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Integrated solutions for digitalisation of motion control drive technology

23 November 2017

At the SPS IPC Drives 2017, Siemens will be demonstrating the consistency of the digital twin over the entire machine life cycle using the example of a packaging machine manufactured by machine builder Easysnap.

To achieve this degree of consistency, all the engineering tools required for design, configuration and commissioning interact seamlessly with each other to enable truly integrated engineering. Siemens supplies a comprehensive range of different tools embedded in its "Digital Enterprise Suite" solution portfolio which are designed to enable the creation of a digital twin and so bring about substantial improvements along the value chain. The digital twin can be created using tools such as the Mechatronics Concept Designer, which enables kinematic simulations, and the Sizer configuration tool which uses this data as the basis for determining the required electrical drive values and relevant products.

All the relevant data can continue to be used during the subsequent step, commissioning. The guided selection process ensures right from the start that the converters and motors are perfectly matched for every application. A wide range of digital information such as technical data, 2D dimensional drawings and 3D data models of the devices, macros for electrical planning and circuit diagrams for electrical design helps to reduce the amount of work involved, and speeds up both engineering and the preparation of technical documentation. Open interfaces to internal and third-party systems automatically ensure data consistency, as they eliminate the need for the multiple redundant acquisition and matching of data. This in turn further simplifies processes such as control cabinet production.

With its integrated hardware and software solutions, Siemens supports machine builders in their bid to create a digital twin of their application, and to optimise it virtually in model form, allowing faults to be detected and eliminated from an early stage. This saves time and expense when it comes to actual commissioning, as every aspect is engineered to an advanced stage of maturity and ideally configured. Data generated by the machine in operation is gathered and rendered usable in MindSphere, the open, cloud-based IoT operating system from Siemens, with the aid of either Siemens' own MindApps or partner apps. The Fleet Manager used by Easysnap, for instance, supplies an overview of all relevant operating statuses, allowing it to suggest preventive servicing measures at an early stage and so prevent machine standstill. The MindApp Analyse MyDrives also detects any actual servicing requirement in advance by continuously checking energy flows, output volume, speed and frequency. These apps not only enable predictive maintenance to be carried out but also allow any energy saving potential to be determined.

The Easysnap machine exhibited at the SPS IPC Drives produces small individual portions of liquid and semi-liquid F&B and cosmetic products. Siemens is using this application at the show to demonstrate its new servo drive system comprising Sinamics S210 converters with Simotics S-1FK2 motors. It comes complete with One Cable Connection (OCC), Simatic S7-1500-T controller with integrated motion control and safety functionality combined with the newly innovated Sinamics S120 C/D type motor modules in the 3A to 30A range.

Commissioning takes place using extremely simple one-button tuning. The entire Sinamics 210 servo drive system is UL certified, and use of the Simotics S-1FK2 motors makes for high performance. 

Connection to MindSphere is possible using a MindConnect Nano. "The use of digitalisation in drive technology opens up significant benefits to machine builders and operators alike, starting with end-to-end digital engineering through commissioning to running operation. This allows all the sequences along the entire value chain to be made not only transparent but ultimately also more efficient. From our point of view, digitalisation in drive technology is a highly effective lever for greater competitive strength, and we are continuously working to improve its efficiency still further," sums up Achim Peltz, Head of the General Motion Control (GMC) Segment at Siemens AG. 


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