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November 2015


HARTING Customised Solutions Kitting, Cable Assemblies, Box Builds and Product Modification


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HARTING Customised Solutions - bringing together market leading connectors with expert local and global production capabilities. Capabilties include; Kitting, Cable Assemblies, Box Builds and Product Modification UK and Global production facilities In-house CAD Engineers to help design your customised solution Quality Assurance team to ensure the highest quality throughout Transmit any combination of power, signal, data embedded processor I/O Ethernet communications and fibre-optics To discuss your requirements phone +44 (0) 1604 827500 or e-mail

AUTOMATION UPDATE Editorial Assistant Jenna Burridge 01843 580 460

Automation Update is an engaging, editorially led publication & directory giving the reader news and updates on new products and services to our ever Progressing industry.

Publishing Director Tony Little 01843 580 460 Publication Manager Matthew Scott 01843 580 460 Sales Director Tim Johnston 01843 448 443 Operations Director Chris Sims 01843 448 443 Advertising Exec Jamie Simmons 01843 580 460

This Digital only branch off from our parent publication Engineering Update provides an in-depth look at the Automation side of engineering we distribute the magazine to over 23,000 readers monthly. With Automation being ever present for the Industrial Engineering Sector we provide the latest news and unbiased opinions throughout the UK’s market place.

Publishing House Jet Digital Media Ltd The Forge Spratling Court Office Spratling Court Farm Manston Kent CT12 5AN

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ABB wins $90-million order to supply world’s longest extruded ‘power from shore’ cable

200-kilometer cable system to deliver 100 megawatts of electricity from Norwegian grid to Johan Sverdrup offshore facility ABB has won an order worth around $90 million from leading international energy company Statoil, for a high-voltage cable system to supply power from shore to the Johan Sverdrup offshore oil field. Located 155 kilometres (km) west of Stavanger in the North Sea, Johan Sverdrup is considered one of the largest offshore oil fields on the Norwegian Continental Shelf (NCS). Once fully operational, production is estimated at 550,000 – 650,000 barrels of oil per day, accounting for nearly 40 percent of total oil production from the NCS. ABB will design, manufacture and install an 80-kilovolt (kV) extruded direct current (DC) cable system with a capacity of 100 megawatts to transmit power from the Norwegian power grid to the Johan Sverdrup offshore production facility. At around 200 km in length, it will be the longest extruded submarine cable system to an offshore oil and gas platform facility in the world. Supplying electric power from shore for offshore oil and gas production avoids the need to burn diesel or gas out at sea to power the equipment and machinery on the platforms, resulting in substantial reductions in CO2 and nitrogen oxide emissions. In addition to the environmental benefits of powering the cluster of platforms from shore, the cable solution is safer and more ener4 - Automation Update November 2015

gy-efficient than generating the power offshore using fossil fuels. “Delivering enhanced customer value through close customer collaboration is an important element of ABB’s Next Level strategy and we are delighted to be supporting Statoil with this cable system as well as the HVDC converter stations,” said Claudio Facchin, president of ABB’s Power Systems division. ”With this ‘power from shore’ cable solution, ABB will once again be pushing the boundaries of technology and lowering environmental impact, in line with our vision of power and productivity for a better world.” In March, ABB was awarded an order to supply the two high voltage direct current (HVDC) converter stations for the same project. One will be located onshore at Haugsneset, where it will turn alternating current (AC) from the grid into DC, which can be transmitted efficiently over 200 km to the second station which is on one of the oil platforms. There, the DC current will be converted back into AC and distributed to the rest of the field. ABB leads the way when it comes to cable systems delivering power-fromshore to both fixed as well as floating platforms. The company’s track record includes Statoil´s Troll A 1&2 with 3&4 currently under commissioning. Other

major references include the Gjøa platform which was commissioned in 2010, the Martin Linge platform which will be the world’s longest alternating current (AC) cable from land to an offshore installation and the link to the Goliat power from shore installation in the Norwegian sector of the Barents Sea. ABB also performed the front-end engineering and design for the entire Johan Sverdrup HVDC power-fromshore system. ABB is a global leader in high-voltage cable systems across applications such as integration of renewables, city centre infeeds, oil and gas platform power supplies and subsea interconnections. ABB has commissioned more than 25 DC and hundreds of AC cable links around the world. ABB ( is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility, industry, and transport and infrastructure customers to improve their performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in roughly 100 countries and employs about 140,000 people. For more information please contact: Will Leonard Tel: 01480 475 321

Photonex 2015 - Unlock the potential of Light Technologies THIS YEAR’S SHOWCASE MUST-VISIT EVENT DEDICATED TO PHOTONICS AND LIGHT TECHNOLOGIES WILL BE HELD ON WEDNESDAY 14TH AND THURSDAY 15TH OCTOBER AT RICOH ARENA. 100+ Exhibitors, the largest event for 10 years. Co-located Vision UK & VACUUM EXPO. What’s it all about? Every light-based technology imaginable, this event provides researchers and industry engineers the unique opportunity to meet the UK’s top supplier companies, innovators & leading science groups in the comprehensive exhibition and to attend the in-depth Enlighten Conference covering applications, technology advances, innovations and emerging technologies in photonics based technologies. The Enlighten Conference Programmes: High Power Diode Lasers & Systems, Nano-Spectroscopy & Bio-Imaging, Vision in Action: Advances in industrial Imaging, Optical Engineering & Design, Optical Metrology, Photonics Tutorials, Innovation Live! what’s new, Laser Processes in Ultra Precision Manufacturing, SID: Display Selection and Evaluation. Included; a special International Year of Light event: Your future in photonics: LIGHTtalks - brighten up your world. The conference includes an impressive 100 speakers over the two days. Something for everyone.

Co-located event: Industrial vision technologies at PHOTONEX. The VISION UK showcase, annually held and sharing the exhibition hall with PHOTONEX 2015, is dedicated to vision/imaging and laser technology for research, science, industry and factory automation. WHY YOU SHOULD ATTEND? It will be a great use of your time! Discover the difference: On the internet one product can seem just like another. But it is getting down to the in depth detail face-to-face with a specialist which will enable you to make a better informed purchasing decision.

Feature Meeting:

12.30 The Art of 3D Robot Vision Paul Wilson – Scorpion Vision

Vision in Action - advances in vision and imaging technologies Wednesday 14th October 10.30 Planning ideas for MV Applications Tristan Hurley - Stemmer Imaging 11.00 Keynote Speech Vision for Autonomous Driving: Challenges and Opportunities Dr. Will Maddern - Oxford University 11.30 Advantages of Native High Dynamic Range in SWIR Raf Slotwinski – Alrad Imaging 12.00 The Rise of the CMOS Sensor Mike Morgan – Multipix Imaging

13.00 3D Vision Techniques and Applications Nick Hall - Clearview Imaging 13.30 Direct Part Marking – the evolution of using “Indestructible Barcodes” in manufacturing Paul Cunningham – Acrovision 14.00 Vision system integration and labeling Andrew Moses – The Config Team 14.30 Hyperspectral Imaging in the Machine Vision World Jurgen Hillmann - XImea 15.00 Liquid crystal optical components for polarization control in machine vision applications Dr. Fredrik Kihlborg - LC-Tec Displays Check the website for Thursday’s schedule.

Readers of this article are encouraged to visit the website to register to attend, to subscribe to receive enewsletter updates and to find out more. More details at or call T: 01372 750555 for free invitations.

mk Extend their Conveyor Range mk Profile Systems have expanded their conveyor range with two more options in their belt conveyor range and an addition to their chain conveyor range. A belt conveyor with metal detector is now available and also a belt conveyor with back lighting. The chain conveyor comes with an immersion bath for applications where an automated cleaning station is required. Belt Conveyor Lighting


Back mk has designed a belt conveyor with

mk’s new conveyor with back lighting is ideal for automated production lines that require on-going visual inspections. The belt allows light to pass through it and illuminate the products which are checked for material faults, position, completeness, or contour abnormalities either by cameras or by the human eye.

Using mk’s belt conveyor GUF-P 2000 AC with tall conveyor frame, there is easy side access for the light, regardless of the lighting used. The conveyor is equipped with a light-permeable belt and in the lighting area, the belt running surface consists of a glass panel made from scratch resistant, satin finished tempered glass. This allows light to pass through the running surface and the belt. The separate tension roller in the drive unit makes for easy belt tensioning and adjustment. This back lighting option is available for all standard mk belt conveyors and modules.

Belt Conveyor Detector



integrated flat-panel metal detector to assist the plastic & wood industries in the use of machines such as granulators, shredders, or chippers to reduce material to smaller fragments. These machines can be severely damaged if the material contains any metal impurities. To prevent such damage, and related production downtime, the material should be checked for metal impurities while being fed in. If any metal is detected, the belt should be stopped and audible and visible warnings should be triggered.

The metal detector is installed inside the conveyor body and it scans piece goods and bulk materials up to a height of 100 mm. If metal is detected the motor is stopped and a connected signalling unit issues a visual and audio warning. A lateral guide stops the material from falling and an additional PE strip located near the metal detector guides the product. The conveyor with metal detector offers huge benefits to mk’s customers as it can detect both magnetic and non-magnetic metals, even if they are enclosed in the product. This in turn prevents machine damage and production downtime. The conveyor can quickly and easily be incorporated into existing systems with the ability to easily adjust the height of the input and output sides to suit installation conditions. This application is also suitable for quality control in the chemical, pharmaceutical, and food industries. To see the full range of mk’s conveyors please visit or call (01949) 823751.

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conveyor by a customer-provided handling unit and conveyed through a cleaning solution where the cylinders are rinsed. Before removal by another handling unit, the cylinders should be cleaned of fluid and contaminants. This solution uses mk’s KTF-P 2040 indexing chain conveyor with product specific mounting V-blocks. The chain travels at an approximately 30° angle and moves the material into the cleaning bath and out again. Adjustable nozzles in the bath thoroughly rinse the conveyed material. The solution can be cleaned and replaced via a circulation pump and filter system. In an enclosed compressed air cleaning station, fluid residues and contamination residues are removed from the conveyed material via flexible nozzles.

mk’s complete integrated solution provides chemical resistance due to matched materials and components, and can be provided using the customers own control system or supplied directly from mk. Different immersion options are possible through the use of suitable materials whether it be for an oil bath or a cooling bath.

Chain Conveyor with Immersion Bath

mk offer an extensive range of conveyors including belt conveyors, chain conveyors, incline conveyors, timing belt and roller conveyors.

mk’s automated cleaning station with cleaning bath is shown here as part of an assembly line for metal cyclinders. The cylinders are loaded onto the

To see the full range of mk’s conveyors please visit or call (01949) 823751.


Conveyor Technology

Linear Motion

Factory Equipment

Providing solutions for demanding material handling applications. 20 different modular conveying systems available Ideal for material handling & automation Solutions available as standard modules or systems Conveyor modules include flat-belt, twin-belt, timing belt, chain, flat top chain & roller Compatible with our profile technology, factory equipment & linear motion

mk Profile Systems Ltd. Unit 2, Wolds Farm Business Park, Kinoulton Lane, Kinoulton Nottinghamshire, NG12 3EQ t: 01949 823751路 f: 01949 81270

Editor’s Choice

Eastern Transformers & Equipment: National Distributor for Meanwell and Well… they Mean Business Eastern Transformers & Equipment are a leading manufacturer of transformers and wound components to various industries nationwide. As well as offering standard products, ETE designs and manufactures custom-built transformers and work closely with their customers to develop innovatively constructed solutions for their products with prototypes often produced within days of the initial enquiry. This is only the tip of the iceberg however as ETE offers an extensive range of power electronics, thermal management products, and accessories. In addition, they are an official national distributor for Meanwell, one of the biggest power supply manufacturers in the world, allowing them to offer the full range of products available within the Meanwell catalogue. ETE’s comprehensive mix of manufactured and stock items (usually available on next day delivery) makes them a unique supplier to the electrical market. The new series of Meanwell NDR/EDR DIN rail power supplies are just one example of

8 - Automation Update November 2015

the novel designs within the substantial ETE collection. These effectively created power supplies have a much slimmer profile than previous editions saving space wherever they are used. The items within this popular high specification range are available at incredibly competitive prices whilst maintaining the exceptional quality and reliability that has become synonymous with the ETE brand. This efficient, yet economical, collection spans from 75 Watt to 480 Watt and has an output voltage range of 12–48VDC. All products from the NDR series MDR-10 come with three years warranty and with integrated protection against overload, over voltage, short circuits, and over temperature, you can leave the power supplies to function with total peace of mind. Additionally, the Meanwell MDR series of DIN rail power supplies are available with a range spanning 10 Watt to

96 Watt and outputting 5-48VDC. Those in the MDR collection are much slighter, with dimensions from just 22.5 mm x 90 mm x 100 mm, and are perfect for smaller power applications. Despite the considerable size difference, the quality and dependability are parallel to that of the NDR/EDR range. ETE understand the importance of providing an up-todate service and, as such, are continually adding specially selected products to their ever-growing catalogue. You can order your free catalogue now or learn more about their products and services by visiting their website at Alternatively, you can get in touch with their friendly and knowledgeable sales team on 01284 388 033 or e-mail You will not be disappointed!

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Omron demos path tracing delta robot with freehand pattern recognition A demonstration robot cell at the 2015 PPMA show will highlight innovative applications in pattern recognition and path tracing. Visitors to the show’s Robot Feature Area, will be able to draw their own freeform shapes, present them to the vision system within the cell, and then watch as the delta robot traces the shape. The system accurately follows the path even as the shape is rotated or moved back and forth on a linear slide to demonstrate on-the-fly conveyor synchronisation. The demo cell features an Omron delta robot, controlled by a Sysmac NJ controller, and linked to Omron’s FH vision system, with a light curtain to ensure user safety. When a drawing of a shape is presented to the cell through the light curtain, the FH vision camera first scans it to create the data points. Image filtering for increased contrast and background suppression improves the scan for outline detection. From the outline, the vision system splits the path by buffers of 128 points each, and generates the output XY data of equally spaced points. The whole process happens at high speed, with the vision algorithms executed over a multicore processor system to reduce inspection time. The algorithm skips the traditional pre-calculation that would conventionally be used in pattern recognition – a task that has high computational cost. This allows faster calculations to be performed and the cell to operate within a real time control systems context. The XY data is sent to the NJ PLC, which connects these output data points using interpolation to create a smooth curve. The total length of the path is calculated from the number of points and distance between pairs of points, supplied by the FH vision system. With the total distance calculated and the curves smoothed, the trajectory data and velocity profile can be applied, with the velocity data used to calculate the distance from the initial position to the current position. A key feature of the system is its ability to synchronise with the speed of a conveyor – simulated in the demo cell using the rotary turntable and linear slide. A third degree polynomial interpolation is recalculated at every CPU tick (1ms) and based on time instead of the maximum speeds and accelerations, which are checked constantly during the path execution. The demo highlights a host of applications for path following where it is either not possible or desirable to have the path generated within a CAD system. The ability 10 - Automation Update November 2015

Omron delta robot cell demonstrates on the fly conveyor synchronisation

Omron demonstrates pattern recognition and path tracing

to draw a closed shape freehand and have it accurately traced saves time and could have important applications in areas such as food production, packaging, healthcare and more, enabling new levels of customisation for short batch runs or even single products, with full flexibility for changes in the design. The demonstration addresses a number of key issues and trends across industries. The fast teaching time means minimal downtime on the production line, and eliminates the requirement for generating a CAD profile first, which can be a time consuming operation in itself. It also highlights how the use of integrated robotics and vision technology can enable more flexible production, and offers huge potential to improve efficiency, reduce costs and improve throughput. Further, the robot cell highlights the ease of integration and programming of different technologies for machine builders. With Omron’s Sysmac platform, the controller, robot, vision system, safety technology, drives and servos are all connected over EtherCAT and programmed using a single unified software package, reducing programming, configuration and set-up times and offering the assurance that the final system will work as expected. Programming of the robot is particularly simple for such a complex application, using only one function block based on time for synchronising with the conveyor.

Well served.

Automated processing and careful handling of your products. KUKA robots provide you with the perfect ingredients for your automation solution along the entire process chain: recognition, sorting, packaging, palletizing, depalletizing and order picking. Fast and precise. We solve even complex automation tasks efficiently using innovative technologies. Our commitment – your guarantee for success. Find out about our specialists for the foodstuffs industry:

GE Healthcare partners with FANUC UK to build a packaging line The Challenge GE Healthcare, a leading manufacturer of high quality medical technologies and services for the healthcare industry needed to transform an ageing packaging line for its signature ‘Drytec’ product, a generator of the injectable radio nuclide TC99m used in hospitals all over the world for patient diagnostic imaging. A new handling and packaging solution was required at The Grove Centre in Amersham, headquarters of the GEHC Life Sciences business as well as ‘Drytec’ manufacturing and distribution. The existing packaging facility was struggling to keep up with demand, with the short lifetime of the product requiring a 24 hour turnaround to ensure timely patient care. Packing line components were becoming outdated and/or unavailable and required extensive modification to repair or upgrade. GE Healthcare needed a quick and efficient way of increasing the production output, and at the same time ensuring safety due to the radioactive composition of the product. GE needed to respond rapidly to improve its packaging line processes without disrupting current operations. The Solution GE Healthcare partnered with FANUC UK, the world’s largest robotics and automation solutions provider, to build and install a reliable and safe solution for its packing line. In conjunction with GE Healthcare, FANUC designed the complete solution, and a FANUC facility in Rugby was used to build and test the packing line, including fully mocked-up shield walls, for an extensive FAT (Factory Acceptance Test). The test demonstrated functionality of all robotic end-effectors, product throughput time and the software managing the scheduling and product tracking through the system to despatch and shipping. For the above mentioned software, FANUC commissioned SOLCOM Ltd, a leading provider of industrial software and systems, to deliver this aspect of the project. Validation of the system was completed in-house. Once the automated packaging process was successfully installed and operational at the Grove Centre, the finished DRYTEC products were collected from the manufacturing production line and loaded onto the packaging line in

12 - Automation Update November 2015

stillages. The packing materials were pre-loaded onto the line during nonproduction, after which the packing process ran automatically, packing the Drytec generators, associated ancillary box and paper documentation into the individually labelled shipping boxes, followed by palletising and wrapping. Shipment inventory documents are created for each pallet. A wide range of Drytec generators are available, with each order individually manufactured and packed with appropriate literature for the destination country. A total of six FANUC robots were integrated into this solution. The software provided by SOLCOM Ltd, working in conjunction with visual barcode reading and OCR was integrated into several stages of the packaging process ensuring that only the correct product could ever be shipped to a given address, whilst managing and prioritising delivery for clients around the world. Benefits Previously, the unreliable automation caused a high degree of manual intervention to the line, increasing operator radiation dose rates. Also occasional failure of the plant for even a few hours directly impacted supply to the end customer, resulting in cancelled patient appointments. Using robots to automate the packaging vastly improves the line reliability, and reduces risk. The automated solution ensures a consistent flow in the packing line with zero outages, and guaranteed timely delivery of the product to the end user. At the same time, reductions in manual handling reduced operator dose rate, and improved working conditions. Outcomes Since the installation of the plant in January 2014 manual handling and rework has gone down from 10 per cent to 1 per cent,

and much needed capacity for growth has been created; with the ability to produce in excess of 500 generators per 8 hour shift. Robert Scivier, Technical Authority for Controls & Instrumentation, GE Healthcare said: ‘We chose to work with FANUC due to their reputation as the world’s leading provider of automation solutions. FANUC were able to supply us with a safe and reliable end-to-end packaging process and at the same time support and maintain existing operations. The new robotics packaging line supplied by FANUC represents a significant step forward for our supply chain. It has delivered major improvements to our manufacturing operation through improved reliability and the ability to meet regulatory expectations and safeguards, whilst reducing manual handling/dose uptake for operators and ensuring capacity for future growth. In short, it has been a major success.”

Around-the-clock performance PICK, PACK, PALLETISE AND MORE ...

Improve output and efficiency at your food and beverage plant by automating your production processes. Automating your food or beverages production facilities is easier than you might think. FANUC provides smart solutions to increase productivity regardless of your business’ size. The net results are lower costs and greater competitive scope. Smart FANUC solutions create added value across your entire food and beverage industry manufacturing process. Dedicated to every phase of your production, we support you with front-ofline, processing, picking and handling and end-ofline applications.

Variohm EuroSensor’s ELPM linear position sensor has improved sealing option for even more reliability Variohm EuroSensor’s ELPM motorsports series linear position sensor is well-proven over several years for demanding applications that include ride height, suspension displacement and steering angle measurement. Recent developments to the IP67 rated sensor, which is UK designed and manufactured by Variohm, includes an optional internal dual-lip seal arrangement that offers enhanced reliability and improved endurance. The option will suit all areas of motorsports as well as industrial applications where unpredictable wet and hostile environmental conditions may exist - where fit-and-forget dependability, uncompromising reliability and topmost performance is an imperative.

The S option (ELPMS) is available across the full range of the sensor series, covering electrical stroke lengths from 12.5 mm to 175 mm (in 25 mm increments) for both the standard self-aligning pivot bearing version and the ‘Pop’ version that includes snap-on mountings for rapid installation or removal. Furthermore, the improved sealing option does not increase the 9.5 mm diameter cylindrical housing or the overall mounting length which is shorter and more compact than competitive linear sensor devices. The independent linearity across the range is +/-1% for the 12.5 to 50mm versions and +/- 0.5% for the 75 to 175mm versions. The ELPM has a temperature range of -30ºC to +150ºC continuous with a short term rating to 175ºC. Rated at 25 million operations and with a maximum speed of 10 m/sec, the long life and high reliability of the ELPM and ELPMS series is the similarly due to the patented multi-fingered precious metal wiper system which maintains full and complete contact with the linear sensor’s conductive plastic resistance element - even under the most arduous physical and environmental conditions and with very low electrical noise. The 24 VDC supplied sensor has a recommended wiper current of only 10 µA for maximum efficiency in battery powered use and is supplied as standard with a 500mm free cable with a Viton® seal. The ELPM series is also available with a spring loaded shaft and protective covers - custom options for stroke length, mounting and electrical connection are available on request.

14 - Automation Update November 2015

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ZeroK specify Variohm VLP position sensor for electric kart throttle control

ZeroK is an all-electric racing kart power system, the brainchild of designer and driver James Davies. During 2015 various iterations of the kart have been built and tested with the aim that ZeroK will be introduced as a competition class of its own. Competing against other ZeroK teams and potentially providing young drivers a new route to Formula E – and of course thrilling karting enthusiasts in the UK and further afield.

Being electric, the kart is almost silent with enormous torque for swift, lag free acceleration, a top speed of over 70mph, and 0-60mph in around 4.5 seconds. Recent power system developments have included a new supercharged controller, heavier cables and new motor/electrics cooling that delivers up to 40hp with a short-term potential of 80hp and a larger capacity hot swappable battery. To allow James Davies to finely control all this power, the ZeroK team turned to Variohm EuroSensor and specified its motorsports proven VLP series linear position sensor for the kart’s throttle pedal control. With its dual seal design the VLP provides extended reliability for the demanding race track conditions the kart needs to endure. With essentially infinite resolution and 0.1%

16 - Automation Update November 2015

linearity, its repeatable and consistent performance translates into optimal throttle control. The sensor features a conductive plastic resistance element and multi-fingered precious metal wipers in an elastomer damped mechanism to ensure smooth and uninterrupted contact - even under the most arduous physical and environmental conditions. It certainly meets with the driver’s approval. “The VLP helps keeps the power smooth through all speeds and conditions on the track,” says Chris ing takes approximately 40mins. With McCarthy Test Driver for Karting Magazine. no emissions, and almost zero noise it’s ideal for tracks with noise pollution The VLP linear positon sensor is used across restrictions. Featuring Bluetooth Tablet motorsports for ride height, steering angle, integration for driver display and infinite gearshift and suspension as well as throttle custom driver settings, allowing for drivcontrol for 4- and 2-wheel high-performance ers of all skill levels. At present ZeroK is cars and bikes. in prototyping stage, and is looking for Zero K has a modular battery system with sponsorship to help grow and develop swappable packs, allowing back to back v13, its most advanced version so far. racing with minimum delay between races. For more information about Zero K – see Runtime is between 10-20mins and charg-

High Precision MEMS Inertial Sensors and Systems

Recent developments mean that Silicon Sensing can now provide high precision MEMS IMUs, gyroscopes and accelerometers with low output noise and bias instability able to meet the accuracy requirements for all applications.

High accuracy

Excellent bias stability

Low output noise

Robust and reliable

Progworx Improves Device Programming Efficiency and Quality Control Adaptsys, a leading provider of programming and taping solutions for electronics and precision mechanical manufacturing, announces the availability of ProgWorx, a software suite to improve the efficiency and traceability of programming devices in electronics manufacturing.

NEW APPROACH ProgWorx is a new approach to board programming which complements and streamlines traditional device programming hardware interfaces, including manual probing, edge connections and bed-of-nails fixtures. By utilising ProgWorx the user can set up processes to ensure the operators are guided through each step of a programming process. This can eliminate operator errors and ensure full traceability on programming jobs, revisions, codes and device serialisation. All these processes can be monitored live and if required fed directly back into customers’ manufacturing systems. In addition ProgWorx can help move programming away from expensive ATE systems, which are historically slow to program in any production line. .

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ProgWorx allows electronics OEMs and contract manufacturers to dramatically enhance quality control and traceability, while improving the efficiency of their manufacturing systems and therefore reducing costs. The software integrates with a range of different programmers, allowing companies to select the programming technology best suited to their needs. The software also links with ERP and other manufacturing software systems through APIs (Application Programming Interfaces), aiding the optimisation of business processes, reporting and the management of stock. ProgWorx supports common technologies for tracking boards in manufacturing environments, such as barcode scanning and label printing. It also generates serial numbers and keys automatically, which benefits applications where secure communications are required. ProgWorx features an easy-to-use GUI, which makes configuration intuitive, displays the progress of the programming process and allows easy identification of which boards pass and fail. A particular advantage of ProgWorx is the built-in traceability, which will improve quality control systems in all industries but is particularly relevant for applications where this is a key requirement.

ProgWorx software is available now from Adaptsys

When it must be accurate, it must be Zwick! When decisions on material quality and material selection are on the line, there is no room for error. Your work demands the best and Zwick delivers top quality materials testing systems that leverage our 160+ years of industry experience. Contact us for more information on how intelligent testing systems from Zwick can optimize throughput in your lab.

Zwick Testing Machines Ltd. Southern Avenue Leominster Herefordshire HR6 OQH United Kingdom Phone: ++44 1568-61 5201 E-Mail:

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High Pressure No Worries! The HP1100 Series of ultra high pressure transducers and transmitters takes away the worries of dealing with very high pressures safely.


esigned to perform in demanding environments, The HP1100 Series from ESI Technology will consistently maintain accurate performance whilst sustaining high durability. The wetted parts and diaphragm are machined from a single piece of titanium alloy which means no weld joints and therefore high pressure integrity and overload capacity and with operating ranges up to 4000bar, the Silicon-onSapphire sensor technology ensures a high performance level even with high overpressures. Stainless steel housing gives unbeatable corrosion resistance whilst the Silicon-on-Sapphire sensor technology provides outstanding performance with virtually no hysteresis and excellent long term stability over a wide temperature range. The standard autoclave fitting enables safe and reliable sealing to such high pressures.

An optional ATEX and IECEx certified version of the HP1100 series is available for explosion protection for flammable gases (zone 0), dusts (zone 20) and mining areas (group I M1). • Pressure ranges from 0-400bar to 0-4000bar • All titanium wetted parts with no seals or welds • Excellent accuracy • High operating temperature • Autoclave high pressure process connection • Intrinsically safe option Contact the ESI sales team on +44 (0)1978 262255 and or visit our website

Automation Update - 21 November 2015

Drives & Motors

Group HES is excited to announce a new division - HES Automatec Building on many years of accumulated experience in critical and complex fluid power control systems, Group HES has now formally launched a dedicated control division, HES Automatec.

Specialising in providing fluid power control solutions. • Skilled engineers with extensive experience in electrical engineering and enterprise software development. • Full turnkey capabilities - The multidisciplinary engineering team comprises fluid power, electrical, instrumentation and control engineers. • Official distributors of Danfoss Plus+1, the complete development environment for off highway applications. • Technical excellence in National Instruments products for data acquisition and test rigs and Siemens S7 for bespoke industrial machinery applications. • Total project management drawing on the support and structure of Group HES and the sister divisions.

Typical market sectors covered: • Industrial Automation • Fluid Power • Mobile Machinery • Control Instrumentation • Data Acquisition part of

Call or email the specialists to discuss your next project

t. 01452 733108

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28/09/2015 13:36

Group HES takes Control with HES Automatec Group HES, a leading engineering company, is proud to announce the launch of a new Industrial Automation and Motion Control Division, HES Automatec. Group HES has been awarded a substantial government investment grant to develop HES Automatec, as a result of a deal with long-standing partners, Triumph Actuation & Motion Control Systems. This boost will see the Gloucester-based company grow, in terms of infrastructure, staff and revenue, as well as their relationship with one of the leading Aerospace firms being further cemented. The development of this new division, HES Automatec has arisen in part as well in response to increasing demand from customers, who are looking for more turnkey solutions. Branch Hydraulic Systems is the existing engineering arm of Group HES and has several decades of experience within the fluid power industry. HES Automatec provides control solutions to Branch Hydraulic Systems’ customers, where required, whilst also undertaking their own separate projects. The close relationship between the divisions sees the two technical teams sharing an office; therefore customers receive complete solutions under one contract, from one trusted supplier. No longer do customers have to compromise between a control and a hydraulic solution or wait for both sides to try and solve an issue, the engineers will work together to provide an optimal and efficient response first time, reducing the time, money and effort required by the customer. HES Automatec benefits from their parent company Group HES being official distributors for Danfoss, (formerly Sauer Danfoss) and uses the Plus +1 product extensively in their projects. With a long historical relationship with (Sauer)

22 - Automation Update November 2015

Danfoss, dating back to the early 1980s, the company has significant technical knowledge and experience to offer expert advice to the customer. Branch Hydraulic Systems have already been using the Plus +1 product for several years and the creation of HES Automatec was a natural progression. Heading up the new division is Bruce Diesel, who has an impressive background in electrical engineering and enterprise software development. As well as being an extremely capable and experienced software engineer; Bruce is a competitive amateur cyclist, who is going to lead the success and development of the new division. HES Automatec becomes the fifth division of Group HES, who is celebrating their 50 anniversary in 2015. It joins Hydraulic Equipment Supermarkets, Branch Hydraulic Systems, HES Tractec and HES Lubemec, extending the Group’s portfolio.

Mclennan is proud to provide motion control for the University of Liverpool’s ‘bedside’ diagnostic instrument for sepsis


eveloping medical instrument application demonstrates the role that motion specialists like Mclennan can play in British science

Ash Vale, Surrey, UK – September 2015: Mclennan has been working with scientists and researchers at the University of Liverpool over the past two years to help develop a portable prototype diagnostic instrument that will perform a straightforward, quick, and robust test for detecting sepsis in patients from a small sample of blood. Sepsis is a bacterial infection of the blood, causing potentially fatal whole-body inflammation that injures tissue and organs. The condition may be overcome if treated early with antibiotics and intravenous fluids, but current tests can take up to two days to identify the condition, by which time a treatment regime can be ineffective. Scientists at the University have a successful method of detecting the infection at its early stages and are translating this test into a point-of-care device for improved ease and speed of diagnosis. It is envisaged that rapid diagnosis can be a reality in the future to combat the condition which annually affects 18 million people worldwide and reportedly costs the NHS over £2billion. The project was funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) under the Invention for Innovation (i4i) programme (II-LS-1010-10045) which provides guided progression of innovative medical product prototypes via commercial development; aiming for eventual use in the clinical environment for the benefit of patients in the NHS. The sepsis instrument and test, which has been protected via several patent applications, is a fairly simple application that could be described as a textbook example where motion control is used as an enabling technology to facilitate amazing science. With the small blood sample loaded into a specially developed multi layered disc which is about the size of a CD, the single axis machine combines high speed controlled ‘spinning’ of the disc to centrifugally separate the blood plasma and then performs precision indexing to rotate it through one or two revolutions to various positions where chambers containing biomarked and unmarked ‘control’ plasma samples are presented for microfluidic examination. Simply put, the difference between the sample and control determines the result. The disposable discs would be manufactured relatively inexpensively making the whole test a very economic as well as effective solution. Initially, a very brief specification was delivered to engineers at Mclennan and as with many research projects there was sparse information about load characteristics and even some secrecy about the application as well as budget restrictions. Dr Dominic

Banks, the research fellow working on the project, based at the University of Liverpool’s Institute of Infection and Global Health recalls, “We had a basic outline of the functions we needed, and more than anything required the flexibility in the motion controller to develop the project as we progressed along the development path”. To meet the budget and prove the process for the first prototype machine Mclennan supplied an open loop stepper motor drive. From the control requirements given at the time, it was clear that an intelligent drive with I/O and maths capability could possibly take on most of the machine functions. As the exclusive UK distributor for Applied Motion Products (AMP), its ST series intelligent microstepping drives proved to adequately provide the instrument control requirements. As the ST series stepper drive essentially uses the same programming and has similar functionality to AMP’s servo range, it was an easy transition when the instrument was further developed and servo motor control with high resolution position feedback was specified to meet more exacting positional requirements as well as provide the compactness and low audible noise levels that were needed for the envisioned point-of-care bedside version. Dr Banks had an eye on the servo route from the outset, “We were most interested to learn that the AMP stepper and servo versions were scalable – this was a deciding factor to initially go with Mclennan so as to make the transition more seamless when funding was increased”. AMP SV7 series intelligent drives combine many progressive features for digital servo control including advanced current control and Ethernet communications that proved useful for programming and developing the application. Programming was taken care with AMP’s ‘Q ProgrammerTM’ language – a multi-tasking BASIC like language with stored program execution, maths functions and conditional processing. A simple LCD display and pushbutton panel connected to the drive is used to initiate and run the SV7 program that includes data registers along with I/O for various functions including interaction with the microfluidic examination

process developed by the University. Sample processing is completed automatically with the results displayed on screen. It would be possible to output this information to a PC for further use. In the latest prototype version these same components are included in a miniaturised model developed by the Liverpool team that demonstrates how the machine may look in full production. “Mclennan has worked very closely with us from the outset and provided vital information and support for the instruments motion control functionality which will prove invaluable going forward”, says Banks. The project if continued would of course be cost reduced, and for Mclennan it would be unlikely that the AMP SV7 intelligent drive, servomotor and encoder would be selected but through the capability to design and supply customised mechatronic solutions the Hampshire based motion specialist may well play a role in the sepsis instrument’s future. Graham Wingate, Mclennan’s Sales Director summarises, “Research based applications like the sepsis instrument may not yield generous income – we rely on our volume OEMs and enduser business for that - but they do give us a great deal of satisfaction and experience; and leave the door open for future business as university led projects progress through potential technology transfer initiatives.”


Automation Update - 23 November 2015


The new 1000 Series is set to transform the world of calibration - the completely new design utilises the latest in cutting edge digital and analogue electronics, combined with the latest manufacturing techniques to create the worlds first ultra portable full function calibrator. Transmille have applied their expertise in designing bench and transportable calibrators to create this new generation of multi function calibrators to offer true portability and rapid return on investment. For the first time the 1000 Series will allow you to easily take your calibration laboratory with you. The significant improvement in portability changes how and where calibration can be performed. On-site calibration is not a new idea, but older designs meant carrying large, heavy instruments. The 1000 Series is easy to carry, quick to set up anywhere and a fast warm up time allows work to be started quickly.

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Although ultra portable and lightweight, the 1000 Series provides all the capabilities you would expect from a traditional full size calibrator. Full functionality and accuracy come as standard, with the 1000 Series offering the following comprehensive features : • • • • • • • • • •

AC/DC Voltage to 1000V AC/DC Current to 10A (500A with coil) Resistance to 100 MOhms Capacitance Frequency Thermocouple Simulation PRT Simulation Pressure Measurement (via Transducers) Process Control Measurement (mV / mA) Insulation Tester Calibration

All these functions together with the high drive capabilities for calibrating older analogue instruments make the 1000 Series the perfect choice for on-site calibration. This full function ultra portable configuration makes it ideal for all types of sites including oil rigs, ships, aviation, power & process plants and railways.

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Automation Update - 25 November 2015

MiniTec designs and supplies display cabinets for National Physical Laboratory ‘Super Sight’ stand Demonstrating the innumerable capabilities of its new Profile Series 30 range of aluminium profiles with matching modular elements and fittings, MiniTec UK recently supplied interactive exhibition display cabinets for the National Physical Laboratory’s ‘Super Sight’ stand at the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition that explores augmented reality – the placement of computer generated images into the human eye’s view.

MiniTec’s new Profile System 30 used for the NPL’s Total Internal Reflection demonstrator for the Royal Society Science Summer Exhibition

With its nominal sectional size of 30 x 30 mm which suits smaller structures, the wheeled cabinets allowed the exhibition organisers to customise the information panels for the specific subject matter and MiniTec also provided additional engineered equipment for a laser enclosure that allow visitors to set the angle for the ‘total internal refraction’ cabinet shown in the attached image. Profile Series 30 aluminium profiles suit smaller machine frames, consoles, panels, fixtures, safety guards and the lightweight range is also particularly suited to structural frames for equipment used in the food and medical industries or for organising component or tool storage in confined areas such as vehicle fit-outs. The new range also lowers the cost base for light-duty machine applications. With eight new profiles in sectional sizes of 23 x 16, 23 x 30, 30 x 30 and 30 x 60 (mm) and with combinations of smooth sides and T slot profiles that maximises flexibility and aesthetic appearance the range uses a new 30 mm version of MiniTec’s Powerlock rapid one-piece fastening system that requires no pre-drilling of the profile and saves considerable assembly time. The range of ancillary components includes angle and adapter brackets, door hinges, panel sealing strips and many other modular construction pieces. The Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition, ran from 30 June to 5 July 2015 and included a stand by the National Physical Laboratory and TrueLife Optics, about augmented reality, aimed at school students and the general public. All went well and MiniTec’s customer was very pleased with the demonstration consoles - over 15,000 people used it! 26 - Automation Update November 2015

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From Ice Cold to Burning Hot “wenglor’s New Optical Sensor OptoTemp Permit Contactless Temperature Measurement”


s of the end of September, the new Temperature Sensor OptoTemp has expanded wenglor’s product portfolio in the field of Photoelectronic Sensors. The highperformance sensor measures temperatures within a range of -25 to 350° C on the basis of infrared radiation emitted by the object, regardless of the material it’s made of and its state of aggregation. Thus wenglor is once again demonstrating innovative market competence in the area of optical sensor technology.

The measurement of infrared radiation is quick and contactless, and the object itself is not influenced in any way. The temperature of a great variety of objects can thus be reliably measured, regardless of the material they’re made from and their state of aggregation. The sensor measures temperature with a spectral sensitivity of 8 to 14 µm within a measuring range of -25 to 350° C. The measured value appears at the integrated, intuitively operable display and is read out via the outputs or the RS-232 port. Thanks to its two switching outputs and an analog output, the sensor is suited for various measuring applications, for example target versus actual value comparison and absolute measurement. The integrated laser alignment tool and a teachable emission factor make initial start-up quick and easy. “The OptoTemp Temperature Sensor is a genuine all-around product”, explains product manager Maria Boos. “In particular the two switching outputs, the analog output, the configurable output function and teach-in of the emission factor via the intuitive display provide an ideal basis for a broad range of various temperature measurements.” Applications include conventional target versus actual value monitoring of liquids and raw masses, as well as process control for the prevention of temperature violations at non-metallic surfaces, right on up to the monitoring of engines and system components in the automotive industry. “Downtime can be avoided in this way, scrap can 28 - Automation Update November 2015

The new OptoTemp Temperature Sensor is distinguished by its two switching outputs and a highly flexible analog output.

be reduced in production and uniform product quality can be assured throughout the entire value creation chain”, continues Boos. The Highlights at a Glance: • Contactless temperature measurement within a range of -25 to 350° C • 2 switching outputs for simple setpoint versus actual value comparison • Freely scalable analog output for absolute measurement • Output functions can be configured as desired (PNP / NPN, NO / NC, 4 to 20 mA / 0 to 10 V)Emission factor adjustable from 0.1 to 1 • Integrated laser alignment tool • Easy adjustment via intuitive menu and 7-segment display or wTeach2 (RS-232)

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Processing and Packaging Professionals Converge on NEC for Most Successful PPMA Show in Recent History The PPMA Show 2015 returned to the NEC from the 29th September - 1st October, with more than 1,000 leading packaging and processing machinery manufacturers represented at the show and providing a platform to showcase the latest technological innovations and discuss key business opportunities with more than 7,500 visitors. The exhibition saw prominent figures from across the manufacturing sector take to the stage as part of the show’s seminar sessions with former Sainsbury’s CEO Justin King CBE, providing the headline discussion, addressing the future for multiple retailers and how the growing market share of discount retailers will affect the supply chain. Show features also included a Robotic and Industrial Vision zone which showcased the latest inventive and quirky uses of robotic technology including robots that could dance, pour drinks and even play golf. Highlighting the latest innovations Visitors were able to view first-hand many of the latest innovations on the market with exhibitors including the likes of Riggs Autopack, who presented the Guinness World Record winning Series 1 microfill depositor, which was recently used to produce 35,000 cupcakes for the world’s largest cupcake mosaic. L.A.C. Conveyor Systems were on hand to discuss their spiral bakery conveyor prototype, a collaboration with Intralox, showcasing the continued advances in product movement for the bakery industry. Elsewhere, Food is Life, a collection of manufacturers combining expertise to bring about disruptive change in food production, featured a BMW i8 on the stand to demonstrate the levels of efficiency achievable in the automotive industry that the food manufacturing industry should be looking to replicate. Returning as headline sponsors of the PPMA Show 2015, Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking offered valuable expertise from their manufacturing specialists, including guidance on day-to-day banking requirements and funding for expansion, as well as supporting businesses in their plans to invest in new plant and machinery. David Atkinson, Head of Manufacturing, SME, at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, said: “The PPMA Show is a major landmark in the manufacturing calendar and this year’s event was bigger and better than ever. Many businesses were keen to share

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their experiences, taking elements of best practice from across the industry to better understand how they can achieve their growth aspirations. “In particular, our manufacturing experts were on hand to offer advice and support on topics from exploring new markets, through to the development of new products and increasing use of automation. It was fantastic to see so many businesses from across the industry hungry to collaborate and share new ideas, a true reflection of the best British business has to offer.” Dan Lake, Head of UK Sales at Bradman Lake, who showcased the FT120 Flow Wrapper with ILPF Phase Feeder, praised the networking opportunities on offer at the show: “At the PPMA Show we’re able to see the right people all in one place. It’s given us the opportunity to come and have joint venture meetings and it’s a great place to show off our machinery range.” Mark James, Product Marketing Manager, RS Components said: “We’re a first time exhibitor and the show has been very good. Overall organisation and the quality of customers is up with the best of them. The show meets the needs of end customers and compared to other shows, communication is very slick, and the organisers produce good lvooking materials.” Visitors to the exhibition also discussed the importance of the PPMA Show to the industry and its role in showcasing the latest technology on offer. Pavel Rokosz, Project Engineer, RB UK said: “We’re here at the PPMA to see what’s new on the market. This is the number one show in the UK for us. It’s important to have contact with companies in the industry and to see what the competition is up to.”

Ones to Watch Award 2015 The Ones to Watch award also returned, celebrating the contributions of those people under the age of 35 to the packaging and processing industries with Reiser engineer Cesare Bove the recipient of this year’s Gold award. Cesare was awarded the title by a panel of judges having demonstrated his talent, and dedication to the industry. He was also praised for the progress he’d made during his time working with Reiser, having started as an apprentice, before moving into the field as a service and installation engineer. Discussing his award Cesare said: “I feel incredibly privileged to have won gold in this year’s awards - it feels great to have my hard work recognised. I hope these awards

encourage the younger generation to work in the processing and packaging industry. Yes, it can be really hard work and high pressure at times but it is also interesting and full of exciting innovation.”

Seminar Sessions An opening keynote speech from Lord Digby Jones, former Minister of State for Trade and Investment, set the tone for the informative Seminar Sessions which took place at the show, with a number of key topics addressed by industry figures during the course of the exhibition. Hannah Wall, Graduate Project Engineer, Nestle and Sam Kelly, Electrical Engineering Apprentice, PepsiCo, took to the stage to discuss the opportunities available to young people to get into the engineering industry. In front of a packed audience of students, Hannah and Sam spoke about their own experiences in the industry and the type of projects they’d worked on during their careers. The hot topic of the adoption of robotics came under the spotlight with Shadow Robot’s Managing Director Rich Walker showcasing the capabilities of modern robotics and in particular the development of the Moley robotic kitchen, which is capable of producing chef quality meals using a normal kitchen. Another popular seminar saw Mike Cosby, Finance Director at Burts Chips, discuss how investment in production facilities and new technology has resulted in increased sales and profitability, and led to the growth of existing partnerships with the likes of Guinness, Wychwood Brewery and The Well Hung Meat Company. Discussing the success of the 2015 show, Richard Little, PPMA Show Director said: “The PPMA Show 2015 has been a resounding success and we’re very pleased with how the event has run this year. The exhibition benefits from an amazing community atmosphere, and there was a real buzz about the show floor this year. “We have been inundated with compliments, and would like to thank everyone that took the time to exhibit or visit the show. We have more than 200 exhibiting companies already confirmed for Total 2016, many of whom were exhibitors at this year’s show rebooking stand space, but we’ve also taken bookings from those who opted to visit the Show this year. Needless to say, they’ve been impressed by what they’ve seen.”

Position sensors with 10m range: Variohm EuroSensor adds new Celesco SK series cable extension sensors

Towcester – UK – October 2015: Variohm EuroSensor has expanded its position sensor range to include several new models that are available ex-stock from the ‘cable extension transducer’ specialist Celesco Inc. Aimed at demanding applications in outdoor mobile equipment such as cranes, hoists and hydraulic lifts, the SK series also suits long range position monitoring for industrial machinery. The modular range offers stroke options of 6.4 and 10.2 metres with a variety of electrical interfaces, including CANbus, voltage and current output, in addition to a choice of plastic-hybrid potentiometer sensing or flange-mounted encoder. With its glass-filled polycarbonate housing the durable SK series has an IP67 environmental rating and nominal dimensions of approximately 165mm x 109mm x 139mm (w x d x h). Installation in any orientation is very easy thanks to a rotatable mounting bracket - and alignment of the robust spring-loaded stainless steel measuring cable is non-critical. With maximum cable velocity to 1.5 m/sec and acceleration to 5g, the sensor has a life rating in excess of 250,000 cycles and operating temperature range from -40 to +85°C. The specific models in the new SK series include four that feature Celesco’s well proven plastic-hybrid precision potentiometer offering a nominal accuracy of 0.35% FS. and repeatability of 0.05% FS. These models comprise the SKD with a user selectable 4…20 mA or 0..10V DC output; the SK1 with a voltage divider output; the SKH-CAN with a CANopen interface, and the SKJ-CAN with CANbus SAE J1939. A fifth model, the SK6-Encoder offers the possibility to incorporate any standard 2 ½ inch square flange or 58 mm synchro-flange encoder. Variohm can offer suitable encoders or users choose their own preferred model that suits the application in hand. Electrical interfacing is via an industry standard M12 connector. Customised version are available - please contact Variohm EuroSensor at Variohm EuroSensor provides complete sales and application support across a comprehensive range of position, load, force and temperature sensor technologies - for demanding measurement applications across industry, construction, agriculture, motorsports, research and more. Email: Website: Email: Web: Automation Update - 31 November 2015

BSRIA 2015 BRIEFING – SMART DATA, SILVER LINING OR BLACK COULD? BSRIA’s flagship event – the annual Briefing and lunch – will be looking at the issue of big data with the topic of Smart data, silver lining or black cloud? and will be held at the Brewery, in London, on Friday 13th November 2015. The main sponsor is Trend. The event takes the form of a morning briefing followed by a luncheon with a guest speaker. It is well-established in the industry calendar drawing a wide range of attendees from all sectors, commencing at 9.00 am. The Briefing will specifically consider how digital will look within the built environment and how it will drive operational improvement, create new value propositions for clients and new value streams for suppliers. While not forgetting the important aspect of the changing skill sets that will be required, along with the social issues and challenges the industry may encounter – both at work and home. Julia Evans, Chief Executive, BSRIA said: “There are many ways big data can be used to create values across industry sectors of the global economy. But in order to create innovation, productivity and growth as well as new modes of value capture we need to have the skills, security and knowledge to be able to use the data effectively and competitively with in the built environment for both commercial and domestic buildings.” The lunch is at 13:00 and the after lunch speaker is Nick Hewer – this slick PR consultant was Lord Alan Sugar’s advisor on the Apprentice and then went on to present the Channel 4 show ‘Countdown’ sending ratings through the roof! Speakers include: Dr Alison Vincent, Chief Technology Officer, Cisco – UK and Ireland; Christopher Pountney, Principal Engineer, AECOM; Professor William Webster, Director, Centre for Research into Information, Surveillance and Privacy (CRISP), University of Stirling; Neil Thompson, Principal BIM Integrator, Balfour Beatty & Chair of BIM 2050 Group; and Gary Goodenough, Cloud & Hosting Services, Vodafone. Rob Manning, Government Level 3 BIM Team at Engineering Construction Strategies, is the Briefing Chairman. The event will close at 15.30. More detailed information on the whole event is available at Or to discuss booking your company table or the Briefing Sponsorship Packages, e-mail or phone 01344 465 512. Venue: The Brewery, 52 Chiswell Street, London, EC1Y 4SD. 32 - Automation Update November 2015


The first FANUC M410iC/185 universal palletising robot has been installed in the UK at pulse processor Askew & Barrett, where it has helped to boost productivity by 15-20% and eliminated a potential health and safety risk factor by automating a manual palletising operation.


skew & Barrett sources pulses from key agricultural merchants and then sorts, cleans and grades them at its processing plant in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire. The pulses are bagged into 12.5kg and 25kg paper sacks and 25kg woven polypropylene (WPP) sacks, before being palletised and transported to food manufacturers and retailers at home and abroad. Prior to investing in the new generation FANUC palletising robot, Askew & Barrett used manpower to stack the sacks onto pallets. The problem was that in order to keep up with demand, during busy periods Askew & Barrett was having to operate the line 24 hours a day, six days a week. Although the working day was split into either two 12 hour or three eight hour shifts, this was still physically demanding work, and the company didn’t want to continue exposing its staff to that level of manual handling. “It takes it out of you, standing at the end of the line, stacking sacks onto a pallet. We wanted to take steps to ensure the physical wellbeing of our employees,” says production and warehouse manager Chris Askew. Askew & Barrett engaged Pacepacker Services, FANUC’s palletising integrator, to design a fully automated packing and palletising line that would reduce manual handling and increase productivity. For the palletising element, Pacepacker specified FANUC’s new M410iC/185, the first of a new generation of Japaneseengineered palletising robots that combines FANUC’s proven 99.99% reliability record with tangible improvements in performance, allowing users across a range of industries to palletise heavier loads faster and stack pallets higher. FANUC recommended this model on account of its high cycling speed - the robot is capable of 1700 cycles per minute - and

The FANUC M410iC/185 universal palletising robot at Askew and Barrett boosting productivity by15-20% its 185g payload. This combination results in heightened productivity and more efficient palletising of heavy payloads. “In designing the M410iC/185, FANUC’s engineers have harnessed the latest advancements in servo motors and drives to design a robot arm that is quite simply best in its class on every front: speed, payload, energy-efficiency and reach. We have absolute confidence that this robot will continue to exceed Askew & Barrett’s performance expectations and prove completely reliable for years to come,” said Paul Wilkinson, business development manager at Pacepacker Services. The robot was installed in a dual cell configuration for maximum performance, and it is here that the M410iC/185’s compact 610 x 806mm footprint and extended reach capabilities come into play. In a dual cell configuration, the robot is sited so that it can swivel between two individually accessible pallet loading positions. This means that as soon as the robot has finished palletising a stack, it starts to palletise on the other pallet in the cell.

“This is an extremely time-efficient configuration as the robot is always in use - it can start loading a new pallet while the full pallet is being transported to the delivery area. The M410iC/185 is ideal for dual cell installations owing to is small footprint and its reach of 2.4m - higher than any other robot in the same class - which enables it to service two cells effortlessly,” explained FANUC UK technical manager Darren Whittall. The M410iC/185, which was installed in February this year, has increased palletising speed to 10 bags per minute, and has enabled the company to reduce the working week from six days to five without laying anyone off - staff have been redeployed to less physical tasks. Chris also reports that bags are now stacked more consistently onto pallets allowing for much “safer storage within our warehouse and easier loading into containers”

FANUC UK Contact: Angela Ridley, Sales & Marketing Administrator T +44 (0)2476 518415 E Automation Update - 33 November 2015

Partnership of the Year award win for Coventry based

FANUC and partners

On 29th September, Coventry-based robotics company FANUC UK scooped the coveted ‘Partnership of the Year’ accolade for its three-way alliance with likeminded automation specialists Pacepacker Services and Festo at the PPMA* Awards 2015. At a gala ceremony hosted by comedian and entertainer Bobby Davro at the National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham, the alliance between the three companies was highlighted as a real game changer for the food sector. This winning partnership gives manufacturers access to the widest choice of hygienic automation, product handling and packaging solutions in the market today. Plus, the trio have designed systems to address key obstacles including hygiene, dexterity, safety and flexibility, which were up until recently stalling robot adoption in food manufacturing. It was highlighted during the awards that this was a tough category for the judging panel as this year’s entries for Partnership of the Year had given some great examples of what businesses can achieve together. What set the winners apart was their willingness to work together despite being competitors in some areas ensuring customers’ needs were fully met.

The Pacepacker team pictured with John Rainer FANUC regional sales manager (second from right)

Collecting the award in front of more than 400 industry leaders and innovators, John Rainer, regional sales manager of FANUC UK highlighted the significance of this victory “Winning the Partner of the Year award reaffirms what can be accomplished when likeminded companies work together to address specific industry challenges. As a partnership, we have a combined knowledge exceeding 100 years. This alone fosters greater innovation, resulting in quicker premium robot builds and a faster return on investment for our customers.” John concludes “FANUC Robots today are economical, some IP69K-certified for harsh environment applications, and offer proven output and energy efficiencies. This has boosted the business case for uptake of automated systems in the food industry. This partnership offers a wide automation portfolio, giving customers access to 80+ robots, virtually infinite end effector configurations and over 85 service consultants nationwide. ” FANUC UK Contact: Angela Ridley, Sales & Marketing Administrator T +44 (0)2476 518415 E 34 - Automation Update November 2015

The PPMA ‘Partnership of the Year’ award scooped by FANUC for is three-way alliance with likeminded automation specialists Pacepacker Services and Festo.

Around-the-clock performance PICK, PACK, PALLETISE AND MORE ...

Improve output and efficiency at your food and beverage plant by automating your production processes. Automating your food or beverages production facilities is easier than you might think. FANUC provides smart solutions to increase productivity regardless of your business’ size. The net results are lower costs and greater competitive scope. Smart FANUC solutions create added value across your entire food and beverage industry manufacturing process. Dedicated to every phase of your production, we support you with front-ofline, processing, picking and handling and end-ofline applications.

MiniTec supplies flexible manufacturing cell with Kanban storage for The Proving Factory Basingstoke, March 2015: The Proving Factory’s recently opened assembly facility in Coventry will use a flexible manufacturing cell supplied by MiniTec UK Limited. The £22 million Proving Factory provides process development and ‘proving volume’ production of leading-edge lowcarbon technology automotive components and systems. With major partners across the automotive industry, The Proving Factory takes innovative products and design ideas from small high-tech British companies and university department technology transfer enterprises, and develops them for large-volume production for global vehicle manufacturers and tier one suppliers. The 6000 m2 assembly facility is designed for flexibility with nine new products nearing the end of the development stage and two due to start production in 2015. The Proving Factory aims to manufacture 1,000 to 20,000 units annually, representing up to 20 products. The flexibility and scalability of MiniTec’s Profile System allows The Proving Factory to easily modify and fine tune the set-up in line with their own aims to develop the best assembly and test procedures for producing competitive high-quality products. Working closely with The Proving Factory team, MiniTec designed and supplied the majority of the equipment for the assembly operations and end-of-line tests which includes several workbenches with Kanban racks and component storage. The design brief included the requirement to handle products from 30 to 300 kg and defined a standard for tools and equipment storage – with re-configurability a prime consideration – to adapt the large variety of products that will be assembled using the cell. MiniTec supplied the complete system within five weeks from receipt of order and further components or subassemblies are available on very short lead times. Karl

36 - Automation Update November 2015

Fawdry, Manufacturing Engineer at The Proving Factory said “We were able to build and configure the first cell within four hours of delivery to the Coventry site. MiniTec’s support has been invaluable in developing our need for flexible and reconfigurable assembly cells.” Redesign and reconfiguration is made straightforward using MiniTec’s free-of-charge iCAD design software that is integrated with the customer’s preferred software system. iCAD includes interfaces with all common CAD packages and is also available for standalone design and development as an on-line tool with no CAD knowledge required. MiniTec’s Profile System also boasts the fastest assembly/ re-asembly time for all major framing systems thanks to its Powerlock® fastener – a single operation fixing requiring just an Allen key and no pre-drilling of the cut-to-length profile. In addition to workbenches, Kanban and component storage systems, MiniTec’s modular aluminium profile based machine building system includes thousands of components that combine for highly efficient machine frame solutions with control system and motion components for electrical, pneumatic and hydraulic automation. MiniTec can provide separate components for customer assembly, build to customer requirements in-house or on-site. Email: Web: Email: Web:

Quick and simple product sample ordering HARTING has eased the process of providing product samples to engineers and designers by increasing its stockholding of PCB connectors and I/O connectors to over 2000 devices.

As a result, the samples requested can be shipped free of charge within 24 hours of ordering. They can be ordered quickly and simply through HARTING’s online product eCatalogue by using specific buttons on the relevant product pages. Peter Hannon, Managing Director of HARTING Ltd., states “This is a great development in the HARTING sample offering. By increasing the number of products available, we can help our customers create solutions with the renowned HARTING quality and reliability. “ For more information or to order samples, visit

About HARTING The HARTING Group develops, manufactures and distributes electrical and electronic connectors, network components, pre-assembled system cables, and backplane assemblies. These products are capable of withstanding the harshest demands in industrial environments and provide high data rates for electronic applications. HARTING connectors and network components are used in mechanical engineering and plant manufacturing, in automation systems, energy generation and distribution, and in electronic and telecommunication markets. Industrial connectors are also vital in construction machinery, rail vehicles and shipbuilding. HARTING offers Ethernet network components and cable systems for both indoor and outdoor networking applications involving power and data. HARTING today employs a workforce of nearly 4000 in 40 countries. For further information visit Automation Update - 37 November 2015

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Street Crane Co Ltd Chapel-en-le-Frith High Peak SK23 0PH Tel: +44 (0) 1298 812456 email:

ECi Software Solutions Si One, St Ives Business Park, Parsons Green, St Ives, PE27 4AA Tel: +44 (0) 333 123 0333   Website:     Email:

Man and Machine Ltd Unit 8 Thame 40 Jane Morbey Road Thame Oxfordshire OX9 3RR

Weber Marking Systems UK Macmerry Industrial Estate, Tranent, East Lothian EH33 1HD, United Kingdom Tel: +44.18.7561.1111 E-mail: 38 - Automation Update


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Quantum Controls 6a Dukes Way Low Prudhoe Northumberland NE42 69Q 0330 9000 247  

Fraser Anti-Static Techniques Ltd Scotts Business Park Bampton, Devon EX16 9DN +44 (0)1398331114

Hone-All Cherrycourt Way, Leighton Buzzard. LU7 4UH. Tel: 0845 5555 111 E-mail:

Ecopac (UK) Power Ltd Unit 4, Ridgeway, Crendon Industrial Area, Long Crendon, Bucks, HP18 9BF Tel: +44 1844204420

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Automation Update - November 2015  

Automation Update - November 2015