As we start a new decade, we have seen a huge explosion of technology in the manufacturing automation space. At the end of last year the Rumsey team attended the 2019 Automation Fair (along with 19,000 of our closest friends) and there was no shortage of exciting new things coming in the New Year. Here is a sneak peek into what you might see as we head into 2020!
Could it be? A new single-axis motion solution? Sure is! On display at Automation Fair was the new Kinetix 5100, the planned successor for the Ultra 3000 we’ve known and loved for so many years. This standalone indexer doesn’t require a controller (but can use one) and can do everything the Ultra 3000 could, plus adds dual Ethernet ports and Safe-Off capability. It could be run by a simple Micro800 for step and direction or feel free to utilize a separate software program similar to Ultraware. Finally, the form factor is similar or smaller thank the U3000 so space isn’t an issue and Phase 1 started shipping in Mid-Nov. Interested in more of the details? This recent blog from our Motion Specialist covers much more.
Timing: 240V Now, 460V Estimated for Sept. 2020
PS – You might already be familiar with the Kinetix 5300 and now you know about the 5100. Word from product managers at the fair is there will also be a Kinetix 5200 launching in the fall of 2020 focusing on Integrated Motion.
Also in the motion arena, Rockwell was showing an extensive selection of the recently launched TLP Servo Motor. Why is this interesting?
It is the first motor option using the JIS Standard, which makes retrofits of similar products from Yaskawa and others no problem, and previous challenges with different shaft size and pilots are gone. Nice!
A few things caught our eye when it comes to anything but standard sensor technologies. The first is the 48CR Ethernet Code Reader. With capabilities up to 50 decodes/sec. and 20 codes in single frame, this is a solid add to the Allen-Bradley portfolio. Add to it Studio 5000 Add-on Profiles (AOPs) and Premiere Integration and you have a winner.
Another is the Odos Swift E Reconfigurable 3D Sensor – also with EtherNet/IP connectivity. As part of a recent acquisition by Rockwell, this sensor supports multiple virtual sensing zone to evaluate height, distance, and much more. With Rockwell at the helm, they have added Ethernet/IP and predefined applications to make it engineer-friendly. Additionally, these are part of Allen Bradley’s” Smart Sensor Portfolio” – think profiles stored in Logix and Automatic Device (ADC) Replacement – making your end user’s life 1000x easier! More Information.
Timing: Code Reader – Q1 2020; Odos Swift E-3D Sensor – now!
Ensure your Machine’s Performance in the Field – Not new, but we feel worth an honorable mention, IO Link was all over the show floor this year. Already embedded in a huge portion of the AB sensor portfolio, this is worth a serious look for 2020.
Think preemptive failure/change notification, actual failure notification, and configuration storage (aka Automatic Device Configuration -ADC) – all ideal to make your machine easy to service by its new owners and keep it running as you expected. If you haven’t considered this already, there might be an opportunity here for you to take a solid step forward in providing a smart machine, by using sensors you might already be buying.
Timing: IO Link Sensors – Now; On-Machine ArmorBlock IO Link Hubs – Now
Another intriguing set of products from Wittenstein are the cyber® dynamic system (CDS) and cyber® simco® Drive 2. At Automation Fair they had the smallest “on motor” or “near” motor linear and rotary drive systems this engineer has seen. The fantastic part: they are integrated with CIP Sync. This means you can command a virtual axis to command these units using the camming and gearing capability in Logix 5000. These small and integrated units cut down on space to offer freedom in machine design.
Timing: March-April 2020
In the last few months you may have noticed some articles from us promoting the eWON Flexy’s Data Logging capabilities. At a price point just slightly higher than their entry level Cosy, the Flexy 205 could take your remote access and monitoring to the next level.
“Report Data from Anywhere in the World”
At the Fair, eWON took it to a whole new level when they showed a screen that displaying all deployed eWON units and six key data points that the OEM identified as “critical to knowing the health of their deployed machines.” Then, they demonstrated new reporting capabilities with XL-Reporter, another well-known RA Encompass Partner. Essentially, if installed in your office, XLReporter can go out to the eWON and pull back all your critical data for canned reporting back to you. Get creative – we think the possibilities for you are endless here!
Timing: Coming soon!
Do you have a new engineer but don’t want to have him or her out of the office for four days in a row? Would you like them to work through dynamic training at their own pace and as your build schedule allows?
At Automation Fair, Rockwell introduced a brand-new online training system that was pleasantly surprising in its sophistication. Most of their core programming classes are available and everything is broken into modules with interactive material, including videos, traditional presentations and “skills in action” modules. Interested in trying one?
A 90-day pass is available for one class for $726 and if you have an active TechConnect contract you get a 33% discount – dropping it to $482 OR you have the option to access the whole catalog of classes (17+) for one year at less than $3k.
Timing: 17 classes available now, 6 more expected to be released throughout 2020.
A PanelView – cabinet free – but IP66? Yes indeed!
Shown at last year’s Automation Fair but released just a few months ago, this transformed Panelview Plus 7 can provide great line of site for operators with ready -to-go mounting options for swing arms, pedestals, or traditional fixed panels. It uses Ethernet to communicate and has ordering options for push buttons and selector switches so you can customize it for your machine’s needs.
We selected this because we think it is an intriguing option for machine builders who have new designs pending.
Timing: Now – Released August 2019
You may be familiar with Softing’s popular ControlLogix 56eATM-tManager Appliance that provides a bidirectional data exchange between a Logix controller and a SQL database, without a PC or Windows license. This is a popular solution for those that need to provide a means to get data out of a machine, however it wasn’t all that scalable – until now.
At Automation Fair, Softing introduced the 69eATM-tManager, a CompactLogix version. For under $3k, this could provide a worthwhile solution for those needing this capability.
Last but not least, did you know Zebra, a leader in barcode and print technology, has developed an integrated PLC solution? This too was on display and if printers and barcode scanners are a part of your solution, Rumsey has a functioning demo ready to show you. It has been out for some time, but it is really starting to hit the market now, and Rumsey recently joined forces with Zebra.
Called Network Connect, they offer a solution for integration directly into Logix5000 for both printers and scanners, without any proprietary software or coding. Check out this recent blog article for more details.
Whew! A lot of new stuff, right?
This is far from everything we saw at the show, honorable mentions go to a few more things like the third phase of Flex 5000 I/O being launched which now includes a gig copper and fiber connection, three Safety I/O options and eight new digital, AC, analog, HART, and serial modules. We can’t forget the next Generation PanelView 5310 and 5510 running Version 6 either, which includes the integrated design environment, dynamic sizing, PDF support, and new features like email notifications of machine issues, loading firmware from removable media for quick disaster recovery, more controller support and more tag-based alarm capability. And of course, there is no way to close without mentioning the amazing strides that are being made with Artificial Intelligence and Digital Twins.
We wish we could capture it all here but ask away! Also look for more blogs and articles from Rumsey highlighting all these new technologies and “what you need to know” as the products continue to launch throughout 2020.
Cheers to the new decade and tremendous new technology!