Industrial manufacturing is a world that continues to demand more flexibility and more customized solutions, with less of a one-size-fits-all approach. So it shouldn't be a surprise that machine builders are all over the board with what kinds of I/O solutions they need.
Control Design surveyed machine builders recently about their I/O systems and terminal blocks, and found that they were often pretty evenly divided on a number of points. For example, about one-third of respondents (32%) say their I/O is mostly centralized, with some remote/distributed; while another third (30%) are using remote/distributed I/O, with some centralized. A quarter of them are using mostly or entirely centralized/rack-mounted I/O systems, with just under 13% using mostly or entirely remote/distributed I/O. Of those using remote I/O, they are predominately (almost 73%) mounted in cabinets, with 25% machine-mount varieties.
SEE ALSO: Mix and Match I/O? Maybe
Machine builders responding to our survey are also using a wide range of I/O connectivity options. Asked which types of connectivity they mostly use, more than half (almost 58%) responded with 4–20 mA, and also more than half (54%) indicated hardwiring is high on their list. Close to 45% ranked some kind of Ethernet connection high as well. Other usage includes process fieldbus (30%), device-level digital networks (30%), serial (26%) and wireless (12%).
Choosing controller technology is a less diplomatic affair, however. Almost three-quarters (74%) of respondents say their machine controller technology is PLC. That's followed by embedded control at a distant 14% and PCs at 7%. Close to two-thirds are specifying and purchasing their I/O bundled together with the controller.
Keep Old I/O
More ASI I/O
Jump 3 Times
Axioline real-time I/O system has a response time of less than 1 µs per I/O module. It uses push-in technology for quick, tool-less connection; operates in a range of -25 to 60 °C; and has extended protection against EMC with adjustable input filter times.
EtherNet/IP-based remote I/O modules include Adam-6150EI with 15 channels of isolated digital I/O; Adam-6151EI with 16-channel isolated digital input; Adam-6156EI with 16-channel isolated digital output; and Adam-6160EI with six-channel relay output. They are designed with 2,500 Vdc isolation protections and are resistant to field interference.
Advantech Industrial Automation
|Plenty of Zip
Zipport heavy-duty, multi-wire connectors in 3A, 6B, 10B, 16B and 24B frame sizes and polyester powder-coated aluminum alloy housings have a standard profile, and PG threaded cable passages; PG thread to NPT adapters are optional.
|Will You cRIO?
cRIO-908x reconfigurable I/O (RIO) has Xilinx Spartan-6 FPGAs and optional Windows Embedded Standard 7 (WES7) OS configuration. The systems have two Gigabit Ethernet ports, an MXI Express port, four USB ports, RS-232 and RS-485 serial ports, as well as a CPU eXpansion Module (CXM).
|Feed It Through
DIN-rail-mountable AVK feed-through, screw-connection-style terminal blocks with vibration-resistant wire clamps have a plastic housing made from polyamide 6.6 thermoplastic resin with a UL 94 V2 rating for 105 °C. Available accessories include end plates, end brackets, cross connectors for bridging, and marking tags.
|Save on I/O
Bulletin 931 analog signal conditioners convert a range of device signals to a standard 4–20 mA signal. Systems that transmit thermocouple signals over significant distances can take advantage of the signal conditioners to help reduce additional I/O and cabling costs with less chance of signal deterioration.
Simatic ET 200iSP I/O system has three modules to accommodate safety standards IEC 61508 to SIL 3 or ISO 13849-1 to PLe e. Sensors and actuators connect directly to a bus system and the I/O system can be mounted in a non-explosion-proof cabinet.
|Support Your Local Marshal
WMF 2.5 terminal series for DCS marshalling applications features feed-through, fusing and quick disconnects in a single profile. The terminals have an integrated shield or ground (PE) connection, and three separate jumpering channels for parallel and series jumpering.
|Connect the Cube
Backward-compatible Cube67+ connects up to 32 I/O modules with a reach to 60 m, and has protocol support for EtherCAT. Bus nodes include an integrated Ethernet switch, built-in T-coupler for power, and IP selection window. Modules include analog I/O, digital I/O, RTD, thermocouple, and high-speed counter.
|DAQ and More
MAQ20 for industrial data acquisition and control is a family of programmable, multi-channel signal conditioning I/O modules and communication modules. They mount on standard gull-wing DIN rail. Each I/O module has a 1,500 Vrms isolation barrier between the field-side and system-side wiring.
|Isolate and Convert
DIN-rail-mount TT230 signal conditioning I/O modules are 12.5 mm wide and have a USB connection PC configuration. Models isolate and convert thermocouple, RTD, voltage or current input signals to a 4–20 mA output. They are loop-powered and support both source or sink output wiring connections.
ST Series modular distributed I/O system operates as a slave device station for CC-Link or Profibus device-level networks. It includes a head unit, power supply and on DIN rail to form a remote system, or node, and has a scalable architecture that accepts mix-and-match I/O configurations and I/O concentrations from two to 16 I/O points.
Mitsubishi Electric Automation
Stainless steel junction boxes have FM approval for Class 1, Div. 2, Groups A, B, C and D hazardous locations. Rated IP67, there are six- and eight-port models for use with M12, 7/8 in. or minifast connectors. Stainless steel junction boxes are designed to house existing circuit boards and receptacle housings.
|Some Need It Hot
EtherCAT I/O devices with Fast Hot Connect reduces the connection time for these changeovers to 1 s, increasing productivity as a result of changing topologies via direct plug-and-play coupling or decoupling during operation. WinCAT automation suite supports Fast Hot Connect on the master side.
LioN-M I/O EtherNet/IP modules have 16 digital I/O channels with universal input/output functionality for direct connections between sensors/actuators and control systems. The universal modules (16DIO universal) provide 16 digital inputs and 16 digital outputs in any desired combination without individual parameterization.
Spiro-TC three-channel remote thermocouple modules can be powered by USB, 6–50 Vdc or Power over Ethernet (PoE). Support for K, J, N, S, T, E and R thermocouples is available to 0.25 °C resolution with ±2.0 °C accuracy with no calibration required. 14-bit measurement includes built-in cold junction compensation and open thermocouple detection.
|Distributed and Modular
Distributed modular I/O with IP67 protection and industry-standard connectors uses standard three-conductor cables. Up to four slave devices can be connected to each master block, which communicates via industrial Ethernet to the controller. With point-to-point IO-Link, the system is fieldbus-independent and vendor-neutral.
|Connect at the Sumit
PXM-UIO96-2 96-line digital I/O module offers PCI Express expansion on a PC/104-sized module enabled by stackable high-speed Sumit connector. It uses a Lattice Semiconductor FPGA with a superset of the company’s universal I/O controller cores. Each I/O line is programmable for input, output, or output with read-back operation.
CBC terminal blocks are designed to address control and power distribution applications where circuit bridging of two to 50 positions is required for consecutive, alternate and numerous terminal blocks in one assembly. Each terminal block can accept one or two bridges/jumpers.
|SLIO Not Slow
Compact SLIO I/O system for systems 100V, 200V, 300S and 500S have a staircase-shaped wiring layer, clear readability of channel states, protection against reverse polarity, backplane bus at 48 MBps, and 20 µs response time. The decentralized I/O system is a space-saving, thin design with a simple two-component setup.
|Decentralize the I/O
With IP67 protection, X67 I/O modules can be installed on the machine, and can span 100 m between modules. Users can set parameters for the digital inputs and outputs and connect to all standard fieldbuses.
B&R Industrial Automation
|Fuse the Circuit
WTB2-FB130L IEC fuse holder terminal blocks have a current rating to 30 A, and accept ¼ x 1¼ in. fuses. They have a built-in LED circuit to indicate when the fuse blows and funneled wiring entry with finger-safe IP20 terminals. Marking system allows for fast and easy circuit identification.