Smarter, Simpler Connections

More Customized Machines and Machine-Mount I/O Lead to a Call for Increasingly Intelligent Connection and Cabling Solutions

Solutions for making machines run leaner, smarter and cheaper come in all shapes and sizes, and connection products can play a significant role in this endeavor.

"Everybody wants to reduce cost, and cabling's a big part of that," notes Robert Muehlfellner, director, automation technologies, for B&R Automation.

Muehlfellner sees a trend within machinery that calls for more modularization as end users demand more options and more customization. "Along with this, there are trends toward decentralization of the electrical components, and more machine-mount I/Os and drives," he says. "Intelligent connection and cabling technology plays a more prominent role than it did in the past."

Passive distribution blocks are also resurging, according to Aaron Henry, marketing manager at Murrelektronik . They are similar to machine-mount I/O devices, he explains, because they refrain from active communications and have simple, homerun wiring to I/O cabinets. "Many machine builders in U.S. markets are constructing progressively smaller machines with smaller I/O counts, but they still want to build them faster, and so they're using more passive distribution blocks," he says. "These allow easier troubleshooting and reduce wiring without having to justify and implement a full-blown fieldbus."

Belden's Industrial-grade DataTuff Cat. 6 cord  Tough Wires   
Industrial-grade DataTuff Cat. 6 cord sets for Gigabit industrial Ethernet needs come with RJ45 plugs, available in shielded and unshielded versions suitable for IP20 or IP67 applications, or with ruggedized metal body RJ45, and handle -40 to 70 °C.
Belden
(800) 235-3361
www.belden.com
B&R Industrial Automation's 8CVE remote connection box Make a Remote Connection   
8CVE remote connection box has IP65 protection, and comes with four hybrid cable outlets, allowing the power to be divided between up to four line structures of Acoposmulti65 8CVI inverters; and the connections necessary for Safe Torque Off (STO) signals are included. It has two local I/O connections.
B&R Industrial Automation
(770) 772-0400
www.br-automation.com
B&B Electronics' Vlinx VESP211 small-form-factor serial servers Ethernet Anywhere   
Vlinx VESP211 small-form-factor serial servers connect serial devices to Ethernet networks. VESP211 supports RS-232/422/485 (MEI) with a DB9M serial port and RJ45 Ethernet port. VESP211-232 supports RS-232 with a DB9M serial port and RJ45 Ethernet port. VESP211-485 supports RS-422/485 with a removable terminal block and RJ45 Ethernet port.
B&B Electronics
(800) 346-3119
www.bb-elec.com
Rockwell Automation's EtherNet/IP Communications Auxiliary Device Connect   
EtherNet/IP Communications Auxiliary enables DeviceNet-based components to connect to an EtherNet/IP network. Users can access the status of any DeviceNet device in the network from a PC or PLC.
Rockwell Automation
(414) 382-2000
www.rockwellautomation.com
Sealevel Systems' SeaLink Ethernet serial servers From Serial to Ethernet   
Available with one to 16 ports, SeaLink Ethernet serial servers connect RS-232, RS-422 and RS-485 serial devices to your Ethernet network and use TCP/IP, enabling any host to access serial ports as virtual COM ports.
Sealevel Systems
(864) 843-434
www.sealevel.com
Murrelektronik's Professional RJ45 connectors Connect With Professionals   
Professional RJ45 connectors for either eight-pin Cat. 5e or four-pin Cat. 6A are available in straight and angled designs, and have a 45° angle for multiple connections in tight spaces.
Murrelektronik
(770) 497-9292
www.murrinc.com
Eaton's SmartWire-DT panel wiring system connects Simplify Panels   
SmartWire-DT panel wiring system connects motor control components with a single cable over EtherNet/IP, Modbus TCP, Profibus-DP and CANopen. It uses an eight-conductor, flat cable in the control cabinet to connect motor starters, pushbutton actuators and indicator lights.
Eaton
(414) 449-6555
www.eaton.com
Wago's 756 Series M12 socket Ethernet adapter Socket to Me    
756 Series M12 socket Ethernet adapter helps integrate machine-mount IP67 components with IP20 controls. Tool-free terminations with D-Coded M12 Adapter have a traditional cable-based RJ45 Ethernet socket that routes data through a screw-locking M12 connector.
Wago
(800) 346-7245
www.wago.com
Phoenix Contact's Industrial Ethernet RJ45 patch cables Patch It Up   
Industrial Ethernet RJ45 patch cables are available for EtherCAT, SERCOS III and Profinet protocols in 0.3, 1 and 2 m lengths. Options include straight or angled configurations that meet IP20 protection requirements.
Phoenix Contact
(800) 322-3225
www.phoenixcontact.com
Pepperl+Fuchs' G10 AS-Interface accessories Time to Split   
G10 AS-Interface accessories include IP69K washdown-rated splitters and network terminators that feature Connect & Done technology to eliminate mounting requirements in many applications and simplify mounting in others. Standard flat cable connection for both AS-Interface and auxiliary power includes two M12 round cable connections, so two devices can be split off from one accessory.
Pepperl+Fuchs
(330) 486-0001
www.pepperl-fuchs.us
Advantech Industrial Automation's EKI-1221D and EKI-1222D gateways Clear Gateway    
EKI-1221D and EKI-1222D gateways provide transparent connectivity between Modbus (ASCII, RTU) serial devices and Ethernet-based Modbus TCP equipment. They have built-in Ethernet switches for cascading/daisy-chain connectivity and support Ethernet auto-bypass to prevent accidental power failure if one of the Modbus gateways unexpectedly shuts down. They come with Windows utilities and web-based configuration.
Advantech Industrial Automation
(800) 205-7940
www.advantech.com
AutomationDirect's Cat. 5e straight and crossover Ethernet patch cables Patch That   
Cat. 5e straight and crossover Ethernet patch cables in eight colors and 3-50 ft lengths support up to 1,000 Mbps and are designed to reduce the effects of electromagnetic interference by using one metal-foil shield that wraps around the set of four twisted, shielded pairs and shielded RJ45 connectors. The 350 MHz cables exceed all Cat. 5e TIA/EIA standards, and reduce impedance and structural return loss (SRL) compared with standard 100 MHz cables.
AutomationDirect
(770) 889-2858
www.automationdirect.com/ethernet
c3controls' IEC terminal blocks Power Distribution   
IEC terminal blocks include a screw-clamp, 80 A power distribution block for up to three wires in, four wires out; are available for either base mounting or DIN rail mounting; and are rated 600 V. Housing is a molded polyamide 6.6 thermoplastic, and offers funneled wiring entry with finger-safe IP20 terminals. It’s UL-listed, CE-certified and RoHS-compliant.
c3controls
(724) 775-7926
www.c3controls.com
Harting's Cat. 6e field-installable RJ45 connector Gigabit Ethernet   
Cat. 6e field-installable RJ45 connector provides IDC termination up to eight poles. The design can accommodate conductors AWG 27 to 22 and cable outer diameters of 4.5–9 mm in both stranded and solid cables. Other features include tool-free assembly with captive wire manager and clear wire map, and multi-port capability.
Harting
(847) 717-9242
www.harting.com
Molex's compact connection system Fit for Water   
Mini-Fit H2O weatherproof, compact connection system is designed for wire-to-wire applications to 9.0 A per circuit. IP67-rated, it consists of plug and receptacle assemblies and male and female crimp terminals. The plug and receptacle assemblies have a pre-installed interface and wire seals, for a lower applied cost compared with connectors with manually installed seals. It is suited to tight-space applications.
Molex
(800) 786-6539
www.molex.com
Northwire's ITC/PLTC cables Quick Custom   
ITC/PLTC cables offer exposed-run instrumentation and control wiring for factory-floor automation equipment, material handling, sensors and transducers, process controls and other applications. The cables eliminate the need for conduit in most installations and reduce material and installation costs. They are UL-listed and approved for wet and Class 1, Div. 2 hazardous areas. Custom cable is shipped in five days or less with no minimum length or quantity.
Northwire
(800) 468-1516
www.northwire.com
Omega Engineering's DRTB thermocouple terminal blocks For Thermocouples Only   
DRTB thermocouple terminal blocks come in type K, J, T, E, N, R/S and U calibrations, equipped with a built-in miniature female thermocouple connector for auditing and troubleshooting. The device is DIN-rail-mountable and audit-capable, and is manufactured with thermocouple-grade alloys to guarantee accurate readings.
Omega Engineering
(203) 359-1660
www.omega.com
Turck's Cat. 6 RJ45 field-wireable connectors On-site Connections   
Cat. 6 RJ45 field-wireable connectors extend an Ethernet cable in on-site assembly with no special tools for up to 10 Gbps networks. A color-coded adapter and an Ethernet connector integrate three strain relief settings suitable for cable diameters of 5–9 mm, and are shielded to protect the cable from EMC interference.
Turck
(800) 544-7769
www.turck.us
Cicoil's silicone flat cables Clean Rating   
Rated for Class 1 cleanrooms, standard and custom high-flex silicone flat cables are halogen-free, don’t shed surface particulates, and are water- and chemical-resistant. Custom cables can incorporate power conductors, shielded signal pairs, video and coax conductors, tubing for air or fluid transfer, and fastening strip in a single cable design.
Cicoil
(661) 295-1295
www.cicoil.com
Siemon's Cat. 5e Industrial Max patch cords Tough Connection   
In shielded and UTP configurations, Cat. 5e Industrial Max patch cords have flame-retardant thermoplastic elastomer (FR-TPE), polyurethane (PUR) and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) cable jacket options. The patch cords and outlets have Cat. 5e RJ45 connectivity encased in a protective outer housing made of heat-resistant thermoplastic with a bayonet-style mating design that latches with a quick ¼ turn. Both outlet and patch cord are IP67-rated.
Siemon
(860) 945-4380
www.siemon.com/go/industrial
Automation Systems Interconnect's ASIUK5Return terminal block Back-to-Back   
ASIUK5Return terminal block can be mounted almost directly up against the side of the panel or equipment wall or in a double-row configuration with the backs of the terminal blocks against each other. It is 6.2 mm wide and has a rating of 30 A at 300 V with a wiring capacity of 30 to 10 AWG. The housing is molded with a UL94V0 material, and the metal bodies are a nickel-plated copper alloy.
Automation Systems Interconnect
(877) 650-5160
www.asi-ez.com
Coleman Cable's Industrial Cable Catalog CABLE CATALOG   
Industrial Cable Catalog features more than 160 pages of portable cord, industrial power cables, instrumentation cables, tray cables and lead wire. In addition, this catalog contains the majority of standard industrial products and custom cable capabilities, including green energy and emerging markets, and an enhanced technical section.
Coleman Cable
(800) 323-9355
www.colemancable.com
Beckhoff Automation's HD bus terminals BUS TERMINALS   
HD bus terminals have 16 digital I/O channels in the housing of a 12 mm electronic terminal block. Using Beckhoff bus couplers or DIN-rail-mounted controllers, the terminals are compatible with almost every major fieldbus. The terminals come in Beckhoff bus and EtherCAT versions, and are available as 16-channel terminals for digital inputs or outputs; as eight-channel terminals for digital inputs or outputs with two-wire connection; or as combination terminals with eight digital inputs and eight digital outputs.
Beckhoff Automation
(952) 890-0000
www.beckhoff.com/hd-busterminal