Intelligent Instruments for Machine Automation
Process Sensing & ControlProduct

Intelligent Instruments for Machine Automation

Smarter sensors and practical digital networking make premium automation capabilities accessible for discrete manufacturing applications. Large food and chemical production plants are typically called “process” operations, while machinery and equipment are considered “discrete” manufacturing, but both categories need effective detection and measurement technologies. Some technologies, such as smart sensors and digital fieldbuses have largely been…
What is EtherCAT?
Motion ControlProduct

What is EtherCAT?

EtherCAT, which stands for Ethernet for Control Automation Technology, is a high-performance industrial network protocol based on standard Ethernet. It’s specifically designed for real-time communication and deterministic data exchange, making it ideal for motion control applications like robotics, assembly lines, and packaging machines.  Key Features:  Motion Control using EtherCAT:  Benefits of using EtherCAT for Motion…
Redundancy Options for Smaller Automation Systems
Electrical PowerOperator InterfaceProcess Sensing & ControlProductProgrammable Control

Redundancy Options for Smaller Automation Systems

There are many practical and cost-effective ways for designers to incorporate automation redundancy for systems of any size. Automation redundancy has largely been reserved for larger process automation systems due to cost and complexity. However, there are now more products and design strategies suitable for applying redundancy to smaller-scale systems. Rin Irvin at AutomationDirect covers…
Automation Expands a Machine Shop’s Success
Application StoriesHMIOperator InterfacePLCProductProgrammable Control

Automation Expands a Machine Shop’s Success

By partnering with a local systems integrator and using AutomationDirect products, this machine shop enhanced its capabilities, allowing it to deliver the services required by its customers. Throughout the country, networks of small businesses—including machine shops and systems integrators (SIs)—innovate and integrate to deliver successful projects. One example is a collaboration between Stephens Machine and…
When and Why to Upgrade HMIs
Operator InterfaceProduct

When and Why to Upgrade HMIs

Intelligent HMI advances can justify upgrades based on significant improvements associated with ease-of-use, cybersecurity, and other advanced features. Consumers are accustomed to rapidly upgrading their personal electronic devices by buying new hardware and updating apps, but the industrial automation world usually works at a slower and more delayed pace in this regard. Greg Philbrook, HMI…
How Calgary Racing Uses Linear Position Sensors
Discrete SensingProduct

How Calgary Racing Uses Linear Position Sensors

UCalgary Racing has been using the Gefran PZ12-A-0050-L for the past 3 years to measure the suspension travel of the car. The potentiometers provide data that enable the team to understand and study the behavior of the vehicle at any given moment. It provides information that when analyzed, reveals how the car responds to road…
An Industrial-Grade Serial Communications Solution
ProductProgrammable Control

An Industrial-Grade Serial Communications Solution

Even though Ethernet is a widely-adopted standard, there remains a great need to connect with commercial, industrial, and laboratory devices using enduring serial RS232/RS485 communication technology. Chris Kregoski, product engineer for AutomationDirect, wrote an article for Industrial Equipment News September/October, titled Making Serial Connectivity Industrial-Grade. Here’s a summary, click on the link above for the…