When Power Distribution Meets Push-in Technology

From |

QPD, which is short for QUICKON Power Distribution, is the brain child of Phoenix Contact. Since its launch, it has been well received by many customers in the lighting industry. As the name suggests, it provides easy and efficient power distribution through QUICKON, also known as insulation displacement connection.

QPD consists of a huge variety of connectors such as a 1-in-3-out distributor and cable extender, which offers the flexibility and convenience needed when laying power cables for various lighting infrastructures. Granted that QPD is made of plastic and is very lightweight, it provides up to Ingress Protection (IP) 69k which basically makes it submersible.

However, Phoenix Contact did not stop there. With the increasing popularity of automation, many companies want to minimize manual work. While QUICKON is a fantastic connection technology, it has limitations when comes to automation.  It is neither easy nor cheap to design a machine that could automate cable termination via QUICKON.

Thus, we made the great product even BETTER.

IPD (Installation Power Distribution) designed with Push-in technology, is optimized for automation. As Push-in motion is simple and linear, it is easier and more economical to design a machine to automate the insertion of stranded cables with ferrules/solid cables via Push-in technology. The removal of cables works the same as Phoenix Contact’s Push-in terminal block. Push in the classic orange release button with a screw driver to open up the cage within the connector and gently pull out the cable.

IPD is the perfect panel feed-through for lighting connection and has up to IP 67 protection which is suitable for use with outdoor lightings. IPD comes in classic white, which blends in seamlessly when installed on lighting devices. No hassle is needed to tuck the connector away – it could be installed in plain sight and would still look good.

To receive e-brochure of QPD and IPD, feel free to get in touch with us at marketing@phoenixcontact.com.sg!

Sensor Actuator Cabling for Smart Manufacturing

From |

Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Fotothek_df_ps_0000315_Montagehalle_einer_Maschinenfabrik.jpg

Machine building has evolved greatly over the years. Traditionally, it was classified under heavy industries, usually on a smaller scale and served mostly local or regional areas. However, as a result of the industrial revolution, machines became larger and more complex. The process of producing machines had also become more complicated as well.

Automation is adopted to reduce the production cost and increase productivity. It also lessens the reliance on labour and improves the reliability and quality of machines. All the above mentioned qualities are needed for modern day machine makers to stay competitive in the market.

Data acquisition becomes crucial. In machine building, data such as temperature, pressure, speed and proximity etc. can be attained via sensors. These sensors collect information and send them back to the control system.

In the beginning, the sensors were wired directly to the control system without any organisation. This method of connection is messy. It also makes troubleshooting and maintenance difficult as it is challenging to isolate the defective sensors when a fault occurs. In addition, this way of connecting sensors requires a large amount of cables, leading to increased manufacturing cost of the machines. In many cases, cables take up the bulk of the cost involved in the set up.

As a result, more and more machine builders start to adopt sensor and actuator cabling.  In sensor and actuator cabling, the sensors are connected to a distribution box via circular connectors. The distribution box is then connected to the control system via one master cable. Sensor and actuator cabling greatly reduces the amount of cables required in a set up. It also makes troubleshooting and maintenance easier. There is a LED light indicator (which turns red when a malfunction occurs) and a labelling option (for easy identification of the sensors) for each sensor on the distribution box.

Phoenix Contact offers a wide range of products, from distribution boxes to self-assembled connectors, for sensor and actuator cabling. The self-assembled connector comes with different connection technologies to minimise the installation time and eliminate the use of special tools. We advocate choosing the connection technologies based on your applications. Phoenix Contact had also incorporated the famous Push-in Technology into the self-assembled connector. It could be used with or without ferrules, depending on your preference.

If you prefer pre-fabricated connectors, Phoenix Contact can also cater to your exact needs. We offer different cable materials, from polyvinyl chloride (PVC) to high specification robotic cables of customisable length and a wide variety of header types. Other customisation options such as colour, printing and labelling can be done as well.

Furthermore, Phoenix Contact has a wide array of accessories such as distributor connectors, adapters and valve plug connectors as we strive to be the one-stop provider for sensor actuator cabling solutions.

Interested to know what we can provide for your applications, write to us at marketing@phoenixcontact.com.sg to request for a roadshow to know more!

Direct Connection Adaptivity

From |

Connect adaptivity directly: SKEDD direct connection technology brings new flexibility to device design

SKEDD direct connection technology makes device design more flexible

Whether modern climate and ventilation systems in building technology or compact controllers in classic industrial applications, intelligent automation structures require functionally embedded systems. This poses a challenge to device manufacturers to develop universally operational solutions for specific tasks and ambient conditions. SKEDD direct connection technology revitalizes PCB connection technology.

The first direct connector in the world with Push-in spring connection allows application-specific device designs with just a few PCB layouts

Increased device flexibility – that is to say, adaptability – means that fewer versions need to be produced and made available – and overall unit costs are lower. PCBs and connection components are the central nervous system of electronics and as such have a large impact on the performance and flexibility of electrical devices.

More flexibility thanks to SKEDD

The innovative direct connection technology SKEDD –Swedish for “it happened” – makes direct pluggable and detachable PCB connections at any position on the PCB possible for the first time. The SKEDD connector types SDDC 1,5 and SDC 2,5 from Phoenix Contact no longer require headers – they can be plugged in via tin-plated through-connection bore holes by hand. The advantage: In the past, the electronics manufacturer needed to combine application-specific connection technology such as PCB terminal blocks or headers with the PCB using an irreversible soldering process. This largely dictated functionality of the PCB and the overall device. SKEDD direct connection technology makes this process unnecessary; only the corresponding bore holes need to be provided in PCB manufacturing process. In this way, the PCB does not become thermally loaded again.

Currently, many PCBs are processed first in the SMD method, and PCB terminal blocks or headers are soldered on as the second step in the wave soldering process. If the second soldering process is removed, the operator saves process and component costs. This also makes all logistics and materials planning for the headers unnecessary. Equipment costs and feeder space requirements are also reduced when using the SMD soldering process. Accordingly, there is more space for additional components when the header is omitted using the SMD process. In an ideal case, additional modules can even be produced on a single system without conversion.

Reliable mechanical connection

Both PCB and device manufacturers see immediate benefits from this technology. In addition to saving costs, they are now able to use a single PCB layout for different device designs – and still implement flexible application-specific connections for signal, data or power transmission.

Single- and double-row direct connectors offer solutions for countless applications such as climate control systems, smoke and fire alarms or large household appliances

SKEDD contacts are an improvement on press-in technology, and they place no special requirements on the PCB. The contact zone consists of two flexible contact limbs that are easy to bend outward and that are adapted optimally to the plated-through bore holes. When inserting the contact into the bore hole, the contact limbs are pressed together – thereby ensuring a secure mechanical and electrical connection. Lateral body-bound rivets on the connector increase the mechanical stability as well. The interlock is designed for standard PCBs with a thickness of 1.6 mm and allows for up to 25 connecting cycles.

SKEDD contacts consist of two flexible contact limbs that are easy to bend outward and that are adapted optimally to the plated-through bore holes

Tests in accordance with the railway equipment and household appliances standards

In addition to the required approval and qualification tests, the SKEDD direct connectors from Phoenix Contact meet the highest requirements of mechanical and electrical safety. The series SDDC 1,5 and SDC 2,5, for example, are qualified for special fire protection requirements in accordance with DIN EN 60335-1 (“Household and similar electrical appliances – Safety”). Included in this standard are household appliances such as dishwashers, washing machines and portable cooking appliances, drives for awnings and blinds, heating units, climate systems and heat and cooling circulation pumps in private and commercial areas.

Two tests prove the capability of the electrical components and the polyamide insulating material used. First, a glow-wire with a temperature of 850 °C is applied to the material for 30 seconds. The Glow-Wire Flammability Index(GWFI) test is successfully passed if the test plate continues to glow less than 30 seconds after removing the glow-wire. The second test establishes the Glow-Wire Ignition Temperature (GWIT). For this test, a glow-wire with a temperature of 775 °C is held to the plastic test plate. The material may glow briefly, but for less than 5 seconds, and it may not ignite.

The SDC 2,5 single-row connectors are also qualified and approved for PCBs with HAL surfaces (Hot Air Levelling, surface protection) in accordance with DIN EN 61373 (“Railway applications – Rolling stock equipment – Shock and vibration tests”). These standards place high demands on the vibration-proof and shock-proof capabilities of devices and components used in trains. For this test, the connectors were exposed to 15 hours – five hours per spatial axis – of random vibrations with a frequency of 1 to 150 Hz and an effective acceleration of up to 5.72 m/s². Interruption of the contact may not exceed 1 µs during this process.

A wide range of solutions

The standardized tests attest to how reliable the direct connection technology functions, even under demanding ambient conditions and high safety requirements. SKEDD direct connectors are suited for classic industrial applications as well as for applications in building automation and railway technology.

The SDDC 1,5 and SDC 2,5 product series from Phoenix Contact offers solutions for countless applications such as climate control in rail vehicles, smoke and fire alarms or large household appliances. Both series feature tool-free push-in spring connection: This means that both solid and stranded conductors with ferrules can be connected without opening the clamping space. The integrated test points enable convenient function checks when loaded. Designed for conductor cross sections up to 2.5 mm², the single-row SDC 2,5 direct connectors are suited for currents up to 320 V. The double-row connectors from type SDDC 1,5 offer an efficient connection solution specifically for signal densities that are often high in measuring, control and regulation technology.

SKEDD direct connectors are suited for backside PCB connections, for example, or for internal device wiring

Summary

Tool-free, reliable and process-efficient – the combination of Push-in spring connection and SKEDD direct connection technology offers new flexibility in device wiring. SKEDD connectors do not require headers and can be plugged in directly by hand in tin-plated through-connection bore holes. This enables PCB and device manufacturers to implement countless device designs with application-specific connections for signals, data and power using just a few PCB layouts. Various tests have proven it: Whether for applications with high vibration requirements like railway technology or with special fire protection requirements like in household device technology – direct connectors with SKEDD technology are an interesting new solution.

Single- and double-row direct connectors

Phoenix Contact offers single- and double-row direct connectors with the series SDDC 1,5 and SDC 2,5.

The advantages at a glance:

Flexible positioning on the PCB

  • Easy to plug in by hand and create vibration-proof connection
  • Reduced component and process costs
  • Tool-free, time-saving connection with Push-in technology
  • Intuitive operation, thanks to color-coded push button
  • Quick and convenient testing using integrated testing option
  • Single- and double-row designs for up to 32 connection positions
  SDDC 1,5 SDC 2,5
Contact arrangement Double row Single row
Grid 3.5 mm 5.0 mm
Current 8 A 12 A
Voltage 160 V (IEC)

300 V (UL)

320 V (IEC)

300 V (UL)

Number of positions 2-16
(4-32 contacts)
1-16
Conductor cross section (solid and stranded conductors) 0.2 to 1.5 mm², AWG 24-16 0.2 to 2.5 mm², AWG 24-12

Feel free to contact us at marketing@phoenixcontact.com.sg to find out more!

The “Gasket” Nightmare

From |

I was a project engineer working for a Building Automation Solutions company about twenty years ago. It was my first experience working with electrical and control junction boxes which housed all the required controllers, terminal blocks, networking devices, circuit breakers, power supplies etc.

Back then, it was very laborious and time-consuming to install the equipment inside the junction boxes as all the internal and field wiring were needed as well in order to complete the working installation. This was then followed by the need to request for the end user to witness and approve the Factory Acceptance Test (FAT), Site Acceptance Test, and Testing & Commissioning etc. before we could wrap up the project and finally invoice the client accordingly.

My “nightmare” happened two months into a completed project when several previously-installed outdoor “Weather Proof” IP 66 junction boxes were found with rainwater seeping into the panel that destroyed the electrical/electronic components.

Upon further investigation, it was discovered that the rubber gasket which was supposed to keep the water and dust out of the junction boxes was made of inferior material. The problem was compounded after constant exposure to adverse weather elements in those two months after installation works were completed.

On hindsight, the failure of the gasket had resulted in the need to replace all the damaged components as well as the need to re-install the junction box and re-arrange all the required testing.

As a result of this incident, the end user lost confidence with the rest of the working Junction Boxes and we needed to replace all the installed outdoor “Weather Proof” IP 66 junction boxes so as to regain the customer’s faith in our products.

Thus, when Phoenix Contact first launched the new innovation of Clipsafe Ex Junction Boxes, the very first thing I examined was the gasket. I am relieved to learn that the gasket is of superior quality and has been put through rigorous testing and certification regimes. Thus, I am convinced and assured that similar incidents like my previous encounter will not repeat itself. I will be proud when I promote these Junction Boxes that will address my customers’ needs.

Want to find out more? Feel free to contact us at marketing@phoenixcontact.com.sg!

Solutions for the Transport Industry

From |

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) with its 10 member countries has a combined population of over 640 Million people and a market of US$2.8 trillion as of year 2017. Collectively, this is the third largest economy in Asia and the seventh largest in the world. Over the last decade, ASEAN GDP growth averaged at 5.4%, higher than the global GDP growth of 3.6%. It is forecasted that ASEAN will emerge as the world’s fourth largest economy by year 2030.

To support the fast growing economies in ASEAN, it is not difficult to notice the development projects in the area of Transport, Power and Water & Waste-water.

Taking the transport industry for example, urbanisation has driven populations in Southeast Asian cities to swelling points, averaging between 1 million inhabitants (e.g. Da Nang) and up to 10 million inhabitants (e.g. Jakarta). This has posed a huge challenge to city municipals when traffic gridlocks bring businesses and daily life to a standstill, resulting in huge economic losses.

To tackle this problem, public mass transport systems (i.e. Monorail, Metro) have been put into city planning. Improvement works to road infrastructure has been carried out, with new highways and road tunnels being planned and built.

Contributing to road tunnel safety, Phoenix Contact has developed the Advanced Tunnel Solution (ATS) for Tunnel Lighting control. Depending on the external ambient light condition, the controllers adjust the light intensity with precision through dimming, to attain the ideal illumination for the tunnel zones illustrated above. This “demand oriented” solution provides significant energy savings when compared with the conventional solution we see today, enabling energy efficiency and reducing carbon footprint.

To enhance the speed of deployment onsite, the installation-ready control cabinet solutions (BTS, ATS, TCS) only require simple configuration of the system, without the need for any tedious programming work.

While cable installation and system connectivity is dubbed as the most labour intensive, the versatile and robust QPD installation system with its tried-and-tested QUICKON fast connection technology, allows for effortless distribution of power and data signal.

Looking through the wide range of reliable and excellent quality products portfolio (e.g. Surge protection, Industrial networking, Firewall for Cyber Security), Phoenix Contact constantly strives to develop new innovative industry solutions, to fuel the regional growth in our own ways.

Want to find out more? Feel free to contact us at marketing@phoenixcontact.com.sg!

Phoenix Contact Motor Managers

From |

A motor manager from Phoenix Contact deserves more attention than it gets, as it is a product built with the same quality and technical understanding of the Phoenix Contact brand. Motor managers from Phoenix Contact monitor motors for overload and underload, function, dirt, and wear. One can therefore provide permanent protection for pumps, actuating drives, fans, and machine tools, just to name a few examples. It offers full motor protection for both bimetal and thermistor, and also monitors all electric paramaters such as real power, current, voltage, and cos phi.

One of the applications of the Phoenix Contact Motor Manager is the underload detection in a pump. In the example pictured above, the continuous dry running of the pump will cause the pump to be damaged without any motor manager. With the motor manager, it will lower the power threshold and then stop the pump completely to prevent any hazardous dry running of the pump.

Another application of the Phoenix Contact motor manager is the overload detection in a machine tool. For example, if the feed value on a milling machine is set too high, the tool might break due to overload. Therefore, with the motor manager, one can set the power threshold accordingly to fit the milling process. Furthermore, with the motor manager, one can also detect tool wear in advance.

The advantages of using Phoenix Contact Motor Managers:

  • Integrated full motor protection
  • Protects high-grade system parts
  • High system availability
  • Saves the cost of sensors
  • Easy configuration and diagnostics
  • ATEX-certified for Ex e motors
  • Connection to controller via bus gateway
  • Parameterization via FDT/DTM concept with IFS-Conf software
  • Process data such as performance values, operating hours, and switching cycles are safely transmitted between field and control level

On top of that, the Phoenix Contact Motor Manager can also be use together with the CONTACTRON, which is a hybrid motor starter. The CONTACTRON can increase the reliability of the motor starter to ten times compared to conventional contactors solution, reduce space requirement by up to 89%, and saves labour cost due to significantly less wiring effort. Do visit Phoenix Contact’s blog or website for more information on CONTACTRON, or drop us an email at marketing@phoenixcontact.com.sg.

Less is More – Single Pair Ethernet

From |

Ethernet has come a long way. First developed in the 1980s, Ethernet has progressed so much over the past years. Modern day industrial Ethernet has become one of the main communication technologies in Automation. Being able to be transferred via copper cabling, fiber optics and even without any cable (Wireless), Ethernet protocol provides a strong foundation for customization, opening endless possibilities for new applications.

While the requirements for Ethernet continue to increase, governed by the ever-higher performance categories (Cat7, even Cat8), new standards for lower data transmission rate also emerge – Single Pair Ethernet.

Initially used in automotive industry, the Reduced Twisted Pair Ethernet helped streamline and reduce cabling cost and effort. It also reduces the weight of the vehicle which in turn improves its fuel consumption.

Besides reducing cabling cost and effort, this opens up the possibility of data transmission via copper cabling over a much longer distance, for example 1,000 m. This makes many applications that were previously unachievable with Industrial Ethernet, attainable with Single Pair Ethernet. Besides an additional data rate of 1 Gpbs over a longer distance, SPE allows Power-over-Ethernet of up to 60 Watts. Of course, that alone is not enough. Data connectors to be used with Single Pair Ethernet have to comply with high requirements such as high shock and vibration resistance for the industries such as Process Automation.

Stay tuned for more updates on Single Pair Ethernet, or get in touch with us at marketing@phoenixcontact.com.sg to find out more!

Redefining Laser Marking

From |

Phoenix Contact would like to introduce a facelift version of our laser printing machine, TOPMARK NEO.

It is back, more compact, more economical and with more effective software!

Phoenix Contact provides both the printer as well as the material that you need. In a one stop solution, it saves you the trouble of searching for different vendors for your process. Within the footprint of 180 by 180mm, it is able to engrave on materials such as aluminium, stainless steel, Transply-ABS, UCT terminal cards, and polyacrylate! We have more than 620 materials for you to choose from.

Topmark NEO has a footprint of 580mm X 615mm, weighing no more than 50 kg and qualified as a Class 1 Laser machine. At the side, it has a HMI device for direct printing or connecting it through a laptop where you can create your templates or printings too.

The story doesn’t end here, even if you are not interested to get the printer itself. If you need just the marking, no problem! Phoenix Contact provides the printing services for all of them. Contact us now at marketing@phoenixcontact.com.sg if you would like to know more about it!

Stay Relevant with LinkedIn Career Page

From |

Digital transformation is no longer a challenge for the employees of today, as they are quick enough in adapting to these changes. This in turn makes it necessary for employers like us to be more up to date with technology in order to stay relevant. 

In this highly competitive digital business environment, it is crucial to stay competitive and marketable. We need to make sure that we are continuously improving and evaluating ourselves regularly. One of the key factors involved is to attract and hire the right personnel.

Perception is everything – getting the right perception about the organization across, to the people that matter most (the jobseeker), is a necessary first step to attract and ultimately hire the most qualified candidates in today’s competitive market.  

That is why we are thrilled to introduce our Phoenix Contact SEA LinkedIn Career Page, the latest platform that helps to elevate our organisation’s culture and hopefully to attract the 450 million professionals worldwide on LinkedIn.  We specially created this page to make it significantly easier for candidates to understand our company, culture, career opportunities and to improve discoverability of job openings.

Wait no more and click here to check on our LinkedIn Career Page, or look below for a preview!

Leave it to the PROfessional

From |

Many may know that Phoenix Contact places a lot on emphasis on innovation. New products are being created every year to satisfy the market needs. Automation has been the hottest topic in town and many industry players have been riding on the bandwagon. A fast and efficient system needs to be reliable as well. The value of automation cannot be fully realised without dependable components. Connectors, being one of the core components used in machines such as robotics, should not be neglected.

M17-M40 PRO series is a facelift from the original M17-M40 connectors.  Phoenix Contact makes a good connector better. M17-M40 PRO series comes with the highest cross manufacturer compatibility worldwide. Detailed CT scan and tolerance analysis had been carried out to ensure good connectivity and minimum losses for retrofitting.

Patented locking system, ONECLICK gives you optic, haptic and acoustic feedback when it is connected. So you can see, feel and hear your connector being connected. This is extremely helpful if you have the plug in the connector that is out of your line of sight.

Shielding is important to reduce electrical noises and eliminate signal loss. In order for the shielding to be effective, it has to be connected correctly to the connector. M17-M40 PRO series is designed not only to have effective shielding, but it can be easily terminated without any tools.

M17-M40 connectors are often used in servo motors which are installed at joints of robot to actuate the movement, giving the robot arm its precise angle. This application usually has stringent requirements such as vibration resistance up to 20G. Of course, M17-M40 PRO series is able to live up to the test and more. Both locking systems (standard and ONECLICK) are tested with vibration resistance of MORE than 20G.

PRO series comes in 3 sizes- M17, M23 and M40 with signal and power connection. Interested to try out all the benefits mentioned above? Get in touch with us at marketing@phoenixcontact.com.sg!