Efficient Plant’s COVID-19 Coverage

Occupancy monitoring

An occupancy monitoring system to promote social distancing is part of the Safe Work Solutions suite. The reportedly simple-to-implement automated solution uses optical sensors to count people as they enter or exit areas such as breakrooms or restrooms and tally them against a programmed capacity threshold. Visual indicators signal capacity alerts in green/yellow/red lights or using a networked device.

Banner Engineering

Thermal cameras for temperature screening

EST series thermal-screening solutions provide frontline screening at building entries and in high-traffic areas to improve safety and help curb the spread of COVID-19. The Axxx-EST, T5xx-EST, and Exx-EST cameras simplify the screening process, reducing the burden on screening operators and adhering to recommended social distancing guidelines. Cameras are said to be easy to set up and operate, requiring limited training to begin screening people more quickly and accurately.

FLIR Systems
Arlington, VA

Full Duplex Wireless

UltraLITE wireless systems provide hands-free, two-way voice communication for industrial production crews. Headsets include a compact transceiver installed inside the ear cup, eliminating the need for wires and belt packs. Replaceable padding promotes hygiene. As many as 16 users can talk simultaneously, promoting enhanced safety, training, and social distancing.

Narragansett, RI

Prepare For The Next Crisis

Be ready for the next safety-related event by maintaining your emergency action plan.

Emergency preparedness documents are, unfortunately, often not thought of until it’s too late. Being prepared with an emergency action plan, including specifics for different event types, helps ensure that all employees get through a crisis as safely as possible. In addition, the mere existence of such documents can provide constant peace of mind for everyone.

The following information is intended to help you establish a basic procedure for emergency preparedness and ensure that all relevant information concerning these situations is available to employees. It’s also recommended that you consult your Safety Committee before adding any new or changed directives.

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Mini Factories In Containers Help Reduce Mask Shortages

Decentralized systems from Mikron ensure supply in times of a pandemic. Festo is a key development partner.

Disposable protective nasal-and-mouth masks are in short supply, but a manufacturing system from Swiss company Mikron, Englewood, CO could put masks within everyone’s reach. This scalable system produces 50 to 100 face masks per minute, depending on the version. With engineering support from Festo Corp., Islandia, NY, Mikron developed the system in just six weeks.

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Joint Solution Provides Measured, Verified Air Purification

mCloud, Vancouver, BC, Canada, a provider of asset-management solutions combining IoT, cloud computing, artificial intelligence (“AI”), and analytics, is combining the AI-powered HVAC and indoor-air-quality capabilities of the company’s AssetCare platform with air-purification technology based on active particle control through a partnership with SecureAire LLC, Oldsmar, FL.

The combined offering deploys mCloud’s AssetCare through commercial IoT thermostats with humidity and air-quality sensors to adaptively ventilate and manage building airflow based on how a building is being used. SecureAire provides an air filtration system used today in more than 60 hospitals, based on semiconductor cleanroom technology that takes advantage of this managed airflow to drive airborne contaminants to an electrostatic field that supplies the necessary voltage to oxidize and kill dangerous pathogens and viruses such as COVID-19.

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Manage Your Chain During A Pandemic

Pandemics and other global crises can wreak havoc on supply chains. Some products remain plentiful and easy to acquire and others rapidly become limited or nonexistent. Even worse is that it’s difficult, at best, to predict supply-chain dynamics.

The reasons vary. Some materials are depleted due to increased needs, but some disappear when people stock up because of uncertainty, not unlike trades that don’t trust the parts storeroom system. In many cases the raw materials aren’t in short
supply. The demand predictions are off because of erratic buying behavior.

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Automation Tech Speeds Production Conversion

Converting Ginolis production lines to manufacture COVID test kits was simplified with Beckhoff embedded PC.

To fight the coronavirus pandemic, Ginolis Ltd., Qulunsalo, Finland, has converted existing rapid testing equipment lines to produce COVID-19 testing kits. Compact automation technology from Beckhoff Automation LLC, Savage, MN, contributes significantly to the production equipment’s modularity, flexibility, and high quality.

Since its foundation in 2010, Ginolis has offered high-quality automation solutions for the production and assembly of medical devices such as point-of-care diagnostic equipment, micro-fluid devices, insulin pumps, medication dispensation devices, and test cartridges. Rapid diagnostics is a quickly growing field in health technology, according to Ginolis CEO Teijo Fabritius, but the need became even more urgent with the spread of COVID-19.

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Are Your Lubrication Practices Disaster Proof?

When outside forces affect normal manufacturing processes, adapt your lubrication systems.

By Mark Barnes, PhD CMRP, Des-Case Corp.

Machine reliability is closely tied to consistency—consistency in operation, consistency in function, and consistency in (proper) maintenance. As W. Edwards Deming put it, “uncontrolled variation is the enemy of quality.” Under normal circumstances, consistency can be readily achieved through standardized processes, documentation (procedures), and training. However, what happens when we are forced to change our “normal?” How can we react to ensure that the “uncontrolled variation” that is thrown at us does not affect our ability to operate and maintain our assets at a high level?

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Keep Your Workforce Safe During A Pandemic

By Jon Sillerud, Uponor North America

When a worldwide pandemic brings life as we know it to a screeching halt but manufacturing operations still need to continue, how do you best prepare and protect your workforce to ensure employee safety and business continuity?

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  • Safety relay module

    HR6S safety relay module is a microcomputer-based device supporting a wide variety of connections, input devices, and operating modes while adding diagnostic and status monitoring. The module design meets ISO 13849 requirements, with one model for low-risk Safety Category 1 applications, and six models suitable for high-risk Safety Category 3 and 4 processes requiring redundancy. […]

  • Remote monitoring and control

    QCloudServer (QCS IIoT) system for remote monitoring and control applications provides connection to edge-source data, transmits it on-site or to the cloud, aggregates and logs data, performs calculations and analysis as needed, and delivers mobile/web visualization. The software reportedly connects with any user-supplied edge systems supporting MQTT. Quantum Automation Anaheim, CA quantumautomation.com

  • Handheld tachometers

    Three tachometers expand options for gathering condition-monitoring data. Models TKRT 21 and TKRT 31 are digital units, while the TKRT 25M is mechanical. All are compact, have large displays, and can be operated with one hand. The TKRT 21 uses laser or contact measurement to determine rotational and linear speeds, allowing measurement at a safe […]

  • Control valves

    Fisher V280 full-bore trunnion-mounted ball control valves for severe and specialty pressure, flow, and process-control applications, use a drive train to guide the shaft and absorb energy. Available attenuators for liquid and gas process fluids offer a solution for combatting the negative consequences of cavitation, such as vibration, erosion, and noise. Valve body connections are […]

  • Valve manifold

    The VTSA-F-CB (CB for C-Bus) pneumatic valve manifold offers serial communication that enables as many as three safety-shutdown groups per manifold. It is compatible with combinations of pilot air-control valves, soft-start exhaust valves, proportional valves, and vacuum generators. The C-Bus plug-and-play integration simplifies, speeds up, and lowers component costs when installing pneumatic safety circuits, which […]

  • Wireless transmitter

    RANGER is a battery- or solar-powered LTE-M transmitter that powers sensors and transmits their measurements over LTE-M cellular networks using the MQTT/Sparkplug messaging structure to bring data into a SignalFire cloud or an existing platform. New modules add capabilities for interfacing with HART & SDI-12 communication standards. The unit can power 15 HART devices when […]

  • Power converters

    The company has partnered with Yaskawa America to incorporate their VFD and digital single-phase converters within Single Phase engineered power systems to use application-specific parameters to deliver three-phase power from a single-phase utility. The partnership provides an IEEE 519-compliant product with a reported total harmonic distortion of less than 10%. Single Phase Power Solutions Cincinnati […]

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