Engineering Update - August 2021

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August 2021



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Instruments Ltd

TVR Instruments Limited 143 Butt Road, Colchester CO3 3DP Essex United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0) 1206 575755 Email:



August 2021


Wendy McManus 01843 267 690

August 2021

At the forefront of digital marketing, Engineering Update strives to bring its readers the latest in industrial engineering, in a format that provides the best usability and ease of use for it’s readers.

Editorial Assistant

Taylor Owens 01843 448 443

Publishing Director

Jodie Little 01843 448 443

Publication Manager

Tim Johnston 01843 448 443

Publishing House

Jet Digital Media Ltd, Suite 1 & 2 Spratling Court Offices, Spratling Street, Manston, Kent CT12 5AN

August 2021


BESPOKE SACHET PACKING SOLUTION Machine Overview C J Waterhouse Company were approached by a food additive manufacturer to develop a bespoke machine to take two sachet streams directly from a form, fill and seal machine, count and layer them into boxes and cut the stream when the required number of sachets is achieved. The resultant machine is positioned at the end of the clients existing production line and provides fully automated operation of a process which was previously completed by hand.

Stream Feed System The sachet sream is fed directly into a buffer hopper which monitors the incoming stream tension and level to automatically adjust the downstream feed system. The stream then passes through a guide and over a drive assembly which draws the stream out of the feed hopper.

Stream Tensioning

Stream Dosing & Cutting

The sachet stream then passes through a system which maintains the stream tension and provides automated control of the in-feed system. Tensioning is achieved via a monitored dancer bar arrangement which raises under tension and lowers under gravity when tension is reduced.

The sachet stream passes through a series of guides then to the dosing system which comprises of a pair of counter rotating feed wheels driven by a single variable speed encoded motor. This provides a controlled feed rate in direct relation to the layering system. Upon reaching the desired sachet count a pneumatically operated blade is activated which cuts the stream horizontally along the existing perforation line.

When the dancer bar raises to its upper position the drive wheel is activated and continues for a pre-determined time period therefore reducing the stream tension and lowering the dancer bar.

Box Filling System The sachet stream is layered into the box via a swinging chute assembly driven by a linear electric cylinder with an encoder drive providing highly accurate positioning and permitting speed matching with the dosing system. The boxes reside upon a moving carriage system, as the chute swings across the box the carriage moves backward and forwards to create evenly distributed layers. The height of the sachet layer is monitored via a laser level detection system. As the box fills the carriage is automatically lowered to maintain a specific distance between the filling spout and the sachet layer. For information on our bespoke system development or our standard range of materials handling solutions please visit us at or call us on +44 (0) 1636 610792.


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4 Comm ports, inc Ethernet Built-in data logging to microSD Free no-limit programming Slim stackable design Multiple i/o wiring options Starter kit available +44 (0)20 3026 2670

Lamonde Automation Limited Quality Products: Expert Advice

August 2021


PICK AND MIX FILTER SOLUTIONS DRIVE DOWN COSTS Axium Process is offering manufacturers a unique ‘pick and mix’ liquid filtration solution ensuring consistent product quality and minimal downtime.


he company has developed a universal stainless steel filter housing which can be used with three distinct filter screens. Each screen has specialist capabilities making them suitable for multiple applications across industries including pharmaceutical, food, beverage, dairy, confectionery and chemical. The universal housing is fixed in-place, but the element can be rapidly switched to change filtration levels or to install another type of screen. The three screen options include Axium’s wedge-wire filter screen, a sintered mesh screen, and a basic perforated filter screen. The comprehensive range covers the separation of particulates, fibres, flakes and glass shard protection, as well as offering a wide choice of filtration levels between 5µm and 6,000µm. Axium’s wedge wire-screen is widely used for powder dispersing applications and where product consistency and smoothness are essential. It enables solids and particles such as grits and seeds to be separated, while simultaneously breaking down and dispersing agglomerates. The sintered mesh screen is used in mains water, pharmaceutical, food and beverage applications to remove suspended solids, micro-flakes, hair and fibres; it can also prevent glass contamination. The company’s perforated tube screen is designed for general purpose filtration at high or low temperatures, separating larger particles from liquid streams. Derek Davies, Business Development Director at Axium Process, said: “In response to our customers’ changing needs, we have continued to evolve our filters to provide a comprehensive range of options for almost every application. “The pick and mix solutions can result in significant cost savings for manufacturers with variable filtration requirements as they only need to purchase and install one filter body. They can then choose any filter screen option from Axium’s comprehensive range.


“Whether a customer requires high-security filtration or a consistently smooth filtered product, the interchangeable screens and wide range of filtration levels cover a vast array of applications and multiple filtration requirements in a single installation.” Axium’s stainless steel filters are simple and easy to maintain and have built-in safety features to protect the operator. All elements can be safely removed for cleaning without specialist tooling, ensuring a rapid return to service without unnecessary downtime.

Leaders in temperature measurement

Hand Held Instrumentation Heading 3

A selection of hand held instruments for many applications including a large range of digital thermometers, light level meter and a range of great value handheld sensors.

IR Industrial IR Medical Infrared Thermometers Thermometers

Pressure Manometers

Digital Light Meters


Temperature & Wood Moisture Meter Humidity Meter

Grain Moisture Meter Bognor Regis tel: +44 (0)1243 871280 Sheffield tel: +44 (0)1909 569446

August 2021


Meet the Marine Range We're going to be showing off our range of DNV GL approved pressure transmitters at Ocean Business 2021, which is now taking place in October. The range includes high pressure, general purpose, low pressure, submersible and hazardous area pressure transmitters. They have been designed for use on shipping systems such as marine engines, cargo storage tanks, fuel gauging, fresh water storage, wastewater management, and heating, cooling and ballast tank control. For oil, LNG and LPG tanker applications there are also ATEX and IECEx approved, intrinsically safe options available.

There are various levels of marine approval ranging from the very basic for use in cabins and locker spaces, through to engine room and bilges, to on deck and even up mast mountings. These are classified by DNVGL as location classes and it is important that the equipment used is suitable and certified for use in each location, in relation to temperature, humidity, vibration, EMC, and enclosure. The location classes are defined on the equipment certificate, but further guidance can be found from DNVGL. ESI have aimed for the highest level in each class so that the products can be used in the most diverse range of applications on-board.


Of course, SOS (Silicon-on-sapphire) sensor technology features heavily in the range. With high accuracy, virtually no hysteresis and unbeatable stability, the sensor is perfect for tough environments which require optimal performance. The GS4200, HP1000 and PR3900 cover pressure ranges from vacuum up to 5000 bar, with titanium or stainless steel options and rugged housing. Check out the product datasheets for more information by visiting the ESI website or contact sales


The AZM150 solenoid interlock can be combined with three different actuators for different installation situations: a straight actuator for sliding doors, an angled actuator for large revolving doors and a movable actuator for smaller revolving doors. One of the plus points of the interlock is the rotating actuator head which can be locked simply by putting the lid on rather than a screw fitting. The rotating actuator head has two feeder slots to enable a range of installation positions and approach options. This makes the interlock really flexible to use. The AZM150 is an electromechanical design which can be combined with high safety standards. The interlock comes with a low coding level as standard but is also available with an optional high coding level. The benefit for users: In accordance with ISO 14119, a higher coding requires fewer measures to prevent the bypassing of locking mechanisms, such as fitting out of range or in a concealed position. Schmersal is the only manufacturer which can offer electromechanical safety switches and solenoid interlocks with high coding levels. Scan the QR code to see the AZM150 in action or visit our website for more information.

SCHMERSAL | Enigma Business Park Malvern, Worcestershire, WR14 1GL

August 2021


HDR Canada Creates New Business Unit: Building Engineering Servicess HDR Canada has expanded its service delivery within mechanical, electrical structural and civil engineering to form a dedicated Building Engineering Services business group, providing solutions for the built environment. The new practice is part of a growth strategy to target new market sectors, while continuing to support our important current clientele. This move follows the acquisition of Hurley Palmer Flatt Group, the United Kingdom’s leading independent engineering consultancy in July 2019, a critical step in expanding multidisciplinary building engineering services globally. The new Building Engineering Services group in Canada brings together experts with diverse and broad experience in major projects, from transit facilities and industrial installations to commercial and institutional buildings. The services being offered moving forward include mechanical, plumbing electrical, structural and civil engineering. One important area for growth is in mission critical facilities such as complex data centres, with a focus on energy efficiency and sustainable, green building design. Key team leaders within the group are: Neil MacDonald - Business Group Manager Neil has worked both as an engineering consultant and as section manager for large metropolitan municipalities. Neil is a Professional Engineer licensed in Ontario, with a track record of success delivering a wide range of design and construction projects. Neil’s areas of expertise include: multi-disciplinary design and construction of many different types of facilities, project management, contract management, solid waste management, renewable energy, and contaminated site remediation. Kevin Henry – Senior Mechanical Engineer Kevin is the mechanical engineering team lead in the Toronto office, where he directs, mentors, develops and supports the Toronto Architectural Engineering team. His experience includes the complete design of mechanical systems and project management for a wide range of projects, including for the data, educational,


healthcare, civic, and energy sectors. Kevin's expertise extends as well to contract documents, construction contract administration and commissioning for a variety of applications. Najib Maliyar – Senior Mechanical Engineer Najib is a lead mechanical engineer with over 33 years of experience in design and project management of building mechanical services projects for water/wastewater treatment and municipal water pollution control plants. He has also worked on healthcare and recreational facilities, office, educational, transportation, commercial, residential and heritage buildings. Najib has extensive knowledge of TTC Design Manual, Master Specifications, Directive Drawings and TTC CAD standards. Alireza Deghani – Senior Structural Engineer Alireza has over 23 years of dedicated experience in large scale engineering projects such as transit projects, industrial structures, high-rise steel and concrete buildings and underground structures, as well as the oil & gas and mining industry. Tina (Hua) Tian – Senior Electrical Engineer Tina has 30 years of experience in power distribution systems and communication systems for transit, oil & gas, power, wastewater as well as residential and commercial buildings. During her extensive career, Tina led and provided technical expertise in various projects through engineering design and calculations, technical advisory, bid document evaluation, vendor document/drawings review and overall project management. HDR Canada is able to provide a full complement of skills for its clients, offering support in every aspect of a project for a seamless service.


August 2021

Series 35X


IS THE OPTION Pressure Ranges 0…0,3 to 0…1000 bar Accuracy ±0,05 %FS

Total Error Band ±0,1 %FS @ -10…80 °C Interfaces RS485, 4…20 mA, 0…10 V Operational Temperature Range -40…120 °C

we make ideas come to life

RMIG is the world’s largest manufacturer and supplier of perforated metal and its related products. We know our customers’ requirements for price and quality and meet their demands with uncompromising service. Not only do we offer standard and bespoke perforated metal sheets, we are able to offer you a range of secondary operations as detailed below. Complete solutions With a continued investment in the latest equipment and a network of professional partners we are able to produce prime quality products and solutions – from a simple perforated sheet to the fully formed and coated custom made part.

Cutting We can cut and shape perforated sheet to meet the needs of your final application. Levelling For some applications a high degree of flatness is required, we have processes in place to ensure our perforated coils and sheets meet with your most demanding requirements. Rolling and forming We can roll, bend and form perforated sheets to match your design. Aesthetic finishes and protective coating We can offer powder coating and hot dip galvanizing solutions to meet your specifications.

For more information please contact us tel: 01925 839610 | email: |


August 2021


Reliable lubrication without lubricating Eisele connectors supply spray dosing systems from HPM Technologie In applications as diverse as metal machining and food production, it is necessary to apply cooling lubricants, grease, oil, alcoholic solutions and many other fluids to surfaces and components. In contrast to conventional nozzle systems, the spray heads from HPM Technologie ensure precise distribution of the exact amount of the required fluid, for low consumption. The supply of compressed air and liquids to the spray heads is achieved with high-quality all metal push-in fittings from Eisele. The precise spray cone ensures economical dosing of the cooling lubricant at exactly the location where it is needed. Photo: HPM Technologie GmbH

Advantages for costs and production The essential advantage of minimal lubrication is the enormous reduction of the lubricant quantities used compared with conventional cooling lubricant systems and concepts. Processes that use minimal lubrication require only a few millilitres per hour. The minimal application of fluid also reduces the environmental impact, operating costs and system contamination. According to the Bureau of Statistics, cooling lubricant costs make up 8 to 16 % of the total costs in metal machining processes and therefore represent a relevant cost pool that can be significantly reduced by using a modern minimal lubrication system.

Advantages due to low-maintenance components To minimise maintenance and maximise userfriendliness, the spray heads at HPM Technologie are supplied with media using connection components from EISELE GmbH. The German company has more than 80 years of experience in high-quality all metal connectors for use with compressed air, gases, coolants, vacuum and liquids. Since 2013, Eisele has already been


HPM’s primary supplier of connection components. This turns out to have been a good choice: “Eisele simply has excellent products, both visually and functionally,” says Steffen Hoffmann, member of management, in describing the cooperation with Eisele.

Guaranteed solid connections For supplying the spray heads with lubricant for minimal lubrication, HPM uses straight push-in fittings of nickelplated brass with a release sleeve from Series 14 and 14A of the Eisele BASICLINE. The push-in fittings are also equipped with a blue-coded aluminum sleeve, which unmistakably shows where to connect the blue compressed air tube. The push-in fittings with a release sleeve feature a larger gripping surface for release of the tube as compared with a simple release ring. This is especially advantageous in applications that use oils or cooling lubricants in which components near the drill or milling head – despite the high level of precision – can be covered with a spray medium.




The Cygnus 4+ General Purpose thickness gauge is a light, tough multi-mode thickness gauge. It features a sunlight readable LCD display with Live A-scan, intuitive menu and sequential data logging for easy reporting & analysis.



...plant maintenance, civil engineering, marine structures, ship inspections, oil and gas facilities, offshore platforms, wind farms, rail infrastructure, metals protected by thick/special coatings.


August 2021


What does the new Ecodesign Regulation mean for machine builders? A new Ecodesign Regulation came into force in the EU on 1 July 2021 and there are important implications for machine builders. In addition, the rules in Great Britain are being aligned with those in the EU, and the Northern Ireland Protocol ensures the rules in Northern Ireland are the same as in the EU. EU Regulation 2019/1781 on electric motors and variable speed drives replaces the existing ecodesign Regulation for electric motors. As well as the motors covered previously, the new Regulation specifies efficiency requirements for smaller motors of 0.120.75kW, larger motors of 375-1000kW, 60Hz motors and eight-pole motors. From July 2023, singlephase motors of 0.12kW or above are included.

Furthermore, the Regulation introduces efficiency requirements for VSDs rated at 0.12-1000kW. There are various exceptions but this article explains the implications for machine builders, not the minutiae of the Regulation. If a machine is placed on the market in the EU or GB from 1 July onwards, motors or VSDs within it must be ecodesign-compliant if they are within the scope of the new Regulation, regardless of where the machine is manufactured. When the machine is placed on the market, motors or VSDs within it are deemed to be placed

on the market or put into service at the same time. Using non-compliant motors or VSDs is illegal. A copy of the motor/ VSD data sheet or manual must be supplied with the machine’s documentation and machine builders should retain a copy. While it would be incorrect to store the ecodesign documentation in the technical file (which relates to machinery safety), it would be logical to hold it in the same place. Regulation 2019/1781 does not say for how long documentation should be retained but it makes sense to keep it for the same period as the technical file, which is usually ten years after the last product was placed on the market. EU machine builders can retain the technical file themselves but nonEU machine builders must authorise a person


established in the EU to compile the technical file. Many non-EU machine builders also need to appoint an Authorised Representative in compliance with Regulation 2019/1020 on market surveillance. It would be simplest for non-EU machine builders to provide a copy of the motor/ VSD documentation to the person authorised to compile the technical file or the Authorised Representative. Hold Tech Files Ltd is based in the Republic of Ireland and can be named as the person authorised to compile the technical file. The company has created a web-based portal for setting this up. In addition, Hold Tech Files can act as an Authorised Representative for nonEU machine builders. To learn more, visit or email


August 2021

Series 35X


IS THE OPTION Pressure Ranges 0…0,3 to 0…1000 bar Accuracy ±0,05 %FS

Total Error Band ±0,1 %FS @ -10…80 °C Interfaces RS485, 4…20 mA, 0…10 V Operational Temperature Range -40…120 °C

Supplier to the power generation market With proven experience in conducting onsite installation surveys and the subsequest specification and manufacturing of pipe, hose and coupling products for turbines and generators; Dixon can give a commited response to breakdowns and planned maintenance, repairs and re-modifications to ensure outages and downtime is kept to a minimum.

• Metallic Hose Assemblies • Hose & Pipe Fittings • Instrumentation Fittings • Pipework Fabrication

+44 (0)1772 323529 | |


August 2021

ENGINEERING UPDATE We’ve seen plenty of exciting developments so far this year at Industry Expo. The trade show floor is bigger and better, thanks to updates in our 3D technologies, which also make it even easier to navigate New stands and features...

Join Wittenstein at Industry Expo

The world’s first fully 3D navigable virtual exhibition has renewed its trade show floor. The Q2-2021 update highlights include new renders integrating all of Zone 2 into one main hall for easier visitor navigation.

Wittenstein is a pioneer in drive technology – a company that meets industry challenges and opportunities with intelligence and innovation. With industrial production becoming more and more complex and intelligent, Wittenstein aims to develop products that can blend the physical and virtual worlds. Thanks to their new virtual exhibition stand they can now apply this same approach to connect with their customers online. “We pride ourselves on being original and adaptive, and we think it’s important to extend that attitude into how we reach our audience,” says Mark Cooper, Managing Director at Wittenstein.

Servos to the future with Motion Control Products Motion Control Products Ltd is a technology company and an expert in smart, high performance universal servo drive, motion and automation solutions. For over 25 years, Motion Control Products has partnered with the most respected names in the industry.



August 2021

Give me Moore! Moore International are experts in ballscrews, leadscrews, linear guides and bearings. With state-of-the art facilities and an array of stock available, Moore International provides fast, quality service to a wide range of industries.

The company is also the UK’s leading supplier of Swiss-made Eichenberger Gewinde ballscrews and leadscrews. Whether you need ready-to-go parts, or want a bespoke solution tailored to your needs, Moore International will help to find a solution.

The heat is on... with Fulton! The Fulton Group of Companies specialises in the design and manufacture of fuel-fired and electric steam boilers, thermal fluid heaters and skid-mounted systems for industrial, commercial and medical applications. Operating on five continents with manufacturing plants located in China, the UK and USA, Fulton has a reputation as a world leader in the development of heat transfer products. Industry Expo is also opening its doors to trade associations and other organisations, to offer a virtual venue for online meetings and conferences. Support services such as filming, pre-recording, streaming, registration, event management, and 3D environment building are all available. “Many people have missed out on AGMs and conferences throughout the pandemic,” says Nigel Borrell at Industry Expo, “Online events hosted on our virtual platform can bridge the gap between fully digital and hybrid events, and enable organisations to bring people together in a way that balances their needs and personal comfort zones.”

To visit the show go to: |17

August 2021


Titan Bridges Troubled Waters For Flow Meter Installation Titan Enterprises have released video tutorials illustrating correct wiring of their pulse precision flow measurement devices to support customers with the installation of flow meters into their applications.


ithin the flow metering industry, wiring a flow meter is often second nature to experienced engineers and may seem intuitive for established customers. However, Titan’s flow meters are used throughout a wide variety of industries, processes and applications. New customers unfamiliar with our flow metering solutions, may find themselves in turbulent water if the meters are wired incorrectly during the installation process. The majority of Titan’s flow meters use transistors which can be damaged through simple wiring mistakes, resulting in a defunct meter before the customer has even started! By providing customers with clear visual methods of how to install a flow meter and correct wiring to the power source, we are aiming to save customers time and money in what are essentially preventable errors. “Although all Titan flow measurement devices are supported with written data and instruction sheets, through our ISO 9001 examination of returns and call logs, we have found that a large percentage of flow meter installation issues result from mis-wiring.” states Jeremy Thorne, Production Manager with Titan Enterprises.


Research shows that a large proportion of people consult a video when learning something new. Neil Hannay, Senior R&D Engineer at Titan Enterprises, commented: “For customers who are new to our flow meters, visual demonstrations for wiring the flow measurement devices will help to reduce simple errors that cost customers time and money.” “YouTube is a very accessible platform and is a great delivery method for Titan flow meter instructional videos. As we don’t carry out on-site flow meter installations

ourselves, providing visual tutorials are a useful way to illustrate correct wiring methods which we anticipate will reduce the number of unnecessary returns and rebuilds.” Video tutorials currently available on the Titan website ( include wiring requirements for: • Titan’s beverage flow meter. • Turbine flow meters within Titan’s 800 series, 900 series and FT2 flow transducers. • Titan’s OG2 oval gear flow meter.

We will be expanding Titan’s flow metering instruction videos to include our full range of flow meter devices to help customers get the best out of their meters and to ensure that the meters are performing to their most efficient levels within customer applications. For further information on flow measurement devices to suit specific applications, please contact Titan Enterprises on +44 (0)1935 812790 or For Titan’s video tutorials, visit our website’s Customer Resources please click here









+44 (0) 1844 204420 Email us at

Ecopac (UK) Power Ltd, Unit 4, Ridgeway, Crendon Industrial Area, Long Crendon, Bucks, HP18 9BF

August 2021


ProSolv®5408e new sustainable solvent for safety critical cleaning of electronicsand electrical components


olvents are used throughout industries where extremely high performance and safety critical cleaning levels are required including aerospace, military and defence, electronics, semiconductor manufacturing, optics, and industrial machining. ProSolv®5408e is an innovative contemporary highly effective, versatile defluxer developed to not only remove rosin flux, no-clean flux, oil, grease and wax contaminants, but also to eliminate residual halide salts, ions and other polar and non-polar soils and contaminants that often cause component failures with tracking and other issues impacting performance. Solvents based on conventional chlorinated hydrocarbons have delivered the high standards required for critical cleaning in the past. These chemicals had desirable properties which when combined gave a profile which was perfect for vapour/vapour liquid degreasing when combined with suitable equipment as industrial cleaning systems. Non-flammable, consistent azeotropes, low viscosity, high liquid density, very low surface tension, and effective wetting enabling them to penetrate tight spaces for optimum cleaning performance. High KB values allows for cleaning a variety of light and heavy soils including particulates, ionic soils, oils, waxes, and greases these are no longer acceptable. Evolving legislation for ecodevelopment demanded by governments worldwide demand inventive and original formulations for the use of solvents to continue to comply with the increasingly stringent legislation for protection of the environment and, even more importantly, safety of operators who maybe exposed to the products. In applications where formulated blends of halogenated solvents have been used very effectively in the past these are now required by changes in legislation to be phased out of use. With their 25 years wealth of experience in this field as the inventors of the highly regarded n propyl bromide (nPB) based EnSolv range of precision cleaning solvents EnviroTech Europe created a contemporary new formulation based on recent research and developed a new solvent as a replacement for the “old” technology which has been found to perform just as effectively, but without the negative environmental, health and safety issues. Listed above are just some of the benefits from using ProSolv®5408e, your forever sustainable solvent for cleaning and defluxing in the electronics and electrical components industry and an economical and efficient


ProSolv®5408e Benefits • Short cycle times, increases productivity • Parts exit the machine cool, dry, and spot-free • Lower energy consumption • Excellent cleaning performance, even on complex geometries and tight clearances • Easy process monitoring with minimal effort and minimal waste generation • Easy reclamation for reuse • Compatibility with a wide range of sensitive components (some components or products are sensitive to the high pressures of water cleaning, the heat of washing and/or drying, or surface residues after drying) • Not classified as a carcinogen • Very high solvency power, excellent fast

precision cleaning • Mid-range temperature operation, reduced energy use, faster cleaning cycle, easier handling • Can be used in any Vapour Degreasing Equipment with improved productivity and lower maintenance • Safe for the environment, zero Global warming (GWP) and zero Ozone depletion potential (ODP) • Ideal replacement for Trichloroethylene (TCE), and n-Propyl Bromide (nPB) • Compatibility with a broad range of substrates • High solvency for a variety of contaminants • Efficient cleaning in tight to reach places and complex geometries • No drying required for increased productivity • Non-flammable

“drop in “for vapour / vapour liquid cleaning systems using legacy solvents. EnviroTech experts with many years of experience are available to guide you through changeover procedures or to advise on equipment.

FURTHER INFORMATION ProSolv®5408e is not just for cleaning electronics and electrical components, please visit our website for information about other applications. For more advice, please telephone us on +44 (0) 20 8281 6370 or use our website contact form. All products are supplied and supported by EnviroTech Europe Ltd. Manufactured in the United Kingdom and available on short delivery times through our dedicated team of distributors worldwide. supplied and supported by EnviroTech Europe Ltd Tel +44 (0) 20 8281 6370

August 2021


Moving from Sage 50 to Liquid Accounts - a case study Don't just take our word for it - hear it from a happy customer

Established in 1982, Comtec Presentations have an unrivalled history in providing marketing solutions to an exceptional range of clients. From multinational corporations to political parties, including educational institutions, they have helped arrange the biggest and the best to deliver their messages with clarity, flair and precision. To support the business in delivering the best possible service and results, Comtec relies upon its business management software to ensure that the finances are under control. For many years, this was done using Sage 50, the perennial desktop accounting package that has been a feature of British businesses for many years. However, the business felt it was time to move on and modernise their accounting and finance procedures to better match how the team were now working, and Liquid was considered as a Sage 50 replacement. One of the main drivers of wanting to move to cloud accounting software was the freedom of using the software wherever it was needed, and it not being an on-premise package as Anne, the finance manager, does not attend the office every day and needs to use the software wherever she happens to be at any given time. Liquid provides her with this, as it is 100% cloud and simply requires an internet connection and a browser to access, with no need to install or register any software. Critically, they had experienced some data corruption issues with Sage 50, and as it was approaching their new financial year, they wanted a clean start in a fresh new system ready for the start of their new fiscal year. Changing accounting software is never easy, and there are days when Anne looks back on Sage 50 with some fondness, but the benefits that Liquid provide for a more flexible, variable working life more than make up for any loss of familiarity. Liquid Accounts Ltd 2 Cromwell Court Oldham OL1 1ET Tel: 0161 413 5050


Protecting Your Plant Before

Rotech Motion Sensor’s can be used whenever information or monitoring of shaft rotation, position, direction, speed, slip etc is required! Rotech Motion Sensor’s can be used for indication, control, interlocking, protection, sequencing, alarm initiations and many more functions! Rotech Motion Sensor’s can be used wherever materials are transported or processed By conveyors, elevators, screws, mixers, etc!






RELIABILITY Tel : +44 (0)151 356 2322 Website: Fax: +44 (0)151 356 2437 Email:

Monitoring the world

August 2021


High Contrast SWIR Lenses for Agricultural Sorting Resolve Optics is a leading developer and supplier of high contrast Short Wavelength Infrared (SWIR) lenses for agricultural sorting applications.

Above: A bruised apple revealed using SWIR inspection


raditionally fruit, vegetable and grain sorting methods have relied upon visible inspection of parameters such as shape, size, colour, texture and defects to determine quality. Compared to visible light - SWIR’s shorter wavelengths enable images to be acquired with stronger contrast and higher resolution, which are both important criteria for agricultural inspection and sorting. SWIR is a proven technology for helping food and agricultural producers reduce waste, increase yield and improve quality by identifying bruised produce which can be identified and removed during the sorting process. In addition - SWIR is able to detect foreign objects such as stones and other foreign contaminants during sorting. For cost reasons, many off-the-shelf SWIR lens designs are based upon a standard visible lens with AR coating designed for the SWIR waveband. These lenses do not account for the way that glass transmits in the SWIR region and as such the final image quality


can often be compromised. This problem is particularly apparent with the latest generation of higher resolution InGaAs SWIR sensors. Working closely with manufacturers of agricultural sorting systems - Resolve Optics has a proven track record of custom designing SWIR lenses that optimise both the resolution and imaging contrast achievable with the product. For further information on developing a custom SWIR lens to help optimise results from your agricultural sorting system please contact Resolve Optics Ltd. on +44-1494-777100 or Drawing upon nearly 30 years experience - Resolve Optics has built a strong reputation for specialist lens design and manufacture of production quantities of lenses and optical products on time to strict quality and target price guidelines.



DUE TO POPULAR DEMAND, LIFTEX - THE LEADING NETWORKING EXHIBITION DEDICATED TO THE LIFTING INDUSTRY - IS COMING TO THE MIDDLE EAST! The 2-day exhibition will be hosted by LEEA (Lifting Equipment Engineers Association), the global representative body for the lifting industry worldwide, under the patronage of Bahrain’s Ministry of Labor at the Gulf Hotel & Convention Centre, Bahrain on 27-28 September 2021.

If you work in the lifting and rigging industry or you want to learn about the latest solutions in the local marketplace, then you can’t afford to miss LiftEx 2021. Network with other like-minded professionals, gain advice on the latest regulations and best practice to save you time and money.

To find out how you can get involved as a Sponsor, Exhibitor or Visitor, please email or call on +44 20 3488 2865. Follow us @LiftEx2021 #LiftEx21 |

August 2021


Youngs Launch UKAS Temperature Calibration Services Expanding on the enhancements added during the COVID-19 restrictions, the Young Calibration Laboratory (Lab 0604) has invested a further £200,000 in reference instrumentation for the calibration of temperature and humidity sensors. Having successfully extended the UKAS scope of accreditation in the previous year, the company has further invested in both dry block and stirred liquid bath calibration systems, along with a range Fluke SPRT’s which will see continued improvements to the available CMC measurement uncertainty. Customers can expect to see improved turnaround times and extended capabilities for all temperature probes, loggers and bath calibrations in the -40 to 200°C temperature range over the coming months. ISO 17025 Temperature Calibration within the laboratory covers the calibration of thermocouples, thermistors and platinum resistance

probes using a range of leading manufacturer stirred liquid baths and SPRTs across a temperature range of -40 to 200°C with a CMC from ± 0.05°C. The reference SPRT’s provide a comparative measurement technique whilst held in stable isothermal states for optimum calibration periods offering cost effective calibrations.

the laboratory is accredited for the calibration of dry block calibrators and stirred liquid baths using single and multipoint time dependent temperature profiling, also referred to as spatial temperature surveying or mapping with a CMC from ± 0.045°C.

Dry or air probe calibrations for system temperature measurements in HVAC probes, anemometers, IAQ sensors, data loggers, RH probes and weather stations can also be calibrated within a controlled environmental chamber across a 0 to 60°C range with a CMC from ± 0.19°C. For the user undertaking their own internal calibration work

Complimenting the Temperature Calibration Laboratory is another of the company’s latest investments for its’ UKAS accredited relative humidity and dew point calibration services. The UKAS (Lab 0604) schedule now covers dew point calibration from -32 to 60°C, relative humidity calibration from 5 to 95% and all across a temperature range of 0 to 60°C. Utilising both controlled environment chambers with reference SPRT’s, chilled mirrors and comparative RH probes, the facility can achieve a Relative Humidity uncertainty CMC of ± 0.2% to 1.9% across the full temperature range of 0-60°C whilst achieving a ± 0.31°C CMC for dew point measurement.

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Contact Details Young Calibration Ltd 5 Cecil Pashley Way, Shoreham by Sea, West Sussex, BN43 5FF United Kingdom Tel: +44 (0)1273 455572 Email: Web:


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TF Automation automates process for face mask manufacturer TF Automation were recently commissioned to design and manufacture a machine to automate the production of straps for face masks for a new customer - Air Filtration Solutions (AFS). AFS manufacture high performance respiratory filters, face masks, respiratory masks and domestic appliance filters and filter casings. The company required a bespoke machine to automatically cut and weld the straps for face masks to accommodate on-going increases in demand. The previously manual process involved cutting the elastic to length and then hand-welding to form the loop. Our project engineers designed a machine that feeds the elastic strap material from an attached reel, drawing out at a known predetermined length. The elastic is then cut and welded using ultrasonics to form a loop. The automation provides consistent length measurement and a reliable consistent weld which was not the case whilst hand welding. Each loop had to be stretched to test its strength & then cut & rewelded in the case of a poor weld. These straps are the then used for AFS generic range of disposable face masks which are in high demand. The assembly process has been simplified with rejects and rework now being minimal, with the company seeing a 30% output increase with only occasional operator intervention to change the medial roll. Tony Hubbert, MD at TF Automation, comments, “This is one of the first machines we have designed for AFS and we are delighted with the outcome in helping them increase productivity and ensure standardisation and consistency. There are already new projects in the pipeline for further machines focussing on process automation.”


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NewfromWorldleadingWeldingInverterManufacturer JASIC are the TIG 200 Amp AC/DC machines The JASIC TIG 202 Analogue Pulse AC/ DC and JASIC TIG 202 Digital Pulse AC/DC are technologically advanced single-phase inverter power source suitable for medium production work. 30|

The 202 Analogue has an innovative and user-friendly analogue control panel allowing full control of the welding parameters. The 202 Digital has an innovative and user-friendly digital control panel allowing full control of the welding parameters. The excellent technical characteristics of these models make it an ideal choice for the professionally qualified TIG welders that require precise and reliable performance.

Optional water cooler and large cylinder trolleys are available. Both inverters come complete with TIG torch & adaptor, gas regulator, work return lead and clamp. All JASIC welding inverters carry in the UK and Eire a free 5-year warranty supported by factory trained technicians offering you total peace of mind. WILKINSON STAR LIMITED Marketing Department 0161 793 8127


August 2021

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August 2021


Snap-on’s Level 5™ asset management system is network ready As engineering managers cope with relentless pressure to deliver improved productivity, often with fewer skilled hands and tighter budgets, the benefits of professional tool storage and management become stronger than ever.


nap-on Industrial’s Level 5™ automated total asset management system brings order to any workplace, enabling engineers and technicians to know exactly where to find every tool they need, when they need it, saving time and easing stress. How useful would it be if all your workshop’s valuable tools could be tracked from one central point? Snap-on’s Level 5™ system makes that possible. It provides complete reports on everything managers or supervisors need to keep an eye on. They are even informed when a tool needs to be refilled or ordered. And then there’s FOD. The threat of foreign object damage is a real and present danger in many engineering workplaces. Using Snap-on Level 5™ minimises the risk of human error, as automated tool control constantly tracks every tool and detects which tools have been removed or returned, ensuring greater protection against FOD.

Engineered to automatically track individual tools by user, without bar codes, scanners, RFID tags or other add-ons, the system works at the speed its users demand. Other systems require additional steps to scan or log activity. The Snap-on system does this automatically so users save time and don’t have to depend on other steps to ensure accurate results. Snap-on’s Level 5™ ATC boxes are network ready, using either Ethernet or wireless connection. That enables users to review activity at all Level 5 boxes in their location from one central computer, avoiding the time consuming need to inspect each box. Says Richard Packham, Director UK & Europe for Snapon Industrial: “Snap-on’s automated system takes asset management to an entirely new level. The ability to monitor several boxes from one central computer offers a huge advantage to engineering managers.”

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August 2021

ENGINEERING UPDATE All Images copyright Adam Gasson / Munters. All rights reserved.

Energy saving EC fan upgrades at Brunel’s SS Great Britain Munters, global leaders in energy efficient climate control, recently completed a pioneering upgrade of the dry dock air handling unit (AHU) at Brunel’s SS Great Britain. The upgrade, which was carried out in just one day, ensures long term protection against corrosion, while reducing AHU fan energy consumption by 25-30%.

Background Launched in July 1843, Brunel’s SS Great Britain was the world’s first iron hulled, screw propeller-driven, steam-powered passenger liner. The largest ship of her day, she is the only surviving example of her type. She was returned to Bristol in 1970 as a hull, and underwent a multimillion pound conservation program in the early 2000’s. As part of this program, two specially-designed air handling units complete with


Munters desiccant rotor technology were installed to protect the iron hull from corrosion. One of these AHU’s was installed inside the ship, and the other was installed in the dry dock (often referred to as the dry dock dehumidifier). “Looking after the ship and conserving the original iron is the most important thing that we do” said Nicola Grahamslaw, Ship’s Conservation Engineer for Brunel’s SS Great Britain. “By ensuring the

Nicola Grahamslaw, Ship’s Conservation Engineer for Brunel’s SS Great Britain

air around the ship is kept at 20% relative humidity, which is as dry as the Arizona desert, we can stop the ship from rusting. This keeps her structurally safe for many years to come.”

Time to upgrade Since its initial installation, Munters has worked closely with the SS Great Britain to carry out routine service and maintenance. During one visit, Munters suggested replacing the old belt driven fan (which was coming to the end of its expected life) with the latest EC plug fan technology. This would reduce energy consumption, and improve resilience and efficiency. “I wanted to know how I should run this system to minimize our energy consumption and reduce our carbon footprint,” said Nicola. “Munters has been really helpful in discussing how we run the kit, helping us to analyse our data, and suggesting how we can optimize our energy use.” Paul Harrison, Head of Technical Services at Brunel’s SS Great Britain, is responsible for looking after the plant equipment. “If we have a drive belt failure, we have lost all of our air supply. This leads to downtime for the machine, time for the maintenance team to replace those belts, and time to get it back up and running. Removing drive belts from the equation is a big plus for us.”


August 2021

Installation The original dry dock dehumidifier consisted of an AC motor, scroll fan and inverter, three separate components that can all fail. Due to the way the dry dock is designed, it is not possible to replace the dehumidifier with a newer AHU. Munters therefore proposed a bespoke upgrade by designing a bulk head for the new fans that could be brought in in component form, flat packed, and retrofitted. The upgrade was completed in just one day. Munters engineers removed the old belt driven fan, and replaced it with three electronically commutated (EC) direct drive plug fans from Ebm-papst. The fans were fitted in a fan wall configuration and digitally integrated into the ship’s control system. Minimizing downtime was an extremely critical factor for the customer. Chris Stead, Munters Projects Manager said “Ultimately we don’t want to expose the ship to humid air. In the morning, we started by removing the old fan and by the evening the new fans were up and running.” Replacing belt driven fans with direct drive EC fans removes the energy required to power the mechanical belts. The new fans have built in redundancy, so if one fan fails the others will ramp up to compensate, preventing any loss of air flow or impact on humidity levels.

Benefits of the upgrade Greg Frazer, Munters Service Sales, said “This upgrade brings cutting edge technology into the original dehumidifier with minimal disruption to the customer. There is little maintenance, and we predict energy savings for the fan are 25-30%.*” When it comes to maintenance, the new fans offer two main advantages. The first is removing the dependence on drive belts, which can easily fail. The second, is using three fans instead of one single fan. “In the unlikely event that a failure occurs, there will still be some air flow (from the other two fans)” said Paul. This ensures the ship is always protected against corrosion.

The SS Great Britain Trust has committed to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2030, and conserving the ship is one of the biggest energy consumers. “As with any conservation project, what you do has to be sustainable,” said Nicola. “Every time we make a tweak to the system, we are thinking about our carbon footprint, and learning how we can make that energy requirement as small as we possibly can on our journey to net zero”. Brunel’s SS Great Britain dry dock EC fan upgrade. • Reduce fan motor energy consumption by 25-30% • Built-in redundancy prevents air flow loss for optimised performance • Reduce maintenance requirements, and improve reliability and resilience • Sustainable conservation project supports carbon neutral goals

Watch the video here or visit our website for more information


August 2021


Mills CNC uses Murrelektronik’s decentralised IO system Cube 67+ Established in Norwich in 1974, Mills CNC has constantly reinvented itself and has undergone a remarkable transformation in its size and structure, most notably, its extensive range of services.


oday Mills CNC’s core business is split between the supply and service of Doosan Machine Tools and its Automation Systems division, specialising in the designing and delivery of industrial and collaborative robots systems and solutions to manufacturers. As the Mills CNC Automation business grew, so has the company’s requirements for innovative electrical components and systems. As Chris Ingham (Controls & Systems Engineer) explains “The addition of the Automation Systems division presented us with a wealth of new opportunities. Our aim was to make automation more accessible. Our systems are flexible and powerful, but what sets us apart is that our automation solutions are simple to understand, program and operate.” “We needed a partner that understood the advantages of our automation solutions and could provide the electrical systems and components for these cells that enhanced productivity. Whilst also keeping to our core aim of making automation more assessable for our end customers.” Murrelektronik is a global leader in the development, manufacture, and distribution of automation solutions. Its four core lines can be divided into: Power Supplies and Control, Interfaces, Cables/ Connectors and IO Systems. The UK branch was founded in 1983 and its clear vision to provide innovative electrical installation solutions, tailormade to each application is testament to its success over the years. The UK customer support team boasts a network of highly qualified Regional Sales Engineers, supported by a


back-office team comprising of a Technical Helpdesk, Sales Support and Applications Engineer Support.

helped us rationalise this, simplify the wiring and thus reduce the wiring time.”

Chris Ingham, Controls & Systems Engineer, at Mills CNC explains how the working relationship between the two companies developed and the benefits of Murrelektronik technology. “When Paul Hughes, Murrelektronik Sales Engineer, initially came to see our SYNERGi Automated Manufacturing Cells, it was obvious he was an expert in his field of electrical connectivity, but he also had a clear understanding of our business too. At the time we were using a range of different electrical products from a range of suppliers inside the control panel including IP20 I/O. Our cabinet size was dictated largely by the requirement to house the IO. Paul

Murrelektronik’s solution was to use Cube67+ to decentralise the IO points out of the cabinet and abolish all the complex wiring issues. A more bespoke installation was needed as Mills CNC SYNERGi systems offer multiple options for their customers, so the system needed to be both flexible, and be compatible with a Fanuc Robot Controller. “At this point in the system design, it is a huge advantage to have the expertise of the Murrelektronik Applications Engineers” stated Paul Hughes “To be able to help our UK customers with this additional technical knowhow is a great advantage for Murrelektronik customers”.


August 2021 Craig Cookson, a UK Applications Engineer at Murrelektronik, was able to provide and demonstrate the simplicity of Cube 67+ set up and configuration, using the built-in webserver. Ensuring that the controller and Cube67+ system was fully integrated on EthernetIP.

“Our customers tell us that this extra support is a game changer, giving them the confidence and reassurance that the solution is the best fit for their application and that our Applications Engineers can also help with any teething issues further down the line.”

The control panel was reduced in size. Showing the Emparro Switch Mode Power Supply and Mico Pro Current Monitoring System in situ

The switch to Cube67+ I/O system was relatively simple, and with most of the IO now being in the field, it meant the control panel size could be reduced, the wiring became more efficient, and the commissioning would be streamlined when locating any issues because the input or output is now localised to the IO. Although it might sound expensive, replacing the whole system is not as costly as it would appear. Due to the core of every machine being the same, repetitive simple tasks very easy to complete. Due to the backup and recovery options on the webserver, 10-20% of the software work is only completed once, and due to the number of options available with Cube67+, there is no redesign needed when switching to different customer specified pneumatics manifold. There is even an optional upgrade for any system to make industry 4.0 easy to implement by the Cube 67+ diagnostic gateway upgrade. “I would urge anyone to have an open mind when it comes to decentralised I/O. Changing the system is far easier than you might think”

The onboard diagnostics LED’s make faults very easy for maintenance to find. Due to the time savings during installation and commissioning, any increase in material cost is dwarfed by the savings in man hours.

As the majority of the Mills CNC customer base require many bespoke additional features and options, Cube67+ is flexible enough to meet all requirements. Easily expandable as required, Cube67+ is an excellent addition to the Mills CNC SYNERGi system as it allows for true flexibility across the entire system. For example, expanders for additional IO, beacon stacks or IO-Link devices can be included to ensure that cross system communication is not lost.

For their SYNERGi Automation systems, Mills CNC started with the basic system and one node with two expansion modules one for discrete IO and the other to control a pneumatic valve bank - and expanded from there. A whole host of additional expanders can be easily integrated at a later stage, so should the end customer’s requirements change, then the system can be added to with modular add-ons. Cube67+ is characterised by its single cable technology, carrying internal communications as well as input and output power, reducing the amount of cabling and containment required. With Cube67+’s integrated circuit protection and fault diagnostics contributing to the SYNERGi systems Industry4.0 performance, Murrelektronik and Mills CNC can ensure maximum light’s out production with excellent up-time and minimum downtime.

Another advantage for Mills CNC was that with new pluggable connectivity, either M12 or M8 connections, the chances of wiring errors are reduced considerably, and should there ever be a problem with a cable, the Cube67+ system allows quick change out of the now shorter IO cables as the expander can be positioned close to the individual IO devices. Tel: 0161 728 3133 Tel: 01926 736736


August 2021


Why handheld testers will help security installers overcome their biggest challenges A new generation of handheld tools can help security installers overcome key industry challenges and benefit from significant time and cost savings, says TREND Networks. “Despite the fact that the security market is changing, we see many businesses configuring, installing and troubleshooting IP security cameras using laptops, even though it’s time consuming and ineffective,” says Tim Widdershoven, Marketing Director for TREND Networks. “Many are simply unaware of the productivity benefits possible by tackling their most common challenges on the job with a new approach to test equipment.” Challenge: Emerging Technologies Arguably the biggest trend affecting the security industry in recent years has been the switch to digital IP cameras from analogue technologies. Installers are faced with having to fit unfamiliar, fast evolving equipment and obtain new knowledge to keep up with customer demand. With numerous types of CCTV camera, plus


many different configurations and connection methods, installation and troubleshooting can be time intensive and complicated. The handheld SecuriTEST™ IP CCTV tester supports installers through this transition, with features to help save time and boost productivity such as QuickIP, which enables novice technicians to connect and configure IP cameras quickly and easily. Even on complex installations, users may only need to use one tester, helping remove the need for in-depth and time-consuming training. Where security installations are using Power over Ethernet (PoE), technicians also need to be able to verify that the camera has enough power to function. The compact PoE Pro tester from TREND Networks eliminates guesswork when installing,

maintaining, and troubleshooting networks where PoE is deployed. Installers can easily verify Pass/Fail, even without a full understanding of the various industry testing standards, device power outputs, and cable lengths that are required for a device to operate successfully. Challenge: Network integration “Analogue CCTV was installed with its own infrastructure, a series of hardware and cables for controlling the cameras,” explains Tim. “However, IP security cameras are usually installed to an existing network, already in place supporting computers, phones, or IoT (Internet of Things) devices. Installers now need to understand the completely new area of how network integration works in order to conduct installation correctly or troubleshoot issues.”


August 2021

First, it’s important to verify that the network has the bandwidth to support the cameras and prevent poor image quality, for instance. The SignalTEK 10G tester can be used to determine maximum bandwidth up to 10 Gb/s and identify areas with bottlenecks. Post installation, it can also be used to troubleshoot Ethernet connectivity issues faster using diagnostic tools such as the 72-hour event log which helps diagnose intermittent connectivity issues faster. During commissioning and maintenance, SecuriTEST IP can also be used for a range of network troubleshooting and advanced testing requirements, including cable tracing, length, wiremap, and quality testing, removing the need for installers to carry multiple instruments. Challenge: Changing use of cameras Cameras are increasingly being used for a wider range of purposes,

not just for observing crime, such as number plate recognition, access control, and fire monitoring. Camera installations have also been used to aid compliance with Covid policies, observing that social distancing is being adhered to, for instance. “For outdoor cameras, installation can be especially complex where installers don’t have the correct tools to test a fixed camera,” says Tim. “Time is spent travelling up and down a ladder to check the angle on a laptop. In the case of a new network installation or where building construction is in progress, set up can only be completed at a later date, returning to site when the IT infrastructure and computer room are in place and performance can be checked.” With a handheld SecuriTEST IP tester, the whole installation can be completed, tested, and documented, removing the time-consuming need to return to site later. It is small,

lightweight and does not require external power adapters and injectors, has 10-hour battery life and is operable with one hand, supporting productivity even for installers working on lifts and ladders. Challenge: Residential security boom As demand for home security cameras and devices such as video doorbells has increased, the cost has become ever more affordable, even for those looking for more advanced solutions. The global smart home security camera market size was valued at USD 3.71 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.7% to 2027*. However, residential customers do not necessarily have the same understanding of how these systems work as a commercial user, making it even more important to be able to clearly document the installation has been done correctly to prove performance and prevent unpaid callbacks. SecuriTEST IP features advanced reporting to enable installers to document performance on site in detail, rather than filling in excel documents to create reports. When an issue arises, the proof of performance reports can demonstrate both camera images and network configuration, making return visits to site billable, especially in the case that the customer has changed the network parameters. “With SecuriTEST IP, users can depend on a simple, handheld tool that can replace an Ethernet cable tester, laptop, PoE injector, PoE tester, and reporting tool. Plus, it connects first time without the need to change complex settings and deliver reliable test results,” says Tim. “And supported by a suite of our other complementary test solutions, security installers can save huge amounts of time on every job and keep their customers happy.” Buy TREND Networks handheld testers now or find more information at .



August 2021


What are the costs associated with an AutoCoding system? Investing in an AutoCoding system will bring huge benefits to your factory, the main benefit being peace of mind, knowing your products will always leave the factory in the right packaging with the correct label and coding information. A common question, however, is “how much will it cost to run?” That’s why we’ve taken a look at the costs associated with running an AutoCoding system to help you prepare for your potential investment.

The cost of skills Many will be under the misapprehension that AutoCoding is a sophisticated complicated piece of software that requires specialist, high-skilled staff to maintain and run it. However, this is not the case. AutoCoding does not rely on a high level of day-to-day operator intervention on the packaging line. Most of the work required is in the “back-office”, such as the Technical Department, during the initial setup. Consequently, there is no need to adjust the mix of skills in the packaging hall itself where there is quite often a high staff turnover resulting in ongoing training costs.

Return on Investment Implications Obviously one of the most important factors to consider in a business when making a major investment is the return on investment (ROI).

Some of the ways the cost of investing in an AutoCoding system are typically offset include an improvement in efficiency, reduction in packaging waste due to human error, and most significantly a reduction in downtime and changeover time. The AutoCoding system will automatically setErrors are easy to make when different products are in similar packaging up and control all the devices on a packaging line from one central point and, whilst effectiveness (OEE) and identify any the cost saving would be different underlying reasons for losses. By for every factory, if you quantify the collecting real-time data, proactive amount of downtime experienced for measures can be taken to improve product changeovers, device set-ups manufacturing processes, improving and shift changes etc you’re likely to efficiency and productivity. experience a significant benefit. Furthermore, with the addition of the right value-add modules, time savings and improvements in productivity can be achieved.

For example, the AutoCoding paperless quality module automates in-line and off-line quality processes with data capture and reporting options. The application is completely configurable to individual factory requirements with all responses, images and corrective actions recorded in an audit log. Not only does this reduce the amount of time spent on carrying out paper-based checks, but by storing the results of Errors are easy to make when different products are in similar packaging the checks automatically in the audit log, the amount of Whilst it is categorically difficult to storage space required for quality answer what the average ROI will reports is significantly reduced. be after installing an AutoCoding solution, on average we expect the AutoCoding’s line performance ROI to be between 18 and 24 months reporting module will give you the on one line. ability to measure overall equipment


The cost of not having an AutoCoding system

So perhaps the question should be, “what is the cost of not having an AutoCoding system?” Product recalls can be disastrous for food and drink manufacturers, involving both direct costs, such as product scrappage and potential fines, and indirect costs, such as reputational damage. A packaging line without an AutoCoding system is much more dependent on human set-up and manual monitoring of activities, and consequently is at higher risk of human error, putting the factory at risk of the abovementioned product recalls.

For more information, contact :

Tel : 01928 790444

KRUK half page page generic(2).pdf 1 22/02/2021 August 2021 ENGINEERING PDATE


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August 2021


Media Advisory:

AD Communications appointed PR Agency for the upcoming PPMA Show Please be advised that the PPMA Group of Associations has once again appointed AD Communications as its PR agency with responsibility for the PPMA Show 2021. PPMA Show 2021 The PPMA Show 2021 will take place at the NEC, Birmingham from 28th to 30th September 2021. All PR activity for the forthcoming show is now being handled by AD Communications with immediate effect.

Show information will be issued shortly. In the meantime, if you have any queries or requests for editorial material for show preview features, please contact AD Communications.

Media contacts at AD Communications: Kirsty Jones Tel: +44 (0) 1372 464470 Mobile: +44 (0) 7714 299520

Media Contacts at the PPMA: Ellie Martin Tel: +44 (0) 1372 464470 Mobile: +44 (0) 7714 299520

Clare McSheaffrey Marketing Manager Tel: +44 (0) 20 8773 5522

Thin walling delivers the whole package Thin-walling has long been a practice in primary food and medical packaging to save material, showcase brand quality and maintain manufacturing standards. Nigel Flowers, UK Managing Director of Sumitomo (SHI) Demag, examines the emerging trends in this fast and evergrowing packaging segment. Global forecasts for the thin walled plastic packaging market is rising significantly. According to a report released by Smithers, the packaging market will be worth an estimated USD 1.2 trillion by 2028 expanding at a CAGR of approximately 3 percent. Food and beverage, and more widespread adoption of thin walled packaging in developing economies, will drive this growth. PE is projected to be the largest-growing segment during this forecast period. Lightweighting and consumer convenience are important factors in this expansion, with the combination of environmental pressures, improvements in recycle rates and high polymer prices placing increasing pressures on packaging manufacturers. Wider adoption of bio-based and recycled materials is also expected to boost market growth. For several decades now light-weighting and consumer convenience have given packaging manufacturers the strong commercial incentive to do more with less. No strangers to responding to demographic and lifestyle changes and balancing a wide range of variables, including cost, increased strength, recycle rates and functional requirements, lightweight formats have become the industry norm. Especially in food and medical packaging. More recently, the market has been moving more towards novelty solutions that improve performance, functionality and shelf impact.


28 - 30 SEPT 2021 NEC, BIRMINGHAM WHERE PRODUCTIVITY MATTERS See the latest processing equipment, packaging machinery, robotics and machine vision in action Gain a competitive advantage through the latest innovations and seminars


August 2021


Earth Leakage Protection- Safe Guarding your Investment and your Resilience More and more in every electrical installation the security of the power supply is paramount. The increasing complexity of electrical installations and the loads placed on them can lead to progressive faults, especially in the earthing circuit. Early detection of the increased insulation or development of an earth fault allows the prevention of tripping events, maintains continuity of supply and a resilient installation, be it for the coffee machine or the critical piece of plant for your client’s order. Frer manufacture a series of earth league relays for us on Type AC, A, F and B earth fault protection applications. The X...DX3 series earth leakage relays are designed to measure the leakage or unbalanced currents caused by conductors or appliances insulation loss, and to trip the relay contact if the set limits are exceeded, switching of the power supply to the defective system. All the relays in the series for any of the installation requirements (Type AC, A, F or B earth fault protection)


offer the following features, dependant on model, to provide communication and early warning of a developing fault. Main functions: • • • • •

• • • • • • •

Type AC, A, F or B earth fault protection Continuous digital indication of the leakage current Logic Selectivity - Automatic retry Internal clock and storage of the last 10 events RS485 Modbus RTU, measurements, event archive, scope Selectable antifibrillation filter up to 15A for fire protection Sensitivity 30mA to 30A AC Storing of the intervention current values Measure and display of the THD Selectable 3rd harmonic filter AC measurements up to 10kHz 35mm DIN rail mounting, 48 or 72mm Panel mount

The Frer range offers options for panel or DIN rail mounting. They are available with communication and real time clock for integration into a plant or building management system. The digital designs used by Frer leads to the inclusion of features and protections which other relays simply do not have. The ability to see a progressive fault and to have this communicated via a RS485 MODbus connection into a facility management system, will save time, money and nuisance trips, the only element that Frer cannot control is the attention given to the alarm data the Earth Leakage Relay alarm trip levels set at by the client.

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August 2021


What all Engineers should know about Inverter Repairs I’m sure we can all agree Variable Speed Drives are expensive pieces of equipment that require regular maintenance to minimize premature failure and maximize the life span of your asset.



August 2021


owever, all makes of Drives do fail and one of the most common faults is IGBT (Insulatedgate bipolar transistor) failure. An insulated-gate bipolar transistor (IGBT) is a three-terminal power semiconductor device primarily used as an electronic switch in Variable Speed Drives. When a drive suffers an IGBT failure the best practice is to replace all three devices, even if only has actually failed as the fault condition more often than not weakens the remaining devices which will inevitably lead to a further premature failure and more costly downtime for the user. So far, I’m sure I’ve not told you anything you don’t already know, but the real issue with drive repairs is this…it is imperative that each repair is fully load tested

This is important because each IGBT has a free-wheeling diode which you can only accurately be tested with a full inductive load test. Most companies that offer Drive Repair do not have the required load test facilities and hence they simply carry out a resistive load test which actually does not show if the IGBT’s are fully functioning as a power device which leads to a very high percentage of IGBT drive repairs simply failing again as soon as they are fitted to the original application when load is introduced, leading to another repair cost and more costly downtime for your process. In summary all engineers should only send their valuable variable speed drive assets to drive repair facilities that have fully qualified Drive Engineers who have attended the relevant manufacturers courses. But also insist that the repairer have load test facilities and carry out a

full load test on your drive which you can attend to witness test or at the very least request a video of the final test. Insisting on these simple steps for all your drive repairs ensures 100% that your drive is repaired correctly and fully functioning before you put back into service on your plant, thus ensuring minimum repair cost and minimises expensive lost production costs. Quantum Controls have an 10,000 square foot Drive Repair Facility near Newcastle with full load testing facilities and are Official Drive Service Partners for all major Brands of Drives. When you next have a Drive failure get in touch with our expert team for repair estimate. Tel :01661 835566


August 2021

Automation components from Panasonic PLCs, sensors, power supplies and much more. Panasonic_landing_2021 • Photoelectric Sensors • DIN rail power supplies • PLCs • FP0R series • FP0H series • FP-X and FP-X0 controllers Although the average consumer associates the Panasonic brand with consumer electronics, experts in industrial automation are well aware of the other face of the Japanese company. The brand formerly known as Matsushita Electric Industrial specializes in the production of devices from many fields - ensuring high specialization and product quality. That is why TME offers many Panasonic products. Most of them are available directly from our warehouses. As a result, we can reduce delivery times to customers as much as possible, which in the case of automation components means minimum downtime and improved maintenance of machines. In this article we will discuss several product groups. This is just a sample from the wide range of Panasonic products available at TME. In addition to the range described below, the on-line catalogue also includes passive components (e.g., a wide range of capacitors), microswitches, electromagnetic relays and much more. For our entire range of Panasonic products, please visit the link below.


Photoelectric sensors Photoelectric sensors are found in many areas of automation - although the most common applications include intelligent buildings, lighting, alarm, and HVAC systems. They are also used in devices such as ticket machines. Panasonic reflective sensors are called PaPIR, which stands for – Panasonic Passive Intrared (or pyroelectric, a type of infrared detector). The products of the Japanese manufacturer are made of environmentally friendly materials. The EKMB series stands out for its very low power consumption (1 µA or 6 µA). As their supply voltage is 2.3 V to 4 V DC, they are ideal for batterypowered devices , e.g. for occasional and automatic lighting of sites located far from the power grid and remote monitoring systems (CCTV). They have digital outputs and are immune to interference that could cause false triggering. The components are designed for through-hole technology (THT).


DIN rail power supplies FP-PS24 is a series of DIN rail mounted DC power supplies. They are designed to be powered directly from the mains anywhere in the world (85 V to 264 AC, 47 to 63 Hz). They provide a stable voltage of 24V DC that can be adjusted with a potentiometer from 23 V to 29 V. The series includes three models, with the following suffixes at the end of the model number: 023E, 060E, and 120E. Their maximum output current is 1A, 2.5A, and 5A at constant load, respectively. These values may be exceeded temporarily (e.g., during start-up) by 25% (for 7 seconds) or 50% (up to 3 seconds). The efficiency of the power supplies reaches up to 91.5%, which, combined with the use of branded capacitors with long life, guarantees ergonomic operation and durability - important features for power supplies used in automation.

PaPIRs motion sensor, 5 m detection distance.

Manufactured in accordance with EN60950 (Information Technology Equipment standard) and IEC60068 (shock testing). The power supplies are protected

PaPIRs motion sensor, 5 m detection distance.


Weidmiiller More productivity in your workplace with our THM MultiMark printer Let’s Connect

MultiMark: the smart all-in-one solution In Weidmüller, you have a trusted and reliable partner with years of experience in cable preparation, processing and systemised marking. Our THM thermal transfer printer integrates cutting and perforation tasks into the printing process; it can divide endless materials into arbitrary lengths. The result is a noticeably simpler production of custom cuts with a respective inscription assignment. Using the Mulitmark printer, you reduce the potential sources of error with complete data consistency. You will streamline timeconsuming work processes and increase your productivity.

£995 RRP*

Order 1 THM MultiMark Printer (2599430000) for £995 and you will receive £1400 worth of list price marking materials FREE!

Click here to order your THM MultiMark printer! Weidmüller UK Klippon House, Centurion Court Office Park Meridian Business Park, Leicester, LE19 1TP Tel: +44 1162 823470 Fax:+44 1162 893582

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August 2021


BAKERHICKS WIN FIRST STAGE OF NUCLEAR ‘GAME CHANGER’ CHALLENGE BakerHicks, the multi-disciplinary design, engineering and project delivery company, have won the Feasibility Study stage of the ‘Detection of organics in pipes and vessels’ Game Changer challenge.

Run by the National Nuclear Laboratory, Game Changers is an innovation programme which finds solutions and develops technologies to overcome some of the most complex challenges facing the nuclear industry. The best ideas are then selected for funding and further development to help them fulfil their potential and increase the chance of implementation on nuclear sites. The first stage of this particular challenge, set by Sellafield Ltd and Dounreay Site Restoration Limited (DSRL), looked for feasibility solutions for the characterisation or post-operational sampling of organic residues in pipes and vessels to help confirm their removal to acceptable levels. The presence of residues, in the form of solids, liquids and sludges, is expected in pipes and vessels across a wide range of facilities as a result of reprocessing, but their presence can be hazardous, including the risk of ignition. Therefore, to ensure the safe decommissioning and dismantling of nuclear site facilities, these risks need to be mitigated and the challenge looks for an efficient and effective way to do this.


The design put forward by BakerHicks’ nuclear specialists draws on their experience in process engineering. with a straightforward yet pioneering solution. The concept incorporates a bespoke ‘duplex’ endoscopic / Raman spectrometer probe with the capability to visually locate and chemically characterise samples in-situ. Its core functionality enables the visual identification of analysed samples via an integrated light source and an articulating endoscope sensor tip, with the assembly of both inspection technologies designed to operate in the harsh environment of nuclear decommissioning. Gwyn Jones, Principal Engineer at BakerHicks, who led the development of the design, says the solution focuses on integrating two sets of technology in one: “We have essentially created a bundle which delivers both visual and organic characterisation to detect hazards and substances in real time. The probe has a reach of up to 30 metres, which allows it to address the issue of accessing the organics in pipes, vessels and columns located in areas with no permitted access. This will

help make the decommissioning process much easier, safer and cheaper.” Dave Gorringe, Head of Nuclear at BakerHicks, is a strong advocate of the Game Changer programme: “Game Changers is a brilliant platform which gives individuals and companies the freedom to think. We have some tremendous talent in this industry and this programme gives them the scope to really challenge themselves as designers and add value. “This particular challenge allowed our team to draw on their experience on other projects and across different sectors to come up with a solution that ticks all the right boxes without being over-engineered. The programme represents innovation at its best and we will definitely be entering further challenges where our experience can be of benefit to the industry.” BakerHicks’ solution will now be reviewed by Sellafield and DSRL with a view to it progressing to the Proof of Concept phase of the competition.


August 2021

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August 2021


Contrinex's SMART 👨‍💻 Sensors Keep Shafts ⚙ Turning with Low-cost Bearing Condition Monitoring 🔍 – Contrinex Smart Sensors offer a low-cost single sensor solution for condition-based monitoring of critical rotating machinery. They are able to monitor multiple parameters in real-time, including unexpected levels of vibration, increased bearing temperature or irregular radial deflections of a shaft. These highly versatile sensors provide a flexible, cost-effective solution that maximises data availability without adding complexity to the system. CUSTOMER APPLICATION Engineers constantly seek solutions to minimise machine downtime without risking costly or perhaps dangerous breakdowns. It is a dilemma faced by engineers and designers worldwide, especially in sectors like heavy industry, mining, marine engineering, oil and gas, green energy and rail operations where rotating machinery is common-place and the machinery is often remotely located or inaccessible. Bearing failure is a significant risk in equipment with rotating elements and it is generally sign-posted in its early stages by increased levels of vibration and a rise in bearing temperature. Typically, this risk is managed by frequent inspection and maintenance of bearings, but condition-based monitoring (CBM) has become the preferred approach for cost-effective maintenance operations. CBM uses sensor technology to extract real-time data from machinery, developing a performance profile that identifies potential failures before they bring operations to a ‘grinding halt’. Designers have to balance the desire to collect as much data as possible, on vibration, deflection, temperature and operating hours, which might all help predict an imminent breakdown, while keeping cost and complexity to a minimum. Specifying multiple sensors meets the data-collection needs, but is a costly approach, often requiring significant compromise in mechanical design.


CUSTOMER SOLUTION Contrinex Multi-Mode Smart Sensors fulfil the application’s requirements without compromise, using their multi-function technology. A single Smart Sensor can monitor multiple parameters including deflection, vibration, temperature, linear position, angular displacement and cycle count. Each of these measurements may be reported as process data or event data, while cumulative operating parameters are recorded in the sensor’s on-board storage. The user-defined operating modes enable a single sensor to provide a range of functions. On the rotating machinery, it is mounted in either a bearing housing or adjacent to a shaft, to monitor for unexpected levels of vibration, increased bearing temperature or irregular radial deflections of the shaft. The sensor’s IO-Link functionality provides plug-andplay replacement of damaged sensors, without any loss of functionality and without any need for configuration.

Dual-channel operation is another valuable feature of the Smart Sensor range. Should a critical event occur, the sensor delivers a high-speed notification directly to the control system, bypassing the IO-Link communications channel and initiating a shut-down sequence immediately. This avoids further, costly damage and minimizes subsequent process downtime. Smart Sensors are exceptionally reliable, making them ideal for installation in remote locations where day-to-day access can be impossible. In wind turbines, rail cars, drag-lines, marine powerplants, paper mills, drilling platforms, construction equipment, heavyduty pumps and a host of similar installations, these highly versatile sensors tick all the boxes. Contrinex inductive Smart Sensors are designed with the needs of OEMs and System Integrators in mind to provide an unobtrusive fit-and-forget solution. For flexible,


August 2021


Right-Angle Metal XLR Plugs from Cliff Electronics Rugged space saving connectors for audio, broadcast and instrumentation

Cliff Electronics leaders in the design, development and manufacture of connectivity solutions can supply rugged, space saving and versatile right-angle metal XLR plugs. Audio and broadcast applications include microphones, amplifiers, active and monitor speakers, mixing desks and sound cards, with further uses such as digital and SLR cameras and home AV systems, industrial and test and measurement products. Male and female versions are available with 3, 4, 5 and 7 pins with flexible cable entry and screw down cable restraint. Reliability is assured with >/=2000 mating/ unmating cycles, low contact resistance </= 5mΩ, high insulation resistance >/= 5000MΩ and withstand voltage of 1400V


John Hall, Managing Director of Cliff Electronics, comments, “XLR connectors have a wide variety of uses in professional and industrial applications. The right-angle construction meets the increasing pressure from systems integrators to reduce enclosure sizes without sacrificing reliability or flexibility. As a UK manufacturer we have the flexibility to respond to global demand direct to OEMs and through our distribution network.” Cliff are also leaders in the design and manufacture of standard and FeedThrough connectors, the full range available from Cliff may be found on their website at and are available from major international distributors. For more information call +44 (0)1737 771375, email or visit

Reduce unscheduled shut downs, reduce maintenance costs and improve plant safety with our Valvescan Diagnostic Monitoring System. Our revolutionary system is an end-to-end solution that captures data from every valve operation, analyses it and provides targeted alerts on the valve health without any requirement for involvement from plant personnel or any potential impact on the asset real-time control integrity. It is a true IIoT solution for automated valves. This system is not only a pioneering development in valve monitoring, it is also; ● Cost effective and easy to install ● Works with all existing valve systems ● Enables data retrieval and transmission to the cloud ● Provides a ‘real time health’ check on the valve and alerts when performance drop off is detected

Contact us to find out more:

08700 340 002

August 2021

ABB’s IRB 1300 robot enhanced with new protection for harsh and cleanroom applications IRB 1300 features IP67, Foundry Plus 2 and cleanroom ISO 4 versions, enabling new applications in harsh and contamination-free production environments


’s 6-axis IRB 1300 industrial robot includes new protection elements that enable it to be used in tough industrial applications and contaminationfree production processes, opening new opportunities for increased productivity, improved product quality and reduced cycle times in a variety of industries including electronics assembly, automotive and metals fabrication, amongst others. Originally launched in 2020, the IRB 1300 is now available in IP67, Foundry Plus 2 and cleanroom ISO 4 versions. This will expand its use in tough environments, with high levels of liquids and dust. This is achieved by preventing intrusion by sealing all electrical components, which enables in a variety of processes in industries including electronics manufacture, Automotive, and metals fabrication. For added protection in metals applications including metal die casting, sand casting, forging and machining, the Foundry Plus 2 version includes the use of stainless steel on the end effector. This will prevent rusting that can occur when liquids are applied to wash



away dust particles and metallic debris. By helping to protect against premature wear, this feature can help to prolong the robot’s service life, minimizing disruption caused by downtime and unscheduled repairs. For applications requiring a clean production environment, in industries such as pharmaceuticals and semiconductor manufacturing, the IRB 1300 ISO 4 cleanroom version features a number of measures to help eliminate the risk of contamination. Key features include the use of chemical resistant exterior paint which helps avoid paint degradation when using cleaning agents that protect against bacteria. The robot’s design also minimizes the number of gaps where bacteria could form, providing an added level of protection, while a particle filter and a fully sealed design prevent grease, oil and particles from coming into contact with the products being handled. “The addition of cleanroom and harsh environment capability enables us to offer the benefits of the IRB 1300 to a whole new set of manufacturing applications in industries renowned for their tough nature or their need

to be contamination-free,” said Darren Hung, Global Product Manager – Small Robots for ABB. “The IRB 1300 is the perfect partner for a wide variety of tasks including materials handling, machine tending, polishing, and assembly and testing, and can now help more businesses achieve new standards of speed and accuracy as they develop solutions to lift and handle heavy, complex or irregular shapes, even in small workspaces.” Featuring a footprint of just 220 mm by 220 mm, the IRB 1300 is ideal for use in confined spaces, enabling more robots to be deployed in a specific area if required. It is available in three main versions - 11 kg/900 mm, 10 kg/1150 mm and 7 kg/1400 mm. The 11kg payload for the 900 mm reach variant is higher than any other competing robot in its class. Powered by ABB’s OmniCore™ controller, the IRB 1300 offers advanced motion control and best-inclass path accuracy, allowing it to handle an expanded range of applications such as polishing and machine tending. To maximize the versatility of the IRB 1300, the OmniCore controller can be equipped with a range of additional equipment, including fieldbus protocols, vision solutions, and force control. OmniCore also offers a simple user interface on the intuitive FlexPendant, which features a large multitouch display with standard gestures such as pinch, swipe and tap, allowing users to easily program and operate their robot.

The new Interroll Split-Tray Sorter Fast, flexible sortation for everyone Interroll introduces the new Split-Tray Sorter: the perfect solution for small and mid-sized items. Efficiency and low maintenance make this new sorter attractive for those looking for lower operating costs and quicker return on investment. It is an ideal solution for the 3PL , E-Commerce, Fashion and CEP industries. Easy to install and reliable with its proven mechanical components & integrated control solution Lightweight and energy-efficient - with a single motor every 40 meters Compact but dense footprint with plenty of destinations Extremely quiet with only <70 dB(A) noise levels

Interroll Limited Unit 1a Orion Way Kettering, Northants NN15 6NL Tel. +44 / 15 36 31 27 70 Email:

August 2021


PP C&A targets training boost with investment in Bright Sparks initiative One of the UK’s leading strategic manufacturing outsourcing specialists has signalled its intentions to ramp up investment in its recently launched Bright Sparks University (BSU).

PP Control & Automation, which works with twenty of the world’s largest machinery builders, is offering all of its 230 employees the opportunity to engage with in-house learning and development programmes, covering continuous improvement, customer service, finance, leadership & management, marketing, sales and technical training. Staff members are also encouraged to source courses outside of BSU, with the company happy to fund any course on any subject, as long as there are tangible benefits to both the business and the individual. “Our people are the heartbeat of what we do, and we want to give them every opportunity to learn new skills and competences they can use to boost their own career prospects and deliver additional value to the service we provide our customers,” explained Ian Knight, Chief Information Officer at PP Control & Automation. “Bright Sparks University is the latest in a long line of personal development and training programmes we have introduced, following on from the launch of our Excellence School, back in 2000. It will deliver learning on the job, in a classroom or online and all of the courses will be funded by PP C&A.”


He continued: “Through BSU we recognise that inside every employee there is more potential than we, or maybe even they realise, and we need to constantly work to unlock this potential, whether that is through training, coaching or mentoring. “It’s a sizeable investment, but one that is easy to make when you consider the benefits we are already seeing. Training builds self-confidence, keeps the mind sharp, helps with better decision-making and builds a stronger relationship between staff and the company.” PP Control & Automation has been fully operational throughout the entire pandemic, providing strategic outsourcing solutions to customers involved in food and drink, packaging, renewables and medical. The company’s expertise in control and automation and contract manufacturing, combined with the ability to quickly set up new production cells, saw it supply critical wiring harnesses to the VentilatorChallengeUK consortium and a host of new Covid-19 inspired technologies designed to protect people and reduce the spread of the virus.

With the UK hopefully emerging from the pandemic, the Cheslyn Hay-based manufacturer is targeting 20% growth this year after it saw sales surge post lockdown. Its skilled workforce will be key to achieving this ambitious expansion plan, with a recruitment drive currently in place to take on ten new people across engineering, logistics and sales. Ian, who is a black belt in Six Sigma manufacturing practices, concluded: “Covid-19 limited some of our early activities with the Bright Sparks University, but we are now rolling it out at speed and expect all 230+ staff to have access to training and development opportunities by this time next year. “Some people say why invest so much in training your staff, they could leave. Our view is simple, imagine not training them and they stay with you!” For further information, please visit or follow @ppcanda on twitter

Tel: 01296 611660 Email: 26 Faraday Road, Aylesbury Buckinghamshire HP19 8RU

August 2021


SICK Goes Flat Out for Performance with Mini Smart Sensors SICK has launched the versatile W4F family of miniature smart sensors, developed to achieve next-generation detection performance and incorporating powerful new optical technologies, each purpose-designed to master common sensing challenges with complete reliability.

The SICK W4F family of photoelectric smart sensors pack a choice of class-leading detection options and application-specific optics into the same, rugged, 16mm x 40mm x 12mm housing. Each features SICK’s trademark BluePilot push-turn pinpoint alignment and on-sensor status display. Impressing with their resilience to bright ambient light, the versatile W4F smart sensors multiply intelligent machine integration options for almost any application, no matter how tight the available mounting space.

that is up to the task. At the same time, the W4F’s extended smart sensor features unlock more diagnostics and monitoring, while process information including distance measurement can be output to configure smart automation tasks. “We have had excellent feedback from the first users of the SICK W4F photoelectric sensors. They have told us that they are getting the best-ever ambient light and sunlight suppression performance, as well as maximum immunity to all sources of optical interference.”

“The SICK W4F is really a team of tiny superstar performers and each is destined to be a future workhorse of the SICK smart sensor range,” explains David Hannaby, SICK’s UK Product Manager for Presence Detection.

The SICK W4F family comprises eight different sensor types, split into the Optical Experts together with a range known as Optical Standards, but which deliver performance significantly above the market standard.

“Superstar Performers”

Optical Experts

“Whether you need to detect jet black, high-gloss, highly reflective, perforated, transparent, wire-thin or flat products, the W4F has a specialist Optical Expert

Among the W4F Optical Experts is the new SICK W4F MultiSwitch with two separate switching points, together with a distance measurement output in mm. It is therefore possible


e.g. to reliably detect a pack both when it is upright or lying on its side using just one sensor, or to enable a robot arm to travel more quickly by allowing it to stop in two steps. Using distance measurement, an automated response can be designed to alert when products drift away from a preset detection position on a conveyor, or to measure the width of a roll of paper or fabric. Another highlight is the new foreground suppression sensor optic, capable of reliably detecting low, flat objects less than one 1mm in depth on a conveyor, even if they are highly reflective. The new SICK W4F ForegroundSuppression sensor excels when detecting flat products, even if they are extremely dark and glossy, such as chocolate bars, PCBs, batteries or smartphone components. The SICK W4F V-Optic features a new V-focused light beam, designed to achieve exceptional accuracy when detecting mirror-reflective or completely transparent products such as glass panes. Low-remission, or tiny


August 2021

components such as solar wafers are detected reliably, as well as objects as thin as a single fuse wire. The SICK W4F DoubleLine upgrades SICK’s MultiLine technology adding more power and performance to detect components that have uneven surfaces, recesses, holes, perforations, grids or grooves, such as plastic totes, packs of pharmaceuticals, or printed circuit-boards with cut-outs. Even when faced with dirt, vibrations or high temperature, the W4F is designed to self-monitor and will continue to deliver precise results even under tough conditions thanks to its rugged IP66/IP67 VISTAL® housing and highly-reliable optics. Optical Standards The W4F Optical Standards sensors have already proven themselves in the field as space-saving and highperforming all-rounders. The throughbeam photoelectric sensor has a long sensing range of up to 8 metres, while the photoelectric retro-reflective sensor extends up to 5 metres. Together with two photoelectric proximity sensors with background suppression, the Optical Standards achieve exceptionally reliable object detection. The W4F Narrow-beam

sensor uses a highly-concentrated light beam and point geometry to detect jet black objects with a remission of less than one percent.

Using SICK’s intuitive BluePilot, precise alignment of the W4F sensors is easy using the push-turn mechanism guided by the on-sensor LED display. BluePilot also provides a visual indication of detection quality and enables any loss of detection capability, e.g. as a result of dirt on the lens, to be corrected before causing unplanned downtime. Useful IO-Link features include a ‘current receiver level’ read-out enabling detection to be monitored in real time. Extensive diagnostic functions ensure the system can monitor sensor status and can respond if process parameters such as temperature or degree of contamination deviate beyond preset limits. Extensive diagnostic data also enables rapid identification of the cause of failure, e.g. at critical temperatures, the W4F can automatically initiate maintenance, thus preventing failures. For more information, please contact Andrea Hornby on 01727 831121 or email



August 2021


NKK Switches - quality and functionality Robust and reliable solutions for industry and more. Switches are electromechanical components that control the current flow by connecting and disconnecting the electrical circuit. Even the popularity of touch screens has not changed the fact that it is still the leading method of user-device interaction. Therefore, they perform an extremely important function, and at the same time seem to be such simple elements that many engineers do not pay due attention to choosing the right component. Indeed, the multitude of switch types and models available on the market can be overwhelming. However, it is worth looking for products where quality and reliability go hand in hand with an attractive price. The products of NKK Switches, a Japanese manufacturer that has been operating since 1953 and has established itself as an innovation leader in the production of switches, can serve as an example. The company’s products are widely ranked as the best in the industry, and many of the company’s solutions have become standard, including Sliding Twin Crossbar (STC)mechanism, which provides high reliability and stable switch operation. TME offers more than 100 models of NKK Switches, including toggle, rocker, sliding, rotary, and miniature switches.

selection of products in this group facilitates the work of designers, who do not have to make compromises, having the ability to choose the optimal switch in terms of dimensions, connections, switching methods, or to choose between two or three states.

Below we present the three most popular product groups in TME’s offer.

Electronics, including switches, are becoming more and more compact. Switches of the A, B, D2, and G series are compact switches designed to save valuable PCB space. These elements, based on patented STC mechanism, are enclosed in a sealed housing, making them suitable for PCB mounting using wave soldering. Additionally, the B series has an anti-static carbon impregnated design that protects the unit against the risks of electrostatic discharge. NKK Switches components are characterized by high mechanical and electrical durability, which can be up to one million cycles for selected G-series models. The M and S Series are waterproof switches with an

NKK toggle switches Toggle switches are universal switches widely used in electronics and industrial automation thanks to their high durability and ease of use. Two-state and threestate NKK toggle switches can be used, among others in mobile devices, industry, transport, and medicine, i.e., in very demanding environmental conditions, where at the same time, durability is crucial. The wide


A12AB toggle switch


August 2021

IP68 rating, extending the range of potential applications to include devices operating in particularly demanding environments. It is worth noting that, regardless of switch type, NKK switches are available in many contact configurations, including the most common: single-pole, single-throw (SPST); single-pole, double-throw (SPDT); and double pole, double throw (DPDT).

Pushbutton NNK Switches Pushbutton switches are commonly used in almost every market segment of electronics. Computers, consumer electronics, white and brown goods are the most popular examples. These switches are used to disconnect the circuit only when the pushbutton is pressed, but can also operate in bistable mode when successive activations alternately disconnect and connect the circuit. Depending on the model, NKK pushbutton switches can withstand voltages up to 250 V (AC and DC) and current up to 5 A, with contact resistance ranging from 10 mΩ to 200 mΩ.

NKK slide switches NKK Switches manufactures 2-, 3-, and 4-state miniature and ultra-miniature slide switches, with the slide on the top or side for mounting convenience and to easily adapt the switch to application requirements. Most switches of this type have SPDT contacts, i.e., single-pole, doublethrow and thus they are commonly used for switching between two power sources. An equally popular category is DPDT configuration for simultaneous control of two separate circuits, used, for example, in the control of motors and electric actuators. In this category NKK Switches offers switches with leads for PCB and soldering. Increasing miniaturisation is at the same time a challenge for manufacturers in terms of quality and manufacturing accuracy. The mechanically rugged design, proven manufacturing process and rigorous testing of NKK Switches guarantee their reliability even under heavy use. The MS series is characterized by excellent durability, providing a mechanical life of 100.000 cycles, making it recommended for particularly demanding applications. It is worth noting that the seals used in all the company’s switches provide excellent resistance to adverse environmental conditions such as humidity and dust. The switches, e.g., the SM series, work over a wide temperature range, from -40°C to 85°C. AS22AP slide switch Text prepared by Transfer Multisort Elektronik Sp. z o.o. The original source of text: news/library-articles/page/43478/nkk-switches-qualityand-functionality/

AB15AH pushbutton switch

In addition to such features as lifetime and reliability, the usability aspect is also of great importance. Aesthetics and ergonomics come to the fore, and customers value products that ensure user comfort. NKK pushbutton switches are available in a wide range of dimensions. GB series microswitches, thanks to their weight of only 0.25g, are perfect for portable devices. On the opposite pole are switches from the LB and LP series, i.e., larger switches that offer high mechanical and electrical durability in addition to ease of use. In selected models, the manufacturer has decided to use a modular design, so you can choose a button according to the required functionality; by choosing the appropriate fronts or backlighting, you can achieve the desired look of the button.


August 2021


Hard-to-handle fruit, veg & poultry waste proves easy pickings for SEEPEX BTM pumps A sophisticated chopping, pumping and waste removal solution from progressive cavity (PC) pump specialist SEEPEX UK is making light work of previously challenging by-products from whole chickens, potatoes and cabbages to peelings and fruit stones. The BTM range is not only cutting food producers costs, it’s also improving their standards of hygiene and health & safety.


aste is an unavoidable part of the production process at fruit, vegetable and poultry processing facilities. Whether in the form of trimmings, wash residue and by-products, or as a result of off-specification batches, overproduction or expired goods, it must be handled within strict sanitary guidelines and quickly removed from production areas. Not only does this free capacity so that primary processing operations can continue, but waste and by-products can also create an additional revenue stream as animal feed or compost, or to generate renewable energy. This makes their efficient removal and

SEEPEX PC pumps are used in poultry processing and for the efficient and cost-effective removal of byproducts and waste.


swift onward transfer even more important to manufacturers’ bottom lines. However, some waste products are notoriously difficult to handle. Large, highly viscous or non-flowable foodstuffs can prove particularly challenging: for example, whole chickens; chicken frames, heads, feet and necks; whole cabbages or potatoes; and fruit stones, seeds and peels from vegetables and fruit. As a result, some operators still rely on traditional methods to remove them from the production area. It is not uncommon to find conveyor belts, compressed air systems, vacuums, water flumes, and manual handling via waste containers such as tote

bins being used even at large food production factories. These methods can be inefficient, unsanitary and expensive.

Automated, all-in-one alternative Fortunately, there are sophisticated, hygienic and cost-effective alternatives on the market. Seepex BTM pump range is one such option. The patented chopping and pumping solution, featuring an enclosed pipework system, is already being used in waste handling applications at many fruit, vegetable and poultry processing factories throughout the UK and Europe. Thanks to an integrated cutting unit that reduces particle size, the BTM effectively chops and pumps in a single operation, reducing the solids volume by up to 60%. This creates a pumpable consistency, without requiring the addition of water, enabling whole vegetables and even entire birds such as DOA or off-specification chickens to be hygienically and efficiently removed off-site.


August 2021

SEEPEX’s integrated system hygienically remove waste, including whole fruit and vegetables, peelings and fruit stones.

SEEPEX BTM pumps chop and pump in a single operation

SEEPEX bespoke waste pumping solutions

Hygienic waste removal The benefits to food manufacturers of switching from conventional waste removal methods to an enclosed, automated solution like the BTM are three-fold. Firstly, it is more hygienic. Transferring waste products through a closed pipe system eliminates, for example, the need for dedicated cleaning of tote bins prior to re-entering high-care areas which prevents potential cross contamination.

Improved health & safety Secondly, it is safer. Manual handling or conveying systems often result in waste product falling or being dropped onto the floor, presenting an immediate health and safety risk to operatives, who are in danger of slipping on it. Furthermore, this fully automated solution requires only one

staff member to load product into the hopper. This leads to improved health and safety on the factory floor due to a reduction in traffic and hazards in high-risk areas – fewer forklift trucks, fewer operatives and fewer tote bins.

energy costs as well as minimising potential contamination from external sources.

Cost-saving solution

Where more challenging by-products need to be transported, customised solutions are available. ‘Bridging’ can be an issue with certain wastes, so the BTM pump range includes augers with a large pitch that enables the product to be conveyed into the cutting elements to ensure continuous pumping.

Finally, the BTM pump range is more efficient, generating significant cost savings. By chopping, pumping and transferring all-in-one as the BTM is able to create a pumpable consistency without requiring any additional water, resulting in savings from water usage. This has the additional benefit of reducing the volume of waste by up to 60%, making it easier to transport and thereby cutting transport costs. The operating and energy costs of the BTM are considerably lower than vacuum or compressed air systems, generating savings there. And by removing a manual element from the process and automating it, food producers are saving on labour costs, too, freeing employees for more lucrative, primary production roles. Where high care production areas are chilled, removing waste via a simple pipeline rather than manually through doorways, will also assist in reducing

Bespoke options for most challenging waste streams

Horizontal and vertical grinders can also be integrated, as can stone and knife traps to prevent pump damage, while dewatering devices can help to reduce waste volume even further. Finally, all BTM pump systems can be fitted with Smart Conveying Technology (SCT); an innovation from Seepex that enables rapid dismantling and cleaning, increasing pump stator life by up to 200% and reducing maintenance time by up to 85%. Pumps fitted with SCT are also suitable for Clean-Out-of-Place (COP) or CIP.


August 2021

Locate cables fast with new Tone and Probe from TREND Networks TREND Networks today launches a new Tone and Probe for easy and dependable tracing of all types of copper cables, including data, telephone, electrical and COAX. “All installers, engineers, and integrators need to find some sort of cable or wire, yet many are using low cost, unreliable tools to do this, and simply hoping for the best,” says Tim Widdershoven, Marketing Director for TREND Networks. “Now, they can depend on our Tone and Probe as the kit bag essential for faster, more accurate cable tracing in any commercial or residential application.” The new Tone Generator features an industry leading power output of 13dBm, providing reliable cable tracing even over long distances. Easy to use, with no training needed, it is equipped with comprehensive line testing features for troubleshooting and service verification. With 70 hours of battery life, and a shielded button to prevent accident battery drain, users can depend on it being available whenever the job demands it. “When using some Tone and Probe products, either there is so much crackling on the line you can’t hear whether there is a tone or not, or the signal is so weak nothing is



picked up,” explains Tim. “Our new high sensitivity Probe is designed to not only locate weak signals but also make it easier to find cables in challenging working conditions, such as noisy or dark server rooms.” The Probe features a visual signal strength light, that grows brighter the stronger the signal, as well as an audible indicator with volume control. Headphones can be plugged into the probe so that users can easily hear the sound, even in noisy environments, while an LED torch at the tip makes it easier to work in dark conditions. “Built with our dependable TREND Networks DNA, our Tone and Probe features a design that is modern, ergonomic, and rugged,” says Tim. “It is equally well suited to engineers using these tools day in, day out, or installers that simply need to be sure the tip won’t have broken off the probe when they next remove it from their kit bag!” The new tools have helpful applications in a wide range of industries, such as telecommunications, cable TV, electrical installation, security, AV, IT, and data cable installation. For example, the Tone and Probe can help users to accurately identify a specific pair of wires in a multi-pair bundle, conduct continuity tests on phone lines or detect Ethernet cable via RJ45 connectors. As well as being available as a kit, the Tone and Probe tools are available individually. The Probe is compatible with trusted TREND Networks products such as VDV II, NaviTEK NT, SignalTEK NT, LanTEK IV and LanXPLORER which all have built in Tone functionality. The Tone and Probe is available to buy now from TREND Networks’ distributors or direct from TREND Networks. Visit

August 2021


New Qi® 1.3 Wireless Charging Reference Design Unveiled to Accelerate Development of Automotive and Consumer Qi Transmitter Microchip’s Qi 1.3 reference design is compliant with the recently released Qi 1.3 specification and includes everything needed to quickly develop a Qi 1.3 certified transmitter The Wireless Power Consortium (WPC) has recently released the Qi 1.3 specification that requires authentication for improved safety when transmitting up to 15W of power between a transmitter and a receiver. To meet the requirements of the specification, Microchip Technology Inc. (Nasdaq: MCHP) announced today a new Qi® 1.3 wireless charging reference design providing developers of wireless charging systems for automotive and consumer applications with the necessary tools and support for the seamless integration and certification of new-generation product designs. For wireless charging system developers launching certified Qi 1.3 transmitters under tight timelines, Microchip’s three-coil Qi 1.3 reference design provides a head start for product development. The reference design fully integrates secure storage subsystem software with the wireless power microcontroller (MCU) and is a flexible solution, enabling custom topologies and foreign object detection (FOD) implementation. As a regular member in the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC), which sets global standards for wireless charging of mobile devices, Microchip provided expertise during development of the recently released Qi 1.3 specification. Qi 1.3 is a significant update from Qi 1.2.4 and mandates hardware-based authentication between transmitter and receiving devices for power transfer above 5W. By adhering to the new authentication standard, designers can ensure phones receiving 15W are receiving it from a Qi-certified authenticated transmitter to ensure safety. “Wireless charging makes it easy and convenient for consumers to charge devices and, as a result, demand for these systems in the automotive and


consumer segments is on the rise,” said Joe Thomsen, vice president, MCU16 business unit. “Microchip’s Qi 1.3 reference design, tools and support help engineers to meet rapidly evolving development requirements and enable easy certification of the new Qi 1.3 transmitter designs, speeding time to market and easing end-product certification.” Included in Microchip’s reference design solution for wireless charging systems are all required elements: Qi controller, Qi application software, provisioned authentication controller that is a WPC-approved secure storage subsystem and crypto software libraries that execute on the Qi controller. The reference design includes complete schematics, bill of materials, software and design guidelines. Microchip is partnering with Avnet to make evaluation boards for the Qi reference design available to qualified customers around the world. To support its Qi 1.3 wireless power solution, Microchip provides the dsPIC33C family of devices to run the Qi application software and the

ECC608/TA100 secure storage subsystem provisioned by Microchip as a licensed WPC Manufacturing Certificate Authority. As a total system solution, this reference design also incorporates MIC4605 and MCP14700 gate drivers, MCP16331 and MCP1725 regulators, an MCP6C02 current sense device, an ATA6563 CAN transceiver and an MCP9700 temperature sensor. Pricing and Availability Microchip’s Qi 1.3 wireless charging transmitter reference design are available for demonstrations and evaluations for qualified customers. The company will provide a license agreement to access the reference design software. Evaluation boards for these reference design will be available for purchase for qualified customers through Avnet in August 2021. For pricing and additional information, contact a Microchip sales representative, authorized worldwide distributor, or visit Microchip’s website /wirelesspower.


August 2021

Ashtead Technology launches new indoor air quality monitors International equipment rental and solutions specialist Ashtead Technology has launched two new indoor air quality monitors that will help building and facility managers to protect people from toxic gases, as well as airborne particles and viral aerosols.


he TSI 8144-4 measures formaldehyde, carbon monoxide, total volatile organic compounds, carbon dioxide, temperature/relative humidity, particulate matter and barometric pressure. This instrument therefore provides the ideal solution for monitoring the most common indoor pollutants to help achieve optimal indoor air quality. The TSI 8144-6 monitors the same parameters, but instead of formaldehyde it measures ozone, nitrogen dioxide and sulphur dioxide. This means that the TSI 8144-6 is ideally suited to buildings in urban or industrial locations where air drawn from outdoors may be polluted. Josh Thomas, Ashtead Technology’s Senior Sales Manager, said: “Currently, the greatest demand is coming from organisations that need to monitor carbon dioxide (CO2) in the workplace as this has been linked to higher Covid-19 infection rates. “Whilst it is important for particulates and potentially dangerous gases to be continually monitored, for many workplaces the most serious risk is airborne coronavirus aerosols being exhaled by asymptomatic individuals. These particles are usually less than 5 micrometres in diameter, and therefore similar in size to cigarette smoke, which as we know does not settle and tends to linger in poorly ventilated spaces. “The TSI monitors can help detect situations in which people have spent too long in a confined space, exhaling carbon dioxide, and potentially coronavirus aerosols. Occupied spaces with good ventilation may

contain 350-1,000 ppm CO2, but anything above this can induce drowsiness, with levels above 2,000 ppm causing headaches, increased heart rate and slight nausea. “We recently worked with a national newspaper to investigate CO2 levels in London stores; worryingly, two of them showed CO2 levels above 1,300 ppm, indicating inadequate ventilation to reduce Covid-19 risk.” The monitors are supplied with TSI Link™ Solutions cloud-based software which provides customised

alerts and 24/7 remote access to the monitors for measuring air quality data in real-time. Josh, added: “We are offering the TSI 8144-4 monitor for sale at just £815, and the TSI 8144-6 for £1,210, which means that almost anyone with responsibility for health and safety can afford to monitor all of the most important indoor air quality risks with an instrument that can be installed in under ten minutes.” For further information, visit


August 2021


Longer operating life with NSK DH/DS series linear guides With its new long-life DH/DS series, NSK can offer linear guides that achieve twice the running distance of the company’s conventional alternative. This extended operating life is thanks to a number of design innovations, including new material and special heat treatment that promotes a world-leading dynamic load rating.


y selecting DH/ DS series linear guides from NSK, customers will benefit from enhanced longevity and reliability, which in turn contribute to productivity gains. Furthermore, such are the robust attributes of the new linear guides that design engineers can ‘downsize’, thus aiding overall system reductions in both weight and friction, as well as energy consumption. Among the myriad of industry applications NSK DH/DS linear guides offer twice the running distance of the company’s conventional series set to benefit are semiconductor and LCD manufacturing Providing much of the gains in operating life equipment, automated conveyance systems, manufacturing is the company’s proprietary TF material and equipment for the automotive sector, machine tools, special heat-treatment technology, which enables steelmaking equipment, railway platform doors and CT DH/DS linear guides to offer a world-leading scanners; essentially any equipment or machinery that dynamic load rating. NSK’s expert R&D team has requires extended-life linear motion products in order to developed and refined TF technology over many achieve high reliability and long-term stable operation. years. In essence, this unique heat treatment NSK's conventional NH/NS series linear guides meet controls the amount of retained austenite in customer needs for reliability by optimising contact steel to significantly extend the fatigue life of surface pressure distribution between rolling elements components such as linear guides and bearings. (balls) and raceway grooves. However, with more and NSK provides a broad line-up of DH/DS linear more companies shifting to smart factory operations, guides, all of which are interchangeable with the equipment is required to further elevate productivity conventional NH/NS series. Options include highby improving tact times, functioning around-the-clock, performance seals, protectors and lubrication consuming less energy and offering a compact form factor. units to suit specific application requirements. Linear guides must therefore keep pace by delivering even higher reliability and longer life, a thought process that prompted NSK to develop the new DH/DS series.



August 2021

Beckhoff introduces new Solution Provider programme Global automation technology manufacturer Beckhoff Automation has announced the launch of its Solution Provider programme, a scheme that aims to couple end users with trusted, competent partners. The programme will help to deliver best-in-class solutions by combining innovative and creative products and knowledge.

As part of a worldwide initiative, the partner network covers a diverse array of industries, from robotic handling systems and process plant machinery through to smart building automation. Using Beckhoff’s proven high-performance PC and EtherCAT-based automation platform, coupled with extensive knowledge of the system and the underlying products and technologies, Solution Providers are uniquely placed to implement pioneering application solutions. These partners also bring a deep understanding of their specialist industries, along with complementary products and technologies, to ensure the seamless delivery of any application. As this growing network of valued partners will be closely supported by Beckhoff’s own sales and

technical personnel, ongoing training and early insights and access to emerging technologies will be freely accessible. “The trusted partners that make up the Beckhoff Solution Provider programme have the knowledge and expertise needed to design manufacture, install, program, commission and maintain a diverse range of control solutions using Beckhoff hardware,” said Stephen Hayes, managing director of Beckhoff UK. “This reliably provides peace of mind for the end user. “Every Solution Provider has invested in advanced, intelligent automation solutions and has a knowledgeable and highly skilled team ready to meet the unique demands of each individual project.”

Further details can be found at


August 2021


How to improve sustainability and energy consumption with robotics Sustainability is the ability to develop and implement technologies that are self-sustaining, without damaging the environment or jeopardising the potential for future generation to meet their energy needs. In manufacturing, the adoption of robotics helps improve sustainability and energy consumption, thereby enhancing companies’ reputation while improving their competitiveness. Here Neil Ballinger, head of EMEA at automation parts supplier EU Automation, explains how robotics not only improves sustainability but also benefits business’ bottom line. Kandeh Yumkella, the Director General of the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), pointed out that industrial energy efficiency is a key issue that needs to be addressed to ensure continued growth, employment and mitigation of climate change. To pursue a sustainable future, manufacturers need to find options to increase energy efficiency. Industrial robotics is an ideal solution to help improve sustainability and minimise the environmental impact of manufacturing activities while maintaining high productivity and efficiency. Compared to a completely humanoperated assembly line, the adoption of robotics in manufacturing is more sustainable and energy-saving. For example, robots don’t need to work in bright lighting; unlike human workforce, they also don’t require heating on the factory floor during the winter months, achieving considerable energy savings. Besides, robots can work non-stop, and their high speed helps increase the production rate, thereby reducing standby time and avoid unnecessary waste of energy. Additionally, as robots are programmed to work precisely, scrap or excess material during production processes can be reduced, thereby minimising not only energy but also material waste. For instance, in a car assembly line, a robot can accurately calculate how much paint is needed for a certain vehicle and then repeat the same process, reducing the material used and the amount of defective or unsuitable end products. This directly benefits both the consumer and the environment, because the number of items which end up in landfills or are returned after purchase will be decreased dramatically.


For products like vehicles, in which spare parts are needed for years after the manufacturing of the car is completed, robotics can considerably reduce costs in the long run. Many manufacturers are now transferring the production of such parts from mass production lines, which previously needed to be maintained only to be used infrequently for the largescale manufacturing of a specific part, to a small number of robotics designed and programmed to manufacture parts only when needed. In this way, robotics helps eliminate the need for mass production, saving space, energy and material usage. Benefits and tax relief Using robotics in manufacturing not only helps save energy, but also provides tangible economic benefits for businesses. Improved levels of energy efficiency reduce operating costs and lower energy bills, and these savings shorten the payback period for new equipment and lead to quicker ROI. It is worth noting that businesses that operate sustainably can take advantage of environmental tax reliefs. If organisations buy energy efficient, or low or zero-carbon technology for their business, they can claim capital allowances, which reduces the amount of tax they need to pay.

Besides this, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy of the UK government has launched the Enhanced Capital Allowances (ECA) scheme to encourage businesses to invest in energy saving equipment specified in the Energy Technology List (ETL). The ETL is a government approved list of approximately 14,000 energy efficient products, helping organisations select higher performance energy efficient equipment for their operations. The ETL can be paired with accelerated tax relief, such as the Annual Investment Allowance (AIA), enabling companies to claim allowances on items they keep using in their business. Simply put, if your business uses energy efficient products listed in the ETL, you will be able to claim AIA on them. Consequently, by deploying robotics and other energy saving equipment, you can receive allowance and tax reliefs from the government, which may provide additional benefits for your business. As a major driver toward sustainability, robotics helps reduce energy consumption and waste in manufacturing processes while boosting productivity and efficiency. For more information about robotics and other automation technologies, please visit


August 2021

The new Bin Picking Kit from RARUK Automation is the latest example of how the company is providing manufacturers with accessible automation so workers can relinquish tedious and repetitive tasks in favour of higher-value, more strategic work. This latest addition to its range provides a complete solution for picking, handling and placing flat and cylindrical parts whose rapid set-up ensures optimal return on investment.



ombining proven products from Robotiq and Pickit, the kit is compatible with RARUK Automation’s UR5e, UR10e and UR16e Universal Robots. It is suitable for bins up to 800 x 600 x 450mm and for handling parts with a minimum size of 10 x 10 x 5mm or flat parts at least 1.5mm thick. The kit comprises three main elements, the first of which is a Robotiq EPick vacuum gripper

which fits onto the wrist of the cobot and is ideal for handling both flat and curved parts. As the gripper operates without an external air supply it is highly mobile; unique air nodes link the air tubes to the suction cups making the entire system customisable. The second product in the kit is the 3D vision system from the RARUK Automation Pickit range. Fast and easy to set-up, this highly accurate

system can detect overlapping parts and parts made from most materials, whatever their colour, on a variety of surfaces; it also remains effective in changing or poor light conditions. The easy-to-use software allows the system to be programmed by anyone, regardless of previous experience. Robotiq Machine Tending Copilot software suite completes the kit and is also designed to save hours of programming. It incorporates the company’s original Force Copilot software but also unlocks additional features such as the creation of programs that will automatically adjust all movement according to the object’s position using contact offset. This makes it ideal if the cobot is handling parts which are not always in the exact, same place or if the cobot is on a mobile base. To see the system in action go to please click here.


August 2021


Innodisk Releases Industrial-grade 112-Layer 3D TLC SSDs with World´s Highest Capacity and Complete Product Line Innodisk, a leading global provider of industrial flash and memory solutions, announces its industrial-grade 112-Layer 3D TLC SSDs along with the world´s highest capacity up to 8TB The 112-layer SSDs introduces a complete product line including the SATA 3TG6-P and 3TE7 series, as well as the PCIe Gen3x4 and Gen4x4 series.


ompared to the previous 96-layer technology that offered a maximum of 2TB storage, the new 112-layer PCIe Gen 4x4 series increase the capacity to 8TB for U.2 SSD, which is the highest in the industry, while increased the capacity to 4TB for M.2 (P80). Beyond capacity increases, 112-layer is also faster, with the PCIe Gen 4x4 series clocking in at speeds up to 7500/6700 MB/s (8CH) and 3800/3000 MB/s (4CH). The marked increase in performance meets the growing needs of AIoT applications and industries in 5G, edge computing, deep learning, smart surveillance and smart medical where speed and higher capacity support are critical. The new 112-Layer 3D TLC SSD series also boasts other vital improvements to fit industrial and IoT market demand. Reliability is paramount, so a two-pronged approach of


ECC correction by LDPC within a page and RAID between blocks provides a double layer of protection for greater data security. Consistent and stable linear performance is implemented through a direct write mode that reduces performance drops and WAF. Innodisk´s 112-layer series also features better endurance, greater data security with built-in iDataGuard and iPowerGuard, enhancing compatibility and protection in critical power environments and ensuring sudden power loss data integrity. Innodisk estimates mass production of 112-Layer 3D TLC series in Q3 2021 to worldwide customers. With Innodisk's commitment to product longevity, long-term supply, and product support, we help guarantee long-haul viability to customers seeking the best in SSD solutions. For more information about Innodisk, please visit


August 2021

Comau Has Been Named A 2020 Supplier Of The Year For The Third Year In A Row By General Motors Comau was named a GM Supplier of the Year winner in General Motors’ 29th annual Supplier of the Year awards. GM recognized 122 of its best suppliers from 16 countries for performance in the 2020 calendar year. The annual awards highlight global suppliers that distinguish themselves by exceeding GM’s requirements, in turn providing GM customers with innovative technologies and among the highest quality in the automotive industry. This is the 3rd year running that Comau has received the Supplier of the Year award, in addition to having received the GM Innovation award at the 2016 Supplier of the Year event. “As GM works to achieve a future with zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion, we are proud to have innovative and dedicated suppliers around the world as partners in this mission,” said Shilpan Amin, GM vice president, Global Purchasing and Supply Chain. “Throughout a challenging year, our suppliers have showed resilience and dedication in working toward our shared goal of long-term sustainability for our planet and the communities we serve, while meeting our present needs,” Amin said. “We are pleased with what we’ve accomplished together in the past year and we are excited by the opportunity that lies ahead.” The 2020 Supplier of the Year winners were selected by a global team of GM purchasing, engineering, quality, manufacturing and logistics leaders. Winners were chosen based on performance criteria in Product Purchasing, Global Purchasing and Manufacturing Services, Customer Care and Aftersales, and Logistics. “Comau is honored to be named Supplier of the Year for the third time in a row. As a leader in high-performance framing, bodyside and Body in White systems, we appreciate GM’s recognition of our commitment to their success. This important award reflects our customer-centric approach

to creating and sharing value, which has been a fundamental pillar of our longstanding collaboration,” said Giacomo Del Panta, Chief Customer Officer. “I would also like to thank the extended Comau team, whose dedication to achieving exceptional results continues to drive our ability to bring high-quality, innovative manufacturing solutions to meet the evolving needs of the automotive industry.” Comau, a member of Stellantis, is a worldwide leader in delivering advanced industrial automation products and systems. Its portfolio includes technology and systems for electric, hybrid and traditional vehicle manufacturing, industrial robots, collaborative and wearable robotics, autonomous logistics, dedicated machining centers and interconnected digital services and products able to transmit, elaborate and analyze machine and process data. With over 45 years of experience and a strong presence within every major industrial country, Comau is helping manufacturers of all sizes in almost any industry experience higher quality, increased productivity, faster time-to-market and lower overall costs. The company’s offering also extends to project management and consultancy, as well as maintenance and training for a wide range of industrial segments. Headquartered in Turin, Italy, Comau has an international network of 7 innovation centers, 5 digital hubs, 8 manufacturing plants and employs more than 9,000 people in 14 countries. A global network of distributors and partners allows the company to respond quickly to the needs of customers, no matter where they are located throughout the world. Through the training activities organized by its Academy, Comau is also committed to developing the technical and managerial knowledge necessary for companies to face the challenges and opportunities of Industry 4.0.



August 2021


T&D Corporation Mr Minoru Ito, European Sales Office, Gronauer Straße 1, 61194 Niddatal, Germany 0049 (0)6034 930970

Unit 3A, Whitworth Court, Manor Park, Runcorn WA7 1WA. Tel.: (0044)-330 002 0640,

Curtiss-Wright Surface Technologies

TR Fastenings LTD

European Corporate Office, Hambridge Lane, Newbury, Berkshire, RG14 5TU 01635 279621

Trifast House, Bellbrook Park, Uckfield, East Sussex, TN22 1QW Free phone: 08454 811 800 E-mail:

Phoenix Mecano Ltd

Blackfast Chemicals Ltd

26 Faraday Road, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP19 8RY +44 (0)1296 611660

Unit 5 Russell House , Molesey Road, Walton-onThames, Surrey, KT12 3PE 0207 339 7370,


Ecopac (UK) Power Ltd

Monitran Ltd, Monitor House, 33 Hazlemere Road, Penn, HP10 8AD, UK T: +44 (0)1494 816569 E:



Unit 4, Ridgeway, Crendon Industrial Area, Long Crendon, Bucks, HP18 9BF Tel: +44 1844204420



August 2021

Foremost Electronics Ltd

Seepex UK Ltd.

14 Bluegate Business Park Great Bardfield, Essex CM7 4PZ TEL: +44 (0) 1371 811171 FAX: +44 (0) 1371 810933 WEB:

3 Armtech Row Houndstone Business Park Yeovil, Somerset, BA22 8RW

HRS Heat Exchangers 0-12 Caxton Way, Watford Business Park, Watford, Hertfordshire, WD18 8JY Email: Tel: +44 (0)1923 232 335

T +44 1935 472376

Mecmesin Ltd Newton House, Spring Copse Business Park, Slinfold, West Sussex, RH13 0SZ w: t: +44 (0) 1403 799979 e:

1 Brownfields Court Welwyn Garden City Hertfordshire, AL7 1AJ

BÜLTE GmbH Kunststofferzeugnisse Carl-Sonnenschein-Straße 22 D-59348 Lüdinghausen – Germany Phone: (+49) 02591 / 91 94 – 0

Wood Automated Systems UK (ATG – Systems) Tenter Road, Moulton Park Industrial Estate Northampton, NN3 6AX +44 (0)7827 327231

Lascar Electronics Ltd UK Module House Whiteparish, Wiltshire SP5 2SJ +44 (0)1794 884 567

Rotech Machines Limited


Power Security & Back-Up

Instruments Ltd


CBI Series Input 90-305 V AC Output 12/24/48 V DC upto 20 A MODbus / CANbus Comms Remote Monitoring via ethernet Status Relay

Battery Chargers CB Series Input 90-305 V AC Output 12/24/48 V DC upto 20 A MODbus / CANbus Comms Remote Monitoring via ethernet Status Relay

Power Supplies

FLEX Series Input 90-500 V AC Output 12/24/48 V DC upto 25 A Single / Dual or 3 Phase inputs


h r A

Multifunction Meters | CTs, VTs and Shunts | Transducers | Energy Meters - MID Bargraphs | Earth Leakage Relays | Protection Relays | Battery Chargers | Power Supplies DC UPS | Generator Controllers | Remote Monitoring | Ventilation Control


Instruments Ltd

TVR Instruments Limited 143 Butt Road, Colchester CO3 3DP Essex United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0) 1206 575755 Email:


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