The winners of the 2022 LEAP Awards (Leadership in Engineering Achievement Program) were announced earlier this week in a digital ceremony, with products across 14 categories, including Industrial Automation.
Critical to LEAP’s success is the involvement of the engineering community. The Design World editorial team assembled a top-notch independent judging panel, comprised of a cross-section of OEM design engineers and academics — 14 professionals in total. This judging team was solely responsible for the final results.
In the Industrial Automation category, the winning submissions for this year are:
DXMR90-X1 Industrial Controller
The central component of Banner Engineering’s Snap Signal system for device monitoring, the DXMR90-X1 is a smart controller that consolidates, processes, and distributes data from multiple inputs. This data can be used for analytics, condition monitoring, predictive maintenance, OEE analysis, diagnostics, and troubleshooting via the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). The slim and rugged IP67/IP68 housing features four dedicated Modbus ports and provides simplified installation by eliminating the need for a control cabinet.
By taking data from legacy sensors and other devices and processing it at the edge, converting protocols to Industrial Ethernet, and sending information where it’s needed, the DXMR90-X1 provides a simple and cost-effective way to connect existing sensors and devices without requiring expensive retrofits, overhauls, or equipment replacement, or switching everything over to the same ecosystem at great cost.
The DXMR90-X1 is easy to install, easy to operate, and delivers cost-conscious IIoT efficiency to existing systems.
The judges commented: “The DXMR90-X1 Industrial Controller is a well-executed repackaging of existing technologies that simplifies the integration of mature Modbus networked sensors into industrial networks such as Modbus TCP, EtherNet/IP, and PROFINET. The smaller footprint provides machine builders with more packaging and cabling options reducing the time to assemble and connect into existing equipment into modern control systems.”
The M.2000-SWM handle is an ideal combination of ergonomics, functionality, and compactness, developed for assembly on machine doors or protections. In addition to the handle function, M.2000-SWM handles integrate the function of a signalling light column and control box with safety contacts in 2NC (Normally Closed) or 1NO (Normally Openend) + NC (Normally Closed) configuration in a single product. With the appropriate electrical connection, it’s possible to configure the color of the LED strip to indicate the status of the guard.
The electrical and mechanical characteristics of the safety button let these handles be integrated into a safety system. By pressing the button, the operator requests access to the protected area through external logic: the power supply circuit is interrupted for allowing in the operator with the maximum safety.
The UR20 is not just a bigger version of existing UR cobots; it’s the cobot redefined, boasting an all-new joint design that increases all joint torques approximately 25% and joint speeds by as much as 65% with an increase in TCP speed to 2 m/sec from 1 m/sec. The UR20 can handle heavier loads – up to 20 kg with a greater reach of (1,750 mm). It’s the lightest robot on the market in its payload and reach class, weighing only 64 kg with a small footprint. The updated software enables motion control capabilities with smoother motion, especially beneficial for dispensing applications, and less wear on the joints for increased uptime and decreases maintenance.
Red Lion Controls
Graphical Panel Meter, PM-50
Red Lion’s next-generation panel meter, the PM-50, is a graphical panel meter that’s available as a 3.5-inch or 4.3-inch graphical touchscreen display. Using simple “swipe” technology, users can easily switch between relevant screens and receive comprehensive operational data for monitoring equipment and production. Visual alerts notify users that immediate action is necessary, either on the unit itself or via the PM-50 app, available on Google Play or Apple Store.
The PM-50 offers built-in Wi-Fi connectivity for users to remotely access critical workflow and process data from the confines of the plant floor to create a smarter plant floor. Wired connectivity is also an option via Ethernet and Modbus. The PM-50 is easy to install, program, and expand and can replace a meter with a 1/8 or 1/16 DIN panel cut out. An on-device programming wizard, mobile app, or web browser provides an easy and intuitive setup.
Richardson Electronics, Ltd.
Ultracapacitor-based energy storage solutions have significantly enhanced reliability in electric pitch control systems. Ultracapacitors, unlike batteries, have the ability to deliver quick bursts of power in a short time frame, an ideal function for emergency pitching in a wind turbine generator. The ULTRA3000 Pitch Energy Module product line from Richardson Electronics, Ltd. is a drop-in replacement for batteries on 20 and 30 Nm pitch systems. It features a wide operating temperature range from -40 to 65°C with no hazardous chemicals.
With over 1 million charge-discharge cycles, the ULTRA3000 Pitch Energy Module can provide 15-plus years of reliable operation without maintenance. Other benefits include no modifications to existing battery box or harness and no loss of batteries or power supplies due to motor regeneration.
Congratulations to all of this year’s winners!
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