Cold winds greeting opening day visitors to the Rockwell Automation Fair in St. Louis quickly yielded to a warm, hearty reception indoors at America's Center. About 14,000 attendees packed the 2-day event held Nov. 16-17.
In addition to a chance to mingle with Rockwell's nearly 100 Encompass partners, visitors could attend any of 50 plus technical sessions and dozens of workshops, eat a free lunch or two, and try to set a speed record for removing and installing a Nascar wheel. Espresso at one booth was handed out at no charge, with only the occassional patron asked to take a short survey in return.
The Rockwell Encompass partner program, according to manager Kim Porter,looks for third party products that complement the company's own automation and manufacturing solutions. The program embraces manufactured products that range from circuit protectors to valve controllers.
Encompass partner Spectrum Controls, for instance, teamed up with Rockwell to better bring its line of I/O modules, HMIs, and communications devices to its utility, processing, and manufacturing customers. When Rockwell suggested that Appleton Paper, a manufacturer of thermal copy products, use the company's Hart-enabled communications modules to collect pressure, temperature, and level data from a batch of new process equipment, Appleton engineers were able to implement the system with a minumum of new learning, according to Appleton's controls sytems supervisor, Steve Savoi.
The program helps smaller companies to qualify customers, Porter explains. It also helps a small company to have the "blessing" of a major like Rockwell Automation, according to Spectrum Controls' senior product manager, Neal Meldrum.
Anchoring the exhibit hall were Rockwell's seven booths, which covered the company's offerings in components, information software, maintenance, motor control, network architecture, security, safety, and integrated motion.
Between exhibits, show goers had a chance to attend any number of tech forums, with tempting titles like "Basic Physics for Drive Systems Engineers," and "Using Excel in an Automated World." A 2 pm session Wednesday covering "The Ten Commandments of Applying Ethernet for Control," had prospective attendees overflowing the halls.
Long sign-up lines attested to the popularity of the hands-on labs, which served up short courses in everything from troubleshooting safety-relay systems to a session on PLC basics.
What makes this movie stand out from the typical high school sports story is that the teenagers are undocumented immigrants, and the big game is a NASA-sponsored marine robotics competition. Like many other Hollywood movies, however, Spare Parts only tells part of the story. What the film shows -- and doesn’t show -- raises important issues affecting STEM education in the US.
Instead of sifting through huge amounts of technical data looking for answers to assembly problems, engineers can now benefit from 3M's new initiative -- 3M Assembly Solutions. The company has organized its wealth of adhesive and tape solutions into six typical application areas, making it easier to find the best products to solve their real-world assembly and bonding problems.
Load dump occurs when a discharged battery is disconnected while the alternator is generating current and other loads remain on the alternator circuit. If left alone, the electrical spikes and transients will be transmitted along the power line, leading to malfunctions in individual electronics/sensors or permanent damage to the vehicle’s electronic system. Bottom line: An uncontrolled load dump threatens the overall safety and reliability of the vehicle.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.