Jeff Payne, the Automation Controls Group Product Manager at AutomationDirect, penned an article titled Product Design: Incorporating Commercial Technologies into Industrial Controllers for the February 2018 issue of Control Engineering. The article looked at some of the commercial off-the-shelf or COTS technologies used in industrial controllers. These technologies include Ethernet, FPGAs, USB, MicroSD and others. ... Read More
Jonathan Griffith, Product Manager, Industrial Communications & Power Supplies at AutomationDirect, wrote an article for Machine Design April 2018 titled What’s the Difference Between Traditional and Hosted VPNs? Griffith points out that connecting programmable logic controllers (PLCs), human machine interfaces (HMIs) and other automation system components to the industrial internet of things (IIoT) for remote ... Read More
Beyond the standard sensor types used in machine automation—such as photo eyes, limit switches and DC proximity sensors—are a wide range of color, contrast, AC proximity and area sensors. All of these sensors, as well as optical rotary encoders, are used to enable sorting, detection, error checking and positioning for machine automation.
Chip McDaniel, Technical Marketing at AutomationDirect wrote an article titled Tubing versus Hose in Pneumatic Systems for the February 2018 issue of Fluid Power World. The article looked at some of the differences between tubing and hose, and related fittings—and at best practices for design, selection and implementation of each. Tubing and hose play a ... Read More
In addition to following industry regulations, internal company standards should be created and adhered to so existing and new plant automation system designs are consistent. These internal standards should help define best practices and provide clear guidelines for system design, and for hardware and software used on the factory floor. If not, you may have ... Read More
Jonathan Griffith, Product Manager, Industrial Communications & Power Supplies at AutomationDirect, wrote an article titled Remote Access to Automation System Components, discussing how it is becoming easier to connect to the IIoT using cloud-based remote access to monitor, program and maintain machine control systems.
Overview Magnetic proximity sensors are used for non-contact position detection beyond the normal limits of inductive sensors. In conjunction with a separate “damping” magnet, magnetic sensors offer very long sensing ranges from a small package size and can detect magnets through walls of non-ferrous metal, stainless steel, aluminum, plastic or wood. Depending on the orientation of the magnetic field the sensor can be damped from ... Read More
When it comes to detecting position and presence in automated equipment, be sure to consider limit switch as choices available today are robust, and can provide high precision. While photo eyes and inductive switches are popular choices in many applications, precision limit switches can be a better option with repeatable accuracy less than a micron.
It’s a good idea to protect both. OSHA provides clear standards on the use of eye and other personal protective equipment, yet workers often choose to not to follow these rules. Certainly, there are places where protection must always be worn, so it’s best to offer workers comfortable and fashionable choices.
When automating machines or processes, picking the right controller hardware is important, and the application often drives the selection process. However, the programming software can make development, startup and operation easier—and is therefore an important factor in the buying decision. Jeff Payne, the Automation Controls Group Product Manager at AutomationDirect, wrote an article titled How ... Read More