Manufacturing is just starting its evolution into the digital world, and robotics is one of the key enabling technologies. But is it the right time to take the plunge? Andrew Armstrong, FANUC’s UK sales and marketing manager reports.

“Increasing the safety of your machines means reducing productivity”. This is a commonly held view among staff who are accountable for the throughput of work equipment. Warren Spiers, of Spiers Engineering Safety explains that it’s actually a false dilemma.

"Increasing the safety of your machines means reducing productivity". This is a commonly held view among staff who are accountable for the throughput of work equipment. Warren Spiers, of Spiers Engineering Safety explains that it’s actually a false dilemma.

You wouldn’t allow an intruder to spend 229 days in your house undetected, so why would you do that with your manufacturing facility? As incredible as that sounds, the average time between a cyber security breach and its detection is 229 days. Manufacturing facilities are leading the list of potential targets for cyber espionage, denial of service (DoS) and web-application attacks. Martyn Williams, managing director of industrial automation software supplier, COPA-DATA UK, discusses three steps manufacturers should take to stay safe in the cloud.

Many engineers are comfortable with rotary bearing technology but view linear as complicated and over-engineered with complex maintenance requirements. Bob Love, business development manager at Schaeffler UK dispels the common myths about linear bearing technology.

During a recent visit to Renold Gears, PWE was shown some of the latest developments in worm gear technology by Rob Stanley, sales manager for open gears. Stanley looks at how modern innovations to one of the oldest forms of gearing technology have yielded benefits for manufacturers and users of precision machinery and equipment alike.

Nick Boughton, sales manager at Boulting Technology, discusses best practice for obsolescence management from a systems integrator point of view.

Tom McKinney of HMS Industrial Networks offers a review of the available short range wireless standards for industrial applications.

Pressure sensors are used in a whole range of applications, but understanding the differences in design and operation is crucial when specifying a new sensor. These vital components can facilitate a variety of tasks from displaying process information and performing control functions to operating alarms. Kieran Bennett, of process control specialist Bürkert, looks at the range of sensors available, the different technologies used in their design and how the application affects the specification.

When selecting sensors for liquid level measurement applications, engineers are often faced with numerous technologies and measuring principles to choose from. Simon Dear of Cynergy3 Components provides an overview of five common level sensing technologies and the applications these are best suited to.

With engineering skills becomingly an increasingly scarce resource it is important that an engineer’s time is spent on core tasks. Unfortunately, too many are still spending valuable time sourcing spares, according to Andy Silver, is commercial and operations director at ERIKS UK.

Manufacturers of enclosures are required to provide an IP rating for every product, which allows designers and installers to ensure that they select the correct product for each application. But what exactly do all the numbers mean and how can you be sure you have made the correct choice? Chris Lloyd, managing director for Spelsberg els UK, offers an insight into IP ratings and how it affects product selection.

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