutomationDirect and Robotics

    Recently, AutomationDirect’s very own Rick Folea, Senior Technical Marketer, was featured on North Fulton Business Radio speaking about STEM and how local Robotics programs are helping kids learn and become excited about science, technology, engineering, and math. The complete interview …

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  • Pump with Efficiency

    Pump with Efficiency

    The Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) of 1975 marked the beginning of energy conservation standards for industrial, commercial and consumer products and equipment. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) created 60 plus categories of applications and equipment, affecting 30 …

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  • BRX PLCs – Designed to Do-more!

    BRX PLCs – Designed to Do-more!

    The newest Do-more! PLC platform, the BRX PLC, manufactured by Host Engineering is truly an under-budget overachiever. Host Engineering is one of AutomationDirect’s long-time PLC suppliers and a development partner for the Do-more! family of controllers. …

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  • In the Hacker Age, how secure is your PLC?

    In the Hacker Age, how secure is your PLC?

    Let’s face it, we are living in the age of the hacker and in the cat-and-mouse game of cyber warfare, hackers have racked up some pretty impressive scores. From the most recent WannaCry attack, to exposing Ashley Madison, to reportedly …

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  • AutomationDirect Wins Again: 2017 Award Winners for Best Innovations from NED

    AutomationDirect Wins Again: 2017 Award Winners for Best Innovations from NED

    With more than 2,000 new industrial products published across the pages of New Equipment Digest in 2016, the editors and advisors selected the most “disruptive, industry-shifting innovations” they could find. Travis Hessman, Editor-In-Chief, and the team then asked the readers …

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  • Keep the Train Running!

    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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  • Tips for Specifying Variable Frequency Drives

    Tips for Specifying Variable Frequency Drives

    For well over 30 years, variable frequency drives (VFD) have been controlling the speed of three-phase alternating-current (AC) induction motors. In addition to saving energy, there are many things to consider for maximum efficiency, control, operation and motor life when …

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  • Automating Hazardous Gas Delivery

    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 Ethernet Explosion Quiz & Giveaway!

    The Ethernet Explosion Quiz & Giveaway!

    Are you ready for the Ethernet explosion? Well, fire up your memory banks and take the quiz below to see how well you know Ethernet!  Answer all 11 questions and enter your email address by June 9th, 2017! We are …

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  • Finding a System Integrator Partner

    Finding a System Integrator Partner

    It is often difficult to find internal resources to complete an industrial automation project. There are many reasons, such as time limitations and other constraints, so the solution often involves the use of external resources from a system integrator (SI). …

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  • AutomationDirect is Atlanta’s 2017 Top Midsize Workplace

    AutomationDirect is Atlanta’s 2017 Top Midsize Workplace

    It’s 5AM and you slowly realize the all too familiar sound of your alarm clock yelling at you to get out of bed. It’s Monday morning, time to throw on something you’ll realize later you forgot to iron, swallow some …

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  • AutomationDirect’s Support of Robotics Then and Now

    AutomationDirect’s Support of Robotics Then and Now

    AutomationDirect considers itself a strong community partner, and one of our favorite community activities is sponsoring after school competition robotics programs. Why? Because it does such a great job of getting young minds engaged in learning. Attitudes change from “Why …

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  • How to Select a Soft Starter for Your Motor

    How to Select a Soft Starter for Your Motor

    What may seem to be a simple task of selecting a soft starter for your motor may be a more demanding task than first meets the eye. “I just need to know the HP and Voltage to pick the correct …

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  • 10 Physical Properties to Sense for Factory Automation

    10 Physical Properties to Sense for Factory Automation

    Sensors and transmitters convert a variety of physical properties into discrete and analog signals for use by automation controllers. AutomationDirect offers an assortment of these devices for use in the design and operation of machines and processes to create reliable, …

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  • Interlock Safety Switches | Compact Tongue Switches | AutomationDirect

    Interlock Safety Switches | Compact Tongue Switches | AutomationDirect

    Locking tongue operated safety interlock switches provide a tamper-resistant actuator mechanism for sliding or lift-off machine guards, as well as a method for locking the guards in place. They also provide robust position interlock detection and locking for moving guards. …

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  • Ethernet Basics

    Ethernet Basics

    Ethernet has become a prominent method of communication in industrial automation. Its ease of use, speed, and versatility have allowed it to surpass the older, closed-off, proprietary means. Not only that, but Ethernet has also introduced automated systems to a …

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  • Ethernet Dos and Don’ts

    Ethernet Dos and Don’ts

    With the popularity of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), industrial Ethernet applications are expanding. The IIoT is helping collect data on plant floors and is using Ethernet cables, connector and switches as key components.

    Industrial protocols such as Modbus …

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  • Managed Ethernet Switches | White Paper

    Managed Ethernet Switches | White Paper

    Knowing when to choose an managed Ethernet switch instead of an unmanaged Ethernet switch for your industrial grade networking solution might not be obvious. Plus, the price differential between an unmanaged and managed switch is significant and can impact the overall …

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  • Differences Between IT and OT Network Security

    Differences Between IT and OT Network Security

    Ethernet is used extensively in industrial automation applications, and in the office environments of industrial firms. This leads many to believe the network security procedures used in the office can simply be applied to industrial networks. While this would make …

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  • Deterministic Ethernet and TSN | AutomationDirect

    Deterministic Ethernet and TSN | AutomationDirect

    Deterministic Ethernet and Time Sensitive Network (TSN) are current industrial automation buzzwords—both related to how control data and information can flow through network pipes. A little history and understanding of industrial fieldbus communications will help explain where we are now …

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  • Cool Strawberries

    Cool Strawberries

    MACS Cooler—with the help of Hawkins Engineering, Quantum Automation and AutomationDirect—designed a more efficient precooling system for produce. Not only do these forced-air portable precooling systems reduce labor costs by 60%, they also help assure fresh strawberries quickly make it …

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  • PLCs Have Many Uses in Radio Broadcasting

    PLCs Have Many Uses in Radio Broadcasting

    There is lots of impressive technology used in broadcasting, but control of transmitters, audio sources, power and facilities is often low tech. A seasoned broadcast engineer is addressing this issue by using PLCs to improve broadcasting, starting with remote transmitter …

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  • Selecting Motors for Industrial Applications

    Selecting Motors for Industrial Applications

    Efficient use of motors is always important, but there are many other things to consider when specifying an electric motor. Mechanical and environmental considerations are on the list, as is the application and operation. All of these factors are important, …

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  • AutomationDirect Products Win Again!

    AutomationDirect Products Win Again!

    Control’s 25th annual Readers’ Choice Awards were announced and AutomationDirect was listed as a favorite in the category of “infrastructure” with their terminal block products.…

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  • Control Engineering Engineers’ Choice Awards 2017 | Honorable Mention

    Control Engineering Engineers’ Choice Awards 2017 | Honorable Mention

    Winners and Honorable Mentions were just announced for the 2017 Control Engineering Engineers’ Choice awards. For those of you unfamiliar with this award, it highlights some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by CE’s readers …

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  • Will That Controller Work in Your Application?

    Will That Controller Work in Your Application?

    Industry has a seemingly endless variety of machine and process control applications, and a correspondingly wide range of controller choices. When selecting a controller, there are many similarities and some differences to consider. And, while some controllers will control just …

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  • Design World Recognizes AutomationDirect for Innovation and Engineering Excellence

    Design World Recognizes AutomationDirect for Innovation and Engineering Excellence

    On January 10, 2017, the editors of Design World announced the winners in their ‘Leadership in Engineering’ Program. Now in its tenth year, the Leadership in Engineering program is a yearlong print and online event to acknowledge engineering leadership across …

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  • NED Innovation Awards | Vote Today

    NED Innovation Awards | Vote Today

    Finalists have now been announced for the 2017 NED Innovation Award. Each December, editors and advisors of Penton Media’s New Equipment Digest (NED) survey the 2,000+ new products published during the previous 12 months to find the most disruptive examples …

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  • Merry Christmas – 2016

    Merry Christmas – 2016

     

    We hope you have had a good year!

    It’s been a year full of anticipation, concern and surprises both in business and in life. And although there are always challenges, we hope that at this time of year, we …

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  • Linear Motion | Automation Notes

    Linear Motion | Automation Notes

    Linear motion actuators are used in factories for pick and place operations, CNC lasers and routers, complex adhesive application or whenever super-precise and accurate positioning is required.…

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  • Are You Data-Driven? PLC Giveaway

    Are You Data-Driven? PLC Giveaway

    We want to help you collect the system data you need to improve your bottom line. So we are offering you a chance to win a FREE Producitivty2000 Starter Kit, valued at over a $500! All you have to …

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  • 2017 Control Engineering Awards – Vote!

    2017 Control Engineering Awards – Vote!

    Two new candidates have just entered the race!

    No, not that race! The race for the 2017 Control Engineering Engineers’ Choice award. For those of you unfamiliar with this award, it highlights some of the best new control, instrumentation and …

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  • The Halloween Box

    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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  • Lock-Jaw2 Robot Competes in BattleBots TV Show Using AutomationDirect Parts

    Lock-Jaw2 Robot Competes in BattleBots TV Show Using AutomationDirect Parts

    Robots Activate! Is a familiar phrase to those fans who follow the BattleBots competition which just completed its 2016 season broadcast on ABC Television in the United States. One of the BattleBots competition veterans, Donald Hutson, has been involved since …

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  • Specifying Fiber Optic Sensors

    Specifying Fiber Optic Sensors

    Part presence sensing is a critical part of automation. A controller must often sense a part is present in a fixture, or sense the part position on a conveyor, to make logic decisions such as run, stop, etc.

    Presence sensor …

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  • Layered Security Goes Beyond Hardware In IIoT Implementations

    Layered Security Goes Beyond Hardware In IIoT Implementations

    Industry is certainly starting to take note of the IIoT, which raises cybersecurity issues because it requires connecting field devices and other automation system components to the outside world, often through the internet. Connectivity capability is built into many automation …

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  • Are You “Data-driven”? |Industry Survey

    Are You “Data-driven”? |Industry Survey

    With all the talk lately about Big Data and the IIoT, we got to thinking about how much of an impact these trends would have on our industry. Since the primary goal of these two trends is to improve bottom …

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  • IIoT – How Close Are You?

    IIoT – How Close Are You?

    “The Industrial Internet of Things”…when you hear that term, what do you think? Now, some of you might be thinking, “Not another IIoT article!” or maybe, “I don’t need IIoT” or perhaps there are still a few of you that …

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  • Condition Signals as Needed

    Condition Signals as Needed

    Discrete and analog field devices provide the bulk of information to control, monitoring and data acquisition systems. Connecting these devices with the proper signal level and without any issues is therefore critical. Fortunately, signal conditioners can smooth or change the …

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  • Beating the Heat | Ways to Keep Your Industrial Automation Equipment Cool

    Beating the Heat | Ways to Keep Your Industrial Automation Equipment Cool

    Summer’s here and with temperatures climbing everyone is looking for ways to cool off. Humans crank up the AC and animals have their own special ways of keeping cool — dogs pant, pigs roll in the mud, and reptiles hide …

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  • And The Award Goes To…

    And The Award Goes To…

    The 2016 Control Design Readers’ Choice Awards is in its 16th year and we are honored to be placed in the top 5 for many of our product groups. The Readers’ Choice Award is especially gratifying since it is an …

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  • Lockout/Tagout and Machinery Guarding

    Lockout/Tagout and Machinery Guarding

    In today’s automated world, advances in machine complexity, speed and efficiency can result in hazardous risks to operators and equipment. Knowing that faster and more complicated systems are commonplace, it is critical to ensure that today’s machines provide the necessary safety features …

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  • Ethernet in Machine Automation

    Ethernet in Machine Automation

    Fieldbus technology has been around for more than 30 years and has been a great replacement for point-to-point wiring in many cases. It’s widely used for connecting sensors, solenoids and other field devices to PLCs and other controllers. Ethernet is …

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  • It’s a Wrap! Automated Taping Machine

    It’s a Wrap! Automated Taping Machine

    The capstone senior design project is the crowning achievement for seniors at the University of Connecticut School of Engineering.  In this two-semester course, senior students are mentored by faculty and industry engineers as they work to solve real-world engineering problems …

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  • Product Snapshots — Issue 35, 2016

    Product Snapshots — Issue 35, 2016

    This digital issue of Automation Notebook gives you snapshots of some of our latest products. You’ll find products from a variety of categories including, Pneumatics, PLCs, Tools, Sensors, Wire and Wiring Accessories. We’ve also added to our Process Control, Power, …

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  • Robotics Team OTTO is 24th in the World

    Robotics Team OTTO is 24th in the World

    Team OTTO scored many “firsts” throughout the 2016 competition season in the FIRST Robotics program. The students from Forsyth Central High School ranging in age from 14 to 18 have taken the team the furthest it’s ever been – to …

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  • Putting Ethernet into Operation

    Putting Ethernet into Operation

    Industrial Ethernet is widely used in manufacturing and other applications to connect devices including advanced controllers, PLCs, I/O and servo devices—using a wide variety of configurations and hardware. Industrial Ethernet is also used for connecting upper level enterprise, manufacturing, quality …

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  • Team OTTO Continues its Run in World Robotics Competition

    Team OTTO Continues its Run in World Robotics Competition

    The Forsyth Central High School team from Cumming, GA remains strong as it emerged from the Georgia FIRST Robotics competition last week as a qualifier for the World Championships in St. Louis at the end of April. In all, a …

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  • Raising the Curtain on STEM Education

    Raising the Curtain on STEM Education

    STEM-based education is becoming more important in today’s fast-paced technical world. But some kids may have a difficult time with traditional STEM classes especially when a student doesn’t think they’re a “math or science type.” One way to encourage an …

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  • A Quick View of SCADA in Oil and Gas

    A Quick View of SCADA in Oil and Gas

    For quick and secure access to production and process data, a PC-based supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system is often the best solution. Whether upstream, midstream or downstream in the process, data can be collected by the SCADA system …

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  • A Quick Look At Creating The IIoT

    A Quick Look At Creating The IIoT

    The IIoT starts with edge devices. Connecting these sensors, actuators, motors, drives and other smart devices to PLCs and other advanced controllers is the first step. The connection continues through the HMI to provide data sharing to both local and …

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  • Who Pneu?

    Who Pneu?

    Think you know about pneumatics? Well then it’s time to prove it! Take this quiz below to see if you’re a pneumatics expert or just full of hot air!

    Answer all 10 questions and enter your email address by June …

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  • There’s No Vaccine to Prevent this Strain of LOCK-JAW!

    There’s No Vaccine to Prevent this Strain of LOCK-JAW!

    Lock-Jaw is a ‘heavyweight’ (250 lb.) robot built for the 2015 BattleBots competition on ABC. Lock-Jaw’s creator is veteran builder Donald Hutson from team Mutant Robots. Donald has competed in many types of combat robotics events including the original Robot …

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  • Pneumatic Circuit Symbols Explained

    Pneumatic Circuit Symbols Explained

    Directional air control valves are the building blocks of pneumatic control. Pneumatic circuit symbols representing these valves provide detailed information about the valve they represent. Symbols show the methods of actuation, the number of positions, the flow paths and the …

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  • Understanding Pneumatic Air Preparation

    Understanding Pneumatic Air Preparation

    A steady supply of clean and dry air is required to protect all the pneumatic components in machines, equipment and processes and to ensure their proper operation. While controlling mechanical motion with pneumatics—such as clamping, positioning, pushing and lifting—is often …

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  • Pneumatic Actuator (Air Cylinder) Basics

    Pneumatic Actuator (Air Cylinder) Basics

    There are thousands of industrial applications that require a linear motion during their operation sequence. One of the simplest and most cost effective ways to accomplish this is with a pneumatic actuator. Pneumatic actuators are also very clean operating because …

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  • Valves for Pneumatic Cylinders | Actuators

    Valves for Pneumatic Cylinders | Actuators

    In the pneumatic world, valves are the equivalent of relays controlling the flow of electricity in automation systems. Instead of distributing electric power to motors, drives and other devices, pneumatic valves distribute air to cylinders, actuators and nozzles.…

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  • How to Specify Pneumatic Tubing & Fittings

    How to Specify Pneumatic Tubing & Fittings

    In today’s modern pneumatic systems, there are a variety of choices available to get the air preparation systems, valves and cylinders connected. Most designers use flexible pneumatic tubing or hose rather than rigid tubing, and many different types of both …

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  • Are Pneumatic Components Compatible?

    Are Pneumatic Components Compatible?

    The industrial pneumatics market is fairly mature. While there continues to be new developments and technologies, many of the tried and true core products have been around for years. One advantage that this can offer to both system designers and …

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  • Electro-pneumatic Systems in Action

    Electro-pneumatic Systems in Action

    In order to perform a task using pneumatics, there needs to be some way to initiate, monitor, and stop the process. This is where a simple pneumatic system becomes electro-pneumatic. Electro-pneumatic systems integrate pneumatic and electrical technologies into one system …

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  • Pneumatic System Design Considerations

    Pneumatic System Design Considerations

    Pneumatic systems as a whole can be simple, but this simplicity can be deceptive when it comes to selecting components. For instance, there are thousands of types, sizes, and variations of cylinders and valves, from off-the-shelf versions to custom designs. …

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  • Energy Efficient Pneumatic Systems

    Energy Efficient Pneumatic Systems

    Reducing energy consumption is a priority in almost every manufacturing plant and industrial facility, as no company can afford to throw money away using machines and processes that waste energy. Because pneumatic systems are abundant throughout manufacturing and account for …

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  • Pneumatic Actuator vs. Electromechanical

    Pneumatic Actuator vs. Electromechanical

    In materials handling and assembly there are many ways to move an item from one location to another. Conveyors are one way and are widely used, but they can only move objects in a fixed path, limiting their use in …

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  • Pneumatic Application Stories

    Pneumatic Application Stories

    Want some examples of what people are doing with pneumatics? You’re in luck, we have a full collection of Application Stories here. For your convenience we took the time to list some of our favorites. You can see a …

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  • Awesomer: To be even MORE awesome than last year!

    Awesomer: To be even MORE awesome than last year!

    Annually the Atlanta Business Chronicle accepts nominations for “Atlanta’s Healthiest Employers Awards”. This award is determined with the assistance of Healthiest Employers, LLC, who review the applications and select 10 finalists. This award celebrates health in the workplace as well …

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  • PLC-Based PACs Occupy the Middle Ground

    PLC-Based PACs Occupy the Middle Ground

    Have you noticed a gap in the industrial controllers market? PLCs are good at handling your low end applications, but on the high end, many suppliers want to push you into distributed control systems or other expensive and complicated solutions. …

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  • Giving OEMs Freedom Gets Best Results

    Giving OEMs Freedom Gets Best Results

    Owners, managers and other decision makers in production facilities should focus on how purchased equipment fills production needs to get the best pricing, delivery and support from machine and process skid builder OEMs. Unfortunately, some instead focus on component specification …

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  • DIY Pneumatic Saw Clamp

    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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  • Why Use Pneumatics

    Why Use Pneumatics

    In manufacturing facilities, compressed air is so widely used that it is often regarded as the fourth utility after electricity, natural gas and water. But compared to electricity, compressed air is more expensive, so 
why is it so widely used …

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  • Quote and BOM | Web Tip

    Quote and BOM | Web Tip

    We at AutomationDirect, understand that to you time is money. So to prevent you from wasting both your time and your money, we have made creating a quote and bill of materials on our web store fast and easy for …

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  • Riada Solves Difficult Packaging Problem

    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

    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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  • Payment and Return Options | Web Tip

    Payment and Return Options | Web Tip

    We know that you have a lot things to worry about in a day, which is why we believe payment and returns shouldn’t be one of them. That’s why all the information you need to get these tasks done are designed to be easy, …

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  • FIRST TEAM |Five Years and Counting…

    FIRST TEAM |Five Years and Counting…

    On January 12th, the publisher of AutomationWorld, Jim Chrzan, announced the list of “First Team” suppliers as recognized by their readers and subscribers for their Leadership in Automation 2015 program. The goal of the program is to showcase readers’ preferred …

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  • Product Pictures and Images | Web Tip

    Product Pictures and Images | Web Tip

    We are constantly striving to make shopping for industrial control products easier for you. One of the ways we do that is by providing numerous pictures and detailed images of our products on our web store for you to access …

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  • EtherNet/IP | Automation Notes

    EtherNet/IP | Automation Notes

    As technology advances, so does the speed at which it communicates. And with the advances made in industrial controls, the need for high-speed data transmission became a priority. As a result, Ethernet communication became more and more prevalent in industrial …

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  • Reviews and Recommendations | Web Tip

    Reviews and Recommendations | Web Tip

    When we became the first automation supplier with a 24/7 online store in 1999, we made it easier to research and purchase industrial automation parts. Today, we continually strive to improve the service we provide to our customers by showcasing …

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  • PLC Training Giveaway!

    PLC Training Giveaway!

    We want to help you resolve to learn more this year by offering you a chance to win a FREE PLC Training Course of your choice from InterConnecting Automation, valued at over $800! All you have to do is tell …

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  • Top 10 Industrial Automation Trends

    Top 10 Industrial Automation Trends

    Here’s our annual list of Top Ten Trends, with six new items for 2016 in areas ranging from data visualization to 3D printing. Four holdovers remain from 2015, with each gathering steam and media coverage as detailed below.…

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  • Merry Christmas – 2015

    Merry Christmas – 2015

    Each year we send you Christmas wishes along with our thanks for being a valuable customer. This year we would once again like to wish you a Merry Christmas and say that we are thankful for customers like you.

     …

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  • SCADA Systems | Automation Notes

    SCADA Systems | Automation Notes

    Many control systems these days need a way to interact with the process or machine operator. Legacy systems might present a whole panel full of pushbuttons, lights and switches; the development of electronic HMI (Human Machine Interface) devices made operator …

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  • Share a Star Wars Holiday Card from ADC

    Share a Star Wars Holiday Card from ADC

    The most magical time of the year is finally here… AND Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is coming to theaters this month! So we at AutomationDirect thought what better way to wish someone season’s greetings than with a Star …

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  • AC Motor On/Off Controls | Automation Notes

    AC Motor On/Off Controls | Automation Notes

    Most control systems have to make things move, and that usually involves motors. Lifting, pumping, robotics, conveyors, fans – pretty much everything uses a motor of some kind. General purpose one- or three-phase AC motors are great for simple on/off …

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  • Electrical Noise and EMI in the Workplace

    Electrical Noise and EMI in the Workplace

    Drive or motor failures, lights flickering, analog signal variations and poor encoder count repeatability are all symptoms of electrical noise issues. Automated machinery is often the victim of electrical noise, and frequently also the source. Whether it’s electromagnetic interference (EMI) …

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  • Productivity2000| Product of the Year Finalist

    Productivity2000| Product of the Year Finalist

    2015 marks the 28th anniversary of the Product of the Year award program for PLANT ENGINEERING magazine. This year the readers have once again selected outstanding new products that help them do their jobs smarter, more efficiently and more productively. …

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  • The Holiday Season Can Be…Nuts!

    The Holiday Season Can Be…Nuts!

    We all know the holiday season can be nuts! Family gatherings, holiday shopping, parties to attend, toys to build, projects around the house, the list goes on…To help you be prepared, we’re giving away a 38 Piece Ratchet & Socket …

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  • Video News | The Do-more Way

    Video News | The Do-more Way

    The Do-more™ is a super powerful PLC with a modern programming engine that utilizes today’s best programming practices… and that sets it apart from your typical PLC. Of course, that also means that getting your mind wrapped around these programming methods …

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  • PLC Photo Contest Winner!

    PLC Photo Contest Winner!

    We asked you to submit a photo showing us why you could use more Productivity in your life for a chance to win a free Productivity2000 PLC starter kit. You could’ve shown us how PLC programming was getting in the …

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  • Control Engineering Awards – Vote!

    Control Engineering Awards – Vote!

    Do you ever wish you could somehow reward a supplier for their great products? Like, if there was a yearly competition where engineers, like yourself, got to choose a new product for awards and accolades. Well, your wish has been …

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  • Guidelines to Successful Pneumatic Systems

    Guidelines to Successful Pneumatic Systems

    Pneumatic actuators are a popular option for parts handling in automated systems. Whether it’s part transfer, positioning or clamping—pneumatics are a cost-effective choice for mechanical motion. However, without proper design, these pneumatic systems can experience problems. Fortunately, there are some simple …

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  • How to Control Enclosure Temperature

    How to Control Enclosure Temperature

    Industrial facilities have lots of enclosures housing automation and electrical components, many of which need cooling and heating. We’re going to show you how to pick the right enclosure conditioning system from these leading options:

    It’s simpler to heat than …

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  • Video News | Productivity2000 Controller

    Video News | Productivity2000 Controller

    With the number of new and existing PLCs available on the market, it’s pretty difficult to stand out and get noticed. So what do you do? Well, you do what they can’t! And our latest industrial controller, the Productivity2000, delivers …

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  • Looking for a PLC?

    Looking for a PLC?

    Well, don’t forget to check under the hood and see what the software has to offer. After all, hardware is only half of the equation. So, if you are considering the Productivity series of controllers you should be asking yourself, …

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  • Distance Measuring | Automation Notes

    Distance Measuring | Automation Notes

    Object detection is sensing if an object is in proximity or not – that’s it, you get an ON or an OFF signal. A more advanced object detection function involves measuring the actual distance of an object from the sensing …

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  • DIY Halloween Pneumatic Props

    DIY Halloween Pneumatic Props

    Halloween will sneak up before you know it. So have you started planning your creepy, scary, or horrifyingly haunting Halloween props yet? If not, take a look at our three Halloween YouTube videos that I’m sure will scare…I mean…inspire you. …

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  • Boy Scout Programming Merit Badge

    Boy Scout Programming Merit Badge

    During the summer of 2015, while many Scouts were going to traditional summer camps, a group of Scouts from the Twin Rivers Council in New York spent a week at STEM Camp where they participated in Electronics, Engineering, Surveying, and Programming …

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  • Object Detection | Automation Notes

    Object Detection | Automation Notes

    A common function of a control system is detecting the presence of an object. Whether you are detecting the presence of an object passing by on a conveyor, the closure of a gate or the position of a machine part as …

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