Industrial automation is one of the important prerequisites for the start of Industry 4.0 in Germany, mainly in the field of mechanical manufacturing and electrical engineering. The "embedded system" currently widely used in German and international manufacturing is a specialized computer system designed for specific applications by embedding mechanical or electrical components completely inside the controlled device. The data shows that this "embedded system" has an annual market benefit of 20 billion euros, and this number will increase to 40 billion euros by 2020. The speed of industrial automation has surprised everyone. Some new technologies, such as more advanced drives, fieldbus-based pneumatics, and piezo-actuated valves, are driving the industry's rapid growth. So what is the development trend of industrial automation? Which parts are the most effective in improving the results?
On the drive side we can see a clear trend: the tasks performed by the drives are more complex than in the past. But in some ways, the system itself has become easier to use. Many drive supply companies typically provide low voltage (up to approximately 700 volts) AC and DC variable speed drives for speed control, typically for certain types of continuous processes.
Software control increases and becomes easier
Some variable speed drives provide a higher level of control for pumps, fans and general applications, but the device itself is easier to configure than in the past. The new wizard features step-by-step guides users through process automation configuration and setup. The wizard allows the user to perform a "clone" using an interface device or memory card to quickly transfer the same settings and configuration to another drive.
In addition, functions such as automatic tuning of the position control servo drive and motor identification have been further developed. When the user connects the motor to the drive, a small program is triggered to copy 90% of the application parameters for the drive to the new system.
Extended bus connection
Currently, many drives are connected to a variety of mainstream industrial fieldbus networks, but AC drives are increasingly turning to Ethernet platforms. Ethernet platforms typically use a variety of different industrial fieldbuses, including Ethernet, EtherCAT, Sercos, Powerlink, and Profinet. High-end variable speed drives can also integrate proprietary protocols such as BACnet for building automation and LonWorks for equipment networks.
More economical solution
Not only that, but more and more energy-saving technologies are more cost-effective. For example, an AC drive such as the AC30 can be equipped with an active front end (AFE) power supply. The AFE power supply allows the configuration of a common bus system with the appropriate sinusoidal current and unity power factor that would otherwise be wasted (for example, when a motor on the machine is pulled above its setpoint speed or decelerated). Returned to the grid. In the past, most engineers thought that drives that support energy recovery were too expensive. However, as energy costs have risen, these systems are now considered to be cost effective. High-efficiency equipment can be used for equipment including mine cranes and cranes that load ships.
Multi-purpose, programmable digital servo drive
The servo drive is also changing. Previously, drives were controlled using analog signals through a centralized controller or a connected digital controller. These units are then digital-to-analog converted. Most modern drives are all digital, which means that the feedback signal is a digital signal, the control signal is also digital, and the driver can be equipped with a digital signal processor. As a result, users can configure drives as "dumb drives" that take commands from a centralized control location to provide digital handshake information such as the location and speed of the drive. Legacy drives require a lot of additional hardware. By contrast, today's drives are easier to configure and can perform multiple tasks in a single package.
Open loop vector control system with higher precision
Open-loop vector control systems are also undergoing changes. They are a great improvement over the old "V/F" drives. The open loop vector system provides better accuracy and speed control than the V/F system, as well as better torque characteristics. Current AC drives can use sensorless vector control for permanent magnet servo motors and more traditional squirrel cage induction motors. This system is smaller in size but provides higher torque and power. In addition, this technology has a faster dynamic response, and the permanent magnet motor stops and starts faster than a motor that must generate two fields. This layout features low cost and high performance for low power applications.
More powerful cooling
Drive cooling methods are also constantly changing and evolving. Typically, most drives use air cooling. However, in recent years, in high power applications, refrigerant cooling methods have been used to remove the heat generated by the IGBT. This cooling method allows the driver to provide more power in a smaller space while reducing the thermal cycling of the IGBT. For example, Parker has developed and patented an advanced two-phase cooling system that can be integrated into high-power drives with extremely high power densities.
Article link: China Machine Tool Business Network http://www.jc35.com/news/detail/69286.html