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  In this issue
    Company News
    -From Robots to Rockets!
    Product News
    -Cat5e Ethernet patch cables available
    -Low-cost DC power supplies added to Rhino line
    Featured Products
    -C-more HMI family popular with users
    -Data Collection software enhancements
    What's the latest online?
    -Upcoming Web seminars
    From Notebook
    -Modernizing the Hardinge Turret Lathe
    The Lighter Side

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© 2010
All rights reserved






Volume 12 Issue 5, May 2010
We hope you find this issue of our e-mail update of what's new at AutomationDirect informative. You are receiving this e-news because you subscribed to the newsletter.
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We always welcome your comments or suggestions concerning this newsletter.

Editor's note:

Gardens, Graduations, and Good times!

2010 spring

It's that time of year when gardens have been planted, schools and colleges have held graduation ceremonies, and children of all ages are ready to have good times during their summer breaks.

Just as gardens are filled with a variety of fruits, vegetables, and flowers, AutomationDirect offers a plethora of industrial control products suitable for most applications. Similarly, as students graduate from one level of education to the next, increasing their knowledge, we continue to expand our product list to help improve efficiency in many industrial situations.

This month's newsletter contains information on our latest product releases, information on featured products, the latest webinar schedule, and more. As always, this enewsletter would not be complete without the Lighter Side.

Be sure to send us information about your applications. We are always excited to learn the unique ways customers use AutomationDirect products.

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Company News

From Robots to Rockets!

Forsyth Alliance
VEX robot built by West Forsyth High team #1235

Forsyth County, Georgia's robotics program completed its fifth season with growth reaching hundreds more students. The Forsyth Alliance, an umbrella organization formed to administer funds donated by AutomationDirect, managed the county's FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) involvement. This year, at the Lego League's Georgia State Championship, the final top five out of 48 teams included three Forsyth teams.

The Alliance has expanded its support to include the BEST and VEX competitions as well. County VEX teams won seven regional tournaments, and sent nine teams to the World Championships in April, one of whom had won the Georgia state competition.

Side note - Forsyth Alliance board chairman Rick Folea has the lead on writing the requirements for a planned Robotics Merit Badge for the Boy Scouts of America.

AutomationDirect has gotten into the air as well, with sponsorship of rocketry teams at local high schools. The Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC) is the world's largest rocket contest, sponsored by the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) and the National Association of Rocketry (NAR).
For the 2009-2010 season, the contest guidelines required students to build a rocket that would:

  • reach 825 feet in altitude
  • have a hang time of 40-45 seconds
  • bring a raw egg up and back safely
  • use streamers as a recovery device (no parachutes)

This year AutomationDirect assisted the fledgling Lambert High Rocketry Team, who successfully qualified for the National Finals with an 830-foot flight that lasted 42.23 seconds. At the May 15th-16th Finals, the top 100 qualifying teams competed for the championship.  The Lambert team finished in 16th place overall, and was the top finisher among Georgia schools.

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Product News

Cat5e Ethernet patch cables available

Cat5e Ethernet patch cables

Cat5e Ethernet patch and crossover cables are available in eight colors and three foot to 50 foot lengths. The straight and crossover patch cables support up to 1000 Mbps, and are designed to reduce the effects of electromagnetic interference by incorporating a single metal foil shield which wraps around the entire set of four twisted shielded pairs. The robust RJ45 connectors are also shielded against electrical interference. Our 350 MHz cables exceed all Cat5e TIA/EIA standards, and drastically reduce both impedance and structural return loss (SRL) when compared to standard 100 MHz cables. With prices starting at $5.00, these cables help create solid, reliable Ethernet networks with any application.

View the complete line.

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Low-cost DC Power Supplies added to RHINO line

Low-cost DC Power Supplies added to RHINO line

The RHINO™ line of power supplies now includes panel and DIN rail mountable power supplies designed for applications requiring a basic DC voltage power supply. The low-cost supplies offer high performance and reliability when additional features of higher cost full-featured supplies are not needed.

The panel-mountable RHINO PSS series feature rugged aluminum housings allowing for three different mounting orientations. The series is available with universal single-phase input and output voltages of 12 and 24 VDC from 35 to 100 Watts. The high-quality power supplies equipped with overload, overvoltage, and thermal protection are UL recognized, CE marked, RoHS compliant and backed with a two-year warranty. Prices for the PSS series start at $19.75.

The DIN rail mountable RHINO PSB series is available with universal single and three-phase input and output voltages of 12 and 24 VDC from 15 to 480 Watts. Constructed of rugged plastic and aluminum housings, the power supplies easily install with integral 35mm DIN rail mounting adapters. These high-quality power supplies equipped with overload, overvoltage, and thermal protection are backed with a three-year warranty and are UL listed, CSA certified, CE marked and RoHS compliant. Prices for the PSB series start at $21.50.

See the full line of RHINO power supplies.

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Featured Products

C-more HMI family popular with users

C-more HMI family

Almost any PLC control system these days can benefit from an attached operator interface, and our C-more and C-more micro lines have become a popular choice among PLC users. They communicate with a wide range of manufacturers' controllers (as well as ours!) and can give the operator a lot more information than the equivalent cost of a few pushbuttons and lights. The C-more micro line starts at just $149 for a 3-inch text/graphics panel. The C-more line, starting at $499 for a 6-inch color TFT touch panel, has powerful yet easy-to-use features. Read the dozens of customer reviews of C-more operator panels to see just how easy and powerful they are.

More information on our entire HMI lineup

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Data Collection software enhancements

Data Collection software

Data Collection products by BizwareDirectData collection has become a hot topic in the last few years. Productivity gains, quality improvements and energy savings are just some of the benefits companies are looking for as a result of collecting and analyzing process data. And you don't necessarily need a complex software package to get those benefits. The Data Collection products by BizwareDirect connect to AutomationDirect controllers quickly and simply so you can get the data you need from virtually any application. And now you can view overview and tutorial videos for all these products on our Learn site or on the BizwareDirect site to help you differentiate the packages and their uses.

DataWorxDataWorx, starting at $395, easily connects Ethernet-enabled DirectLOGIC or Productivity3000 controllers to standalone PCs or network servers for simple data logging. New features in Version 2.1 include archiving data files to an FTP site and creating shift-based data log files.

DataLynxDataLynx is an inexpensive data logging and storage package for remotely located PLCs or other devices that support Modbus and a modem connection. DataLynx can collect data from remote locations or relay data from multiple locations back to a single location to be stored. The latest version of DataLynx has incorporated support for a serial interface to facilitate connection to CLICK PLCs. The software starts at $395 for single controller support.

DataNet OPCDataNet OPC, starting at $295, easily connects your PLC or other OPC enabled device to a live Web page. The data is then available for viewing, logging and printing reports. The data is displayed in an easy-to-read table format with color coded text (for alarming) and with no HTML programming required.

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Upcoming Web seminars


Several new Web seminars are planned for the next few months on our AutomationTalk site. The 45-minute shows feature both product overviews and more detailed application-based examples. Each live seminar includes a question and answer time where our hosts address questions from viewers.

Upcoming Web Seminars include:

  • C-More Micro Advanced – June 9th 2:00PM EST
  • DirectSOFT Advanced – June 30th 2:00PM EST
  • Process Control – July 21st 2:00PM EST
  • Productivity 3000 Advanced II – August 11th 2:00PM EST

Register today to attend the free online seminars. If you don't see a specific topic of interest, contact us with your idea. Our team will consider it for future seminars.

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AutomationNOTEBOOKModernizing the Hardinge Turret Lathe

Just about every machinist in the U.S. has encountered a Hardinge turret lathe during the course of their career. These little machines, commonly referred to as "second operation lathes", are astoundingly productive pieces of equipment which still have great value in almost any machine shop. Learn how modernizing speed control improves reliability. [full story]


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The Lighter Side
From one of those www. places

Funny Graduation Quotes

"I have never been jealous. Not even when my dad finished fifth grade a year before I did."
Jeff Foxworthy

"A graduation ceremony is an event where the commencement speaker tells thousands of students dressed in identical caps and gowns that "individuality" is the key to success."
Robert Orben

"It is indeed ironic that we spend our school days yearning to graduate and our remaining days waxing nostalgic about our school days."
Isabel Waxman

"Some people will graduate with summa cum laude, some will graduate with magna cum laude, and others will graduate with thank you laude!"
Cajetan Onu, Project Engineer, (California Legal Aids & Services)

"A professor is someone who talks in someone else's sleep."

"People will frighten you about a graduation....They use words you don't hear often... 'And we wish you Godspeed.' It is a warning, Godspeed. It means you are no longer welcome here at these prices."
Bill Cosby

"You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. You are the guy who'll decide where to go."
Dr. Seuss

"Academe, n.: An ancient school where morality and philosophy were taught. Academy, n.: A modern school where football is taught."
Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary

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Comments or suggestions for topics in future newsletters can be directed to

© 2010
All rights reserved

AutomationDirect HQ is located at 3505 Hutchinson Rd., Cumming, GA 30040
(about 45 minutes north of Atlanta, GA)


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