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Innovative Thinking

Premier Automation

Recent Posts

Five Vital Steps to an Effective Machine-Vision Setup

Machine Vision applications are complex and challenging due to their unique nature, and therefore require careful design to ensure maximum benefit for the investment made.

Whitepaper: What Will Manufacturing Look Like When The COVID-19 Pandemic is in our Rear-View Mirror?

Overview

The answer to this is a difficult one.  There are many ways this could end.  One is a vaccine becomes available and life goes back to normal, although this may not happen for even a few years.  The more likely result is we get through this surge of infections, and once free to do so, companies pick up the pieces and try to get back to production as they did before.  But can they if social distancing strategies make the way they did business before obsolete, using multiple workers to complete tasks in groups where exposure may be likely?  Will workers be comfortable coming to work where they risk exposure that isn’t just dangerous to themselves, but also to their families?

Download the Full Whitepaper


About Premier Automation

Premier Automation is an engineered solutions company that specializes in providing automation, robotics, drives and electrical control solutions.

Power Supplies within Industrial Machinery

Industrial machinery spread throughout a plant floor runs on a variety of power sources, involving a number of intermediary steps to ensure maximum up time is retained. There are several power supply configurations that have made their way into the plant floor as the applications gain more diversity, i.e. from motors to sensitive electronic equipment.

Whitepaper: Service, Engineering & Support in a Time of Social Distancing

Overview

Many companies in many industries rely on us at Premier Automation for our engineering, service and support to supplement their staff, troubleshoot difficult problems and to design solutions for their needs.  In the current situation, many sites are not allowing visitors and vendors on-site to mitigate the risks to their employees and outside personnel which is taking away access to resources that they had at their disposal prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Numerous solutions exist and thinking outside of the box may provide opportunities to continue business as usual through these difficult times.

Download the Full Whitepaper


About Premier Automation

Premier Automation is an engineered solutions company that specializes in providing automation, robotics, drives and electrical control solutions.

Addressing Coronavirus/COVID-19

Addressing Coronavirus/COVID-19

During these trying times we want to assure our nation's manufacturing base that Premier Automation stands united to help address manufacturing shortages of necessary supplies.

We are actively monitoring the COVID-19/Coronavirus situation and are taking the steps recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local health authorities to help keep our communities safe.

How Can Arc Welding Benefit from Robotics?

Welding is an age-old process through which two materials are fused by applying heat, intermixing and cooling, resulting in a strong joint. Traditionally, welding has been performed through arcs or other tools operated by humans. However, in recent years, robotics have been introduced to this field as well, which has opened new avenues and possibilities of productivity within the workplace.

Robotic welding holds several benefits over the traditional process, some of which are increased efficiency, consistency and higher Return on Investment. Breakthroughs within robotic welding technologies have given way to robotic weld cells which are much more productive and safe, dramatically reducing arc glare while improving the consistency of the end products.

Advantages of robotics within arc welding include:

Less Time
Robotic welding systems can get the job done quicker since they don’t suffer from tiredness, obviously unlike humans. Whether you’re making use of a new or used welding robot, both would have greater consistency and can work without breaks, vacations or overtime salary! 

Lower Costs

Costs associated with manual welding can soar depending on the level of skilled labor and the job on hand. In addition, it is dangerous and therefore involves costs associated with medical care. With robotic welding, such risks can be eliminated entirely, and the costs vanish as well. The end result is greater productivity with lower costs.

Less Waste

Even the most skilled welders are likely to make mistakes, but robotic welders hold a certain degree of accuracy under which they won’t fall. This accuracy can be incorporated within the cost benefit analysis and thus can be used to devise the best welding strategy within the factory floor. Generally, the waste produced by robotic welders are less, thus contributing to lower costs.

Higher Return on Investment

From all the aforementioned benefits, it is clear that robotic arc welders have the capacity to ultimately provider Higher Return on Investment, especially during a time when labor, material and utility costs are on the rise.

Interested in learning more? Visit our website www.premierautomation.com , or talk to one of our specialists today.

Automating High Mix Manufacturing Plants

The manufacturing process for a single product can be modified much easier in order to improve its efficiency and productivity, compared to a plant floor where several different products are being produced. Higher Return on Investment is the prime motivation for automation, and improving the parameter becomes more complex as the production capacity increases in difficulty.

Distributed Control System Implementation: Best Practices

Implementation of a new distributed control system is one of the toughest projects undertaken by any process control engineer, with several complexities and risks. In order to do one successfully, the engineer must be well-versed in all steps involved, from documentation to grounding practices. Even though control engineers prepare themselves for such an implementation right from the start of their career, they often develop tunnel vision and find themselves stuck in a mesh of complexities. A couple of best practices regarding DCS implementation can help them navigate through common problems, ensuring that their project is a success.

Standardization

By using a standard wiring scheme throughout the implementation, it would be easier to carry out maintenance and upgrades. The use of standard, off-the-shelf components would allow future operators to stock and replenish supplies. Another possible addition would be purchasing products from two separate sources of vendors.

The Basics

Ensure that you use proper grounding and termination for electrical signals. The supplier’s grounding requirements must be understood clearly and objectively. All automation engineers, and not just the electrical staff, need to understand the grounding principles. When international standards are followed, a supporting booklet and/or tutorials should be provided to ensure that misinterpretations do not take place in the future. Before powering up any part of the DCS system, be sure that there are no short circuits. This can be done during the Site Acceptance Test.

Communication Paths

Several vendors use different software versions for communication purposes, ensuring that all data is transmitted. Several systems will transmit the basic parameters, robbing the setup of advanced diagnostics. A concept known as “Control in Field” can play a vital role here that transfers the control process from the central control unit for field devices. This gives sensors the autonomy to issue a response to an actuator based on the measured variable.

Structuring I/O

The I/O structures should be shifted away to the field that would cause a reduction in the cost and space requirements. The electronics manufactured today are usually resistive to high temperatures and may have G3 compliant conforming coating. Fiber optics should be utilized for communication links, preferably in a ring configuration to increase the reliability of the system. Extended I/O terminal blocks can be utilized for connecting the field working directly, avoiding additional costs and weak connections.

Dual Purpose

A DCS is designed to serve two purposes, to provide a centralized human control and a focal point for MIS information to the management network. Distributed Control Systems shouldn’t be burdened with tasks such as auto-tuning of control loops. Instead, such functions should be restricted to dedicated controllers.

Factory Acceptance Test

To top it all off, before the shift-over takes place, make sure a detailed Factory Acceptance Test (FAT) is carried out that allows experienced operators to interact with the engineering functions of the DCS. This ensures that all functions operate the way they are expected to operate, and if any ambiguity exists it can be cleared straightaway.

Interested in learning more? Visit our website www.premierautomation.com, or talk to one of our specialists today.

Industrial Motor Evolution

Motors have been the cornerstone of industrialization and automation. About 45% of energy generated is consumed by motor loads globally, enunciating the hardware’s importance in today’s world. Over the past 30 years, motors have greatly evolved. The advent of modern processing tools allows manufacturers to get a clear idea as to how motor performance can be improved and tailored for specific applications. Furthermore, the growth of smart manufacturing techniques allows users to monitor process performance in real-time, giving them clearer insights and information required to boost productivity.

VFDs and Harmonics

The early 1950's marked the entry of one of the most revolutionary products in the history of industrial automation: the Variable Frequency Drive. Since then, the product design has evolved and refined at an increased pace. Even in the 21st century, there is no alternative in sight, and thanks to continued improvement, VFDs have solidified their position in the field of automation.