MachineBuilding.net Technical Articles Index
The future of inverter drives in the water industry
The challenges facing the water industry include climate change, rising energy costs, tightening legislation, population growth and increasing usage per head. The use of automated systems in order to make pumps and processes work more efficiently is helping keep pace with these demands; however, what does the future hold for one of the most pivotal products in the automation mix, the inverter drive? Matt Handley, Product Manager for Drive Systems, Mitsubishi Electric UK explains how inverter drive technology is evolving to help in an industry where equipment may be expected to run for 25 years and judging by current evidence, could be in operation for a century or more.
Systems integrator selection: How to pick the right one
In the UK, there are many companies that specialise in automation projects. Some design and provide the technology, components or sub systems – these are usually called OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers). Others provide the full turnkey applications. Then there are system integrators – people or companies – that are specialists in crafting solutions, overseeing the engineering of automated systems, ensuring all the elements on a manufacturing and packing line work harmoniously together to optimise productivity, reduce waste and address rising manufacturing labour costs.
Three things industry can learn from new robotic standards
The British Standards Institute (BSI) recently released a new set of standards for the ethical design of robots and robotic devices. The standards highlight the growing need for guidelines on robotic safety, contact with human beings, robotic deception, addiction and possible sexism or racism exhibited by self-learning artificial intelligence (AI) systems. Here, Graham Mackrell, managing director of Harmonic Drive UK, explains the three things industry can take away from the new standard.
Energy efficiency in machine tools
Energy efficiency in machine tools is a cutting-edge topic. The time of power guzzlers is over. ‘Blue competence’ is required in machines and systems. This is one of Murrelektronik’s specialties. Murrelektronik products help to achieve energy efficiency.
The best of industrial automation is yet to come
The third Monday in January, also known as Blue Monday, is supposed to be the most depressing day of the year. Despite emerging from marketing and pseudo-science, the idea holds a nugget of wisdom, considering the weather conditions, debt level, time passed since the winter holidays and time until the next holiday. If you are struggling to get over the post-holiday blues, don’t despair. Sit back, relax and read all about some of the industrial technologies you can look forward to this year. Here, Leroy Spence, sales and business manager at industrial spare supplier EU Automation, discusses the industry super trends that will change the face of manufacturing in 2017.
Delivering on the requirement for ATEX control panels
Designing and building process control panels requires considerable experience and expertise, especially when they are destined for hazardous areas. These potentially explosive atmospheres, or zoned areas, are more common than you’d think, with applications spread across a number of industries from obvious ones like oil & gas to less well recognised areas such as food & drink or rail.
Cyber security layer cake: security, industry’s second nature
When hackers hijacked the electrical systems of three major Ukrainian power distributors back in December 2015, over 230,000 people were left without power for several hours. The uncertainty caused by the attack lasted much longer, especially since employees in both engineering and IT teams alike were initially unclear about how the hackers managed to infiltrate the system. The scale and severity of this incident illustrated, yet again, how important it is for companies to secure their cyber systems at all levels. Here, Martyn Williams, Managing Director of industrial software provider COPA-DATA UK, discusses developments in industrial cyber security.
How to design and size a busbar
The introduction of the IEC 61439 switchgear and control standards has had significant implications for the design and performance of the copper busbar system. It’s an area which design engineers need to appreciate, not least because the new testing regime and the requirement for compliance has changed the way we think about the selection of the busbar system.