Archive For: Tech Topics

Sinking and Sourcing Circuits – PLC Fundamentals

Sinking and Sourcing Circuits – PLC Fundamentals

Two of the most important fundamentals to understand when it comes to sensors is sinking and sourcing circuits. To properly wire your control device, you need to first know whether the sensor you are using is switching the positive or negative connection. For AC (alternating current) sensors, this is not an issue since AC power ... Read More
 
Honing in on Machine Automation

Honing in on Machine Automation

The automation and electrical system on a large, 82-year-old cylinder honing machine was replaced with a variety of AutomationDirect hardware to improve cycle time, safety and quality. Andrew Marks, Maintenance Foreman and Master Electrician at Exline Leasing Inc., wrote an article for the January 2019 issue of Control Design magazine, titled Honing in on Machine ... Read More
 
What is a Pneumatic System?

What is a Pneumatic System?

In machine automation a pneumatic system provides a simple and cost-effective means to move, clamp, rotate, grind and screw. A pneumatic system is a collection of interconnected components using compressed air to do work for automated equipment. Examples can be found in industrial manufacturing, a home garage or a dentist office. This work is produced ... Read More
 
Logic Circuits – PLC Fundamentals

Logic Circuits – PLC Fundamentals

For a better understanding of PLCs, let’s take a closer look at one of the fundamentals of automated control – logic circuits. Electrical components can be hardwired in a way to allow certain decisions to be made electrically. They can provide physical “If, then” statements that systems can use in their decision making. “If this ... Read More
 
Industrial Controller Selection: Look Beyond the Basics

Industrial Controller Selection: Look Beyond the Basics

Winn Paulk, automation controls group product manager at AutomationDirect, wrote an article for the January 2019 issue of Control Engineering magazine, titled Industrial controller selection: Look beyond the basics. See below for a summary, or click on the link above for the full text. Industrial Controller Selection Most industrial controllers, such as programmable logic controllers ... Read More
 
Get Schooled: AC Motor Basics

Get Schooled: AC Motor Basics

This AC motor and drive information will aid in selection and application. Jeff Payne, product manager for the drives & motors group at AutomationDirect, wrote an article for the January 2019 edition of Plant Service magazine titled Get schooled: AC motor basics Here’s a summary, click on the link above for the full text. Payne ... Read More
 
Why Product Testing and Certification Really Matters

Why Product Testing and Certification Really Matters

Do you ever think about all those marks and logos on electronic equipment? You should, they’re your assurance of product quality. Bill Dehner, technical marketing engineer at AutomationDirect and Tim Dunn, design engineer at Host Engineering, wrote an article for the November 2018 issue of Design News titled Why Product Testing and Certification Really Matters, ... Read More
 
Free PLC Training from AutomationDirect

Free PLC Training from AutomationDirect

No Purchase Necessary for Free PLC Training As the world around us becomes more and more automated, an understanding of electrical control systems becomes more and more vital. Manufacturers, as well as the technicians, integrators, and/or engineers they employ, know firsthand the benefits automation provides. In fact, for many, automation has been the key to ... Read More
 
Industrial Ethernet Basics

Industrial Ethernet Basics

Ethernet is the most widely used network in industrial plants and facilities. Here’s a primer covering its foundational concepts. Bill Dehner, technical marketing engineer at AutomationDirect, wrote an article for the October 2018 issue of IMPO titled Ethernet Basics for Facilities. Here’s a summary, please click on the link above for the full text. Industrial ... Read More
 
Bulk Multi-Conductor Cable FAQ

Bulk Multi-Conductor Cable FAQ

Bulk multi-conductor cable is a convenient way to connect electrical power and signals. Below are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about bulk multi-conductor cable: Why use a shielded cable? What is the difference between cord and cable? Why use VFD cable? What does ‘Exposed Run’ mean? What is the difference between ... Read More