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Instrumentation & Control News

Massive commercial industry potential for solar energy

By: Dylan Slater     13th February 2015 The renewable energy sector should focus on commercial ventures in its drive to increase the uptake of solar energy through photovoltaic (PV) panels, rather than the current industry focus on the residential sector, says renewable-energy company Green Habitat. 

Automated lubrication systems increase efficiency

By: Dylan Slater     6th February 2015 Automated and centralised lubrication control platforms are essential for any type of machine, as they ensure efficient lubricant consumption and application, says Randburg-based lubrication systems company Control Lubrication Systems. 

Automated  lubrication systems increase efficiency
COMPREHENSIVE LUBRICATION SYSTEMS Centralised lubrication systems ensure that there is no need to be concerned about a lubrication point being under- or overlubricated

Skills contests create platforms for collaborative curriculum development

By: Schalk Burger     6th February 2015 Skills competitions that test new apprentices’ and artisans’ skills in a competitive environment are highly effective forums to enable industry, education and government to engage one another on matters such as training and curriculum. The skills competition held in South Africa in November, to... 

Skills contests create platforms  for collaborative curriculum development
Photo by Duane Daws
MECHATRONICS SKILLS COMPETITION Students and apprentice artisans compete against each other to build industrial mechantronic systems

Air motors popular in South Africa

By: Dylan Slater     23rd January 2015 Germany-based air-tools company Deprag’s air motors have proven to be popular in many South African industries, building on the company’s reputation for reliability and performance, according to local distributor Dowson and Dobson (D&D). 

Air motors popular in South Africa
DRIVEN BY AIR The stainless steel air motors from Deprag are ideal for use in wet rooms and can withstand the acidic materials

Industry heading towards increased motor efficiency

     23rd January 2015 The biggest cost factor involved in owning a compressor is its motor’s energy use, with cost cutting in this area resulting in substantial savings for the operator, says air process company Airgas Compressors. 

Industry heading towards increased motor efficiency
BELT-DRIVE MOTOR The most effective means of reducing operational costs is through enhanced energy use

Motors company a regional hub in the making

     23rd January 2015 Electrical construction company Zest WEG Group is positioning itself to become a regional hub of electric motors company WEG, with subsidiary company motor control systems manufacturer Shaw Controls set to become the number one panel builder and systems integrator in Africa, says Zest WEG Group. 

Motors company  a regional hub  in the making
DRIVING A REGIONAL HUB DRIVING A REGIONAL HUB Zest WEG Group aims for all its manufacturing operations to become centres of excellence

Motors company donates equipment to boost skills development

     23rd January 2015 As part of its corporate social investment (CSI) initiatives, electric motors company Zest WEG Group has donated equipment worth more than R2-million to training schools, colleges and other educational institutions. 

Motors company  donates equipment to boost skills development
PROMOTING SKILLS DEVELOPMENT Three colleges have benefited from Zest WEG Group’s donation of electric motors, switchgears, soft starters and other electric equipment

Pneumatic motors suited for winding

     23rd January 2015 Pneumatic motors are ideal for winding applications, owing to their ability to automatically adapt speed as a load changes, Germany-based air tools company Deprag says. 

Pneumatic motors  suited for winding
LESS ENERGY Pneumatic motors’ energy requirement decreases with increased torque

Variable frequency drives for demanding applications

     23rd January 2015 A series of variable frequency drive (VFD) devices, for demanding industrial and building automation applications, was recently launched to customers in Africa, by power management company Eaton. 

Variable frequency drives for demanding applications
VARIABLE FREQUENCY DRIVES An active energy control algorithm is active as standard when using the factory default setting for volts-per-herts mode

Whole-systems approach improves efficiency

     23rd January 2015 At the forefront of engineering considerations for motors are aspects such as efficiency, reliability and total cost of ownership; however, to deliver the maximum benefits it is ideal to examine items of equipment as a whole, instead of individually, says geared motors company Bauer Gear Motor. 

Whole-systems approach improves efficiency
INTEGRATED EFFICIENCY By examining each component within the mechanical section of the motor and drivetrain, and enhancing its design, further efficiencies and savings can be made

Big data to ‘transform’ existing business functions

By: Schalk Burger     5th December 2014 The growth of data generated by devices, sensors and equipment is driving the most significant changes in information technology (IT), affecting all industries, says IT equipment and software company Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) Europe, Middle East and Africa CTO Bob Plumbridge. Business’... 

Industrial integration platform facilitating holistic control

By: Schalk Burger     5th December 2014 The latest version of power and automation giant ABB’s 800xA integration platform unifies core industrial functions, their planning and execution, enabling industrial companies to maintain control over all aspects affecting production, including safety. The platform, similar to previous versions,... 

Valves range redesigned

     7th November 2014 The entire control valve range of valves company AZ-Armaturen has undergone a complete redesign, resulting in a modular system that increases productivity in the process, food, chemical and petrochemical industries, the company says. 

Valves range redesigned
NEW DESIGN The construction of the control valves is based on the standard cavity-free plug valve

New Energy

By: Tracy Hancock     24th October 2014 Sabine Dall'Omo, Siemens South Africa CEO, talks to Tracy Hancock of Engineering News about her career and moving to South Africa for love. For the first time in 150 years, there is a woman at the helm of Siemens South Africa – German-born Sabine Dall'Omo, who has fallen in love with more than... 

New Energy
SABINE DALL’OMO You will be challenged regardless of gender, especially in South Africa, where having a woman at the helm of an organisation is not that unusual

Stainless steel marker introduced

By: Mia Breytenbach     24th October 2014 Stainless steel clamping and identification systems distributor Banding & Identification Solutions Africa (Bisa) acquired a PRO-Mark liquid crystal display (LCD) pin-marking machine at the end of last year and demonstrated the machine’s capabilities at the Electra Mining Africa Expo last month.... 

Stainless steel marker introduced
EASY PRINTING The PRO-Mark LCD pin-marking machine uses programmable marking and component identification

Frequency inverters launched at expo

     17th October 2014 Drive engineering company SEW-Eurodrive launched its MOVI4R-U frequency inverters at trade show Electra Mining Africa, which was held at the Nasrec Expo Centre, in Johannesburg, in September. 

Frequency inverters launched at expo
SIMPLE DESIGN The innovative design of the MOVI4R-U frequency inverters allows for the quick and easy removal or replacement of parts

Computing platforms powering critical industrial, mining systems

By: Schalk Burger     19th September 2014 A computing platform to ensure the availability of critical processes and control systems is receiving increased attention in South Africa to ensure that the software driving new industrial systems, including automated and robotic processes, functions continuously, says industrial systems... 

Computing platforms powering critical industrial, mining systems
BRENDAN WIDLAKE Stratus fault-tolerant servers ensure continuous availability of operational systems in critical processes

Remote-timed switch reduces accident risk

By: Dylan Slater     19th September 2014 A remote switch with a timer function can assist in mitigating the risk of ordinary users being accidentally electrocuted because they are not familiar with complex electrical systems, says Midrand-based technology innovation company Sagifon. 

Remote-timed switch reduces accident risk
SIMPLIFICATION All timer and on/off programming is performed through using the compact remote control transmitter

Pretoria to host engineering asset management congress next month

By: Schalk Burger     5th September 2014 The ninth World Congress on Engineering Asset Management (WCEAM) will be held at the International Convention Centre, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, in Pretoria, from October 28 to 31 and will explore complementary disciplines that constitute the body of knowledge on engineering... 

Company appointed as Japanese product distributor in SA

By: Ilan Solomons     29th August 2014 Tokyo-based temperature and humidity-control speciality products designer and manufacturer Shimaden appointed local industrial instrumentation and process control supplier Indecon Instrumentation as its South African product distributor in May. Indecon Instrumentation managing member Bennie de... 

Company appointed as Japanese product distributor in SA
FP23 PROGRAMMABLE CONTROLLER Shimaden products are predominantly used for high-accuracy temperature control and profiling

Intelligent sensor networks integrate with legacy industrial systems

By: Schalk Burger     29th August 2014 The ability to use a smart sensor concentrator to create a centralised, smart sensor network in factories, plants, mines and remote sites means that older legacy industrial control systems can be integrated and leveraged as a low-cost step towards fully smart industrial control systems. The smart... 

New sensor range positively received by local market

By: Ilan Solomons     29th August 2014 Since local sensor solutions company Countapulse Controls introduced the Leuze 18B series range of sensors to the local market in the last quarter of 2013,  sales of the product have been favourable, Countapulse Controls MD Gerry Bryant tells Engineering News. He says the high-performance sensors... 

New sensor range positively received by local market
LEUZE 18B SENSORS The sensors offer smaller dimensions in a more robust housing

R5m project for snack producer under way

By: Ilan Solomons     29th August 2014 Engineering and technological products distributor BEP Bestobell South Africa is installing eight NDC 710e series moisture gauge systems at a local snack manufacturer’s facilities in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng. The R5-million project started in November 2013 and three units had been installed as... 

R5m project for snack producer under way
GAUGING QUALITY Several food and snacks companies use the NDC 710e series moisture gauge system

Restructuring places greater emphasis on Africa

By: Ilan Solomons     29th August 2014 Monitoring and control systems provider Yokogawa has restructured its operations to provide greater support for the company’s Africa-based operations over the past year, Yokogawa South Africa and Yokogawa Africa Anglophone Region (AAR) MD Johan Louw tells Engineering News. “We moved from a... 

Restructuring places greater emphasis on Africa
ENGINEERING INTERNS Yokogawa South Africa has been running a one-year internship programme for electrical (instrumentation) engineer graduates since 2009

Society seeks I&C recognition by end of 2015 

By: Ilan Solomons     29th August 2014 South African measurement and control industry development promotion body the SAIMC aims to get the instrumentation and control (I&C) sector acknowledged as an engineering discipline by the end of 2015. SAIMC president Vinesh Maharaj tells Engineering News that the society is lobbying its cause... 

Society seeks I&C  recognition by end of 2015
SAIMC president Vinesh Maharaj discusses the state of the local instrumentation and control sector.

Software system simplifies plant management

By: Ilan Solomons     29th August 2014 Industrial software and real-time operations management solutions company Wonderware introduced its Situational Awareness library for the InTouch SCADA/HMI software program in March. The use of this library makes plant operators more aware of their environment by providing real-time status... 

Software system simplifies plant management
SIMPLIFYING SYSTEM MANAGEMENT The Wonderware Corporate Energy Management functionalities include recording consumption and demand for a range of energy types

Tertiary curricula not conducive to growth in I&C skills

By: Ilan Solomons     29th August 2014 There is no specific qualification for instrumentation and control (I&C) in South Africa at the Bachelor of Science level and, as a result, there is insufficient scope for specialisation, which contributes to the existing shortage of skills, says South African measurement and control industry... 

Tertiary curricula not conducive to growth in I&C skills
PRACTICAL EXPERIENCE The SAIMC is engaging with South African universities to ensure that students are being taught the required practical skills sets

Robust industrial platforms, software help improve productivity

By: Schalk Burger     20th June 2014 Reliable mobile industrial equipment, networks and software improve the productivity of industrial workers and the performance of companies, says industrial equipment company Honeywell Scanning and Mobility Europe, Middle East and Africa market development manager Enzo Capobianco. Although... 

Government printing system upgraded

By: Pimani Baloyi     13th June 2014 Local turnkey solutions provider Dac Systems reports that it has, in partnership with enterprise information management solutions provider Intervate, integrated technology to boost the operational efficiency – as well as transform the inner workings – of the State’s 124-year-old security printing... 

Group expands to provide turnkey automation services

By: Pimani Baloyi     13th June 2014 Electrical equipment and industrial instrumentation supplier Magnet Group has expanded its focus on designing and installing automation products by incorporating automation and monitoring solutions provider Proelec Services into the company to form a new division, Magnet Automation. The new... 

International congress to focus on automation and control

By: Pimani Baloyi     13th June 2014 This year’s International Federation of Automatic Control (Ifac) world congress, which will be held at the Cape Town International Convention Centre from August 24 to 28, will have as its theme ways in which control and automation can serve humankind, says the Ifac organising committee. The... 

Solar water heater specialist invests in robot-assisted production

By: Pimani Baloyi     13th June 2014 South Africa’s product manufacturers need to invest more in automating and computerising their products and systems to stay abreast of global competition, says local solar water heating specialist SunTank. The company announced in April that it had completed the implementation of a fully... 

Industrial software group expanding in emerging markets with manufacturing focus

By: Schalk Burger     6th June 2014 International industrial and retail software group JDA Software is expanding in South Africa and is enabling industrial companies to manage their profitability against price fluctuations and to manage their supply chains efficiently and rationally, says JDA Group Europe, Middle East and Africa... 

New biometric security range launched in SA

By: Schalk Burger     6th June 2014 France-based global biometrics company Safran in May launched its new range of Morpho biometrics products and aims to improve its services and support to customers to meet the demand for customisation, says local subsidiary Morpho South Africa COO Paul Jeremias. The products are the new Morpho... 

New technology to enhance situational awareness for Eskom  

By: Mia Breytenbach     16th May 2014 Power delivery currently faces many challenges including decreasing reserves, an increase in renewable generation and changes in electricity loads – it is, therefore, important that State-owned power utility Eskom manages these challenges by having near real-time observation of the health of the... 

New technology to enhance situational awareness for Eskom
Eskom Power Delivery Engineering division smart grid technologies and operational data chief engineer Reshin Moodley and Eskom System Operator, specialised studies senior engineer Brian Berry explain the advantages of the new PMU technology. Video and video editing: Darlene Creamer

General Electric eyes Alstom’s energy assets 

By: Natasha Odendaal     30th April 2014 Alstom on Wednesday said it was considering a binding offer from General Electric (GE) to acquire its energy assets, leaving the France-headquartered company to expand its transport sector activities. The deal, representing an equity value of €12.35-billion and an enterprise value of... 

General Electric eyes Alstom’s energy assets
Photo by Duane Daws
Medupi

More defence orders for Poynting, new acquisition and exports promising

By: Schalk Burger     25th April 2014 Local antenna manufacturer Poynting Holdings reports high growth of its defence equipment order book, offset by losses in other divisions, and notes that about 68% of its earnings stem from exporting equipment mainly to developed markets, says Poynting CEO Dr André Fourie. Poynting’s interim... 

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