Discover how Phoenix Contact can light up your day – with cabinet lighting, that is

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Written by Andy Maskell, Product Manager – I/O Systems

Ok, it is a bold statement I know…

But have you ever worked on a control cabinet and wished someone had thought to install cabinet lighting?

Instead you have a torch balanced somewhere or taped to the side of the panel. It’s usually late at night and just to make matters even worse you’re under pressure. Let’s be honest, it is not a great place to be.

Lights installed in control cabinets are not a new thing but up until now they have been large, expensive and in need of regular maintenance and as a result have not been seen as a necessity, but more of a nuisance.

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Cable Guiding System – Don’t make life stressful for your conductors

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Written by Scott Mullholland, Product Manager – Industrial Components

cable guidance image

Most of us reach for the tried and tested zip tie to manage our cables. Why wouldn’t we? They’re cheap, easy to use and can generally be found lying around most work-shop benches. There is no special training required and quite a hefty bunch of conductors can be quickly brought into line.

The maxim ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ springs to mind.

Here at Phoenix Contact, we recognise that re-inventing the wheel is not a particularly attractive or sustainable business approach.

That being said, we also recognise that in a lot of instances, a fistful of zip ties or a hastily sourced piece of flexible conduit might not be the most effective approach to taking your conductors to the control cabinet door.

If the cabinet door has a very busy frontage populated with various buttons, meters, LCD panels , sockets, HMI etc. It may pay you to take a more structured approach to how you organise and manage your cables. We can forget the importance of cable management certainly in safety critical applications, environments and sectors where the process is paramount to maintaining continuous production, protecting the integrity of your connections. Realistically, by managing the cables/conductors that service those connections, makes a great deal of sense.

Our Cable Guidance System (CGS) offers you the capability to do all of the above.

The benefits of which are probably best illustrated in this short video clip.

The CGS comes in two basic formats. The first uses a thread through approach to managing your cables i.e. you literally feed (or thread) through your conductors, once this is done, the cables are effectively managed from there on in, and will be protected from adverse strain on opening and closing the cabinet door. This is the CGS 50.

The other option is the grey/orange version (CGSA 50). The general rule on Phoenix products is that if it is orange, it either moves or actuates something. In this case, the orange articulated joints can be moved to the ‘open’ position (please refer to video) to enable you to add or remove cables very quickly and very easily, thus ‘future-proofing’ your installation.


Finally, further protection (and to neaten up the process) can be added by choosing the clip on cover CGS-AH 50

Main features

  • Cable entry opening: 42 mm
  • Number of cables at 1.5 mm²: maximum 100 pieces
  • Opening angle of the control cabinet door: maximum 180°
  • Insulation material: PC
  • Flammability rating in accordance with UL 94: V0

For more information on the CGS or to arrange a sample, please contact your local Phoenix sales engineer

Scott Mullholland

Product Manager – Industrial Components
Tel: +44(0)1952 681 700
Fax: +44(0)1952 681 739
Mobile: +44(0) 7908 583 375

Discover our WLAN access point solution for potentially explosive areas

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Dave Hall, Industry Manager – Process Industry


Happy Monday All,

When I have been discussing applications in the process environment, I have seen that more and more design engineers are using Ethernet as their chosen protocol for data transmission. Many opting to send signals by wireless Ethernet avoiding long cable runs around plants. This is fine on a standard production line like a car plant, but what happens on a gas platform out in the North Sea, an oil refinery or a petro-chemical plant or in fact any process plant with hazardous areas?


Phoenix Contact has a simple answer for this, the combinations unit OGL-SC-WLAN-5100-EX-2  is a single enclosure consisting of the Phoenix WLAN 5100  access point, mains power supply, surge protection – already mounted within a polyester Ex approved enclosure and fitted with Ex cable entry glands and antennas, the whole unit certified to be used in hazardous potentially explosive areas.

It can be used as a WLAN access point, a repeater or a client which gives you great flexibility.

Your advantages are:

  • Maximum safety in Zone 2 potentially explosive areas
  • Create industrial WLAN networks easily and reliably – with intuitive planning and configuration concepts
  • Particularly secure, thanks to the latest security standards and encryption
  • Flexible in physical terms, thanks to ranges covering several hundred meters
  • Suitable for use outdoors, thanks to housing made from fiberglass-reinforced plastic with integrated antennas
  • Easy installation, thanks to integrated power supply unit for supplies with 100 V AC … 240 V AC


  • wlan_blog_image

This unit has many features lending itself to the oil and gas industry, a few to mention are safe and secure transmission over long distances, high data rates 300Mbs, optimised not only for Ethernet IP but also Profinet


Although relatively a new product it is already used within the oil and gas industry – specifically on a large tank farm in the Netherlands for monitoring temperatures preventing overheating and thus fire prevention throughout the site. The customer opted for this Phoenix solution as it answered all his concerns about transmitting signals over long distances securely and reliably. Other applications include assisting the controls on a large rotating crane for lifting support vessels used in offshore production.

Are you working on projects involved in transmission of signals in hazardous areas?

If so contact me for more details.

Contact Dave Hall, Industry Manager – Process Industry

Call: 07970 498812


Getting to Know Electronic Circuit Breakers with IO-Link

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Written by Mark Lloyd, Product Marketing Manager, Power Supplies and Surge Protection

For my latest blog I want to talk about our latest Electronic Circuit Breaker, yet I am slightly stepping out of my comfort zone because this product features IO-Link functionality, which is something that is usually associated sensors and actuators and not with circuit breakers. However there is an increasing trend towards the integration of circuit protection into industrial networks and in response to this we have now released the CBMC electronic circuit breaker with an IO-Link interface.

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Monday Blog – RFID marking, because life is too short

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Written by Andy Neat, Product Manager, Marking and Installation


Morning everyone. Thanks for clicking the link and welcome to another Monday morning rambling from myself, only this time on RFID markers. I can sense the excitement!


I have blogged about RFID before, and with the reputation that movie sequels have these days it would appear I’m doomed at keeping your attention with this blog sequel, so let’s hope this blog is more ‘Empire Strikes Back’ and not ‘Jurassic Park II’.

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Monday Blog – Discover inspiring solutions within the water industry

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Written by Mark Cain

On my 10th week with Phoenix Contact I visited the Phoenix offices in Bad Pyrmont with a visit to Blomberg as well. Joachim Pucker, Global Industry Manager for Water and Waste Water and Hauke Abbas, Industry Manager for Water and Waste Water were excellent hosts for the three days. Among other things, we discussed some of the projects completed in the water industry in Germany and different solutions that have been created for specific applications.

Two solutions which were of particular interest were a wet well and pump control and monitoring system. Both can be ordered on single part numbers and offer a complete solution for these particular applications. They both come pre-programmed which removes the need for a trained technician to programme the plc, just power up the system, set some simple parameters on the HMI and you are good to go.

watermanagement_well Continue reading

Monday Blog – How to manage your Ethernet

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Written by Andrew Maskell


 “Ethernet” has become one of the most common used words in industry nowadays.

This is due to the fact that everything around us is being connected to it in one form or another.

As we begin to incorporate more and more into our networks it is inevitable we need to come up with better ways of managing these and making sure we stay in control.

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Everything for Best Switching – What’s new in our relay offers

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Written by Fraser Cowie, Product Marketing Manager – Interface


Phoenix Contact are synonymous with bringing out new and exciting offers on a regular basis, but we are perfectionists and are not against tinkering with an existing best seller if we feel it can be improved.

Here are some new additions and options within our PLC and RIF relay offers:


Phoenix Contact are synonymous with bringing out new and exciting offers on a regular basis, but we are perfectionists and are not against tinkering with an existing best seller if we feel it can be improved.

Here are some new additions and options within our PLC and RIF relay offers:

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Written by Duncan Nicol, Market Segment Manager, Device Connectionsrobot_hand_imageSolutions for a Connected World.

Phoenix Contact’s position as a global market leader in device connection technology, industrial control and automation solutions is achieved by developing “Inspiring Innovations”. With thousands of new products launched each year, we lead the way in product development and innovation.

At the Electronics Design Show (EDS) this year we will be showcasing the very latest in device connection technology together with electronics enclosure solutions for embedded systems.  This year’s highlight products include the SKEDD direct plug-in PCB connectors, M12 power connectors, UCS & ECS enclosures for embedded systems & harsh environments, and electric vehicle charging solutions.

Design for manufacturer.

Device connectivity is much more that finding the correct connector for the job. When considering a new project we focus on both the application and production process in order to achieve the best overall solution for the customer. Working in partnership with our customers enables us to support them throughout the design process to achieve the most cost effective and technically appropriate solution.

As an example, in today’s highly automated production environment it is important to consider the production process together with the functionality of the end product. If the design calls for a PCB terminal for a cable cross section of 1.5mm2 with push in technology this is often driven by the need to improve the final assembly (wiring) of the product either in the factory or in the field. In this instance the obvious choice may be the PTSA 1,5 which meets the design criteria. However the PTDA is a wave soldered part and the remainder of the BOM is designed for reflow soldering. Therefore to avoid a secondary soldering process the better solution may be the SPT-THR 1,5 as this meets the design criteria and is designed for reflow soldering saving assembly time and production costs.

The SPT is also available as a surface mount part (SPT-SMD) providing the additional benefit of freeing up space on the underside of the PCB.

If you are planning to visit EDS this year please drop by to the Phoenix Contact stand M18 to discuss your next project.

Visit us at EDS on the 18th and 19th of October, Ricoh Arena, Coventry

For more information click here.

For more information of the DATA-SIGNAL-POWER options from Phoenix Contact email Duncan Nichol on

TERMITRAB Complete – Much More Than Just Surge Protection

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Written by Mark Lloyd, Product Marketing Manager, Power Supplies and Surge Protection

A few months back, I blogged that we had developed and released a complete family of new Surge Protection Devices specifically for Measurement Control and Regulation or MCR applications. In other words, protecting signal lines. The new range, called Termitrab Complete (henceforward referred to as TTC) was officially unveiled at The Hannover Fair this year, and despite the family not even having been on the market for a year, I am reliably informed that there are already an additional 30+ new articles in planning to be released in 2018. But that is for a future blog.

While protecting power systems from transient surges is relatively well established, I still detect a bit more reluctance to accept that signal lines also need to be protected.

So, why would you need to protect signal lines? Well, lightning discharges during storms are a frequent cause of transient surge voltages and even remote lightning strikes can have an effect on electronics due to the rise in potential in the ground due to the earth resistance and the lightning current. This increase in potential continues via the grounding system and the equipotential bonding conductors and can particularly damage the insulation of devices and cables. As well as that, the electromagnetic field produced by lightning can and does affect signal lines by induction and so components such as field instruments connected by cables laid over long distances in open spaces are particularly at risk. Even cables within buildings can be affected and ultimately whether SPD’s are fitted to signal lines is a decision based upon a financial consideration. Can the end user afford to lose an instrument, or an i/o card and the resultant downtime. It has to be said that it is not just lightning but also inductive and capacitive switching processes that can also lead to coupling of unwanted transients on signal lines. Continue reading