In any system using databuses, most engineers prefer to place intelligent control as close as possible to the actuators. With new Smart Pneumatic Valve Manifolds from Festo, they can now do that to a greater degree than ever before. The reason: The new manifolds incorporate the full processing and control functionality of an Allen-Bradley SLC 5/02 programmable logic controller. The system, which uses either Allen-Bradley DH-485 or DeviceNet protocol, provides OEMs and end users with a space-saving, multi-function control solution for merging electronic and pneumatic controls in automation applications. All the system's components--valves, sub-bases, electrical I/O, bus interface--are integrated with plug-in electrical connectors, thereby eliminating internal and external wiring of individual valves. Festo Corp: Product Code 4188.
A make-your-own Star Wars Sith Lightsaber hilt is heftier and better-looking than most others out there, according to its maker, Sean Charlesworth. You can 3D print it from free source files, and there's even a hardware kit available -- not free -- so you can build one just in time for Halloween.
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