SMC Corporation of Americahas come out with Fieldbus I/O system whose modular construction promises some freedom in the configuration of pneumatic systems. Called the EX600, this system allows system allows manifolds and other components to communicate via Profibus-DP, Devicenet and CC Link protocols. In January, the system will support Ethernet IP as well, according to Rich Hall SMS’s new product marketing manager. The EX600 offers 512 digital inputs and 512 digital outputs or 32 analog inputs/output. The EX600 system also provides diagnostic functions, including over-current detection at each output, open detection at each output and output operation count log. It can integrated with a variety of SMC’s solenoid valves, including Series SV, VQC, SY, VQ and S0700.
Ethernet IP Module Gains Traction
Festo continues to build out its CPX line, a modular I/O system that can Ethernet-enable the company’s pneumatic valve manifolds. Introduced last year, the system supports a wide variety of Ethernet and other types of industrial protocols, including Ethernet IP, Modbus TCP, DeviceNet and Profibus. Of those protocols, “Ethernet IP has really started to take off over the past few months,” reports Dave Thomas, a Festo senior Application engineer. He explains that the reasons for its adoption include the ability to have a single, well-understood, high-speed network reach from operational levels down to individual pneumatic components. And he adds that Ethernet and built-in web servers have created a new class of “smart” pneumatic components that can provide services such as remote diagnostics, process visualization and email alerts. Festo’s Ethernet IP node for its CPX system is called CPX-FB32.
Valve Manifold Cleans Up
As valve manifolds with integrated Fieldbus capabilities take off much of the focus has been on the connectivity options. But users with applications where cleanliness matters also care every bit as much about the manifold’s physical design. Bosch Rexroth has come out with a new “Clean Line” of pneumatic valve manifolds that integrate a variety of Fieldbus and Ethernet protocols and also offer a seamless covered design for use in direct food contact and other wash-down applications. Called the CL03, this manifold can handle up to 16 valves and can be expanded to handle up to 32 pressures in one system. The CL03 pneumatic valves have flows of 0.7 to 0.85 Cv (700 to 850 l/min.) and meet IP69K protection requirements.
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For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.