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Packaging World     VP/Editor, Pat Reynolds
SPONSOR: aerotech, inc February 17, 2011 | Edited by Pat Reynolds

Soloist single-axis digital servo controllers >>

Soloist combines a power supply, amplifier, position control, Ethernet TCP/IP and fieldbuses in a single package.

Aerotech, Inc.

Brushless linear servomotors >>

A complete line of U-channel and flat linear motors to meet your industrial automation needs.

Aerotech, Inc.

High-speed robots >>

High-speed robots use brushless servomotors for maximum performance, and include controllers and drives.

Aerotech, Inc.

Multi-axis motion controllers >>

Software-based and stand-alone models to control from 1 to 32 axes of brush, brushless, and stepper motors.

Aerotech, Inc.

Automation control solutions brochure >>

The brochure highlights automation controllers and software, drives, linear and rotary motors, and positioning mechanics.

Aerotech, Inc.

Three more packaging trends for 2011

The last edition of this Machine Automation Insights newsletter carried three trends to anticipate in the coming year. They came from John Kowal, packaging market development manager at B&R Industrial Automation. Here are the three more trends worth monitoring, says Kowal.

1. Productivity and sustainability are causally related

If a machine operates more efficiently, it's greener than one that's down or that creates more scrap.  Likewise, a safe machine is a more productive machine.  A machine that's easier for the operator to learn to run is likely safer as well as more productive.  A machine that's secure and doesn't get the Stuxnet worm is more productive and, therefore, more sustainable. It's also inherently well suited to FDA-regulated environments.

You get the picture.  For far too long we have siloed the operations, production, quality, IT, safety, and sustainability functions.  We need to converge and use tools that look at the vital signs of packaging lines more holistically. 

PackML will enable this connectivity, along with greater use of industrial PC-based human machine interfaces (HMI) to run these applications moving forward.  So packagers, consider requesting a stop at your headquarters on the PackML World Tour.


2. Leverage more consumer technologies to help you run your machines

Compared to all the money that goes into developing mobile devices for the masses, dedicated industrial hardware suppliers can afford to invest very little in R&D.  The market is just too small.  But when control systems piggyback on consumer electronics innovations -- like the Intel Atom® processor, the latest touchscreen technology, WiFi and web communications – industrial applications emerge much faster.  At Pack Expo this year, we saw a number of demos that take advantage of innovations in the consumer electronics field. The other great thing is that these technologies aren't proprietary to a particular control supplier, making it easier to tie into all the machines on the line.  That's especially true if the machine builders support the PackML standard.


3. Whatever you know about packaging in China won't be true a year from now

A rapidly emerging middle class is creating a market dynamic of upscaling in Chinese consumer goods marketing.  That always means accelerated demand for more sophisticated packaging and packaging machinery. 

At a recent PMMI export conference, featured speaker Xiaoguang Hou asserted that these changes are creating a window of opportunities for North American suppliers who have largely not participated in the world's fastest growing market.  If you are a packaging machinery builder, seek out contacts that can help you participate in China. PMMI would be a good place to begin.


NEW Automation Products

High-performance AC drive

The SJ700-2200HFU2 model inverter from Hitachi America's Industrial Components & Equipment Division has 440 A output current capability to fill the gap at 300-350 hp in the SJ700 series ... Read more

Industrial PC with Microsoft® Windows XP® Pro Operating System

Schneider Electric's Magelis™ Smart+ iPC is the first industrial PC with Microsoft® Windows XP® Pro that does not require maintenance or contain any rotating parts (no hard disk or fan) ... Read more

Drive solution for low power applications

B&R's ACOPOSmicro controls stepper motors and offers support for servo motors ... Read more


AC drives support more networks

The options on Omron Industrial Automation's compact 3G3MX2 AC Drives have been expanded to simplify integration into a wide range of internationally accepted machine platforms ... Read more

Servo gearbox

The alpheno® servo gearbox from Wittenstein improves precision and operating noise and provides an increase of up to 130% power density compared to the company's alpha SP+ ... Read more

Distributed drive platform

Siemens' Sinamics® G110D drive platform is designed for installation in close proximity to motors located throughout facilities where dust and water ingression are a concern. ... Read more


Upcoming events:

Contract Packaging Association Annual Meeting
Loews Ventana Canyon Resort, Tucson, AZ. A packed business agenda, networking, and social and recreational events will make this Annual Meeting CPA's best, from February 24-27.

Sustainable Packaging Symposium
Hyatt Regency Chicago, IL. Sustainable Packaging Symposium, produced by Greener Package and the Institute for Sustainability, will examine the pivotal role of packaging in implementing sustainability across businesses' supply chains, from March 16-18.

Packaging Automation Forum
Westin O'Hare, Rosemont, IL. Packaging Automation Forum, produced by Packaging World and Automation World, features peer-to-peer education about how to increase productivity, flexibility and performance using state-of-the-art packaging controls and information technology, April 26.

Healthcare Packaging Conference & Workshops
Westin Princeton at Forrestal Village, Princeton, NJ. Healthcare Packaging Conference & Workshops, produced by Healthcare Packaging magazine, will feature operational and package design strategies for pharmaceutical and medical device packagers, May 26.

Automate 2011



Automation is helping companies in every industry become stronger global competitors. Automate 2011 will provide you with the resources to help you succeed!

Learn more >>

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