European Automation

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European Automation Articles

Displaying 1 - 20 of 57
22nd August 2016
Keeping industrial automation fit and healthy

In the last few years, fitness tracking technology has been increasingly popular, with a range of devices available to help you become healthier, improve your fitness performance and ultimately live longer. These devices use non-invasive, easy to use sensors that connect directly to your smartphone or computer, giving you instant results to track your progress.

26th July 2016
What is the smart grid?

To help industry better understand the deluge of intelligent devices and systems setting the energy sector alight, EU Automation has produced a concise one page guide about smart technology. Smart technologies are currently taking over both the consumer and industrial automation markets. In the energy sector, this has given birth to smart meters and significant developments towards smart cities running on even smarter grids.

15th July 2016
Engineering vs. IT

Steak and chips, strawberries and cream or rum and coke - some things are meant to be together. Yet, in the same breath, many things that are forced upon each other can create outstanding combinations. As the worlds of engineering and IT continue to band together, Jonathan Wilkins, Marketing Director of industrial automation supplier EU Automation, discusses what this combination means for the manufacturing industry.

6th July 2016
Bridging the islands of automation

The ideal holiday arrangement for the world’s wealthy elite and a distant fantasy for the rest of us, private islands deliver ultimate isolation in our modern world. While this may seem like paradise for those stuck in rush hour traffic, in the real world, communication is key. Here, Robert Holloway, head of order fulfilment at industrial automation supplier EU Automation, discusses the potential of continuous manufacturing compared to its ...

30th June 2016
The internet of zombies

Since Dawn of the Dead was first released in 1978, the possibility of a viral outbreak that will turn us all into night crawling, flesh-eating zombies has become a worry for many and a very prolific Hollywood theme. While it's unlikely this will ever happen, the industry has recently started facing an epidemic across IT systems that companies should be aware of. The internet of zombies won't result in the end of civilisation, but it does put your...

21st June 2016
The rise and fall and rise of the electric car

This may surprise you, but did you know the electric car isn't a recent development? The idea has been around for over a century and has an interesting history of development. The early EVs, such as Wood's Phaeton, were little more than electrified horseless carriages. The Phaeton itself had a range of 18 miles and a top speed of 14 miles per hour.

13th June 2016
War of the currents: AC/DC power

Steve Jobs and Bill Gates - two of the most well-known figures in modern technology and also, one of the industry’s most infamous rivalries. “The only problem with Microsoft is they just have no taste,” Jobs famously stated in 1996. Despite the snide remarks and occasional lawsuits, both Jobs and Gates realised there was room on the IT market for both companies to coexist. The same however, cannot be said for George Westinghouse...

6th June 2016
Automation for oil & gas

On Earth, it’s hard to imagine a more alien place than the unexplored environment of the deep sea. For the Attenborough enthusiasts among us, bizarre, bioluminescent creatures are what usually come to mind when we consider an ocean’s 3,000 ft depths. But by employing cutting-edge technology, these incredible depths are set to become the locations of large production sites for the subsea oil and gas industry. Rapid technological advanc...

31st May 2016
Five misconceptions about reconditioned parts

Dismiss almost every Viking costume you’ve ever laid eyes on. While these threatening Scandinavian tribes did wear all sorts of bizarre headgear when marching into battle, there’s no reason to believe it was decked with the intimidating horns popular culture loves so much. There are countless myths and fallacies which over time, have become commonly accepted as the truth. Misconceptions about reconditioned industrial automation parts ...

17th May 2016
Distributed control systems vs programmable logic controllers

The difference between distributed control systems (DCSs) and programmable logic controllers (PLCs) can be boiled down to a simple football metaphor. Your DCS is your captain. The first name on the team sheet, your DCS is dependable, hardworking and controls the whole outfit. Your PLC is more like a utility player - he's nippy and doesn't mind where he plays, but don't expect him to be as reliable as your captain. Here, Mark Proctor, managing dir...

16th May 2016
The bigger, the better?

In 2009, Northrop Grumman Corporation successfully load tested the most powerful electric motor ever used by the US Navy. The motor is also the world's first 36.5MW high temperature superconductor (HTS) ship propulsion motor, which is double the US Navy's power rating test record. What may surprise you is the motor is less than half the size of a conventional motor, thanks to the use of HTS wire coils that are able to carry 150 times the power of...

21st April 2016
The risks of replacement

We’ve all been there, the vacuum has been rattling for months and you’ve gotten used to the slight aroma of charred carpet after every clean. But a final diminishing groan forces you to admit your trusty vacuum has had its day. Instead of trying to patch up old Henry, most of us would take his demise as the perfect excuse to splash out on that lightweight, wall mounted, cordless number we have seen on the telly. In industrial environm...

6th April 2016
Obsolescence challenges for the automotive industry

As the industry that introduced the traditional six-axis robotic arm to its production lines in the early 1960s, the automotive sector has, in some cases, stayed surprisingly stagnant when it comes to innovation. However, in the past few years the race to design and build self-driving cars, augmented reality windscreens and additive manufactured parts has started to gain speed.

22nd March 2016
Fear not the cobot

The world’s first industrial robot was an idea conceived after a conversation about science fiction novels between inventors George Devol and Joseph Eagleburger in 1954. Six years later, Unimate had secured its place in the robotic hall of fame as the world’s first industrial robot. It was then put to work on the General Motors assembly line in 1961.

16th March 2016
The importance of ergonomics for industrial automation

Kettles that release red hot steam onto their handles, cupboard drawers that don’t quite slot in and of course, those pesky USB sticks that take three or four attempts to insert before realising you had right the first time. These niggles are part of everyday life and albeit annoying, their poor design is usually pretty easy to ignore. But in industry, the bad design of manufacturing environments and equipment is much more significant than ...

7th March 2016
Increased connectivity with digital twins

Until the beginning of the 21st century, the only way to get information about the status of operating industrial equipment was to inspect it. Today, increased computing power and connectivity are making it possible to virtualise this task by creating and maintaining a digital twin of anything from electric motors to PLC systems.

29th February 2016
The benefits of remanufactured automotive parts

During World War II, access to natural resources was incredibly difficult in most European countries. Most countries found that, the effort to build planes, ships and tanks was crippling, creating an urgent need to reuse and remanufacture industrial parts. Beginning with the rebuilding of automotive and truck parts in the 1940s, this gave birth to an entire industry and is now common practice. Here, Darren Halford, sales director of industrial au...

23rd February 2016
Planning a revamp?

Let me set the scene. As a plant manager, you've set your sights on a full system upgrade. You've broken the news to the rest of the team and you’re pleasantly surprised to see they share your excitement. You might think their happiness is a result of having a brand new system, but in reality it might be the prospect of having a short holiday while the upgrade is completed.

16th February 2016
Beyond IoT: pervasive sensing

In manufacturing facilities, unplanned outages force continuously operating processes to go through shutdown and start-up procedures. It's under these conditions that serious incidents are most likely to occur. Ideally, manufacturers should to be able to anticipate equipment failures to prevent these outages.

8th February 2016
The rise of ubiquitous computing

The concept of ubiquitous computing dates back to 1991, only two years after Marty McFly supposedly travelled to 2015 in Back to the Future Part II. The concept was first described by scientist, Mark Weiser who said: "The most profound technologies are those that disappear. They weave themselves into the fabric of everyday life until they are indistinguishable from it."

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