Tuesday, June 21, 2022

New adjustable gripper tooling from PHD is ideal for cobot applications

New Product Release: PHD Inc. Introduces Click & Grip Adjustable Robotic Gripper Tooling

• Ideal for cobot applications and proof of concept 

• Fast configuration and reconfiguration 

• Flexibility with interchangeable components


Available now at FPE Automation

The NEW UR20 from Universal Robots packs 20kg (44 lbs.) of payload into a collaborative robot

Product Launch: Introducing the New UR20 from Universal Robots

Introducing the new UR20 from Universal Robots

Record-setting performance and an increased payload capacity are not the only advantages. Learn more about the new UR20 collaborative robot here

Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Work here! FPE Automation is hiring...

Jobs in Elk Grove Village, Illinois

Come out and see us at the job fair at Elk Grove High School on June 16, 2022. Once again, we'll be participating in this local event.

Work in one of industry's most cutting-edge fields - automation, robotics, AI and more. FPE Automation is a great company to work for. Local since 1963. We're hiring! 

Find out more here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/area-wide-job-fair-registration-337466660867
If you know anyone who might be interested in this, please share! EOE/M/F/D/V/SO

Saturday, May 28, 2022

IO-Link: a connectivity tools guide + free download

Taking the Guesswork out of IO-Link

By: Sandia Harrison, FPE Automation

We are living in an era in which groundbreaking advancements in automation are unprecedented. After decades of solid process improvements, today we are experiencing rapid growth in innovation like we've never seen before. The way we manufacture, position, and produce goods today is transforming every day. 

If you ask nearly anyone in automation or process control, they'll probably tell you that connectivity is at the top of the list. Devices talking to one another through Ethernet, or any other communication protocol, are game-changing. 

Just a few short years ago, IO-link would have been considered an emerging technology. Nowadays, there is a robust ecosystem of products. Companies are doing remarkable things with this technology. So, more recently, the question has evolved from "if" to "how". 

That's where FPE Automation's team of expert engineers comes in. I consulted with them with the goal of putting together an ordering guide to help you quickly source essential products for your connectivity needs. 

Beyond Products

If you need application assistance, please reach out to our ACD team. They are here to help!

Here are some of industry's top products suitable for almost any IO-link application. Click the brochure to download a PDF copy, or scroll down for a complete list: 

FPE Automation IO-Link Product Guide

Master Modules

Murrelektronik Impact67 Pro: 8 ports, class A, class B
Murrelektronik Cube67+: 4 ports, class A, class B

IO-Link Hubs

Murrelektronik D1016 (59719), plug and play


Photoelectric Sensors 

Datasensing: S5N tubular, S100 miniature, S8 compact, S300 PA/PR maxi, TL46 contrast/luminescence, S65-M measurement series

Leuze: 3C retro-reflective and through-beam, 3C, HT10, 25B, 46B, 46C diffuse with background suppression, 18B polarized retro-reflective/contrast, DRT 25C dynamic reference diffuse, 

Omron: E3AS distance-settable with user-friendly display, E3Z-IL standard sensor with I/O link, E3S-DC with color mark detection on any type of packaging. 

Panasonic: FX-550L photoelectric sensor with IO-link

Proximity Sensors 

Omron: E2E NEXT standard proximity sensor, E2EW welding proximity sensor, E2EQ NEXT spatter-resistant proximity sensor

Panasonic: GX-300 standard inductive proximity sensor

Fiber Sensors 

Datasensing: S70/S7/FY series

Panasonic: FX-550L series

Distance Sensors 

Datasensing: UM1, UK1, UK6, UT1B, UT2F, UT5L, UFT/UFK, ultrasonic distance sensors

Leuze: ODSL, ODS optical distance sensor, HRTU, DMU series ultrasonic distance sensor

Panasonic: HG-C1000L laser distance sensor

Flow Sensors 

Omron: E8FC series

Pressure Sensors 

Leuze: DP-100L

Omron: E8PC series

Fork Sensors 

Leuze: GSU, IGSU, GSX label detection, GSL04B, GSO8B, GSL08B object detection

Area Sensors 

Datasensing: CR retroreflective polarized area sensor

Safety Light Curtains

Leuze: CML, CSL

Omron: F3SG-SR / PG

Panasonic: SF4D series


Werma: eSIGN stack lights

Murr: Comlight56 status lights, available in 3 colors

Vacuum Products

Piab: PiCompact vacuum pumps and ejectors, 10X and 23 SMART series


MAC Valves: MIO-67 Fieldbus. Simplifies wiring needed for control of valves, digital I/O, and analog I/O over a single communication cable

Air Preparation

Norgren/Bimba: Excelon Plus air preparation equipment 


JVL: MAC/MIS/MILxxx stepper and servo motors

Analog Converters

Murr: I/O link analog convertor, converts devices to I/O link

The above is only intended as a guide, may not be all-inclusive, and is subject to change. This article is not to be reproduced in whole, or in part, without express written permission from authorized parties at FPE Automation

For pricing quotes or additional information, don't hesitate to contact us

Friday, May 27, 2022

What single factor matters the most when automating?

 Automation Success Made Easy

Whether you are in the process of automating for the first time, adding additional automation, or optimizing automation you already have in your production environment, the process can be a bit daunting. There are so many solutions out there. It takes a lot of expertise and experience to make all the components work together. There is no single roadmap to success. To complicate things even further, a lot is at stake. Streamlining your operations has a big impact on your company's profitability. We understand that you will also want to make the most of your investment, in terms of ROI. 

The single most important action step you can take when automating your business is finding the right partner. You've probably heard that before, it's a mantra that is often repeated. Turns out, there is a lot of truth to it. 

One thing that is always true: successful automation is made up of components. You may need a robot, conveyor, certainly the right end-of-arm-tooling or gripper, perhaps a camera or entire vision system. It takes expertise to determine which of each of those is the best choice for your application. 

Most solution providers can easily come up with an adequate list. Here's the tricky part: what happens next? 

If you chose FPE Automation as your partner, that decision would already have been made. We take the time to get to know you, and what it is you want to accomplish. We will ask you important questions. This sets us apart, and allows us to accomplish what others can't. Do you have the expertise in-house (and the bandwidth) to implement this yourself? Or, would you prefer that the FPE Automation team assist you with your project? If FPE Automation isn't the right implementation partner for you, we have longstanding, solid relationships with CSI partners. We will add one into the conversation if it best serves your purpose. 

Automation doesn't have to be so complicated. FPE Automation helps companies large and small to accomplish things never imagined possible. We've been doing this since 1963, and winning multiple, prestigious industry awards for our innovative solutions. 

To read more, download this one-page flyer.

Check out our Handshake Solutions, which puts you in the driver's seat. 

Or, reach out to us. We'd love to hear from you!

Author: Sandia Harrison

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Are your valves performing as well as other valves? Here's how to tell.

"There's an App for That"

TLD Software Compares Valve Performance

Valve performance can make a significant difference in your application. How do you compare and measure it? 

The sales engineers at FPE Automation all have a useful application in their arsenal of evaluation tools, to do just that. It's called TLD

Today at FPE Automation, Sunset Hills, MO: Steve Carrera,
Cody Schmelzle and Kurt Vaeth work in the pneumatic
lab using the MAC TLD app.
With TLD, you can read scope traces and plot valve performance. It gives you application-critical data. Even milliseconds can count, in big ways. Are there other valves on the market that are faster than yours? Let the data determine the results, so you can have peace of mind that this particular aspect of your operations is as optimized as possible. 

You can learn more about TLD software here. If you would like an on-site test, reach out to FPE Automation to schedule. 

Thursday, May 5, 2022

An independent energy audit recommends MAC Pulse Valves and FPE Automation's Art Gesell wins Distributor of the Month

Congratulations to FPE Automation's Art Gesell - MAC Valves Distributor of the Month award winner! 

This story begins with an independent contractor who was hired to do an energy audit for a large, local plant. The contractor was familiar with MAC pulse valves, and their reputation for energy savings and efficiency. 

Art Gesell has been working with engineers at this particular plant, a large manufacturer of glass bottles, for quite some time on other projects. 

As part of the energy audit, the contractor asked Art to present MAC pulse valve technology. Art did a demo using the MAC pulse valve animation and pulse valve demo case for the group. They were impressed with the technology.

"The contractor was familiar with MAC pulse valves, and their reputation for energy savings and efficiency."

The contractor works often with the local energy company in Illinois on energy-saving projects. If a certain amount of energy can be saved, the energy utility will reimburse the cost of the components. That had a big impact on the ROI of the project to the customer. 

After initiating a plan with the customer, Art and FPE Automation's Scott Massie (FPE MAC Valve Specialist) installed the first nine PV03 valves. After they ran for a few months, the customer was so impressed with the cleaning pulse, lack of maintenance issues, and no leakage, that they decided to change over the entire batch house, where the extremely fine glass powder is very tough on diaphragms and filters.

The next step was to come in and audit this area of the plant. Justin Yochem (MAC Project Engineer) joined Art and Scott on the audit. They are replacing 74 additional valves in the batch house. Later, the group was then informed that there are another 83 pulse valves in the mold shop and machine repair area that they would like to swap out. 

MAC pulse valves: efficiency and savings that speaks for itself.