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Industrial Automation

Interroll modular conveyor platform applied by Alpi

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Gallarate (Varese) based Alpi Sistemi S.r.l. designed and implemented the new automated warehouse for DAMA SpA, who owns the famous brand Paul & Shark. This solution designed and created by Alpi Sistemi and utilizing Interroll’s modular conveyor platform (MCP) boosted productivity in this specific sector by 150 percent.
DAMA SpA was founded in Varese in 1921. Inspired by the world of yachting, the company launched the brand Paul & Shark in 1970, a luxury sportswear brand that attracts those who value the “Made in Italy” hallmark and the high-performance technical materials the company uses. Paul & Shark collections are sold around the world through a network of more than 250 single-brand flagship stores.
The entire DAMA production passes through its central warehouse in Casciago (Varese). A logistics hub in the truest sense of the word, all the goods the company produces transit through this facility before being sent to its retailer network. The 27,000 sqm warehouse has multiple levels; inside it is sub-divided into areas for different material handling tasks, including the areas for folded and hanged items with lines that allow automated handling and storage.
Alpi Sistemi s.r.l., based in Gallarate (Varese), designed and implemented the made-to-measure system in order to optimise the workflow and increase efficiency. The main element of the platform is a robust, modular system that incorporates the various key elements of conveying systems to form a complete material flow solution that renders the services needed. Interroll was called in to handle the sizeable quantity of packages entering and leaving the distribution centre. After thoroughly assessing the distribution and handling needs of the Centre, Interroll provided around 100 metres of its MCP, equipped with the 24 V RollerDrive controlled by the Interroll MultiControl.

24 V technology delivers high-performance operation

Head of Logistics and Operations at DAMA SpA, Andrea Di Cesare, expressed his complete satisfaction with the realisation of the new system, “We needed to implement an automated system for sorting, closing and labelling packages, with the aim of drastically reducing delivery times, boosting productivity and shipping with greater reliability. Alpi Sistemi and Interroll worked together brilliantly to achieve this, creating a system that surpassed my expectations in terms of functionality, quietness and energy consumption.”
Stefano Gornati and Roberto Mombelli, directors of Alpi Sistemi, shared their client’s satisfaction. “Our philosophy is based on combining decisions and results with ethical concerns, respecting human values and professional development in order to foster trusted relationships with clients and create excellent products. The collaboration with Interroll provided us not only with superior quality products but also with excellent technical counsel that enabled us to find the right solutions to the problems that arose when creating something as complex as the new DAMA distribution centre. Fashion is demanding, both in the finished product and in the quality and punctuality of its delivery.”
Alpi Sistemi provided the integration of automatic weighing, barcode reading, volume measuring, and labelling into the line. Software integration has been provided by Alpi Sistemi as well. The platform employs very efficient 24 V technology that delivers high-performance operation, which is also practically noiseless. The highly versatile Interroll conveyor platform has proven to be the perfect choice as it can be adapted to the most diverse specific needs of clients and users alike. Furthermore, it is possible to use the platform as a basis for retrofitting systems for the flow of materials in a particularly quick and practical manner. The modules, most of which come pre-assembled, made the system easy to install. The MCP is controlled by Interroll MultiControl, the new network interface card for PROFINET, EtherNet/IP and EtherCAT. With help of the MultiControl, sensors and RollerDrive are directly integrated in to the field bus level.

I manage the editorial affairs for MONETA Tanıtım, which produces specific publishing, specially for the sphere, Turkey industry. We work for content development through digital and print media, with a new generation, dynamic publishing intellection.

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Industrial Automation

Atlas Servo Amplifiers can now communicate with range of controllers

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INMOCO the Daventry based specialist servo company has announced its ATLAS digital amplifiers can now be used with third party microprocessors or field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) via Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI) communications. ATLAS digital amplifiers are made by Performance Motion Devices Inc, a leading US provider of innovative, high performance integrated circuits, boards and drive-based motion control solutions to OEMs around the globe.

Originally designed to be used in conjunction with Performance Motion Devices’ Magellan motion control ICs, ATLAS digital amplifiers can now also communicate through SPI with other controllers. This significantly increases the range of applications where ATLAS amplifiers can be deployed, and includes robotics, medical devices, laboratory equipment, scientific instruments, fan and pump control, precision motion and industrial motor control.

“The new controller options combined with the ATLAS amplifiers’ high power density, digital current loop, and IoT (Internet of Things) capability results in a powerful and flexible amplifier,” says Gerard Bush of INMOCO.

ATLAS digital amplifiers are compact single-axis modules that provide high-performance torque control of DC brush, brushless DC and step motors. Featuring the highest power density in the industry, ATLAS versions are available in 75W, 250W, and 500W power configurations in two module sizes: 27 x 27 x 13mm and 39 x 39 x 15mm.

For additional flexibility, ATLAS package options can be mounted to a printed circuit board in either vertical or horizontal configurations depending on application requirements and customer preference. ATLAS amplifiers integrate a field-oriented control (FOC) digital current loop, which enables finely-tuned motor current control and lower power consumption and noise.

“The amplifiers can record IoT information such as commanded current vs. actual current, temperature, bus voltage, etc, enabling host processor access to critical motion control parameters,” explains Gerard. This enables users to monitor system performance and proactively address problems before they arise.”

The amplifiers are powered from a single supply voltage, and provide automatic protection from overcurrent, under-voltage, over-voltage, over-temperature, and short circuit faults. Other advanced ATLAS features include; programmable gain parameters and performance trace.

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Industrial Automation

Multifunction controller boasts ethernet connectivity

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The Type 8619 multiCELL controller from Burkert is a popular choice for delivering multi-channel measurement and control for a range of sensors. Now the benefits for process control systems have been extended with the addition of Ethernet connectivity, which will reduce installation time and greatly improve the connectivity of the control network.

With direct connection of a wide range of sensors to measure parameters such as flow rate, pH, ORP, temperature and conductivity, the multiCELL is ideally suited to the control and monitoring of water quality in industrial processes. Designed to provide flexibility and an easy-to-use interface, the multiCELL can be easily configured to suit a wide range of process control systems.

As more and more control systems start to integrate Ethernet communications, so Burkert is adding this important communication tool to many of its products. The continued implementation of this technology is making it considerably easier to install and operate process control infrastructure.

The initial product release by Burkert will enable communication using Modbus TCP and this will be shortly followed by the introduction of PROFINET and Ethernet/IP capability. This will greatly simplify the connection between the multiCELL and the PLC as well as removing the need for an additional I/O card in the PLC.

Built-in flexibility

Each controller can be configured for a range of sensors as well as having up to six pre-configured I/O boards to accommodate any signal requirements.  In addition, the multiCELL can be configured as a datalogger, using the built-in SD card slot for data storage. This SD card slot can also be used to save sensor parameters and control application settings to allow the same settings to be replicated in another multiCELL controller; ensuring accurate transfer of control parameters between sites.

Sophisticated electronics and state-of-the-art control algorithms ensure that optimum process control is maintained at all times with minimal operator intervention. Chemical dosing pumps or control valves can be controlled via pulse, on/off or analogue signals, depending on the application in question. The adaptability and versatility of the multiCELL allows it to be integrated into a variety of applications, from the very simplistic to the more complex designs.

Monitoring and maintaining water quality within an industrial process requires an array of sensors, flowmeters, pumps and control valves. By introducing the highly functional multiCELL, all of these components can be easily configured with parameters being set at the touch of a button.

In many cases, maintaining precise control over the quality of water within a process is a fundamental requirement. At the same time, improved communication and flexibility can go a long way to reducing down-time and maintenance costs.

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Industrial Automation

NSK is more dynamic with miniature linear-guided pick-and-place machines

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As machines for the semiconductor industry operate with cycle times of one second or less, pick-and-place units must offer very high dynamic performance. A case in point can be seen at a manufacturer of chip-mounting systems, where NSK recommended a combination of its ball screw and miniature linear guide technologies to replace the existing linear motor and significantly increase dynamic capability. Assembly machines in the semiconductor industry put high demands on pick-and-place units.

With regard to the process, the pick-and-place unit of the assembly machine grips a semiconductor chip and inserts it inside a package. During this operation, the facilitating 40 mm stroke is executed at a speed of 2.5 m/sec.

The linear motor used previously was performing this task at the limit of its capability, which prompted the OEM to approach NSK for an alternative solution. After a comprehensive assessment of the application, NSK´s engineers proposed the use of a BSS Series ball screw in combination with PU Series miniature linear guides.

NSK´s PU miniature linear guides are purpose-designed for demanding applications such as those found in semiconductor manufacturing equipment and medical devices. Smooth ball recirculation enables effortless motion, while an enhanced seal prevents friction dust from entering the surrounding environment. This makes PU miniature linear guides suitable for use in clean room applications with an appropriate lubricant.

Another advantage of the PU Series is low weight: the carriage is approximately 20% lighter than comparable systems on the market, which makes a considerable difference in highly dynamic applications. The drive unit of the pick-and-place system now weighs only 1 kg, while its operating speed is 2.5 m/s (with an acceleration of 40 g). In addition, it offers a 40 mm stroke and a maximum ball screw rotational speed of 5000 rpm.

Thanks to this high-performance capability, the NSK solution delivers much higher dynamics than the linear motor it replaced. Furthermore, the manufacturer of the chip mounting systems says it is fully satisfied with the reliability and lifespan of the PU Series miniature linear guide and BSS Series ball screw.

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