Despite the growth of network communications for industrial controls, the market for analogue systems is also still growing worldwide. Weidmüller’s commitment is to produce new products with innovative functionality and higher performance, in order to offer customers increased value in this sector. The company's expanding analogue range now offers three tiers of construction and configurability.
The well-established WaveSeries range of isolators, converters and transmitters is modular, robust, with high-quality polymer housings and DIP-switch configuration, for general industrial use. Apart from the temperature and DC measurements made by the WaveSeries, a sub-section of this range, called WaveControl, focusses on AC current and voltage monitoring, and is widely used for phase failure monitoring, pump and motor speed controls and supply voltage measurements.
MicroAnalog has a very high density (6mm width) format, but robust polymer housings and adjustability via DIP-switches, for lighter temperature measurement and DC conversion applications. Although aimed mainly at factory automation sectors, some process sector models exist in the range, offering higher isolation resistance, accuracy and temperature stability. These provide DC power for two-wire 4-20mA transmitters, and passing both analogue and digital signals for HART communications to field equipment is an option.
Currently being introduced to world markets is MannSeries - a versatile signal processing range with many metal housings and front membrane adjustments, aimed at the process segment. Panel-mounted digital indicators and conditioners in 96 x 48mm format add greatly to the functionality, and portable instrument calibrators expand the capability into instrument loop testing.
An example of increased functionality and performance is the company’s recently introduced ITX Plus Universal transmitter. In a single model, with 12.5mm wide DIN rail-mounted housing, an exceptionally wide range of inputs can be accepted, covering most temperature and DC sensors. Changing or re-configuring the input, or output mode, is simple using TSET software and CBX 100 interface. The transmitter’s output is two-wire 4-20mA, output loop-powered, which reduces the cabling needed, compared with auxiliary powered transmitters. This feature, combined with the input versatility makes the ITX Plus a good choice for plant refurbishment projects. Other useful features for such applications include upscale or downscale sensor break output, reverse or direct acting output, and user-definable linearization.
Endorsing Weidmüller's product quality credentials, the list of international approvals offered is growing rapidly. These include UL Listing, as well as marine and also hazardous area approvals such as Class 1 Division 2 and Zone 2 (ATEX) for process environments. The options and opportunities for analogue electronics broaden continually.