The advent of the smartphone and tablet has had a dramatic impact on the types of media we consume. Whereas in the past we might have been wedded to printed sources such as newspapers or magazines, the ubiquitous nature of electronic devices means video has emerged as a highly popular visual means of accessing information and entertainment.
Video perfectly suits the hectic pace of modern life. A tightly edited and well-produced video can be informative, engaging and easy to digest - even on the go - making that this type of format a good match for today’s always-on, 24/7 society.
It comes as no surprise, therefore, to find that video has become an increasingly popular form of media in B2B markets. Many industrial organisations are now in-step with their tech-savvy customers, creating high-quality videos that encapsulate the technical capabilities of the systems and components they produce. Indeed, according to recent research (video marketing statistics 2020 by Wyzowl), 85% of businesses now use video as a marketing tool, proving what a convenient and accessible medium it has become.Supporting maintenance activities
Maintenance is particularly suited to this type of format. It is often easier to show how to prevent or fix a problem than it is to explain in a wordy repair manual. That’s why most companies have established YouTube channels as valuable knowledge resources for technicians and engineers responsible for maintaining equipment, both in plants and out in the field.
Here at Parker, video has been used to provide maintenance support for the new HLR range of electromechanical linear actuators. These three-minute productions cover a broad range of topics including ‘How to re-lubricate an HLR actuator’, ‘How to re-tension the HLR toothed belt’ and ‘How to replace the HLR steel strip cover’.
They also detail the assembly of the HLR within an application, covering areas such as ‘How to mount a gearbox to an HLR’, and ‘How to set up an HLR two axes configuration’. In each case, the videos have been made to get technical information across in a clear and concise manner that supports the more productive working of the maintenance professional.
Going forward, Parker is committed to using video as a means of talking to our customers. That doesn’t mean the end of the printed word in technical manuals: it is about using the power of technology to complement more traditional types of media to communicate in the most effective way that we can.
Parker’s Electromechanical and Drives Division offers specific tutorials to facilitate maintenance and improve the user experience. The video channel, has been enhanced with five new videos relating to the HLR range to help maintenance professionals carry out common operations.
Visit Parker EMDE YouTube support to see the various tutorials already online. You can see here the most popular HLR electromechanical linear actuators maintenance video.
This article contributed by Olaf Zeiss, product manager - Actuators, Electromechanical and Drives Division Europe, Parker Hannifin Corporation
In the manufacturing sector, anywhere that humans mix with machinery is a potential danger zone. Even in the modern production line, people are often still an essential element of the production or packaging process, but moving conveyor belts, robotic arms, chopping blades and other moving machinery nearby can cause serious injuries or even loss of life.
The European Machinery Directive is heavily focused on safety, and one of its key targets is to lower the number of accidents in the industrial workplace. In areas where close cooperation between humans and machines are required, life and health must always take first priority, and risks must be minimised. Machinery and systems therefore need to be designed to leave no room for mistakes or defects which may cause hazards to humans.
Many European countries have built their reputations on the production of safe, reliable and sophisticated industrial machinery and systems, and these machines are almost always designed, installed and maintained with elements of functional safety in mind. Even so, there are still many pieces of machinery that do not put the interests of the user at the forefront of the design process. These machines are often impractical and hinder the operators in the execution of their work, which can often increase the safety risks, particularly if the operator bypasses or avoids essential safety functions.
Broadly speaking, it is the automatic safety function that either ensures that the intended function is performed correctly or where this is not possible, ensures that the system will shut down in an orderly, and therefore safe, way. Functional safety is governed by two main industry standards addressing the safety lifecycle and the different types of failures from faults: IEC61508 and IEC61511.
For machine designers, it’s clear that following the Machinery Directive is not just about simply buying components that offer safety certification. Comprehensive hazard and risk assessments must first be carried out to ensure not just the operator’s safety but also ease of use. Once the design process is complete, technical safety measures can be implemented, such as placing guards around the machine and selecting components that offer excellent functional safety features.
Process shutdown in motion control machinery such as servo motors and drives are becoming increasingly important, particularly for critical elements such as brakes on vertical axes. Ensuring that the stopping reaction time is fast enough to protect body parts from the force of the motion is essential, and this needs to be tested very regularly.
Shutdown systems must be additionally responsive and flexible in applications such as packaging and production machinery which require a high extent of machine safety. Functional safety components can be connected via safety input-output (I/O) or other proprietary bus systems, but the most advanced solutions are based on safety fieldbuses which are flexible and powerful.Functional safety over EtherCAT
Parker now offers an advanced PSD line of products with Functional Safety over EtherCAT (FSoE), providing a complete, centralised functional safety solution that requires no additional wiring.
A powerful, freely-programmable FSoE master, the Parker Safety PLC, addresses all safety components via the network such as safety inputs and outputs as well as PSD drive controllers with integrated safety technology. External components such as light curtains, emergency buttons and safety shut-off mats are connected through the safe I/O-Modules.
When functional safety is done correctly, the operator is not constrained in any way and should have no reason to avoid any safety devices. Similarly, machine uptime will not be negatively impacted due to safety techniques, ensuring smooth and efficient operations on the processing line.
Overall, the benefits of using servo drives with integrated safety functionality are hard to ignore; such as a reduction in wiring and components, ease of use and increased productivity. Functional safety also has much to offer Industry 4.0. Not only is safety going to become increasingly important in automated factories where there will need to be a greater level of trust between machines and humans, but safety systems will also improve diagnostics, efficiency and reliability.
To discover all the safety features offered by the PSD drive watch the animation.
This article contributed by Patrick Knebel, product manager - servo drives & controllers, Electromechanical and Drives Division Europe, Parker Hannifin Corporation
In a hospital or clinical environment, personal protective equipment (PPE) is important and necessary to decrease staff and patient exposure to airborne ailments. Unfortunately, custom equipment may not be available on short notice. On the other hand, T-slot aluminum framing, best known for modular workstations, machine guarding, and tables, is configurable and can lend itself to any type of structure such as protective shielding and screening equipment. Parker IPS T-slot framing is readily available from authorized Design Centers and distributors, with all the accessory panels and parts to make your healthcare-related design a reality.
Parker designed prototype applications* Ventilator/Defibrillator cart
With a growing need for thousands of portable respirators and other emergency equipment such as defibrillators to be used by healthcare providers in the fight against COVID-19, Parker has designed modular rolling carts to be built using IPS t-slot aluminum profile and standard accessories. These carts can easily be used in hospitals, emergency rooms or any temporary medical facilities treating patients with COVID-19. The finished assembly is easily cleaned.Emergency room/Aisle stretcher protector
Constructed from light but strong aluminum extrusion material, this partition features a lightweight profile and a polycarbonate panel to protect neighboring beds in the room. It is approximately 6 feet by 4 feet and is equipped with adjustable leveling feet for stability. Alternatively, it can be fitted with casters for ease of portability. The durable polycarbonate panels are easily spray-cleaned, for a comfortable environment for patients and staff alike.Patient shield
For use when intubating patients with Coronavirus, this prototype shield is constructed from 20 x 20 aluminum profile. The design is modular and easy to assemble on site. The top polycarbonate panel is attached to the extrusion, and the three framed panels are attached to a straight plate. One panel features pre-cut holes for patient intubation. The assembled shield is easy to clean as needed.
Modular hospital room
This free-standing 12’ x 12’ room is made from 40x40 light aluminum IPS profile and 9 white opaque PVC panels that are pre-assembled. Each panel is approximately 4’ x 7’. The front opening can be closed for privacy with two 84” x 84” hospital cubicle curtains that slide on the extrusion track. The finished assembly is easily cleaned. Either standard slotted profile or the smooth face style may be usedTandem modular hospital room
12’ x 12’ hospital room modules can be ordered in multiple quantities to be assembled in tandem. Constructed of 40x40 light aluminum IPS profile, they are easy to assemble on site since the 9 white opaque PVC panels are shipped pre-assembled. Front opening for each room can be closed with two 84” x 84” hospital cubicle curtains that slide on the extrusion track. The finished assembly is easily cleaned. Either standard slotted profile or the smooth face style may be used.Concept to completed structure - quick and easy
With these examples in mind, we would like to help make your process from concept to completed structure quick and efficient. When you have your initial idea for building with t-slot framing, how do you convey the concept? Do you use a piece of paper, CAD or even the famous napkin to sketch out your thoughts?
Traditionally, and still today, the “napkin sketch” method is how most t-slot aluminum framing companies encourage the user to send in information. It is very effective and allows the customer to quickly convey their ideas. But with the right software, customers can use electronic tools to create their designs.
Imagine a tool that gave you template libraries that can be downloaded from the web and all the parts and components available to build a design, with the capability to export files into various 3D CAD formats. That’s Parker TADA (T-slot Aluminum Design Architect) and it’s available now as a free download.
To get your copy of TADA and learn more about IPS aluminum profile, please visit http://parker.com/DesignArchitect
To find out more about prototype medical and health care applications, please visit Parker T-Slot Aluminum for Healthcare
* These devices are not capable of preventing the transmission or contraction of COVID-19 or other ailments.
This article was contributed by Mario Mitchell, product manager for IPS T-Slot Aluminum Framing, Electromechanical & Drives Division, Parker Hannifin Corporation.
Is safety your number-one priority? The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is dedicated to helping companies across the country understand and establish proper safety standards for workers, employers and even temporary workers. They set and enforce safety standards and provide training, outreach, education and assistance.
OSHA publishes an annual list of the Top 10 Most Cited Violations. Companies typically have a specified amount of time to rectify the OSHA safety violations (not just the ones included in the Top 10 list) or risk being assessed fines, which can escalate quickly to very high amounts depending on the violation. The goal of this blog is to provide information on Machine Guarding and where it ranks on the Top 10 list. Within the Machine Guarding category, we’ll dig a little deeper and share some of the most-cited sections.
We’ve included a link to the Top 10 OSHA Most Cited Violations for the past five years. You’ll notice that over this time, Fall Protection, Hazard Communication and Scaffolding were the top three safety violations. Although there is an opportunity to improve and educate in those areas, we want to see where Machine Guarding is on the list. Our goal is to help you, where we can, eliminate this violation from the list and avoid fines.
When we look at the data, it is very promising in that each year the amount of Machine Guarding violations is in decline! See Figure 1 below:
So, what are some of the top specific sections that have been cited within the Machine Guarding category? We looked at safety data from 2015 to 2018 and listed below the top four sections cited during that time:
· 1910.212(a)(1) Types of Guarding
o One or more methods of machine guarding shall be provided to protect the operator and other employees in the machine’s area from hazards, such as those created by point of operation, ingoing nip points, rotating parts, flying chips and sparks. Examples of guarding methods are barrier guards, two-hand tripping devices, electronic safety devices
o Top section most cited
o Number of citations are decreasing: 1575 to 1289 (18%)
· 1910.212(a)(3)(ii) Point of Operation Guarding
o The point of operation of machines whose operation exposes an employee to injury shall be guarded. The guarding device shall be in conformity with any appropriate standards therefore, or, in the absence of applicable specific standards, shall be so designed and constructed as to prevent the operator from having any part of his body in the danger zone during the operating cycle.
o Second most sited section
o Number of citations are decreasing: 629 to 475 (24%)
· 1910.212(b) Anchoring Fixed Machinery
o A machine designed for a fixed location must be securely anchored to prevent walking or moving.
o 3rd most cited since 2015: 165 to 76 (54%)
· 1910.212(a)(2) General Requirements for Machine Guards
o Guards shall be affixed to the machine where possible and secured elsewhere if for any reason attachment to the machine is not possible. The guard shall be such that it does not offer an accident hazard in itself.
o 4th most cited section over 2016 and 2017: 58 to 46 (21%)
We’ve all heard the saying that knowledge is power. If you didn’t already know some of these statistics, we hope that you are now more aware of common OSHA safety violations and some of the specific machine guarding violations that can occur. According to Industrial Safety & Hygiene News, penalties for 2019 were more than $11 million. It is very important for each person in the organization to have a safety-first mentality. Having this kind of attitude will ultimately create a much safer working environment and positively impact your bottom line.
When reviewing ways to guard your machine, consider using T-slot aluminum framing. Parker can help through our Design Center and Authorized Distributor network throughout the country. You can also electronically sketch your ideas with TADA, our free design tool. Visit www.parker.com/designarchitect to download TADA, view help tutorial videos and download templates. Also, visit www.parker.com/ips to learn more about Parker’s T-Slot Aluminum Framing Products and how they can enhance safety.
This article was contributed by Mario Mitchell, product manager for IPS T-Slot Aluminum Framing, Electromechanical & Drives Division, Parker Hannifin Corporation..
Thanks to our loyal followers for all of the interest in the topics covered in this blog over the past year. In examining the most-read blog posts over the course of 2019, it becomes obvious that there is quite a diversity of products under the electromechanical umbrella, but the common threads of precision, innovation and purpose tie them all together.
Energy savings, an important initiative for now and the future, was highlighted in two top posts: 5 Reasons to Control Your Compressor With a VFD and How VFD Technology on Hydraulic Power Units Helps Improve Performance.
The new and rapidly growing field of mobile electrification was covered in Series Hybrid Vehicle System Design.
Providing advice for selecting the right components for a great system was found in three posts:
2019 saw some impressive growth in social media interaction. Our most popular platform remains the Parker Electromechanical Technology Showcase on LinkedIn, which attracted many new followers in the past year. Popular posts covered a variety of topics including motorcycle racing, featuring an electric bike powered by our GVM motor, participation in a number of industry trade shows including our first Cybershow, and shared content from our Parker Distributors. Please follow us and feel free to share and comment - and don't forget, we are also on Twitter @ParkerElectro.
The past year also included some new product announcements, like extended power range for the AC30 VFD, now available through 600 HP, new PAC and PACIO accessories, and most recently the availability of the ACR7000 multi-axis motion controller.
Parker sees its purpose as a platform for growth, change and positive impact to the world. As we enter 2020, watch for more new innovative solutions from the Electromechanical & Drives team as we focus on these values and on engineering your success.
This article was contributed by Lou Lambruschi, marketing services manager, Electromechanical Division, Parker Hannifin Corporation.
In industry, time is money. So, for engineers who are time-pressured, there is a solution for electromechanical press and joining applications.
Push-To-Fit is an innovative electromechanical solution that combines a number of Parker’s established core products into a joining module. All individual components of Push-To-Fit are designed to meet the highest expectations concerning force, dynamics, precision and service life for engineers working in the general industrial and automotive manufacturing space. In fact, the solution is scalable to a wide and diverse range of end application requirements.
In simple terms, the module comprises a process control unit, servo drive, motor electric cylinder and force sensor connected together through software to provide fast and easy integration into customer processes. For instance, the process control unit offers full compatibility and preparation for third-party device connectivity, with dual LAN networks and options for Profinet, Ethernet IP and Modbus. Numerous operating options, such as web visualisation, digital I/O and communications interfaces (e.g. OPC UA,) are also available to further simplify integration.
Parker has made sure that ease-of-use is boosted through real-time control information, historical/trend data, adjustable error response, definable motion profiles, and monitoring via tolerance windows or tolerance curves.
Among the many advantages of this quiet, clean solution is greater energy efficiency versus comparable technologies such as hydraulics and pneumatics. Moreover, excellent throughput rates are facilitated by high travel speeds of up to 450mm/s, while repeatability is 0.03mm.
Created by Parker’s Electromechanical and Drives Division, Push-To-Fit is a cost-effective and highly flexible solution, with different forces and multiple stroke lengths available. As a result, customers only buy precisely what is needed for their specific application.
In terms of functional safety, Push-To-Fit is supplied with hardware STO as standard. Further safety functions such as SLS and others are available with the safety PLC. As a Fail-Safe, over EtherCAT (FSoE) master the safety PLC uses the EtherCAT fieldbus to establish safe communication without separate wiring. The external safety brake completes the range and permits safety-related applications up to PLe.
As press or joining applications are one of the key processes in modern automated manufacturing there are increased demands on product quality and statistical analysis. To fulfill such demands Push-To-Fit comes already with interfaces like Q-DAS. Within a text file basic information and process data is available in a kind of key-value database. In addition to Q-DAS other integrated process data managements like IPM are supported as well. Via TCP/IP process data is collected in a life cycle file to ensure access. Such systems also help you to identifies errors in an early stage This is another reason why these systems and the required interfaces are so valuable.
Discover more about the Push-To-Fit solution and the benefits it can bring to industrial assembly projects.
This article contributed by Patrick Knebel, product manager Push-To-Fit, Electromechanical Division Europe, Parker Hannifin Corporation.
The arguments advocating more automation in our factories and process plants are gaining momentum and translating into a revolution in production environments.
Parker designs automated linear motion solutions such as electromechanical actuators to offer a combination of load handling, space saving and reliability attributes. This all links to the overall goal of optimising throughput and minimising costs. We’ve also noticed that versatility and simple utilisation in multi-axis solutions are also becoming more important, particularly for applications such as materials handling and feed systems, as well as production and packaging machinery.
The latest high-load rodless linear actuators, such as the HLR series, achieve a load capacity at 3847 Newtons (N) that is circa 20 percent higher than existing solutions. Notably, we’ve incorporated a square rail, which not only promotes higher load capabilities, but also longer operating life. Performance parameters include speed up to 5 m/s, acceleration up to 50 m/s2 and repeatability of ±0.05 mm.
Having high load and thrust force capabilities can save money for your plant by allowing the deployment of a smaller actuator than would normally be required. We all know that floor space costs money, so the opportunity to use more compact automation solutions and create space for additional capacity is quite literally, priceless.
Parker’s compact HLR actuators also facilitate the fast and easy creation of multi-axis solutions. If your machine or system is based on a double or multiple axis gantry design, then the HLR concept can be expanded quickly and easily, saving money by reducing design resource and solution complexity.
For instance, in double-axis applications, our system makes use of a connecting shaft to ensure synchronous and rigid transmission of the drive torque to a second linear actuator arranged in parallel. With the use of toe clamps for mounting the actuators, one or two cross beams can be fastened directly to the carriage of linear actuators, dispensing with the need for additional connection plates.
Sometimes, a complete, pre-defined drive and control package can be supplied to match and integrate actuators into a wide range of applications, and here at Parker, we can supply it. By using a pre-defined drive package consisting of actuator, motor, gearbox and servocontroller, a complete drive train can be quickly selected to suit your specific task.
Automating a machine or system is one thing, but sourcing innovative automation offering genuine competitive gain is quite another, particularly with regard to linear motion. Here, only factors such as high-load capabilities, high speed, compact dimensions, reliability, repeatability, and the simple creation of multi-axis solutions can provide the levels of future-proofing required to remain ahead of the pack.
If you would like to discover more about our HLR actuator and the benefits it can bring to your project, please click here.
This article was contributed to by Olaf Zeiss, product manager, Electromechanical and Drives Division Europe, Parker Hannifin Corporation.
It’s no secret that the Millennial Generation’s practices and preferences are shifting consumer product design and marketing messages across the board. But how does that trend affect product design in the world of industrial manufacturing? Are we seeing similar trends in pneumatic and electromechanical design on the factory floor?
The short answer is yes. Millennial engineers, or makers - a popular term coined by this generation, are leading the transformation of our industry. Makers are known for their self-sufficiency. They don’t want to have to make a phone call or wait several days for information. They want to be able to find the answers themselves and get on with their creations.Challenging the status quo
The key is that members of this generation are not afraid to challenge the process or the system. When it comes to pneumatic and electromechanical actuator sizing, the process has been the same for decades. Actuators are designed conservatively to meet many safety and service factors. Calculations are complex but everyone has designed this way because it has worked, and why fix something that is not broken? The reality of this approach, is that very large actuators are specified across a machine and the makers are asking “do the actuators really have to be that big?”
Tools that allow users to simulate their system design with the exact components they need to create the desired motion are helping us to understand that the actuators can be much smaller. We can now design actuators that are specific to the application, while saving money and cost.Modern actuator sizing
Parker’s Virtual Engineer is a web-based product selection program that enables this generation to go out there and get the answers. Users don’t need to have studied electrical engineering to operate. Recently graduated engineers are being asked to specify components on a wide variety of machinery or systems that they haven’t created. No matter what your technical background is you can specify an actuator. It allows the designer to jump in and make a difference – and that’s what the makers are looking to do.
Virtual Engineer was designed for pneumatic and electromechanical actuator sizing in linear motion applications. Users are able to:
Attending PackExpo 2019? Meet our engineers at PackExpo in Las Vegas September 23 - 25 and see a demonstration of the Virtual Engineer at booth LS-6288. Not attending the show? Learn more about Virtual Engineer here.
This article was contributed by Marissa Tucker, product marketing manager for controls and HMI and Tim Faillo, global program manager for factory automation, Parker Hannifin Corporation.
This is the final of a three-part series that spoke to the various feedback devices that are provided as options on Parker Servo Motors. Part 1 & Part 2 provided the basic theory of operation for the devices and provided some guidance on why you might choose one versus the other, along with some helpful formulas for calculating required resolution. The following is a quick summary and recommendations on selecting the best feedback device for your motion control application.
Incremental encoders (optical)
Good resolution - up to 20,000 ppr on standard Parker product
Good for applications where going back to home for out of application situation (power down) is not a concern
Provide absolute position upon powering up (no homing required)
Provide a very high resolution
16 bit = 65,536 ppr
20 bit = 1,048,576 ppr
Options for memory download to support “smart” encoder option
Option to allow for single cable from the motor for power and feedback
Good resolution (12 bit)
Very rugged – 40g vibration and 200g shock
High temp suitability – up to 200 deg. C
Provide absolute position within a single turn
Accuracy not as good as incremental or absolute encoders
Article contributed by Jeff Nazzaro, gearhead and motor product manager, Electromechanical & Drives Division, Parker Hannifin Corporation.
In an industrial manufacturing environment, t-slot framing is often used for workstations, machine guarding, enclosures, tables, carts and more. When you have your initial idea for building with t-slot framing, how do you convey the concept? Do you use a piece of paper, CAD or even the famous napkin to sketch out your thoughts?
Traditionally, and still today, the “napkin sketch” method is how most t-slot aluminum framing companies encourage the user to send in information. It is very effective and allows the customer to quickly convey their ideas.
You might notice a trend that takes the customer from the “paper napkin sketch” to the “electronic or digital napkin sketch.” With the increasing use of 3D CAD systems, customers can use electronic tools to create their designs. The user libraries can be downloaded from the web and all the parts and components become available for use in your CAD system. Some companies offer a plug-in to a specific 3D CAD system. This means that their software works with that specific 3D CAD system, which may or may not be the system that you’re using. Other companies offer a standalone tool that can export files into various 3D CAD formats.
Here are a few ways to access these tools
With so many projects and the time constraints that go along with them, it is important for users to work efficiently. Using an electronic tool to “sketch” your design will allow you to import that assembly into your current project. This is very valuable if it is part of a larger machine design. Also, being able to interact with a trusted partner to quickly receive a quote helps with the process of understanding project costs along the way.
Are you ready to take your concept to completion? Start with the Parker T-Slot Aluminum Design Architect (TADA). This is a free tool that you can use to design your tables, carts, workstations, enclosures and more. We also have a network of Design Centers located throughout North America that are ready to help you with your design needs using T-slot aluminum framing.
Parker is making t-slot aluminum framing design easier than ever. For mechanical design engineers, lean manufacturing leaders and do-it-yourselfers, the Parker T-Slot Aluminum Design Architect (TADA) software allows you to take more creative control over your assembly designs. Download your free, fully functional copy today.
Article contributed by Mario Mitchell, product manager for T-slot Aluminum Framing, Electromechanical & Drives Division North America, Parker Hannifin Corporation.