MachineBuilding.net Technical Articles Index
A simple guide to robot safety
Andrew Armstrong, FANUC UK Sales & Marketing Manager, presents a simple guide to robot safety, including the new generation of collaborative robots (cobots) that are designed for use alongside humans without the physical guards that prevent conventional industrial robots from coming into accidental contact with people.
Introduction to infrared imaging for mechanical applications
For plant or maintenance engineers considering the use of infrared imaging as a potential diagnostic tool in mechanical applications, FLIR is offering the following useful guide to getting started.
Strict but supple – biopharmaceuticals manufacturing
Despite producing innovative drugs that save millions of lives, the pharmaceutical sector is one of the most conservative areas of industry. This cautious approach to new technologies is particularly clear in pharma’s less matured subsectors, including biopharmaceuticals. Here, Robert Harrison, pharmaceutical industry manager of COPA-DATA, explains how industrial automation systems could change the face of biopharmaceutical manufacturing in the years to come.
Top tips for choosing the right harmonic filter
In 1976, it was discovered that the bacteria causing Legionnaires disease, an atypical strain of pneumonia, had always been present in water, but it was the precise temperature of the water in heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems that facilitated the bacteria’s maximum reproduction levels. This is just one example of the unintended consequences of technology. A similar and more recent story comes from the world of industry and features the growing problem of harmonic currents and utility level voltage distortion, as a result an increasing number of non-linear loads in industrial and commercial environments. Here, John Mitchell, global business development manager of CP Automation, shares his top tips for companies that want to commission or replace harmonic filters.
Flexible manufacturing through automated engineering
Science fiction has taught us to fear things that are out of our control. Whether its alien invaders from another planet, highly-evolved apes or artificially intelligent robots, sci-fi culture is built on humanity’s fear of being second in command. With that being said, automated equipment and robotics are the basis of any smart factory, meaning that to stay competitive, manufacturers must learn to embrace this technology. Here, Jonathan Wilkins, marketing director of EU Automation, discusses automated engineering.
Flexible machines to produce at batch size 1
Lenze as an automation provider view Industry 4.0 is simply another phase in the increasing automation that has been underway for many years. Automation is being consistently advanced by digitisation, networking and the use of new communication systems. This progress allows automation providers to provide smart systems that satisfy the changing demands of makers of machinery who in turn must fulfil the market needs. One of these demands is the growing individualisation of products. A car maker no longer simply offers a wide range of models, nowadays buyers can select a mix of options that is only produced once for their car. This is batch size 1.
Using Ethernet alongside a dedicated motion network
Open communications are an ever-growing requirement and with industrial Ethernet offering speeds high enough for even demanding deterministic motion control applications, is there still a role for dedicated motion networks? Mitsubishi Electric’s Product Manager Barry Weller argues that there is…
Oxy-fuel safety: it’s everyone’s responsibility
Oxy-fuel processes such as heating, cutting, brazing and welding create a potential danger from flames, sparks and intense heat. Despite these hazards, millions of people work accident free. By design, manufacturers build safe equipment. This decreases the likelihood of a potential incident. However, good oxy-fuel operators know that their own safety, as well as the safety of those around them, depends on proper and responsible use of oxy-fuel equipment. This article by Paul Woodford, Global Product Manager, ESAB, provides guidelines for proper set-up and shutdown procedures, as well as technical and safety principles.