A Control Design reader asks: I'm a recent college graduate and controls engineer at a system integrator who specializes in remote monitoring and process skid design, so I'm constantly selecting control enclosures for a variety of applications from office-like environments to outdoors in the rain and hot sun. I'm trying to standardize on a single enclosure type, but that doesn't seem possible. While stainless steal is great, it is expensive, and, while plastic works well, I find cracks or holes smashed in the doors of the enclosures at remote sites.
Obviously, the size of the enclosure is important, but what are some other considerations when selecting an enclosure, and what are some common mistakes I should watch out for? I don't want to purchase 100 enclosures that crack, melt, rust or otherwise are not suitable for the application. What do you think? Just get a battleship gray, NEMA 12 enclosure and hope for the best?
Starting and stopping a motor can be done with three common methods: a motor starter, soft start or variable frequency drive (VFD). As of late, the use of a VFD is becoming more popular than ever due to its claimed efficiency benefits, but be sure it is needed. And, once specified, it must be properly installed to ensure reliable operation.
To start, take a step back and be sure you need a VFD for the application, as many users don't realize real benefits. Do you need to vary the speed of the motor or change the motor's acceleration? If neither, a motor starter is simple and will work great. Just want to soften the motor starts? Consider a soft starter. For all the above, a VFD may be the best choice.
The VFD, often called an ac drive or inverter, takes a single- or three-phase signal and varies the speed of a three-phase ac induction motor. This is its main benefit. Running a motor more slowly can save significant energy, and speed changes may be useful to the application. Another big benefit is adjustable acceleration and deceleration. Less acceleration can soften the mechanical forces at motor start and reduce inrush current. The VFD also has built-in overload protection and motor start/stop control functions.
Introducing the CompactLogix™ 5480 Controller, available in 2017.
Our Bulletin 5069 CompactLogix 5480 controllers are real-time controllers with Windows 10 IoT Enterprise running in parallel to the Logix control engine. The CompactLogix 5480 uses the same re-architected control engine deployed in the ControlLogix® 5580 and CompactLogix 5380 controllers. This line of Logix controllers supports embedded Windows applications, such as analytics, data gathering, and predictive computations.
Our Bulletin 5069 CompactLogix 5380 Controllers are ideal for applications in the midrange space that require high-performance communications, I/O, and motion control for up to 32 axes. They also provide up to 20% increased capacity.
Features: Ideal for small to mid-size applications that require low axis motion and I/O point counts, enables high-speed I/O, motion control, and Device Level Ring/Linear Topologies, includes dual configurable ports that supports Dual IP address, provides enhanced diagnostics and troubleshooting, offers controller functions optimized for maximum system performance, offers enhanced security features which include digitally-signed controller firmware, controller-based change detection, and logging and role-based access control to routines and Add-On Instructions, supports up to 31 Bulletin 5069 Compact I/O modules, offers Integrated Motion on EtherNet/IP up to 32 axes, offers a wide range of memory options from 0.6...10 MB.
Tim Jager is a PE and Project Director at DMC, a Siemens Solution Partner, and has been working as a systems integrator for the better part of two decades. This article is based on a presentation he gave at this summer’s Automation Summit in which he shared advice on how to get the most out of your relationship with a systems integrator.
A systems integrator is a person or company that specializes in bringing together component subsystems into a whole and ensuring that those subsystems function together, a practice known as systems integration. (Systems integrators recognized by Siemens are known as Siemens Solution Partners.)
There are three essential questions to ask about working with a systems integrator: When to use one? How to select one? And what to do to ensure a successful relationship?
Our Bulletin 1783 Stratix® 5950 security appliance combines several enhanced security functions into a single appliance to help protect your industrial automation infrastructure.
As part of our security offering, this product builds on common network security technologies. These technologies help provide enhanced access control, threat detection, and application visibility in your industrial control system (ICS).
Includes enhanced security capabilities like deep packet inspection (DPI) technology, to help detect, prevent, and/or respond to potentially malicious traffic between devices.
Provides informed decision-making on the plant floor with Cisco ASA and FirePOWER technologies for threat detection and prevention capabilities based on configured security policies.
Offers a subscription license that provides a term-based solution for threat and application control updates with TechConnect℠ support.
Provides an industrially-hardened, DIN-rail mountable platform to meet the environmental demands of the plant floor.