Issue 2 – 2004

We were so pleased with the responses we received from our readers that we just had to do it again. You have been telling us how much you enjoyed the technical articles in the magazine, so we’ve tried to bring you information that’s helpful and relevant.  We hope you will enjoy this issue as much as we enjoyed putting it together for you.

-Keri Schieber
Managing Editor


In This Issue of The Automation Notebook…

  • After the Blackout

    After the Blackout

    Modernizing America’s Electric System Where were you on August 14, 2003? If you live somewhere other than the Northeast or Midwest, the date of North America’s largest blackout may not be familiar to you. I was working on my home computer, while my spouse was engrossed in vacuuming our cars. When everything came to a … Read More

  • New SureStep™ Stepping System

    New SureStep™ Stepping System

    AutomationDirect has launched the SureStep family of products, a new open-loop stepping system that provides simple and accurate control of position and speed and offers a great solution for applications requiring lower power and low cost. The SureStep family includes four standard motors and a “one-size-fits-all” step motor drive. With holding torques from 83 oz-inch to 434 … Read More

  • How Secure Is Your Control System?

    How Secure Is Your Control System?

    -Maroochydore, Australia, April 2000- Fired by the contractor who installed the control system at the local water treatment plant, engineer Vitek Boden was then rejected for a job by city council. Laid off and ticked off, Boden sought his foul revenge. Using a stolen laptop and two-way radio, he connected wirelessly to the plant’s control … Read More

  • Strides in Motor Technology

    Strides in Motor Technology

    When AutomationDirect was looking to provide customers with a high-performance, cost effective drive/motor package to complement their growing line of AC variable speed drives, they turned to Marathon Electric – a well-recognized, well-respected name in the industry. Marathon manufactures a full line of general purpose, inverter-duty, vector-duty and NEMA premium efficiency motors to meet the … Read More

  • Product Snapshots – Issue 2, 2004

    Product Snapshots – Issue 2, 2004

    We have added several exciting products since our last edition of the Automation Notebook. Here are some highlights about some of those new products including: T1H EBC100 Ethernet link, Non-metal Enclosures, Marathon Motors line extended, 2-pole supplementary protectors, 50 and 75 VA control transformers. New Module Provides High-Performance, Low-Cost Ethernet Link The new T1H-EBC100 module provides a … Read More

  • Business Notes – Issue 2, 2004

    Business Notes – Issue 2, 2004

    RFID Will Affect Many Manufacturers And Packagers Radio frequency identification (RFID) has become one of the most visible issues in manufacturing and packaging in recent months. At its simplest, RFID is a generic term for technologies that use radio waves to automatically identify products to which a special tag has been affixed. To identify or … Read More

  • PLC Technology and Application Tips

    PLC Technology and Application Tips

    Over the past ten years, AutomationDirect, formerly PLCDirect, has provided PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) products in many shapes, sizes, and I/O counts, and with a wide variety of features. Since PLCs were the products on which this company was founded, it is only natural to devote a column on the subject of PLCs in the … Read More

  • Ever Wonder How AutomationDirect Customers Are Applying Their Products?

    Ever Wonder How AutomationDirect Customers Are Applying Their Products?

    Check out some of the application stories we’ve collected and you’ll see that AutomationDirect products are used in a wide variety of applications across many different industries. — Jump to Application Spotlight D2-250 PLC PID Loops Control Pumps In Residential Water System We used PID loops in the D2-250 CPU to control three pumps and … Read More

  • Using Indirect Addressing in a PLC to Scale a Non-linear Analog Input Signal

    Using Indirect Addressing in a PLC to Scale a Non-linear Analog Input Signal

    Indirect addressing, or pointer addressing as it is called with Koyo PLCs, is an addressing mode found in many processors’ instruction sets that specifies a register that contains the effective address. Accessing the operand requires two memory accesses – one to fetch the effective address and another to read or write the actual operand. Indirect … Read More

  • Common Questions About Control Transformers

    Common Questions About Control Transformers

    What Is A Control Transformer? A control transformer is an isolation transformer designed to provide a high degree of secondary voltage stability (regulation) during a brief period of overload condition (also known as ‘inrush current’). Control transformers are also known as machine tool transformers, industrial control transformers, or control power transformers. How Do I Select … Read More

  • Implementing a PLC Calibration Routine to Ensure Accurate Instrument Readings

    Implementing a PLC Calibration Routine to Ensure Accurate Instrument Readings

    Why Calibrate? Many applications call for a means to take accurate analog measurements. Force, pressure, electrical current, lengths, positions and other analog values that are measured must be done so with a degree of accuracy. Factory and lab personnel use calibration procedures to ensure that equipment is reading accurately. If the readings are not as … Read More

  • Brainteasers – Issue 2, 2004

    Brainteasers – Issue 2, 2004

    1. O T T F F _ What’s the next letter in sequence? (They are all letters.)   2. Two old friends meet after a long separation. They swap stories, talk about jobs, families, etc. The first man says “I have three children now.” Second man asks, “Really? What are their ages?” First: “I’ll give you clues and you try to … Read More

  • Brainteaser Answers – Issue 2, 2004

    Brainteaser Answers – Issue 2, 2004

    In each issue of the Automation Notebook we feature a section of brainteasers. These are the brainteaser answers from  Issue 2, 2004 of the Automation Notebook. The brainteaser questions are repeated in black. The answers to the brainteaser questions are highlighted in red with explanations. You can view the brainteasers from Issue 2, 2004 without the answers here: … Read More