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Dec. 22, 2014 - B&R Automation is extending the X20 I/O system to include two additional modules: a temperature measurement module with 4-wire resistance measurement, and an energy measurement module with four current inputs for connecting external transformers with a 333 mV output.
Dec. 22, 2014 - Fanuc says it has introduced CIP safety functionality with the EtherNet/IP adapter safety function for its 3xi-B CNCs that enables safety communication with Rockwell Automation controller (Logix PAC) systems.
Dec. 19, 2014 - The latest generation of Type 4 light curtains and perimeter guarding grids from Schmersal boast new features and additional safety.
Dec. 19, 2014 - Harting says its “major” expansion of its M8, M12 and 7/8 in. overmolded cable assembly lineup will provide customers with the convenience of one-stop shopping for reliable, robust connectivity.
Dec. 19, 2014 - SIL (Safety Integrity Level) 2 compatibility has been added to E2S Warning Signals’ horn and strobe families.
Dec. 19, 2014 - GTI Predictive Technology has designed VibeRMS LT, a single channel vibration documentation tool for the iPad.
Dec. 19, 2014 - AutomationDirect has expanded its mechanical power transmission product line to include aluminum worm gearboxes in five frame sizes, with gear ratios from 10:1 to 100:1.
Dec. 19, 2014 - Omega’s OM-CP-RFPRHTEMP2000A wireless data logger is ideal for monitoring weather data, measuring barometric pressure or monitoring storage or warehouse environments that contain sensitive material.
Dec. 19, 2014 - Ansell’s “Oil is a Chemical” campaign hopes to raise awareness of manufacturing industries about the health challenges that can result from prolonged exposure to oil.
Dec. 12, 2014 - Alliance Sensors Group has announced the ME series linear position sensors for embedded use in measuring the ram position of hydraulic and pneumatic cylinders in industrial, mobile or subsea applications. Designed to be drop-in form, fit, and function replacements for embedded magnetostrictive sensors, the series offers more robust construction and a lower cost of ownership, says the company.
Dec. 12, 2014 - The Dymax 455 micro-spray valve claims to be a more precise, flexible and easier-to-use model.
Nov. 25, 2014 - Four manufacturing organizations say they have banded together for a new “by industry, for industry” learning program to actively hire and train unemployed/underemployed youth to help address a “critical” shortage of CNC machinists.
Nov. 19, 2014 - Ontario says it is investing $4.2 million to help build the Niagara College Advanced Manufacturing Innovation Centre, a permanent, high-tech facility that will provide hands-on applied learning and innovative business solutions.
Nov. 4, 2014 - Skills Canada launched its 10th National Skilled Trades and Technology Week today, which it says aims to create awareness for students and educators of the “incredible career opportunities” available in skilled trades and technologies across Canada.
Oct. 7, 2014 - A $1,050,000 gift from Dow Canada will support student success and campus expansion at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT). Dow’s investment includes $800,000 for NAIT’s Centre for Applied Technologies, and $250,000 to sponsor a biennial seminar at NAIT showcasing the field of power engineering.
Sept. 29, 2014 - AutomationDirect’s new eBook, “Automation 101: An Industry Guide to Control System Engineering”, is now available as a free download. Designed as a general guide for the specification, design and installation of automated control systems, this eBook is filled with information and references that take readers from the skills required to recognize an operation or process suitable for automating, to tips on setting up a program to maintain the control system. Whether an expert or a novice at electrical control devices and systems, the information presented provides a checklist to use when implementing an automated control system. Topics covered include: safety considerations, identifying automation needs, specifying device needs, system design, building tips, installation and maintenance. The eBook also contains information, such as steps for choosing the right controller, understanding discrete and analog I/O, sinking and sourcing concepts, and more.To learn more and to download “Automation 101: An Industry Guide to Control System Engineering”, visit: http://library.automationdirect.com/download-free-ebook.
Sept. 29, 2014 - Mohawk College of Applied Arts and Technology in Hamilton, Ont., has opened an Additive Manufacturing Resource Centre at its Fennell Campus.
Sept. 16, 2014 - Siemens Canada and the Halton Learning Foundation have partnered to introduce an educational program to students at Oakville’s Garth Webb Secondary School.
Sept. 5, 2014 - Ontario is expanding and enhancing its Specialist High Skills Majors program to help more high school students find their career passion and get the skills and knowledge they need for jobs in the 21st century.
Aug. 26, 2014 - The demand for skilled professionals who understand the exchange between information technology (IT) and operations technology (OT) is increasing as the industrial plant floor and corporate enterprise become more connected. In response, Rockwell Automation, in collaboration with Strategic Alliance partner Cisco, has launched a new training course to help IT and OT professionals overcome the challenges of converging their network technologies. The new training helps candidates prepare for the recently introduced Cisco Industrial Networking Specialist certification.
June 23, 2014 - Safety is the top priority at the Siemens Wind Service Training Centre in Orlando, Fla. That was the message Siemens executives relayed to the 31 journalists from 11 countries who attended its recent international press trip to Orlando. Manufacturing AUTOMATION was among the attendees.
Manufacturing AUTOMATION caught up with Skills Canada CEO Shaun Thorson at the Skills Canada National Competition in June. He talked to us about the competition, how it has evolved over the last 20 years, how the perception of skilled trades has evolved, and what industry can do to help bridge the skills gap. Take a look.
Skills Canada’s National Competition took place in Mississauga, Ont., in June, and Manufacturing AUTOMATION was there. Five hundred of Canada’s best skilled trade and technology students and apprentices competed for a chance to make it on Team Canada for Worlds Skills 2015 in Brazil. In this video, we find out more about the Robotics, Mechatronics, and Automation and Control competitions.
Dec. 9, 2014 - Cascades has acquired and installed two new printing presses in its Quebec plants, Norampac – Vaudreuil and Norampac – Drummondville, which specialize in manufacturing corrugated packaging products.
Nov. 5, 2014 - A new national award from Workplace Safety & Prevention Services (WSPS) recognizes “organizations that exceed traditional health and safety practices by the shared value created to have an impact on a broader community dimension beyond their workplaces.”
Oct. 9, 2014 - Increasingly individualized products and more intelligent, networked components are transforming the world of production, and Festo is embracing the changes. That was the message from Dr. Eberhardt Veit, chairman of the management board of Festo AG, during Festo’s recent International Press Conference at its headquarters in Esslingen, Germany.
Oct. 7, 2014 - While at Festo's recent International Press Conference in Germany, Manufacturing AUTOMATION sat down for an interview with Dr. Eberhardt Veit, chairman of the management board, to discuss recent investments the company has made, the economy and which markets he's seeing growth in.
Oct. 7, 2014 - Manufacturing AUTOMATION recently attended Festo's International Press Conference at the company's headquarters in Esslingen, Germany. During the conference, Dr. Eberhardt Veit, chairman of the management board of Festo AG & Co. KG, discussed Industry 4.0 and Festo's view of future production.
Sept. 18, 2014 - Marcos Aranha, process engineer with Yaskawa America Inc., demonstrates four technologies in the Yaskawa Motoman booth at IMTS 2014 in Chicago.
Aug. 15, 2014 - Mohawk College of Applied Arts and Technology has launched a 1,500-square-foot Additive Manufacturing Resource Centre at its Fennell Campus in Hamilton, Ont. In this video, Robert Gerritsen, professor, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering Technology, gives us a tour of the new facility, detailing the equipment in the lab, and the capabilities of the state-of-the-art additive technologies in the lab, including their "pride and joy" - an EOS M 280 direct metal laser sintering machine.
Aug. 15, 2014 - Mohawk College of Applied Arts and Technogy has launched a 1,500-square-foot Additive Manufacturing Resource Centre at its Fennell Campus in Hamilton, Ont. The new centre is both a resource to students and the industry, allowing them to explore the opportunities of additive manufacturing in both metal and plastic. In this video, Tony Thoma, Dean, Engineering Technology, discusses the new facility and how it will benefit the manufacturing industry and the students.
Aug. 1, 2014 - AutomationDirect’s new white paper, “When to Use Multi-Function Safety Relays,” explains how to determine when applications will benefit from multi-function safety relays over other options.
July 28, 2014 - While safety functions have been integrated into drives packages for some years now, the current trends are very exciting, from many angles. Today, a full complement of safety functions can be implemented at the front-end of a system design on all types of production machines. This can be accomplished in full compliance with all the current regulations for machines used worldwide.  
July 4, 2014 - Unico Systems, a manufacturer of home air conditioning and heating systems, previously used manual methods to track manufacturing workflow, a time-consuming task that increased the chance for errors. Today, the company automatically enters the tracking information into a database using Cognex wireless handheld scanners to read barcodes on the product, and QR codes on employee badges and assembly stations. Operators now spend much less time on data entry tasks which, along with other improvements, has helped increase the production rate on the company’s lines by an average of 40 per cent. The new system also provides additional safeguards to ensure that only quality products are shipped to customers, resulting in a reduction in warranty costs. Here’s their story:
Nov. 5, 2014 - KSB Pumps is expanding its presence in Western Canada with a new office and service facility in Edmonton, Alta.
July 25, 2014 - The boards of directors of the Fieldbus Foundation and the HART Communication Foundation have approved unifying the two foundations into a new industry organization dedicated to the needs of intelligent devices and their integration in the world of process automation.
The Fieldbus Foundation, conducting a press briefing at the Hannover Fair on Monday, announced significant progress in its discussions with the HART Communication Foundation on the potential for merging the two organizations into a single industry foundation dedicated to the needs of intelligent device communications in the world of process automation.
The Fieldbus Foundation, conducting a press briefing at the Hannover Fair on Monday, commemorated its 20th anniversary.
A white paper from InduSoft, an Invensys company, describes in depth the benefits multi-touch HMI offers the automation world.
The term "dry wine" has a new meaning at Vincor International's Quebec bottling operation since soap-and-water lubrication have been eliminated from the conveyor line by installing a new conveyor chain and wear track.
To stay competitive with large-scale agricultural producers, today’s small, privately owned farms are turning to automation as a way to improve the efficiency of their operations.
Process automation projects are most often driven by bottom line results, return on investment and an appropriate value position or justification.
AutomationDirect has released a new white paper that explains how businesses benefit from the in-depth information that new PLCs and PACs can provide on processes, machines and manufacturing operations. 
  With the arrival of the latest generation of KSB’s Movitec pumps, KSB Canada has widened its portfolio of small size centrifugal pumps. The 2013 Movitec series feature optimized laser welded hydraulics.
Manufacturing AUTOMATION columnist and respected industrial networking expert Ian Verhappen, has been named to the Process Automation Hall of Fame. Verhappen’s entire career has been dedicated to automation. As a leader in automation practices, he has worked closely with the Standards Council of Canada and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Among his many achievements, Verhappen led the world's first multi-vendor Foundation Fieldbus (FF) pilot test. While serving as International Society of Automation’s (ISA) vice-president of publications, he co-authored the Foundation Fieldbus book, soon to be in its fourth edition in English, Spanish and Portuguese. The Process Automation Hall of Fame was established by Control magazine, a publication dedicated to process automation. Inductees are celebrated for their major contributions to the automation profession. You can read past issues of Verhappen’s popular “Columnbus” column in back issues of Manufacturing AUTOMATION or on the Columnbus page on our website.
Nov. 27, 2014 - Configure One, a provider of web-based product configurator and CPQ (configure, price, quote) software, has announced a partnership agreement with SolidCAD Solutions, a Toronto, Ont.-based technology solution provider for the manufacturing, plant, visualization, civil and building industries.
Nov. 26, 2014 - Cégep de Sherbrooke in Sherbrooke, Que., announced today that it has selected Genius Manufacturing enterprise resource planning (ERP) software for hands-on training in its mechanical engineering techniques (manufacturing option) program.
Oct. 24, 2014 - Consumer power has reached an all-time high, and businesses have felt the impact across their supply chains globally.  
Sept. 29, 2014 - The Company: August Electronics is an electronics manufacturing services (EMS) provider headquartered in Calgary, Alta. They have a long-standing track record of customer satisfaction and productivity, as shown by their yearly recognition in Profit magazine’s PROFIT 200 — Canada’s top 200 fastest growing companies. As an ISO 9001:2008 certified company, August Electronics is committed to a philosophy of continuous quality improvement.
Sept. 29, 2014 - The Company: Privately held and based in Ottawa, Ont., TrueNorth Avionics is an airborne connectivity company that designs, develops and manufactures satellite communication solutions for high-end corporate jets and VIP aircrafts.
Sept. 29, 2014 - Kaizen — translated loosely from the Japanese, it means “good change.” Masaaki Imai, founder of the Japan-based Kaizen Institute, defined kaizen as: "...continuous improvement in the personal life, home life, social life and working life." Even more profoundly, Imai taught that kaizen was a “...state of mind that encourages everyone to consider it unusual when conditions do not continuously evolve.”
Sept. 29, 2014 - The Company: Iggesund Tools is a tooling company with a proud heritage spanning more than 300 years. Today, its core business is the design and production of specialized tooling for the forest products industry. In each of the sectors it serves — debarking, lumber production, chipping technology and chip analysis — Iggesund Tools is recognized as a world leader.
Sept. 26, 2014 - The Company: Hammond Power Solutions (HPS) is the largest manufacturer of dry-type transformers in North America. The company engineers and manufactures a wide range of standard and custom transformers that are exported globally in electrical equipment and systems, and supports solid industries such as oil and gas, mining, steel, waste and water treatment, and wind power generation. Headquartered in Guelph, Ont., HPS has five manufacturing facilities and 11 distribution centres located throughout Canada, the United States and Mexico.
Sept. 26, 2014 - The Company: Every single day, gas, diesel and petrol are used around the world to keep vehicles running. Through a process called “fractionation,” crude, unprocessed oil is separated into these important fuels. An entire facility is needed to carry out the fractionation process. Enerchem International Inc., a leader in the production and distribution of hydrocarbon drilling and fracturing fluids, runs one such facility at Slave Lake in Alberta. To efficiently handle the daunting task of maintaining and controlling this facility, Enerchem uses a flexible HMI, SCADA and MES software platform called Ignition by Inductive Automation.
Sept. 26, 2014 - The Company: Athletica Sport Systems (Sport Systems Unlimited Corp.) specializes in engineering, manufacturing and installing dasher boards and associated products for ice hockey and indoor soccer. The Waterloo, Ont.-based company brings world-class sport solutions under the well-known Crystaplex, Border Patrol and GamePlex brands to customers worldwide, including universities, municipalities and private owners, and is the preferred rink equipment supplier of the NHL. In addition, Athletica has a vastly growing Arena Services division, which accounts for a significant piece of the company’s business, particularly in the winter months during the off season. Athletica’s core manufacturing facility is located in Waterloo, with a sales and distribution facility in Minneapolis, Minn.
Sept. 22, 2014 - The discrete manufacturing industry’s quest to reduce capital expenditure, shorten lead times and improve productivity is expected to fuel investments in the global product life cycle management (PLM) market, according to new analysis from Frost and Sullivan.
Dec. 3, 2014 - Growth in the global product lifecycle management (PLM) software market continues to depend strongly on regional economic and industrial trends and is experiencing significant variability. Currently, there is significant business activity across certain global regions, most notably North America, and industrial sectors, most notably upstream oil and gas. While overall growth in the PLM market slowed slightly from 2012 to 2013, some offsetting factors and technology trends will drive growth in the PLM market in the coming years, according to a recent ARC Advisory Group report, Product Lifecycle Management Global Market Research Study.
Nov. 24, 2014 - Almost everything in automation needs sensing and measurement. There’s definitely a bright future here. That’s why I’m focusing this month’s column on future trends in sensitivity and measurement — a fitting topic as we say goodbye to another year and look at what’s ahead.
Nov. 24, 2014 - With all of the continuous improvements being made in process control and automation through more effective alarm management systems, better HMIs and improved control theory and algorithms, we often forget that a control system is only as good as the field measurements and final control elements used to monitor and control the process. Fortunately, the new HMI standards take this into consideration by providing suggestions on how equipment health can be incorporated into tag display information. Similarly, field device manufacturers have agreed on methods to communicate device status for both analog- and fieldbus-based systems.
Nov. 24, 2014 - Finding that fine line between safety and production efficiency is a constantly evolving process. Companies continue to expand their efforts to ensure employee safety and still make gains in their production output.
Nov. 24, 2014 - I reviewed Radica’s Electra back in 2006. The fact that the product is still active says something about the company and the relevance of the product.
Nov. 24, 2014 - Lean has a seemingly endless stream of phrases to identify its various methodologies — 5S, kanbans, value stream mapping, spaghetti diagrams, kaizen, kaikaku, etc. But according to one engineering manager, you won’t see safety in there anywhere. In reality, lean is more than just becoming more efficient; it’s also about becoming safer, and the results can be immediate.
Nov. 24, 2014 - Up until the industrial revolution, the typical working man (forgive the political incorrectness for now) was able to easily measure the achievements of his efforts by, for example, how much wood was chopped; how many cows were milked; how many miles of fences mended or rows tilled; how much seed was sown and how much crops were harvested. The payoff for every day’s effort invested was not just the tactile results, but also the pride and satisfaction that went with it.
Oct. 24, 2014 - Nearly every Saturday afternoon, a friend and I go to the movies. We don’t know what movie we will be seeing before we buy the tickets. This gives us a sense of adventure.
Oct. 24, 2014 - My husband and I painted the walls and installed new wood trim in our home. Everything was great until the day our friend fell against an open door and it hit the wall behind it, damaging the drywall. Yes, we forgot to replace the doorstop. Unfortunately, another weekend of summertime activities was replaced with spackling and repainting.     
Oct. 24, 2014 - Many years ago, I read Steven Covey’s landmark book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. I have read many other good books since that time, but this one still stands out as a foundational book for me, especially as I consider the roles in my life where my abilities as a leader matter.
Oct. 24, 2014 - I laughed out loud when I first heard about CAVE people. They are the “Citizens Against Virtually Everything,” and they are the group of people resistant to lean changes. Some of the people involved in your lean initiative will be on board with the change; others will be sitting on the fence until they see proof that lean works; and the remaining group will be the CAVE people.