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How to Pick the Right Fieldbus Protocol
December 14, 2017

How to Pick the Right Fieldbus Protocol

By Dale Perry, Emerson Automation Solutions
This article is intended to help you considering the strengths and weaknesses of the four leading fieldbus protocols, in order to help you select the best option for your process plant application.

Dell Accelerating IoT Focus from Enterprise to the Edge
December 12, 2017

Dell Accelerating IoT Focus from Enterprise to the Edge

By Bill Lydon, Editor, Automation.com
The rapid expansion of the Internet of Things into manufacturing has seen several companies, many - like Dell - not previously associated with manufacturing, working to leverage the new technologies to enhance the industry with connected industrial solutions

What Lies Beneath – Avoiding the Unseen Dangers of OT Vulnerabilities
December 11, 2017

What Lies Beneath – Avoiding the Unseen Dangers of OT Vulnerabilities

By Scott Hollis, PAS Global
Process control networks (PCNs) in critical infrastructure sites − refineries, chemical plants, and manufacturing facilities − all have potential danger swimming just below the surface in the form of undiscovered vulnerabilities.

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Small and Mighty Robots
December 08, 2017

Small and Mighty Robots

By Jonathan Wilkins, Marketing Director, EU Automation
For smaller businesses, investing in new technology can be daunting, especially where robotics and automation are concerned. This article discusses the features of robotics that are most useful for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

A Beginner’s PLC Overview, Part 2 of 4: PLC Processors (CPUs)
December 07, 2017

A Beginner’s PLC Overview, Part 2 of 4: PLC Processors (CPUs)

By Stephen Gates, P.E., MyPLCtraining.com
In part 1 of the “Beginner’s PLC Overview” we talked about what PLCs are, their history, and how they work. This article will get a little deeper into the PLC ‘s Central Processing Unit (CPU).

Smart Machines: Redefining Packaging Operations
December 06, 2017

Smart Machines: Redefining Packaging Operations

By Steve Mulder, Rockwell Automation
Packaging end users are eager to better understand their operations, improve productivity and keep up with competitive pressures. This article discusses how smart, secure and Ethernet-enabled packaging machines are working to give end users a competitive edge

Micro PLCs Bring Macro Capabilities to a World of Applications
December 05, 2017

Micro PLCs Bring Macro Capabilities to a World of Applications

By Don Pham, IDEC
The processing power, data storage and I/O handling capabilities of micro PLCs allow them to be used as the main automation driver for complex machines, processing lines, or even an entire plant or facility.

2017 Ignition Conference – Expanding Ecosystem & Edge IoT Drive Enthusiasm
December 04, 2017

2017 Ignition Conference – Expanding Ecosystem & Edge IoT Drive Enthusiasm

By Bill Lydon, Editor, Automation.com
The convergence of IT and OT, to create more effective operations throughout the company, was evident throughout the conference presentations and discussions, and this reflects many of the recent trends in the manufacturing industry.

The Top 7 Manufacturing Pains Today And How To Remedy Them
December 01, 2017

The Top 7 Manufacturing Pains Today And How To Remedy Them

By Anthony Borges, PINpoint Information Systems
There are many common challenges manufacturers face on their assembly lines which must be overcome to produce quality products in the most efficient way. It is after-all the assembly line where products are born, from physical actions, or process steps performed by both line workers and machines.

Transforming Your Business with an ERP Deployment in 2018
November 30, 2017

Transforming Your Business with an ERP Deployment in 2018

By Jeff Carr, Ultra Consultants
When assessing the current value of a legacy ERP system, the primary focus should be whether the legacy features and functions adequately support the business - not just the current state of business but the anticipated future state too.

A Beginner’s PLC Overview, Part 1 of 4: Introduction to PLCs
November 28, 2017

A Beginner’s PLC Overview, Part 1 of 4: Introduction to PLCs

By Stephen Gates, MyPLCtraining.com
If you are interested in learning about PLCs and/or PACs, but you are not sure where to start, then this Beginner’s PLC Overview blog series has been written for you!

HMIs Evolving to Serve the Enterprise in an Industrial IoT World
November 27, 2017

HMIs Evolving to Serve the Enterprise in an Industrial IoT World

By John Krajewski III, Schneider Electric
Human Machine Interfaces started as point solutions, but are now progressing to company-wide Operations Management Interfaces to leverage Industrial IoT and Industry 4.0 strategies.

Honeywell Working to Strengthen Cyber Security Safeguards
November 21, 2017

Honeywell Working to Strengthen Cyber Security Safeguards

By Bill Lydon, Editor, Automation.com
Cyber security remains a prominent concern for many organizations as we continue to move towards a connected industrial future. In this vein, Honeywell recently made a big commitment to Industrial Cyber Security at the 2017 Honeywell Users Group Americas,

Wireless Interoperability Fuels the Industrial Internet of Things
November 20, 2017

Wireless Interoperability Fuels the Industrial Internet of Things

By Bert Williams, ABB Wireless
As we move toward industrial things being digital and connected, putting in place the right communications infrastructure is a critical piece of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) equation. Connectivity is required to ensure that data is meaningful and actionable.

Apprenticeships Help Open the Doors to STEM Careers
November 13, 2017

Apprenticeships Help Open the Doors to STEM Careers

By Daniel Koprowski, Mechatronics Technician Apprentice, Phoenix Contact
Apprenticeship opportunities are available for many career paths including technicians, electricians, plumbers, machinists, welders, sales, information technology, and others. This story tells of one such apprenticeship opportunity

The Future of Process System Architectures – Insights from 2017 Foxboro User Group
November 13, 2017

The Future of Process System Architectures – Insights from 2017 Foxboro User Group

By Bill Lydon, Editor, Automation.com
A common topic of debate revolves around how process system architectures will be shaped in the future. One architectural vision would enable a shift of focus from process efficiency control to business performance control, with increasing levels of monitoring and control.

Climbing the Ranks in Automation
November 09, 2017

Climbing the Ranks in Automation

By Jonathan Wilkins, EU Automation
As the industry grows, smaller countries are beginning to emerge as competitors in the industry. This article will explore the role of countries that are emerging as leaders in manufacturing.

Is Gigabit Industrial Ethernet adoption the key to achieving Industry 4.0 goals?
November 08, 2017

Is Gigabit Industrial Ethernet adoption the key to achieving Industry 4.0 goals?

By Robert Miller and John Browett, CLPA
While there may still be some debate about what Industry 4.0 really means, there is no denying that greater interconnectivity of devices and increased network capability will be the key drivers behind achieving the goals it sets out. This article outlines the network requirements that will enable Industry 4.0.

The Push for Industrial Cyber Security Standards- A Look at Underwriters Laboratory’s Efforts
November 07, 2017

The Push for Industrial Cyber Security Standards- A Look at Underwriters Laboratory’s Efforts

By Bill Lydon, Editor, Automation.com
While industrial automation suppliers can claim products are cybersecure it is hard to prove. Standards and certification, like electrical and safety device requirements, today for cybersecurity are one such way for companies to illustrate that proof.

Independence Drives Collaboration in the Smart Factory
November 06, 2017

Independence Drives Collaboration in the Smart Factory

By Martyn Williams, COPA-DATA UK
In the era of smart manufacturing, valuing independence can be the difference between failure and success. This article explains why manufacturers should consider independence when striving for more collaborative facilities and supply chains.