More TOP NEWS
  • Fuse/Disconnect Terminal Blocks

    Each 2006 block utilizes the compact TOPJOB®S footprint, features dual jumper rows and accommodates conductors 20-8 AWG. The new 2006 Series Blocks serve industrial applications requiring disconnection, isolation and fuse protection of analog signals.2006 Series consists of push-in termination for ferruled or solid conductors, including WAGO-exclusive pivoting disconnect and blade-style fuse models. To terminate stranded conductors, insert a screwdriver to open clamping unit, insert conductor and remove screwdriver. A blown fuse indicator is optional on all fuse terminal blocks. 2006 Series Overview:Knife Disconnect Block: Atop the 2006-1671 Knife Disconnect Block is a simple, pivoting knife disconnect. The block has a 30A/600V UL rating and shares a profile with Fuse and Through Terminal siblings.Fuse Disconnect (Pivoting Fuse Holder): Touch-proof Pivoting Fuse Holder secures fuses in a clip for easy and correct fuse insertion/ejection, as well as a spare fuse location. Depending on model, Fuse Disconnect houses 5x20mm, 5x30mm or 1/4’x1 1/4′ fuses; blocks have a 15A/600V UL rating. Carrier Block for Fuse Plug: Fuse Plug Carrier Blocks eliminate contact with live components parts while changing fuses; personnel can retain plugs for safety. Depending on model, the block accommodates 5x20mm, 5x30mm, or 1/4’x1 1/4′ fuses; a 15A/600V UL rating is pending. Blade-Style Fuse Block: Ideal for compact circuit protection, they are compatible with automotive-style fuses or plug-in circuit breakers and carry a 30A/600V UL rating. Fuse Terminal Blocks offer time-saving accessories including marking and simple push-in jumpers. A convenient test-plug opening is located on each side of fuse or disconnect.WAGO Corporation – www.wago.us

    From automationworld Thursday, September 8, 2011
  • Fender Reaches Out to the General Consumer Market with 3D Printed Inner Ear Monitor Headphones

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    Bob Dylan and his controversial Fender.

    In 1965, Bob Dylan dismayed fans at the Newport Folk Festival by doing something decidedly un-folksy – pulling out an electric guitar and rocking. His fans, expecting one of the acoustic performances on which Dylan had build his reputation, booed and hollered in protest. While there’s some debate over whether the fans actually booed him for “going electric,” or rather if they booed because the sound system was allegedly terrible, is still debated half a century later, but regardless of the motivation, the incident has become legendary in rock-and-roll history.

    The guitar that Dylan played in that infamous performance was a 1964 Fender Stratocaster, which was auctioned off in 2013 for $965,000. 51 years after their technology caused an uproar in Newport, Fender is still causing technological ripples with the introduction of their new Fender Pro In-Ear Monitors. While the company has been manufacturing speakers and sound systems for years, this is the first time they’ve developed any kind of headphone or in-ear device, and they certainly didn’t go into it lightly.

    A lot of research went into the development of the IEMs; Fender states that they scanned thousands of people’s ears to design a nearly universal fit; while they’re not custom-fitted, they will allegedly fit 95% of people comfortably thanks to their 3D printed fabrication.

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    “3D printing allows us to create precise curves and a more ergonomic shape, more closely fitting the natural contours of the ear for improved comfort and isolation,” the company states. “This technology also enables precise orientation of the custom-designed drivers, eliminating the need for a crossover.”

    in-earFender’s IEMs were designed to provide the absolute best sound quality possible; their carefully fabricated drivers are optimized for their 3D printed housing and designed to direct sound into the ear canal with much less distortion than other ear buds and headphones. In addition, their secure fit effectively blocks outside noise, according to several reviews, making them ideal for onstage musicians – or the average teenager who wants to pretend her family isn’t in the car with her.

    Fender is known for being a supplier to professional musicians and performers, and while their IEMs are no exception, they have stated that they are meant for both pros and average listeners. The price range is very consumer-friendly, starting at $99.99 for the basic DXA1 ear buds and ranging to $499.99 for the FXA7, which promises “premium concert hall-quality sound.”

    “Fender Pro In-Ear Monitors offer something for everyone at different price points, transforming the listening experience for performing musicians, audiophiles and serious music lovers, alike,” said Jim Ninesling, VP of Fender Amplifiers and Pro Audio. “These products represent years of development and showcase Fender’s commitment to quality, innovation and best-in-class design.”

    hand-madeThis is, in fact, Fender’s first product designed for a general consumer market, after 70-something years of serving the music industry. Have they sold out? Thrown in their rock-and-roll cred? Will there be backlash?! Probably not. Fender’s Pro In-Ear Monitors are designed and hand-assembled at home in their Nashville workshop; one of the reasons the company is so well-loved is because of their dedication to careful, quality, personal craftsmanship, and that doesn’t appear to be changing. No mass-manufacturing or outsourcing here – just some new 3D printers.

    Again, there are a lot of reviews already out on the Internet, and the ones I’ve seen have been universally positive, raving about the sound quality the IEMs deliver. While any good music snob knows that everything sounds better on vinyl, this new bit of tech seems to be offering some serious competition. Is a device that you could use? Discuss further over in the 3D Printed Ear Monitors by Fender forum thread at 3DPB.com.

     

    From 3dprint Saturday, May 14, 2016
  • 3D Printed Model of Reversed Heart to be Used in Delicate Pacemaker Surgery

    suttonSplashy headlines are made daily as innovators around the world highlight new 3D designs and 3D printed products eliciting ‘ooohs and aaahs’ as they are unveiled to an interested — and highly impressed — public.

    High-powered business partnerships are being formed in high profile, with CEOs shaking hands as they come together to designate new international facilities to pump out 3D printed components for industries like aerospace, automotive, construction, and other highly specialized areas. It’s a race to build quality components with a better bottom line and better attention to deadline — and it couldn’t be done without 3D printing. It’s often also about dollars and cents.

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    Sutton, as a newborn

    There are however, some quieter light bulbs going off, resulting in using 3D printing in a variety of ways in the medical industry, and often helping with mapping out medical solutions and assisting in surgeries — or ruling them out. While surgeries certainly aren’t being ruled out with Kami Sutton, she’d like to avoid having more over time and to correct her current complications. The Marysville, Washington resident has had over 19 surgeries in her life.

    Sutton, a grassroots coordinator with the American Heart Association, has a medical condition that most certainly caught great attention on the day she was born nearly three decades ago, when technology was far behind what we have now in nearly every fashion. Nineteen surgeries and one pacemaker later, Sutton, who was born with her heart on the right side of her body, has been investigating the wonders of 3D printing on her own as previous solutions have kept her alive and functioning, but certainly not at maximum capacity. While doctors often tire of patients perusing the internet and coming up with their own diagnoses and cures, this is one idea that raised an eyebrow and put a plan into action.

    The congenital defect, with Sutton’s heart on the wrong side, also includes reversal of her heart’s left and right pumping chambers, a hole in between them, and a lack of connection to the lungs. Today, her heart and body are left taxed.

    “My ventricles are beating out of sync,” she said. “We’re losing heart function, which is hard. … It’s not as efficient as it could be if they were beating together.”

    Doctors believe the key to helping Sutton’s heart function better is with a new pacemaker, but despite so many surgeries, the area surrounding and the anatomy of her heart still remain uncharted territory — meaning they need to proceed with extreme caution. Dr. Stephan Seslar is in charge of working on the new pacemaker idea and hopes that he can bypass complications with Sutton’s condition to insert a new, bi-ventricular pacemaker. Inserting this pacemaker can be complex in patients with normal heart placement. With the bi-ventricular pacemaker, there is a third wire that runs through the back of the heart, assisting with the heart’s impulses, and improving timing.

    If the new pacemaker were to work, it means the possibility for Sutton not having to wait and go through the exertion and complication of a heart transplant which is a delicate surgery and process with a more traditional heart. Sutton’s condition, obviously, presents additional concerns regarding a transplant in that it could be even more difficult to find a heart that would not be rejected.

    3d heartWhile Dr. Seslar, a congenital heart disease specialist and electrophysiologist at Seattle Children’s Hospital and University of Washington Medical Center, thinks the new pacemaker could be key to helping Sutton, they do have added complications to worry about when it comes to operating on their very unique patient.

    “Kami’s heart is truly one-of-a-kind,” Dr. Seslar said on the Seattle Children’s Hospital website. “Operating on her without understanding the anatomy of her heart better could be very dangerous.”

    Sutton brought the idea of 3D printing a model of her heart to help with better understanding the anatomy and proceeding with insertion of the new pacemaker. “His eyes got really wide,” Sutton said of Dr. Seslar’s reaction when she asked if he could use a 3D model of her heart. “When I suggested it, he got really excited.”

    Seslar set to work on the project, which involved a CT scan for Sutton and an appointment with a materials engineer who has the task of creating the finely detailed material that actually imitates cardiac tissue.

    “Our first attempts produced stiff models that did not feel like human hearts,” Dr. Seslar said. “This model is soft and wet like a real heart inside a person. …We know ahead of time where to maneuver, it allows us to develop a game plan and potentially reduce the surgery time.”

    Timing for the surgery is set for later this year with both surgeons and patient hopeful. While all involved know that it could still prove unsuccessful, with the use of 3D printed models to plan ahead and explore, they have a better chance than ever, and the whole process they are initiating now will continue to help patients improve their quality of life — and live — further down the road.

    “Technology caught up with me just in time and gave me another chance besides the big [transplant] surgery,” Sutton said. “In the future it won’t take 19 operations over 26 years to fix the condition I was born with.”

    We’ve reported on a number of stories regarding the use of 3D printed models for diagnosis and surgical assistance, but never in such a unique case as this. While 3D printing is useful in changing the way industries manufacture and designers create, it’s also helping medical solutions ascend to a much more advanced level — also offering quality, efficiency, and unheard of results for patients.

    Have you been in a situation where a doctor or medical professional has used a 3D printed model to explain a procedure or diagnosis to you? How do you think 3D printed medical devices and models will advance medicine even further? Tell us your thoughts in the 3D Printed Model of Heart for Pacemaker Surgery forum thread over at 3DPB.com.

    From 3dprint Wednesday, February 25, 2015
  • Interview with Ray Hall

    Ray Hall, managing director, HepcoMotion talks with Justin Cunningham

    JC: What is the secret of keeping a successful business going in the face of changing market conditions?
    RH: In the 26 years that I’ve been at HepcoMotion, I have learned that It’s not about knee jerk reactions. Of course it’s only natural that manufacturers focus more attention on house-keeping issues when anticipating difficult times. HepcoMotion is no different in that regard. Rather than commit to a year long investment programme, we’re now making continuous improvements based on quarterly performance and anticipated demand. It’s prudent management. But continued investment in our processes, our products and our people is very much the priority here; and especially now. It’s what brought us safely through the last recession and will continue to underpin our business.
    JC: What about the unit cost of a product?
    RH: Of course this is especially critical when business is tight. Indeed, for that very reason, many OEMs outsource the manufacture of their products to low labour cost countries. HepcoMotion, however, remains steadfastly committed to its ‘local’ British manufacturing base and there are several important reasons for this. First and foremost is the depth of skills of our people in both manufacturing and applications engineering.
    JC: What do you see as the key growth area for HepcoMotion?
    RH: Although the elements of linear motion remain the dominant part of our business, the growth area for us is the use of our linear products in gantry systems and special assemblies. Indeed, systems’ build now accounts for between 10 to 15% of our total output and almost a fifth of our shop floor space is devoted to system assembly. We have anticipated and encouraged this demand and invested accordingly so that we have the flexibility even to accommodate last minute changes to customer specification.
    And it is the quality of our people that allow us to do this. As a result we remain fully committed to our apprentice scheme that grows year on year; currently we have eighteen.
    Speed of turn round is not just important at the manufacturing phase. The sales department’s ability to create system layouts and transfer CAD drawings in minutes is now expected. It’s all about making sure customers have everything they need to make decisions. These small differences can make a big impact.
    HepcoMotion has also actively grown its overseas markets and this diversity has certainly enhanced our strength, and will be a key factor in sustaining turnover in the coming months. For example, our commitment to ‘local’ manufacturing has now been replicated in Korea so that the dedicated engineering service we provide in the UK is also available to our Asian customers. Market diversity is another stabilising factor for us. As well as growing our business in the traditional automation, pharmaceutical and food processing sectors we continue to develop new markets. The burgeoning renewable energy market is an important new addition for us.
    Assessing and re-assessing your company’s strengths against changing market demands is crucial to providing the momentum for business growth and the flexibility to ride the economic tide. It has always stood us in good stead and I am delighted to report that 2008 has been another record for us. Our business has grown by a further 10%. The culture of continued investment is certainly working at HepcoMotion.

    From eurekamagazine Wednesday, May 6, 2009
  • Polymer bearings improve  bikes and food processing

    Tom Shelley reports on some recent advances in solid state bearings that allow them to replace rolling element metallic types.

    Polymer bearings based on PTFE are now able to replace rolling element types in many bicycle applications, maintaining performance, avoiding corrosion and reducing cost and the need for lubrication maintenance. At the same time, bearings based on a completely different polymer technology can now be used in the food industry, thanks to their being made metal detectable, meaning there is no risk of fragments from broken bearings appearing in the end product.
    PTFE-based bearingsmade by Saint Gobain Performance Plastics, already employed in bicycle front suspensions, have been developed to the point where they can be used in headsets – the assemblies that allows front forks to rotate relative to frames, bicycle pedal assemblies, and braking systems. For the headsets, the solution is a PTFE friction surface with a rubber backing. For the bicycle pedal assemblies, they replace axle shaft rolling elements bearings and plastic bushings. For the braking systems, they find application in the brake levers, where they provide low clearance, low friction replacements for conventional lever pivots, and in cantilevers, where they offer a high-performance, corrosion resistant option for brake pivots. A low friction cylinder, flange or washer with an interference fit improves feel. The properties of the bearings can be tailored to application by incorporating metal backing and/or the addition of suitable fillers. Glass fibres increase the load carrying capability and reduce wear and creep, while graphite minimises initial wear.
    Carbon can be made to assume a similar function to glass fibres, but is less abrasive on the mating contact surface. A special ‘Ekonol’ aromatic polyester improves wear resistance and lowers the coefficient of friction for high-speed sliding operations and soft mating surfaces. It is also possible to tailor the electrical conductivity of bearings for electrostatic discharge and to assist in the cathodic dip-coating of assemblies. Electrically non-conductive bearings in the paint shop, on the other hand, reduce paint build-up on bearing surfaces and help improve paint quality. In a similar manner, igus, which uses a totally different proprietary set of polymer technologies, has managed to make its ‘Igubal’ range of plastic bearing products in metal detectable form for the food and beverage industries.
    The range includes lubricant and maintenance-free rod end bearings and clevis joints, flange, pivoting and pillow block bearings. Both the housing and spherical balls are made of detectable plastic. The new plastic variants are easy to install, adjust to all angle deviations and, in many applications, replace traditional metallic components, saving up to 80% weight can be saved. This allows machines and systems to work faster and more efficiently. The igus bearings are suitable for dry use at application temperatures ranging from -30 to +80°C, can run in liquids as well as chemicals, and are corrosion resistant, so they are not adversely effected by regular wash downs.
    In comparison to traditional metallic bearings, the range also offers better damping characteristics since the material more effectively absorbs vibrations. Saint Gobain Plastics, incidentally is the same company that supplies ‘Norslide’ cable liners made by paste extrusion and ‘Rencol’ tolerance rings, three dimensionally patterned inserts made of spring steel. These have a set of applications that range from accommodating differential thermal expansion and small amounts of movement to noise and vibration reduction and slippage at known loads to provide a simple method of mechanical overload protection.
    Design Pointers • PTFE-based bearings can replace most rolling element bearings on a bicycle, especially in headsets, pedals and brakes, maintaining performance while reducing cost and the need for grease maintenance
    • A new grade of plastic bearing material for the food and beverage industry has been developed which is metal detectable

    From eurekamagazine Thursday, January 13, 2011