Bosch Rexroth

The Smartphone of Automation

Let’s be honest: Over many years, automation has for the most part ignored the developments in the consumer area – and thereby missed countless opportunities for user-friendly approaches. With ctrlX AUTOMATION we have asked ourselves the provocative question: What would automation look like if it were reinvented by Google, Apple or another digital company? We did not have to search long for an answer: It would follow the example of a smartphone, with the highest level of functional integration possible and a flexible app technology thanks to which users can easily individualize their devices. With ctrlX AUTOMATION, we have gotten very close to this idea. At the heart of this solution is the new generation of control systems, ctrlX CORE.

YOUR OWN SOFTWARE TRANSFERRED TO INDUSTRY CONTROL SYSTEM

The new generation of control systems decouples the hardware from the software. This fundamental difference to other control systems creates numerous advantages. Rexroth makes it much easier for all users to update the control system or to transfer the programmed contents to another control.

Standard control systems from large manufacturers are proprietary. This often prevents small manufacturers from implementing their expert knowledge for special applications. Developing their own electronics is usually not an option for them, so they often use an IPC-system in addition to the actual control system. Problems associated with this, such as the integration effort for continuous high-speed data communication or the uncertain long-term availability of PC-based technology, must be accepted.

Now, these machine manufacturers can directly transfer their specialist knowledge to ctrlX CORE as their dedicated industry control system, thereby securing the long-term availability of their solutions. ctrlX CORE combines an open architecture with industrial-grade capabilities and a serviceability of at least 25 years. Developers also face significantly reduced engineering efforts: In addition to their own functions, they have the option of simply installing additional apps from Rexroth instead of programming them themselves, such as data gateways for MES and IT connections, VPN client, firewall or OPC UA. End-to-end data communication is automatically supplied by ctrlX CORE.

ONE COMPACT CONTROL SYSTEM FOR ALL PLATFORMS

The decoupling of hardware and software comes with further consequences. ctrlX CORE puts an end to the separation of the individual automation architectures. The control system is integrated in the drive and requires no additional space, resulting in particularly compact automation solutions with no performance limitations. As an embedded control system, the ctrlX CORE can simply be extended with I/O and performance modules such as 5G or additional storage. As a plug-in card for the IPC, ctrlX CORE combines a real-time capable control solution and edge computing in one platform.

In a compact space, the ARM architecture’s processor holds enough reserve capacity for all potential applications, optimally distributed to the four cores of the 64-bit multicore CPU. With 1 GB of RAM, ctrlX CORE offers enough room for individual functions. The 4 GB of permanent memory and the additional external microSD card offer enough storage space for future application extensions, thus reducing the variance of the hardware customers and user need. The high-performance 1 Gigabit Ethernet interfaces are optimized for the fast communication of large quantities of data in highly connected systems, equipping users perfectly for the factory of the future.

Thanks to the modern and open software architecture, operators can make use of their own software and apps. This is because the container technology of Linux, the world’s most stable and secure real-time operating system, for the first time in automation opens up all possibilities of integrating functions with separate apps. The ctrlX Data Layer, which can be described as the central nervous system, grants central authorized access to all real time and non-real time data from the installed apps, enabling eight million potential accesses per second. ctrlX Data Layer does not need to be configured, as the apps automatically recognize the hardware and can use the data available in the system.

For the field communication of ctrlX CORE, we rely on the EtherCAT ecosystem as a standard. This opens up the entire range of EtherCAT peripheral devices to designers, who can simply integrate them into their own control architecture. It also reduces the effort for writing interfaces and allows for the combination of components best suited for the application in question. In addition, the control system supports further customary real-time Ethernet protocols as well as more than 30 IT and IoT standards and protocols.

UP TO 50 PERCENT LESS ENGINEERING EFFORT

The engineering apps reduce engineering efforts by up to 50 percent. The control system supplies a web server for simple browser-based engineering. With ctrlX WORKS, the user programs every single function in the PLC app (according to IEC 61131), G-Code, C/C++, Python, Blockly or other languages at the click of a mouse. The digital nameplates of the connected devices are recognized automatically and integrated in ctrlX WORKS. The integrated web server simplifies the visualization on browser-based end devices such as web-panels or consumer tablets and supports wireless diagnostic solutions with smart devices via WiFi and Bluetooth. In addition, the control system includes a simulation environment in which functions can be tested virtually and then applied to the control system.

COMPACT, OPEN, POWERFUL

ctrlX CORE decouples the hardware from the software and offers users the most modern software architecture in the world of automation. This openness gives machine manufacturers and end users an unprecedented level of freedom by allowing them to implement their own expertise into an industry-grade control system and to transfer pre-written functions as apps. What’s more, Bosch Rexroth consequently mirrors the user-friendliness of consumer electronics, making automation as easy as handling a smart phone – even without Google or Apple.

5 HYDRAULICS MYTHS

Guest Contributor: Dr. Steffen Haack, Bosch Rexroth

br_hydrolicmyths_hero_dec19.jpgNo drive technology is more efficient, compact and robust than hydraulics when dealing with forces in excess of 600 kN. So why is it that the importance of hydraulics is often overlooked in the training and development of our young engineers?

In the modern manufacturing setting, movement is everything along with the resulting data. Little thought is given to hydraulic technology, that is until drive physics comes into play. This is when hydraulic technology comes into its own in managing large forces and delivering robust performance.

Here’s a connected hydraulics ‘Myth Buster’ that demonstrates how the latest smart hydraulics are more versatile and cost-effective than you ever imagined.

THE MYTH: Installation is complex

BUSTED: Designers are no longer required to develop an in-depth knowledge of fluid mechanics and technology and increasingly look for plug & produce modules. These ready-to-install modules simply need an electrical current and a connection to the control communication.

THE MYTH: Commissioning takes time

BUSTED: Our smart, connected hydraulics are now commissioned with the same engineering tools as electric drives and control systems. Functions previously carried out hydromechanically are handled by the latest drive software. There are even software assistants available to guide technicians through the commissioning process and suggest suitable parameters.

THE MYTH: Hydraulics waste energy

BUSTED: There’s a preconception that hydraulics are more energy-intensive than other technologies, but things have changed dramatically. Variable-speed pump drives generate the flow in line with demand and reduce speeds accordingly under partial load conditions. Compared to constantly driven pumps, they reduce power consumption by up to 80 percent – a level consistent with that of electric drives of the same size.

THE MYTH: Hydraulics aren’t IoT ready

BUSTED: Smart hydraulics are a well-established part of IoT in production. Analog valves can be made digitally visible cost-effectively thanks to IO-Link and exchange data available through the control system. Smart valves, with their own control electronics and state of the art field bus connection, are as convenient to use as electric drives.

THE MYTH: Hydraulics are high maintenance

BUSTED: Hydraulics offer a distinct advantage when monitoring operating states and deducing possible wear and expected life cycle. With a few pieces of sensor data, such as pressure differential, oil temperature, optically measured contamination or pressure increase over time, software can assess the health of the system.

This myth busting technology is included in our latest generation of hydraulic power units, allowing young designers and businesses to benefit from all the advantages of our modern, connected innovations.

 

CMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne is an authorized Bosch Rexroth distributor in Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Northern Indiana.

In addition to distribution, we design and fabricate complete engineered systems, including hydraulic power units, electrical control panels, pneumatic panels & aluminum framing. Our advanced components and system solutions are found in a wide variety of industrial applications such as wind energy, solar energy, process control and more.

240% MORE PRODUCTIVITY IN THE SAME SPACE WITH ACTIVEMOVER

Guest Contributor: Jeroen Brands, Bosch Rexroth

Many customers aim to increase productivity in short-cycle applications, but the space available for the planned systems is limited and often set in stone. That means that our challenge is to potentially double the quantities being produced, whilst using as little space as possible.

Sounds impossible? Actually, it isn’t.

In North America, we’ve already achieved the impossible for one of our customers. The decisive solution that made all the difference was our highly flexible ActiveMover transfer system. It has enabled the customer to consolidate two stations into one, reduce the footprint by 44% per line and produce almost two and a half times the quantity in the same amount of time over virtually the same surface area.

Increasing capacity in limited spaces.

The customer was faced with unexpectedly high demand for a complex product, which required a rapid increase in production. As the plant only had limited space for new systems the customer was forced to connect two machines with different cycle times via a classic conveyor belt with a limited buffer capacity.

The system occupied a space measuring around 80 m². Three multi-stations in the system covered longer processes in order to shorten lead times. The entire process involved a total of nine work steps.

The engineers knew that this current set-up was never going to manage more than 50 products a minute and any planned capacity increase would require the basic layout to be changed.

That’s where we stepped in.

Our team suggested using the ActiveMover transfer system as the central element to the operation. It is composed of straight sections and curved units, with vertically installed, low-wear linear motors, which form a closed oval shape. Workpiece pallets travel across the entire section to precisely specified positions independently of each other. They can even approach several positions within one station, one after the other, and change their direction of travel. The individual processing stations are installed on the ActiveMover’s oval shape from outside which make them easily accessible.

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240% more productive with the same surface area.

The engineers were able to integrate all the stations in the ActiveMover in two steps. This allowed them to decouple processing stations with different cycle times and save on a range of multi-stations. The result: as opposed to the original system’s footprint of 80 m², the customer now needs less than 45 m². That corresponds to a space saving of 44%. At the same time, the output per system has increased by 20%. The customer has more or less installed two machines with increased productivity in the original space available, thereby increasing productivity by 240%.

 

CMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne is an authorized Bosch Rexroth distributor in Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Northern Indiana.

In addition to distribution, we design and fabricate complete engineered systems, including hydraulic power units, electrical control panels, pneumatic panels & aluminum framing. Our advanced components and system solutions are found in a wide variety of industrial applications such as wind energy, solar energy, process control and more.

Hydraulic Valves Will Benefit From Connectivity

Guest contributor, Jeroen Brands, Bosch Rexroth

Hydraulic valves: Directional valve with integrated digital axis controller

Hydraulic valves: Directional valve with integrated digital axis controller

What are the current market requirements for hydraulic valves?

We are currently experiencing a transition from classic, analogous hydraulics to connectable digital fluid technology. European machine manufacturers in particular are increasingly digitizing their machine designs and expect that hydraulics can be seamlessly embedded into these connected environments. This means that regarding the level of automation, hydraulics are on a par with electromechanical drives. One of the decisive features in this respect is the seamless integration of intelligent hydraulic valves into different automation topologies via open standards such as multiple Ethernet interfaces.

Which new technical possibilities are available to meet these requirements?

Smart single-axis controllers are already remotely regulating hydraulic motions in a closed control loop. In addition, a powerful motion control is integrated into the on-board electronics of the valve. It performs the target-actual comparison on site and regulates accurately to a few micrometers. The control quality of the system is exclusively determined by the resolution of the measurement systems. These motion controls without control cabinet are increasingly used in saw lines, paper mills and machine tools. In addition, there are smart variable speed pump drives and smart pump controls. They provide completely new possibilities of replacing the throttle controls, which were predominantly used up to now, by more energy-efficient displacement controls. In this way, functions which were previously executed by valves are relocated to the software.

What about the integration of sensor technology into hydraulic valves?

The mass production of sensors for the automotive or the consumer products industry has significantly reduced the costs. Now, sensors are increasingly used in hydraulics. In our opinion, the integration of sensor technology of this kind into existing valve housings is the next step. Regarding condition monitoring, sensors could collect information on fluid quality, temperature, vibrations and performed switching cycles. Via deep learning algorithms, users can then detect wear before it causes malfunction.

Which other possibilities of mechanization does a valve provide?

The degree of freedom regarding connection geometries is already limited by standard requirements. The hydraulics industry discussed the topic of digital hydraulics in great depth some time ago. The idea was and is to control flows in a “stepped” or “clocked” way using single- or multi-bit strategies. In certain applications, this can constitute an advantage compared to continuously variable technology.

Which other innovations in hydraulic valves are relevant in your company?

It is no longer a question whether hydraulic valve technology will benefit from connectivity or not. The only question is when. The current discussions around Industry 4.0 clearly show how important it is to define all required functions and functionalities. Only if mechanisms and sensor technology are standardized across different manufacturers will active connectivity and communication be possible. Even in the future, not every hydraulic-mechanical pressure valve will have digital electronics on board or be connected to a control system or other valves. An imprinted QR code with information on the manufacturer’s settings, functional descriptions or information on replacement seals are a first step towards connectivity. In the area of new materials and production technologies, Rexroth has many innovations in the pipeline. 3D printing of cores for cast housings or direct printing considerably lowers energy consumption during the operation of valves. While the divisibility of the core mold had to be taken into account in the design of the core, this is no longer necessary today thanks to core printing. This means that we can use other channel designs which allow for lower pressure losses and improve energy consumption. For a valve with a flow of 10,000 l/min, the reduction of flow resistance by 10 to 20 percent significantly reduces the operating expenses.

Pressure transducer for hydraulic applications

How do these trends affect your products?

With the IAC (integrated axis controller) valves, Bosch Rexroth offers motion control without control cabinet which is completely integrated into valve electronics. It can be fully connected via open interfaces. The same applies to servo-hydraulic axes with their own fluid circuit. In these ready-to-mount axes, pump, valves and cylinders form an assembly to which the machine manufacturer only has to connect power supply and control communication. They use the same commissioning tools and user interfaces which means that all drive technologies provide the same look and feel. Classic servo valves, however, can also be improved further. New plug-in amplifiers with pulse width modulation for on/off valves by Rexroth reduce the surface temperature of the connectors by more than 80 degrees to only 50 degrees. This is particularly interesting for saw lines where easily inflammable sawdust constitutes an explosion hazard.

Outlook: How will valve technology change in the next 10 years?

In 10 years, valves will allow for easier project planning, more comfortable commissioning and more efficient operation and will provide more information before a service case. If service is required, the valve may already have ordered its spare parts.

 

cropped-cmafh-logo-with-tagline-caps.pngCMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne is an authorized Bosch Rexroth distributor in Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Northern Indiana.

In addition to distribution, we design and fabricate complete engineered systems, including hydraulic power units, electrical control panels, pneumatic panels & aluminum framing. Our advanced components and system solutions are found in a wide variety of industrial applications such as wind energy, solar energy, process control and more.

Hydraulics Meets Internet of Things: Avoiding Machine Downtime the Intelligent Way

Guest Contributor: Luisa Franz, Bosch Rexroth

 

IoT-capable hydraulic power unit ensures efficient production

With the newly developed, intelligent CytroBox unit, Rexroth combines the benefits of hydraulics with low energy consumption and software-based functions. The integrated CytroConnect IoT service ensures higher availability and avoids unplanned downtimes. With this IoT service, operators can monitor operating statuses and plan maintenance in a cost-effective manner. As a result, fluid technology has taken a further step towards the factory of the future.

The digitalization of mechanical and plant engineering means more than decentralized intelligence, integrated sensors and connectivity. This applies to hydraulics too. With its power density and immunity to impacts and vibrations, hydraulics plays a central role as an important drive technology in Industry 4.0 too. The compact CytroBox unit is revolutionizing hydraulic pressure supply. CytroBox is a modular hydraulic power unit for the medium performance range from 7.5 kW to 30 kW. It comprises optimally tailored, impressively compact components. Compared to previous units, considerable amounts of space can be saved.

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75% less oil

One of CytroBox’s unique selling points is it compactness. This is possible because the hydraulic power unit can be integrated into a factory like a control cabinet, i.e. upright. The tank no longer supports all other components – Rexroth developed a special supporting structure for this purpose. In addition, a degassing flow-optimized tank is used. On the basis of extensive CFD simulations, the developers improved the tank geometry so skillfully that the new unit needs only a quarter of the oil required by classic designs: instead of 600 liters, 150 liters are now enough – with at least the same service life. The drive unit – a component which usually takes up a large amount of space in hydraulic power units – is equally compact. The asynchronous servo motor has been replaced by a synchronous servo motor. This is the most efficient motor design, producing the same torque even though it is 80 to 90% smaller. The manifold too was redesigned: thanks to 3D printed sand cores, the block including the internal flow geometry is now cast. As a result of this flow-optimized inner structure, less material and space are required. Thanks to all these measures, the CytroBox has a footprint of just 0.5 square meters instead of one and a half to two square meters. This represents a saving of up to 75%. On top of this, there are energy savings of up to 80% as well as a 10 dB(A) reduction in noise emissions. As a result, noise emissions are lower than 75 dB(A).

Connected for the factory of the future

In the CytroBox, machine manufacturers will find a ready-configured drive controller with numerous integrated functions. Various sensors provide information on the current filter, oil or drive status. The collected sensor data are bundled via IO-LinkMaster and pre-processed by the drive controller so that they can be integrated flexibly into modern machine designs. This means that the CytroBox is IoT-ready.

CytroConnect_Monitor.jpg

CytroConnect Monitor

With the CytroConnect digital service, operators have all information regarding the CytroBox at their fingertips at all times – whether it be information regarding the standardized visualization of the component and operating status or chargeable IoT services such as forthcoming maintenance work and predictive maintenance analyses using Rexroth’s Online Diagnostics Network (ODiN).

The data collected are transferred to the browser-based CytroConnect Monitor web dashboard via Multi-Ethernet or 4G-LTE. As a result, operators can be kept up to date regarding the current operating status and key status indicators on any end device (tablet, smartphone, PC). This plug and play service is free of charge and can be used without additional installation work. CytroConnect is implemented in the CytroBox as standard.

Greater availability thanks to additional analysis functions

In addition to the CytroBox’s automatic status monitoring, maintenance personnel and maintenance managers can add extra solutions for various applications as add-ons. These pay-per-use payment models include additional IoT analysis tools and can be subscribed to on a monthly basis.

For optimizing maintenance processes, the CytroConnect Maintain module offers access to historical sensor data as well as messages if maintenance is required or in the event of critical operating statuses. Pre-defined and custom rules allow customers to improve their maintenance strategy on an ongoing basis. Customers benefit from scalable software solutions from the Bosch IoT portfolio such as the Nexeed Production Performance Manager and the integrated know-how of the Rexroth domain specialists. The Nexeed Production Performance Manager is a condition monitoring software solution for systematic production optimization.

CytroConnect_Addons.jpg

CytroConnect Maintain

With CytroConnect Maintain, data concerning the most important components for reliability and operating life (the hydraulic oil and the drive unit) are assessed. Comprehensive insights into the correlation between the speed of the servo motor and the flow allow the monitoring of system leakage, while correlations between motor data and the operating pressure allow conclusions regarding drive behavior. The leakage sensor, temperature and level sensor, particle sensor, water sensor and oxygen sensor are additional data sources which can be used to make a status diagnosis.

Planning predictive maintenance efficiently

A further add-on, CytroConnect Predict, uses the machine learning algorithms of the Rexroth Online Diagnostics Network (ODiN) for a predictive analysis of the system. With this IoT service, the power curves for a wide range of components are recorded for data analysis purposes. In the event of deviations, the system automatically calculates the expected remaining operating life of the relevant component and informs the operator immediately via a push message. As a result, predictive maintenance application cases can be taken into account predictively in the operator’s maintenance plans, thus ensuring maximum availability.

Conclusion

This new form of hydraulics is energy-efficient, quiet, space-saving and intelligent. With the integrated CytroConnect IoT service, the CytroBox offers anything from transparent, efficient machine monitoring to intelligent predictive maintenance measures. Thanks to the CytroBox, fluid technology is now one step closer to the factory of the future.

www.cytroconnect.com

www.boschrexroth.com/cytro

 

cropped-cmafh-logo-with-tagline-caps.pngCMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne is an authorized Bosch Rexroth distributor in Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Northern Indiana.

In addition to distribution, we design and fabricate complete engineered systems, including hydraulic power units, electrical control panels, pneumatic panels & aluminum framing. Our advanced components and system solutions are found in a wide variety of industrial applications such as wind energy, solar energy, process control and more.

TIME IS MONEY: ENGINEERING FOR LARGE POWER UNITS REDUCED TO FIVE DAYS

Time and cost savings through standardization and proven designs

Faster, simpler, more productive and cost-effective: Rexroth’s new modular system called ABMAXX speeds up the engineering and commissioning of large hydraulic power units in projects designed to modernize existing systems or construct new ones. The hydraulics specialists are able to create a quote complete with a hydraulic circuit diagram, a parts list, a 3D model and dimensions all within a maximum of five working days. As such, system manufacturers and end users can reduce engineering lead times alone by 80 %. The pre-configured ABMAXX modules are composed of highly available standard components. The modular approach reduces costs by up to 35 % and increases operational availability.

When constructing new or modernizing existing steelworks and rolling mills, large-scale presses and test systems or the central media supply of factories, hydraulics is and will continue to be the key drive technology both now and in the future on account of its high power density, robustness and durability. Thanks to the wide range of components available, there is plenty of scope for designing tailored solutions. In the past, system manufacturers and major end users defined their own standards which they implemented with their own resources in development. In light of ever increasing cost pressure and a global shortage of qualified specialists, these days they are increasingly scrutinizing that approach. Their main goal is to achieve pressure and quantity as cost-effectively as possible.

This is where Bosch Rexroth’s modular system ABMAXX comes in. The company is the first hydraulics manufacturer to come up with a modular solution with which system manufacturers and end users can significantly reduce the complexity of engineering large power units for 24/7 operations. On the one hand, it enables them to take advantage of all the economic benefits of cross-manufacturer standardization yet, on the other hand, the modular design provides ample opportunity for coming up with application-specific solutions.

Three pressure ratings and five modules

The concept initially covers tank sizes ranging from 2,000 to 12,500 l. With its three pressure ratings, namely 160, 210 and 315 bar, the concept satisfies the trend for higher operating pressures, thus ensuring it will be fit for the future. Achievable flows currently range from 345 l/min to 2,160 l/min. These basic conditions meet the typical requirements of numerous large plants.

In order to transform the benefits of standardization into shorter project lead times, Rexroth has defined five modules: tank, pump block, circulation unit, cooling and filter unit, and safety controls. Each module is based on proven constructions with a tried-and-tested design. As such, Rexroth is able to considerably reduce the risk of initial errors in the construction.

Simplify the design – Up to 80 % time savings in engineering: Offer in a maximum of five working days

The benefits of standardization and modularization are clear to see at the project planning phase. These days, depending on the level of complexity involved, planning customized individual power units in line with relevant company standards can take four to eight weeks. Rexroth is able to whittle this phase down to a maximum of five working days with its modular system ABMAXX. Rexroth is able to provide 3D models complete with dimensions and parts lists as well as the hydraulic circuit diagram and a quote all based on the customer’s specifications within just one week. This shortens the engineering effort by up to 80 %. This enables designers to save valuable time, which they can use on their projects, and enables system manufacturers to shorten the quote phase.

Streamline the installation – Up to 35 % lower costs through standardization

In comparison to using completely newly designed large power units each time, system manufacturers and end users achieve between up to 35 % direct cost savings on account of modularization and standardization. Internal costs are also reduced thanks to shorter project lead times and shorter time to market for system manufacturers. End users can also use individual ABMAXX modules such as the pump block in order to modernize their systems step by step and improve energy efficiency, for example. The wide range of Sytronix variable-speed pump drives is also able to unlock considerable potential here for reducing power consumption based on demand. Tried-and-tested safety controls help designers to comply with corresponding safety regulations and documentation requirements in line with standards. The choice of standard components also reduces delivery times and cuts costs.

Through its global production network, Rexroth also ensures high local added value and a quick response to customer requirements. Competence centers for power units construction in Europe, Asia and the Americas cover all major regions with short distances.

Maximize the productivity – Latest technology for maximum efficiency

At ABMAXX, Rexroth uses latest technology for all components and the hydraulic design. The components set standards in terms of dynamics and life time. Proven design principles increase productivity through high repeat accuracy and energy efficiency. The wide range of variable-speed pump drives in the Sytronix family opens up considerable potential for reducing energy consumption as required. This reduces life cycle costs sustainably.

With the three pressure stages up to 315 bar, the concept meets the current state of the art, but already reflects the trend towards higher working pressures.

Minimize the downtime – User and maintenance friendliness increases availability

The modules have been designed so as to ensure optimum component accessibility. What’s more, standardization reduces the required maintenance and servicing over the entire life cycle as the standard components used are available at short notice and will be part of the product range over the long term. The modules are composed of highly available Rexroth standard components. They are designed to deal with harsh environmental conditions including humidity, heat, dust, contamination and vibration.

The components are designed to work equally well with mineral oil as with water-based media such as (HFC) and synthetic water-free fluids (HFD). As such, Rexroth’s axial piston pumps achieve the same service life regardless of the media involved.

The pump block and the circulation unit are fundamentally equipped with stand-by units in order to guarantee maximum availability.  The pump block and the circulation unit are always equipped with stand-by units for uninterrupted 24/7 operation.

First power units already in use

Bosch Rexroth has already made several ABMAXX as complete power units and individual modules for modernization projects. System manufacturers for metallurgical plants and operators of steelworks and rolling mills are among the first users. However, potential applications exist across all sectors of industry as well as in large-scale projects.

 

cropped-cmafh-logo-with-tagline-caps.pngCMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne is an authorized Bosch Rexroth distributor in Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Northern Indiana.

In addition to distribution, we design and fabricate complete engineered systems, including hydraulic power units, electrical control panels, pneumatic panels & aluminum framing. Our advanced components and system solutions are found in a wide variety of industrial applications such as wind energy, solar energy, process control and more.

Classic qualities remain in demand

Guest Contributor: Thomas Fey, Bosch Rexroth

Machine tools are rightly considered to be technology carriers and trailblazers for other industries in mechanical engineering. They frequently are the first to try new technologies and optimize existing ones. For this reason, machinery users expect every new piece of equipment to increase productivity. 

The users of machine tools face global competition. When they invest in new machines, they generally have two main issues in mind: cycle times per processing step and throughput times for the completely processed component. At the same time, they continue to increase their requirements for surface quality and tolerances. Machine tool makers respond with higher dynamics in all movements and the integration of additional processing technologies. Increasing numbers of sensors are now monitoring the processing job to create reproducible quality.

These three trends – more speed, more completeness and more precision – place increasing demands on the control system. Every gain in speed requires shorter control cycles. The CNC control unit must provide additional capacities to integrate additional processing stations and technologies. At the same time, data transmissions in a machine are rising inordinately  because of the sensors.

In this regard, Bosch Rexroth has significantly raised the bar with its new generation of the CNC system MTX. The smallest version is a compact solution for up to 12 axes. The highest performance level extends all the way to 250 axes with a hardware control system. In the controllers, high-performance, multi-core processors intelligently assign the different tasks for CNC, PLC and communications. Fluctuating processor utilization levels that vary based on the configuration for the application remain non-reactive and ensure constant overall performance. This is important because the CNC system solution provides the shortest PLC and CNC cycle times even as the number of axes rises, even for high-speed processing. In the process, machine manufacturers can significantly increase the dynamics of their products.

More computing power for increased processing quality and the parallel exchange of information with superior IT applications: Rexroth’s CNC system MTX. (Source: Bosch Rexroth AG)

At the same time, more and more users, particularly automotive industry suppliers, are investing in production lines for complete processing. To reduce wrapping and handling times, they are looking for multi-technology solutions. For this reason, machine manufacturers are increasingly combining classic processes like drilling, milling and grinding into one system. They are also increasingly adding non-cutting technologies like laser cutting and welding or additive processes. The printed components are given their final shape in subsequent processing. These technologies are sometimes very computationally intensive. They are also done simultaneously with other processing steps. The idea of offsetting these performance peaks by using separate control systems with a machine’s own hardware significantly increases the complexity of automation. The MTX offers sufficient power reserves here to display all currently known uses on hardware. This is also the case for the automation of machine tools. A number of manufacturers have said that between 50 percent and 80 of all machines they deliver have integrated loading and unloading systems. The MTX also takes on this task.

Increased productivity through complete processing: Manufacturers are increasingly combining cutting and non-cutting technologies like laser cutting and welding as well as additive processes in a single machine. (Source: Bosch Rexroth AG)

While these trends move forward, machine manufacturers are also increasingly adding more and more sensors. These data support process optimization and monitor the processing in situ. With fast I/O, the MTX ensures that the sensor data are transferred and analyzed in real time. In the process, it lays the foundation for short control cycles that measurably increase the precision of processing and surface quality.

In short: To achieve the classic qualities of increased productivity, all roads lead to higher-performance CNC system solutions. The MTX currently offers the highest computing capacity and system capability for rising demands by offering increased dynamics, technology combinations and amount of sensors.

Learn more:  CNC system solution MTX 

cropped-cmafh-logo-with-tagline-caps.pngCMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne is an authorized Bosch Rexroth distributor in Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Northern Indiana.

In addition to distribution, we design and fabricate complete engineered systems, including hydraulic power units, electrical control panels, pneumatic panels & aluminum framing. Our advanced components and system solutions are found in a wide variety of industrial applications such as wind energy, solar energy, process control and more.

More efficient automation with explosion protection

Guest Contributor:  Frank Kaufmann, Bosch Rexroth

You think that drives for potentially explosive areas are complex to implement or technologically suboptimal? In this way you simplify your engineering and play in the first league on the automation side.

Are you automating in potentially explosive areas and tired of having to make compromises when choosing a drive solution? Regarding performance, intelligence, connection technology, …? In fact, it has not been easy to combine explosion protection, modern servo technology and efficient engineering. The common practice, including the declaration of conformity for the acceptance, is tedious and time-consuming. Especially if you have to design, have certified and apply a special enclosure for a non-ex motor. How much easier would it be if you could simply select a ready-to-install ATEX servo motor with declaration of conformity and the latest technology and immediately concentrate on the essential machine or plant construction? That’s exactly what you can do now.

First ATEX servo motor with single cable connection

Bosch Rexroth has developed the first ATEX-certified servo motor with single-cable connection in order to merge modern features such as high drive performance, simple integration into the machine, safety-on-board and i4.0 features into a complete solution. The new MS2E series is based on the MS2N standard series in terms of design and therefore achieves the same optimum values in terms of dynamics, precision and connectivity. It is also suitable for all ATEX applications up to device group II and device category 3 for gas (zone 2) and dust (zone 22). In practice, this means that an MS2E engine remains safe even if other safety-relevant or safety-specific components fail. If, for example, a combustible atmosphere is created due to a defective extraction unit, this cannot be ignited by the engine.

Fast and accurate design – with safety

Because time is money and errors cost time and money, the design within the IndraSize engineering tool is based on a virtually exact engine model. The result: the design of the MS2E corresponds exactly to the real operation. Do you want even more efficiency? With SafeMotion applications, you achieve the greatest possible machine safety thanks to high-resolution 20-bit single or multiturn encoders in SIL2 PLd. Additional practical options include holding brakes or shafts with feather keyway.

Compact power packs for downsizing

Without the right power density, an ATEX-certified engine is only half the fun. For this reason, Bosch Rexroth pays special attention to compact design. The extremely high torque density of the MS2E motors is up to 30 percent higher than that of the predecessor series – a new motor design with optimized electromagnetic design makes this possible. As a machine manufacturer, you benefit in two ways: You can solve your existing drive tasks with smaller motors and achieve more performance with the specified installation space. For the purpose of such downsizing, the self-cooled MS2E motors are available in five sizes with overlapping torque ranges up to a maximum of 119 Nm, each with up to five times the overload capacity and consistently low rotor inertia. What does this mean for your application? Full of dynamics and performance. A further plus point: because high-quality materials and optimized winding technology reduce internal losses, you can also work at higher speeds in continuous operation. As a result, you achieve significantly improved energy efficiency with sustainably reduced operating costs.

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The motor with single-cable connection reduces cabling, simplifies installation and accelerates time-to-market. (Photo: Bosch Rexroth)

Produce faster with fewer cables

You can use a real novelty in the Ex area if you use the characteristic single cable connection of the MS2E. The advantage: you need much less material as well as plug-in points and space in the cable duct. Fewer cables and interfaces also mean faster and more cost-effective assembly and installation. This reduces your costs and increases productivity – especially in applications with drag chains. Because they become lighter, you can drive at higher speeds.

Industry 4.0 without limits – the motor as sensor

If you also want to implement industrial 4.0 applications in potentially explosive areas cost-effectively and without additional components, you will be particularly pleased about this feature: As with the MS2N series, the MS2E can also be used as a sensor and data source. With a view to future requirements – keyword factory of the future – expand your intelligence in this way up to the engine. The individual measured values including saturation and temperature data are stored in the motor data memory and thus form the basis for various i4.0 applications. Because the IndraDrive controllers also access the data and process it in real time, you benefit from an additional increase in torque accuracy during operation, while the tolerance range is reduced to a fraction of the previously usual values.

Two problems with one solution

With the new ATEX motor MS2E, you have a solution: you guarantee maximum safety and play in the top league on the drive side, even in potentially explosive areas – in terms of power density, functionality and engineering. Together with the flameproof encapsulated MKE motor series, you now have a stringent overall portfolio at your disposal with which you can quickly implement your ideas – with identical performance and up to Zone 1. Interested? Learn more.

cropped-cmafh-logo-with-tagline-caps.pngCMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne is an authorized Bosch Rexroth distributor in Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Northern Indiana.

In addition to distribution, we design and fabricate complete engineered systems, including hydraulic power units, electrical control panels, pneumatic panels & aluminum framing. Our advanced components and system solutions are found in a wide variety of industrial applications such as wind energy, solar energy, process control and more.

The product carousel turns – cabinet free into the future

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Guest contributor: Reinhard Mansius, Bosch Rexroth

Do you ask yourself how to produce smallest quantities in an economically viable manner? That is no problem in the factory of the future: You are able to move your machines within the factory hall or take processing stations out of a production line, reposition them and then continue production at the push of a button. Cabinet-free drive technology is a key technology here with decentralized intelligence and comprehensive communication capabilities.

Looking in any supermarket will reveal promotional packs with twenty percent extra free or special products for Easter, summer, Halloween and Christmas. The product carousel is turning at an ever increasing pace. However, the life cycles of furniture, electronic products and cars are becoming shorter and shorter as well. At the same time, online retail accounts for an increasing share of the market. Consumers like to use online configurators in order to customize their products. As a result of this, you as a manufacturer may have to make production changes several times a week instead of producing the same products over many years. In the future, even this might not be enough and refitting may be necessary on an hourly basis.

On the basis of customer applications and numerous automation projects in our own plants, we have analyzed the requirements of such varied production processes and developed a vision for the factory of the future. Only the ceiling, the walls and the floor of the factory hall will be immovable. In contrast, it will be possible to configure machines and processing stations to create new production lines which will communicate wirelessly with each other. As a result of this approach, control cabinets will be obsolete or will no longer play a central role.

Control cabinets on their way out

The aim in automation: Making production changes primarily via software, with no manual cabling work. With traditional automation concepts, all cables lead from the actuators and sensors to the control cabinet and back again. In practice, this represents a bottleneck when it comes to installation and refitting. In contrast, the IndraDrive Mi servo drives are geared to and integrated into motors. They reduce the amount of cabling work required and take up no space in the control cabinet. They are installed with all necessary supply components in a decentralized manner in the machine or processing station. Up to 30 servo drives form a drive group on a hybrid cable string for power and communication. Only the first drive has an external connection to the higher-level control systems so that changes do not require cabling work on the control cabinet.

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The IndraDrive Mi servo drives are geared to and integrated into motors.

Switch off, reposition, switch on and carry on producing

This flexibility is available for a wide power range – from 0.4 kW to 11 kW. The drives without control cabinets have as standard four digital, freely configurable I/O connections for peripherals and sensors on board. Two of these can be used as quick measuring probes. By decoupling control communication, constructors can integrate further I/O modules, sensors and actuators for pneumatics or hydraulics. This means that automation is completely decentralized. As a result, it is very easy to make changes to the factory of the future later on. Simply switch off the station, pull out one or two plugs, push the machine to its new location, switch it on and carry on producing.

Simple, reliable commissioning

You as a machine manufacturer have scarce engineering resources which need to be used efficiently. Pre-defined, pre-programmed technology functions allow many tasks such as those involving cam discs or cam gears to be performed more quickly. With the integrated Motion Logic for individual axes, the drives take on axis-related processes independently of the central control system.

Engineering tools geared to the tasks make integration into modern concepts easier and save time. The Drive System software allows quick and reliable commissioning because its reads and applies the mechanical data from the motor encoders of the Rexroth motors. At the same time, the IndraDrive Service Tool offers easy access to service and diagnostic functions and also allows the software to be parametrized and updated. The tool which is independent of operating systems runs on HTML5-capable browsers and uses the web server which is integrated into the drive. This architecture makes it easier to replace components, while the tool offers practical access management with guest and service rights.

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Regardless of the sector – cabinet-free drive technology is revolutionizing mechanical engineering, significantly reducing costs and improving flexibility.

Communicative in a wide range of environments

Another key requirement for the factory of the future is that it can fit into connected environments and share information flexibly. You as a machine manufacturers are looking for drive solutions which allow them to cater for the different protocols in specific regions and sectors with a single item of hardware and thus simplify their entire logistics from ordering to the supply of spare parts. Cabinet-free drive technology meets this requirement with its multi-Ethernet interface. It supports all common protocols via software selection.

Ready for high-level language functions

Bosch Rexroth’s Open Core Engineering software technology allows you to access core drive functions and the integrated Motion Logic alongside PLC automation with high-level language programs.

In the future, you will be able to use Open Core Engineering for Drives to develop or purchase previously unseen web and cloud-based functions in high-level languages. This will establish a link between intelligent servo drive and server- and cloud-based applications. High-level language programming will open up entirely new connectivity options for you. Without complex PLC interfaces, you will be able to digitize the value stream – from recording an order in the ERP system and the MES systems to the drive.

Are you ready for new flexibility?

By modular concepts you will be able to streamline your processes or machines and stations and set them up flexibly and without control cabinet modifications to create new production lines geared to specific order requirements: the factory of the future is an evolutionary process which has already begun. Cabinet-free drive technology is helping you to meet the new requirements as regards flexibility economically, intelligently and safely – today.

cropped-cmafh-logo-with-tagline-caps.pngCMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne is an authorized Bosch Rexroth distributor in Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Northern Indiana.

In addition to distribution, we design and fabricate complete engineered systems, including hydraulic power units, electrical control panels, pneumatic panels & aluminum framing. Our advanced components and system solutions are found in a wide variety of industrial applications such as wind energy, solar energy, process control and more.

SAVING UP TO 90% OF TIME WITH PLC-FREE PROGRAMMING AND COMMISSIONING

Guest contributor, Frank Kaufmann, Bosch Rexroth

However efficient PLC programming for complex tasks may be, it is often relatively time-consuming for simple and moderately complex automation solutions. In light of scarce internal resources, machine manufacturers are looking for ways to speed up engineering and shorten delivery times. A new solution is Sequential Motion Control SMC, a virtually universal technology function for IndraDrive servo drives. It reduces users’ programming and commissioning work by up to 90 percent compared to PLC programming.

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Career portals clearly show the lack of skilled labor: in Germany alone, there are more than ten thousand vacancies for PLC programming and commissioning specialists. The situation is no better in other countries. The lack of skilled labor not only lengthens the time to market for new machines – it also makes it more difficult to develop lucrative services, for example adapting installed stations to new tasks.

If orders are delayed owing to capacity bottlenecks, this annoys customers. This makes it all the more important to come up with an alternative to complex, time-consuming PLC programming. This is where drive-based Sequential Motion Control SMC comes in. It uses the intelligence of servo drives for applications with up to six axes yet requires no external motion control system. The integrated motion control system, on-board I/Os and expandable I/O cards reduce hardware costs and make system integration easier.

Ten automation solutions in the time it would take for one

Lean engineering offers particularly exciting opportunities for machine manufacturers as it allows them to put in place up to ten automation solutions in the time it would normally take for one. As a result, they can step up the pace instantly and ultimately increase their turnover. Independent investigations and empirical findings show that the PLC programming and commissioning work for a flying cutter takes slightly more than a man-week. With SMC, the same result can be achieved in just four man-hours.

With a single command, SMC controls complete motion sequences which the user arranges one after another. These sequences are based on a wealth of automation experience in areas ranging from wood processing to the packaging industry and can cope with simple and moderately complex tasks in a virtually universal manner. With pre-defined commands, users can achieve independent positioning axes, axis and master axis couplings, synchronous axis operation, cam profile applications and sequential movements. Applications range from handling systems, processing stations and test stands to flying cut-off. A wide range of special functions are available: With just a few lines, users can activate head cutting, parts movements, maximum lifting routines, reverse optimization, short length processing and other functions.

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90 percent faster engineering – with SMC for IndraDrive, axis couplings, synchronous axes and sequential motion sequences can be achieved much more quickly.

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With SMC, users can achieve independent positioning axes, axis and master axis couplings, synchronous axis operation, cam disc applications and sequential movements with pre-defined commands.

Eight commands replace 200 lines of PLC code

When engineering, routine tasks such as defining operating modes, diagnostics and error handling take up significant amounts of time. Up until now, these tasks which are often unpopular accounted for up to two thirds of overall programming time although they barely contribute towards the specific solution. With the SMC option, the drives are pre-configured in the factory, thus eliminating these routine tasks. Thanks to this pre-configuration, users can begin task programming and commissioning straight away.

Sequential programming also helps less experienced technicians to create automation solutions geared to particular applications quickly. A practical example: in an open PLC such as the IEC 61131-3, the programming code for a pair of flying shears is more than 200 lines long. With SMC, the user arranges eight commands one after another and then only needs to optimize the processing procedure. Users merely need to learn around 70 commands. They include complete applications and command up to six axes at the same time with one instruction. Users issue step and motion control commands, use closed-loop force and torque controls and query I/Os.

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PLC code with just eight commands reduced to 14 lines. With SMC, programming and commissioning a pair of flying shears takes less than half a day.

Optimizing variables directly

SMC includes a manual mode for setting up and referencing axes, a parameterization mode and an automatic mode for working through the programs. In automatic mode, the solutions can control up to four tasks in parallel. At the same time, a cyclic task allows statuses and diagnoses to be called up at any time. Users can therefore observe and optimize variables while the program is running.

Quick solutions for emerging markets

The level of automation in China and other emerging markets is increasing very quickly at the moment. At the same time, there is a lack of programmers with an expert knowledge of PLC in these countries. With online help, watch-listen and tools for debugging or program management, the free SMC Editor helps even technicians with little experience. If necessary, users can use ready-made templates for visualization or create their own.

Owing to increasingly short product life cycles, rapid automation is also becoming more important in mature markets. Concepts such as Bosch Rexroth’s Factory of the Future are highly flexible and allow the production of very small quantities – even down to a batch size of 1. In the future, end users will be able to adapt their production lines flexibly according to orders at very short intervals and will require new motion sequences and additional processing stations at short notice.

The new processing stations must also fit into connected production lines. As a result, an open system for sharing data and information with other machines and higher-level IT systems is a must. The Sercos automation bus allows real-time cross-communication – an important requirement when it comes to precise synchronization with other process movements. Via software, the user selects in the multi-Ethernet interface one of the common protocols such as Sercos, PROFINET IO, EtherNet/IP and EtherCAT as well as the safety protocols CIP Safety on Sercos, Fail Safe over EtherCat and PROFIsafe on PROFINET.

Another task which only very experienced programmers were able to cope with relates to machine safety. Rexroth’s SafeMotion reduces the time required with certified safety functions. As a result, users do not need any additional safety control system in order to meet the requirements and standards of the Machinery Directive.

Increasing turnover with existing resources

The lack of skilled labor will remain a problem for the global mechanical engineering sector in the long term. SMC is a practically oriented approach for simplifying programming and commissioning. Machine manufacturers can therefore significantly increase the number of automation solutions that they supply even without additional PLC programmers. At the same time, the available specialists can concentrate on automating more complex tasks and here too reduce the time to market considerably.

 

cropped-cmafh-logo-with-tagline-caps.pngCMA/Flodyne/Hydradyne is an authorized Bosch Rexroth distributor in Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa and Northern Indiana.

In addition to distribution, we design and fabricate complete engineered systems, including hydraulic power units, electrical control panels, pneumatic panels & aluminum framing. Our advanced components and system solutions are found in a wide variety of industrial applications such as wind energy, solar energy, process control and more.