Energy efficient obsolete technology has a new name.


You may already be familiar with the phrase ‘Eco Obsolete Technology’ (EOT), but you may not be aware of what it refers to or how it came about. The phrase was created by obsolete automation components supplier, European Automation as a way of referring to obsolete technology that is energy efficient and therefore compliant with the latest energy efficiency standards.

EPA272The lion’s share of European Automation’s sales comes from obsolete industrial automation parts that can be several decades old. In recent years, European Automation’s sales team noticed an increase in the energy efficiency requirements of its clients, as a result of tightening energy regulations for industry. The concept of Eco Obsolete Technology was born out of the need to make conversations with clients easier.

“With international standards such as ISO 50001 and programmes like the Ecodesign Directive and the Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme, being energy efficient is as important as being cost efficient to many plant managers,” explains Jonathan Wilkins, marketing director of European Automation. “Implementing Eco Obsolete Technology fulfils both objectives, reducing your carbon footprint whilst avoiding a costly system upgrade.

“Over specification is a historic issue in the world of industrial automation, especially when it comes to motors. It is not until the equipment is tested by a lead assessor that energy efficiency questions start being asked.”

“Many business owners think that cutting their carbon footprint will prove costly. In fact, by implementing Eco Obsolete Technology in your facility, you can significantly improve your efficiency for a considerably smaller cost,” explains Jeremy Lefroy, current MP for Stafford constituency. “Across the UK, many manufacturers are already using Eco Obsolete Technology without knowing it. By giving this type of technology a name, European Automation is reaching out to the industry as a whole and encouraging the conversation on energy efficiency.”

European Automation can provide almost any spare EOT part to be retrofitted into a system. With a vast network of authorised suppliers, European Automation sources and delivers energy efficient obsolete parts anywhere in the world in record time. European Automation also publishes online magazine, AUTOMATED, which focuses on industry specific content such as special reports and useful guides. The magazine is published in print every three months.

@EUAuto #EOT #Environment #PAuto

Report productronica 2015 – “The world’s leading trade fair where the future is the present!”


On its 40th anniversary, productronica featured plenty of innovations including augmented reality, robotics in electronics manufacturing and the productronica innovation award. Some 38,000 visitors from nearly 80 countries took part in the World’s Leading Trade Fair for Electronics Development and Production. The share of visitors from Asia was up considerably.


Falk Senger, Managing Director at Messe München, drew a positive conclusion: “During the past four days of the fair, we have experienced the industry’s unbelievable innovative strength. That underscores productronica’s position as an international industry gathering for electronics development and production.” 

productronicaReleases received from exhibitors!

Rainer Kurtz, Chairman of productronica’s Technical Advisory Board, CEO of kurtz ersa and Chairman of the VDMA Electronics, Micro and Nano Technologies (EMINT) Association, sees positive signals for the industry: “There are so many opportunities to drive our business forward. Industry 4.0 is a new market with a great deal of growth potential. And in automotive electronics, all the driver assistance systems are giving electronics production a considerable boost.” The latest figures from a VDMA survey about the business climate verify that. According to studies, growth rates of approximately 15 percent are expected between now and 2018—among other things due to Industry 4.0, the automotive industry, wireless network technologies and mobile communication.

According to a survey by market research institute TNS Infratest, 93 percent of visitors said that productronica met their expectations regarding innovations.

Some 38,000 visitors from nearly 80 countries attended the trade fair in Munich—roughly the same high level as in previous years. According to a survey by market research institute TNS Infratest, visitor satisfaction is very high: 97 percent of visitors gave the fair a rating of good to excellent.

The sharpest increase in attendance was the number of visitors from Asia—and from China, Japan, Malaysia and Singapore in particular. After Germany, the countries with the largest number of visitors were as follows (in this order): Italy, Austria, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, the Russian Federation and Great Britain.

Successful premiere: productronica innovation award
Panel member Prof. Lothar Pfitzner from the Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Systems and Device Technology IISB, is convinced by the award’s concept: “Given global competition, it is important to further strengthen machine manufacturers, material producers and information technology suppliers in Europe. productronica and the brand new productronica innovation award play an important role for the economy, but also for the scientific sector, and they strengthen horizontal and vertical cooperation. In doing so, they satisfy a key prerequisite for rapid implementation in system development and the user industry.”

Of the more than 70 submissions, awards were presented to the following winners in five cluster categories: Fuji Machine in the PCB & EMS cluster, Rehm Thermal in the SMT cluster, F&K Delvotec in the Semiconductors cluster, Schleuniger in the Cables, Coils & Hybrids cluster, and Asys in the Future Markets cluster.

IT2Industry, the Exhibition and Open Conference for Intelligent, Digitally Networked Working Environments, was held in conjunction with productronica for the first time ever. The final report for IT2Industry is available in German on the website.

The trade fairs productronica and electronica are held in alternating years, making Munich the most important place for the electronics industry to meet.

• The next electronica takes place from November 8 to 11, 2016, and the next productronica takes place in Munich from November 14 to 17, 2017.

Applications requiring multiple smultaneous signals drive demand for advanced signal generators.


The increasing sophistication of consumer electronics, rising acceptance of 4G, and the constant introduction of innovative products all contribute to the growth of the signal generator market. Signal generators have evolved from mere continuous wave devices to advanced modulation devices with superior software control, modulation capabilities and user interfaces. These improvements, along with the use of new software techniques that enhance the linearity, bandwidth and signal creation capabilities, are stoking the market for signal generators.

FS_Graphic_360Degree_Curved_400New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, Analysis of Opportunities for Signal Generators Market , finds that the market earned revenues of €693 million ($742.0 million) in 2014 and estimates this to reach €1043 million ($1127.5 million) in 2020. The study covers the segments of radio frequency (RF) tests, microwave tests, arbitrary waveform generators (AWG) and peripheral component interconnect (PCI) eXtensions for instrumentation (PXI).

Earlier, users found it challenging to synchronise multiple instruments for multichannel applications because of the closed architectural designs. This is now a thing of the past as these integrated systems share internal local oscillators.

“This will enable the synchronisation of multiple instruments and in turn, ease the tasks of test engineers.” said Frost & Sullivan Measurement & Instrumentation Industry Analyst Prathima Bommakanti. “This is important as more applications are requiring multiple simultaneous signals.”

Another important technological issue in the microwave signal generators market is the management of phase noise. Phase noise increases with carrier frequency multiplication during the generation of higher frequencies. The use of yttrium iron garnet (YIG)-based microwave oscillators, rather than voltage controlled oscillators (VCOs), is expected to help achieve the desired level of phase noise performance.

In spite of their improved functionalities, signal generators’ prices have remained stable. Since alternative integrated test solutions and have become attractive options, one way to improve the revenue generation potential of the equipment is to offer modular options.

“Developments in semiconductors, including processors, field-programmable gate array and data converters, have resulted in cutting-edge modular solutions,” observed Bommakanti. “With the communication industry introducing new standards constantly, there is a need for scalable/flexible solutions, which in turn is driving the need for PXI-based instruments, including signal generators.”

“What 35 years in engineering has taught me!”

Brian Booth, VP of the Water Treatment Innovation Platform of global water, energy and maintenance solutions provider with NCH Europe shares what he has learned.

Brian Booth of NCH Europe

I’ve worked in the engineering industry for the last 35 years, starting out as a chemist in the water treatment sector in 1985.

One of the biggest changes I’ve witnessed over the last three decades is the rise of legislation covering every aspect of the industry. It started with basic health and safety and now reaches into countless niche areas, such as the consideration of industry challenges including legionella outbreaks.

While my generation were classically trained chemists recruited to solve problems with scale, corrosion and bacteria in the water industry, new graduates are now required to have a deeper understanding of general issues affecting the whole industry. Engineers are under increasing pressure to show how localised issues fit into the wider socioeconomic and legislative context.

Another change has been the industry’s approach to transparency, traceability and accountability. In this age of globalisation, formal contracts and job responsibilities allow each action to be traced to an individual. This maximises resource allocation, improves training accuracy and improves safety.

However, all of these changes pale in comparison to the opportunity provided by mobile technology to communicate in real time. The rise of the internet has fundamentally altered the way we interact.

Engineers whose jobs involve working in the field might be asked to respond to another incident while on a job. Twenty years ago engineers on the road used carbon paper to record actions. Now smartphones, tablets and laptops allow a continuous link to the office, using graphs and charts to visualise data on the go. This technology has improved productivity and means that engineers in the field can get more done than ever before.

Building trust
Despite all of these changes, some things have stayed the same. The importance of building valuable customer relationships is as great today as it’s ever been. Inspiring confidence in a customer and building trust wins contracts.

Once you’ve got trust, being able to deliver on your promise is vital. The need to prove reliability and credibility, especially in a service industry, is something I don’t think will ever change. At the end of the day, people like to do business with real people and not faceless corporations.

However, there is no doubt that the industry will see significant changes in the future. The rise of the Internet of Things (IoT) is already allowing us to make use of embedded sensors in engineering environments to provide better big-data transparency and interpretation, using novel graphing and visualisation techniques. I’m already seeing this evolve to the point where our engineers can remotely prompt customers to turn off a valve in response to a cooling system alert, a change in the pH of process water or if the level of a specific chemical such as bromine is too high for example.

Advice to graduates
My advice to new graduates is that, now you’ve left university, you can no longer expect to be spoon fed. You are responsible for your own continuous professional development (CPD) and, while employers provide on-the-job skills to allow you to work on profit-making business functions, you have to read around the subject, to develop professionally.

This might mean becoming a member of a professional body such as the Water Management Society for Chartered Chemists, attending networking sessions, conferences or trade shows or finding a mentor who can guide you to success.

Self-Organizing Networks, Cloud-Based Radio Access Networks & IoT Drive Network Testing and Monitoring Equipment Market


Network operators require analytics solutions that are not only predictive but can also test automated network infrastructure, finds Frost & Sullivan

The widespread adoption of machine-to-machine (M2M) communication, shift from reactive to predictive analytics for the Internet of Things (IoT), and continuing virtualization of network functions are compelling service providers to seek advanced testing solutions for big data and cloud analytics. Testing methodologies that can check the conformance of higher level infrastructure will prove critical in a digital environment that is characterised by long-term evolution (LTE), heterogeneous networks (HetNets) and cloud computing.

EU_PR_JNikishkina_MB0B_13Oct15New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, Global Big Data and Cloud Analytics Test Service Market and Monitoring Equipment Market, finds that the market earned revenues of €522.5 million (US $650.1 m) in 2014 and estimates this to reach €1.46 billion (US$1.63b) by 2019. The market consists of testing participants that aid in the overall visibility of the network as well as probe-based network infrastructure testing and service assurance, which aids in the monitoring of network metrics that will be collected for data analytics.

As M2M communications enabled by IoT becomes ubiquitous across industries, the copious amounts of digital data have begun to strain the networks. The issue is exacerbated by the deployment of self-organising networks (SON) and cloud radio access networks (C-RAN) technologies.

“To reduce churn in the price-sensitive telecommunication and service providers space, network operators need to actively offer exceptional quality of experience and service,” said Frost & Sullivan Measurement & Instrumentation Research Analyst Rohan Joy Thomas. “They can no longer afford to rely on traditional analytics solutions; innovative solutions that can aggregate relevant information from heaps of data in a smaller window, as well as make forecasts by visualising patterns among end users, are becoming vital.”

However, these end users continue to be sceptical about adopting big data analysis due to the market shortage of talent and skillsets. Poor technical expertise of the product could lead to serious ramifications from a security perspective.

Furthermore, end users are reluctant to deploy big data analytics due to the complexities inherent in migrating from traditional data analytics to more contemporary and innovative forms of big data analytics, particularly in more well established organizations. The siloed approach of assigning tasks to specific teams based upon the nature of work, coupled with the multi-vendor nature of network infrastructure, often challenge testing specialists. It is difficult to efficiently deploy any analytics across networks with such variable characteristics.

The scepticism associated with adopting big data and cloud analytics test services is expected to gradually abate as the CAPEX and OPEX benefits for SON and C-RAN become evident. Many telecommunications and service providers have already started restructuring their IT staff in order to provide a more holistic view into the network infrastructure.

“Industry vendors should fill the gaps in their product portfolio to facilitate a more open testing environment for their end users,” observed Thomas. “This can be achieved through partnerships with participants from other niches of the industry, as well as the strategic acquisition of market participants.”

Global Big Data and Cloud Analytics Test Service Market and Monitoring Equipment Market is part of the Test & Measurement Growth Partnership Service program. Frost & Sullivan’s related studies include: Analysis of the Global Self-Organizing Network (SON) Testing and Monitoring Equipment Market, Big Data: Implications for T&M, Global VoLTE Testing and Monitoring Market, Cloud Infrastructure Testing and Cloud-based Application Performance Monitoring Market, Global Application Performance Monitoring and Application Aware Network Performance Monitoring Market, and Global Internet of Things (IoT) Testing and Monitoring Equipment Market, among others. All studies included in subscriptions provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.

#EMrex On top of the world!

Pic tweeted by @NewEngControls

Pic tweeted by @NewEngControls

Unfortunately we were unable, in any detail, to follow this years Emerson User Group love in. It took place high up in the Rocky mountain city of Denver (CO USA) and certainly looked like a very full programme with the usual enthusiastic plethora of tweets submerging our twitter feed, such as “Great venue, great presentations, great networking, great week – I’m #Elevated!” from @ChristopAmstutz. And obviously singing from the same hymn sheet @MCChow_88 with “I truly had my experience elevated this past week @EmersonExchange!”  Obviously all were on a higher plane – or altitude than us mere mortals at sea level!

A new item (as far as I can remember) was a feature which included those who were unable to be in Denver who were invited to participate in the final “Ask the Experts” – seven gurus with all information and knowledge on the topics featured in the four packed days of information sharing. The @EmersonExchange twitter constantly referred to the various forum posts questions and solutions of interest to users.

As always the Jim Cahill, Mr Emerson On-Line, was ever present guiding, pointing and highlighting interesting happenings, speakers and events.

There were news letters and videos published on a daily basis which helped inform people not present what was happening.   This was also useful for those attending but who had to make choices as to which presentation to attend.

A very comprehensive account of highlights has been written by Gary Mintchell, “Wireless, Enhanced Sensing Lead Emerson Product Announcements,” which is “a summary—running through many of the new products introduced to the press and analysts during Emerson Exchange 2015.”  He also made an video of his experience:

During the week although we were unable to follow events we did have a link on our home page, which allowed visitor to follow things.


Daily Reports
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3

Videos from Major Sessions

Our Reports for earlier EMrex Events

The next User Group Meeting is scheduled for Europe in Brussels (B) in April 2016. Emrex Americas is planned for later next year in the Capital of Texas, Austin – 24-28th October 2016. And if you wish to plan even further ahead the 2017 event is to be held in Minneapolis.

How long can this go on?

Breaking Moore’s Law – Can technology maintain its current pace of growth?

With its depth of only 6.7mm, the iPhone 6 holds more processing power than was used by NASA at the time of the 1969 moon landing and over four times that of the Mars Curiosity Rover. Here, Jonathan Wilkins, marketing director of European Automation, analyses the rate of technological progress and discusses the validity of Moore’s Law.

EPA250In 1965, Gordon Moore, founder of Intel, predicted that throughout the future of technological hardware, the number of transistors per square inch of integrated circuits will double approximately every two years. This observation came to be known as Moore’s Law.

At the time, the industry as a whole was still in its infancy. In fact, Intel itself would not be founded for a further three years. Defying expectations, Moore’s prediction was correct and continued to hold true for over half a century. In fact, Moore’s Law became so well known that it turned into an industry objective for competing companies.

The increase of the number of transistors on integrated circuits was made possible by shrinking the size of the transistor. Simply translated, Moore’s Law is one of the reasons why each generation of iPhone is thinner, yet more powerful than the previous.

But Moore’s Law is beginning to lose its momentum. Recently, Intel announced that for 2016, it will continue to use the current 14 nanometre processes – as opposed to the smaller ten nanometre chips we were all expecting. Only a few days after Intel’s announcement, Apple partner TSMC estimated it will be mass producing ten nanomentre chips by early 2017. Clearly, tech companies are struggling to keep up with Moore’s Law.

Although they are not ready for official release, the ten nanometre size chips can be successfully manufactured by using pure silicon. However, shrinking manufacturing beyond this will require the use of different materials, which means that sooner or later, Moore’s law will become obsolete.

Unfortunately for Intel, IBM recently announced a breakthrough seven nanometre processor. This incredibly thin chip was made possible by using a silicon-germanium alloy (SiGe). This new material improves electron mobility and enables faster switching transistors with lower power requirements. Although functional, IBM’s seven nanometre SiGe chips will not ready for mass production until 2017. 

The era of Moore’s Law may be coming to a natural end, but technologists argue that the concept is simply changing form. Soon, a new generation of quantum processors could be developed, built on the principals of quantum physics. By using new technology and new materials future processors could break the expectations set by Moore’s Law.

• Moore’s Law as covered by WIKIPedia.



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