Is it Time for a Network Assessment? 4 Cybersecurity Preparedness Questions to Ask Yourself

11/29/2023 - Billy Hayes, IIoT Business Development Manager

When was the last time you evaluated your cybersecurity preparedness? This post outlines four critical questions you should ask yourself to determine if it’s time for a network assessment: Understanding your network assets, safety implications, audit depth, and access regulation.

Your OT Networks Don't Take a Break for the Holidays: Unveiling Lurking Vulnerabilities

11/28/2023 - Mark Miozzi, Industrial Automation Sales Manager

This blog post highlights two first-hand accounts of industrial manufacturers facing unforeseen OT network challenges and disrupted operations. Learn some key takeaways and proactive measures you can take to fortify your industrial operations and avoid costly downtime.

Revolutionizing Industrial Manufacturing: Highlights From Automation Fair 2023

11/27/2023 - Rexel

This blog post unveils the key takeaways from Automation Fair 2023, hosted in Boston, where more than 6,000 industrial manufacturing professionals gathered to explore the forefront of robotics, artificial intelligence, software solutions, cybersecurity, and more.

PID Pump Control Using Exclusive Pump Control

11/16/2023 - Scott Savage, Senior Power Technical Consultant

This blog post explores PID pump control, specifically focusing on the exclusive pump control model. It covers key aspects such as configuration, output selection, tuning parameters, and features like preload and zero clamp. It also covers the importance of testing in manual mode before PID activation and includes additional resources for the PowerFlex 750.

Restarting PowerFlex Drives with Confidence

11/9/2023 - Scott Savage, Senior Power Technical Consultant

The blog post troubleshoots what to do if your unmanned PowerFlex 753 drive fails to restart or respond as expected.

Automation Fair 2023: Optimizing Production, Driving Sustainability, and Embracing Digital Transformation

10/25/2023 - Rexel

This post explores how Automation Fair 2023 – now a 4-day event – will help you embrace and capitalize on ways to optimize production, drive sustainability, and embrace digital transformation. By exploring these three key areas, you’ll set your business up for a successful and productive future.​

The Path to Efficient Industrial Operations: How the Rexel Support Agreements Make a Difference

10/11/2023 - Kim Goodwin, Director of Customer Success and Life Cycle Services

This blog post explores how Rexel Support Agreements go beyond traditional support plans and are reshaping the landscape of industrial manufacturing. Dive into the heart of efficiency and learn how RSA's suite of tailored services can streamline your operations, prevent downtime, and keep your industrial processes at their peak.

Industry 4.0: What it is and What it Means for Your Workforce

10/4/2023 - Rexel

As technology continues to advance, it’s important that your teams are adaptable, innovative, informed, and well-trained. This blog post defines Industry 4.0 and explores the implications, knowledge, and skills needed for your workforce.

How Unified Robot Control Drives Innovative Manufacturing Solutions

9/20/2023 - Robert Werkman, Industrial Automation Solutions Manager

This blog post highlights how Unified Robot Control breaks down traditional silos, enhances flexibility, elevates product quality, and empowers your workforce. You’ll learn how this technology drives innovation, helps you adapt to change, and allows you to embrace sustainability in your manufacturing processes.

The Power of the Next-Gen Stratix 5200 Switch

9/15/2023 - Rexel

The Stratix 5200 Managed Industrial Ethernet Switch, set to replace the Stratix 5700, introduces advanced features like simplified portfolio selection, higher port speeds, and enhanced redundancy. The post explores the enhanced capabilities and security of the switch and how it can elevate your operations.

Optimizing IIoT Networks: Data Management for Manufacturers

9/6/2023 - Billy Hayes, IIoT Business Development Manager

The integration of new technology and data is revolutionizing manufacturing efficiency, productivity, and innovation. However, it also creates new challenges. This post explores microsegmentation, network segmentation, and the role of data types in hardware selection.

Automation Fair 2023: Managing Risk and Empowering Your Workforce

8/30/2023 - Rexel

Managing risk and empowering your workforce to proactively and efficiently prevent and handle challenges are important parts of running your operations efficiently. Now a 4-day event, this post explores how the resources available at Automation Fair 2023 can improve both areas of your business.

Understanding the Importance of Thermal Audits for Industrial Enclosures

8/23/2023 - Erica McConnell, Life Cycle Business Development Manager

Excess heat poses several hidden risks to your equipment’s performance and operational life. This post explores the world of thermal management and an often-overlooked factor that can lead to unplanned downtime and costly repairs.

Maximizing Industrial Productivity: The Role of the Rexel Support Agreement

8/16/2023 - Kim Goodwin, Director of Customer Success

As an industrial manufacturer, it’s not uncommon to face challenges across your operations. This post explores the role that the Rexel Service Agreement (RSA) has in maximizing productivity, reducing risk, and increasing productivity in a streamlined, convenient package.

The Top 5 Challenges With Implementing Industrial IoT

8/8/2023 - Paul Sainato, IIoT Solutions Manager

This post outlines 5 key challenges industrial manufacturers face when implementing industrial internet of things (IIoT). By mitigating these challenges, you’ll drive innovation and enhance operational efficiency.

Don't Get Caught in a Machine Safety Accident: 4 Types of Machine Safety Input Devices

7/26/2023 - Dave Cucerzan, Product Specialist

There’s no shortage of hazards when working around machines, and we know employee safety is top of mind for you. This post explores four types of machine safety input devices that can protect your team(s) and keep your operations running at peak efficiency.

Beware the Risks of Grey Market Rockwell Automation Products

7/18/2023 - Rexel

This post explores the risks involved in purchasing industrial automation products from gray market sources. You’ll learn what the gray market is and how you can protect yourself and your operations from these dangerous products.

Case Study: Securing Critical Infrastructure 'til the Cows Come Home

7/11/2023 - Rexel

Discover how Aurora Organic Dairy (AOD), the nation's leading producer and processor of organic dairy products, partnered with Rexel to strengthen their cybersecurity measures. In this insightful case study, learn how AOD overcame device visibility challenges, implemented a proactive cybersecurity approach, and safeguarded their operations while maintaining their Grade A rating.

Understanding the Different Types of Cyberattacks

6/30/2023 - Billy Hayes & Paul Sainato, IIOT Solutions Managers

This post explores some of the different types of cyberattacks that industrial manufacturers may face, including phishing attacks, malware, DDoS attacks, insider threats, and supply chain attacks. You’ll also gain valuable insights into these threats and learn proactive measures to protect your organization.

Rexel Automation Solutions Names Greg Powell as New Vice President of Automation

6/29/2023 - Rexel

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Greg Powell as the new Vice President of Automation at Rexel Automation Solutions. With over 30 years of industrial automation experience, including eight years of leading the Rexel Automation USA team's sales and business development efforts, Greg brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to his new role.

The 5 Stages of the Functional Machine Safety Lifecycle

6/23/2023 - Dave Cucerzan, Product Specialist

This post takes you through five crucial stages of the machine safety lifecycle. From conducting hazard/risk assessments to maintaining and improving safety systems, this comprehensive approach provides valuable insights and guidance for creating a safe working environment in your industrial manufacturing facility.

Industrial Manufacturing Cybersecurity 101

6/9/2023 - Billy Hayes & Paul Sainato, IIOT Solutions Managers

As technology continues to evolve, threat actors are actively seeking out ways to exploit vulnerabilities in your industrial networks and systems This post explains key cybersecurity concepts and best practices to make sure you don’t fall victim to a cyberattack, putting both business and reputation on the line.

Understanding Process Automation & Advanced Process Control

5/24/2023 - Claire Felix-Davies, Process Solutions Manager

This post defines process automation and advanced process control, key things to know, and explores the benefits of investing in technology and software to improve your industrial manufacturing processes. This is a great place to start as you consider your digital transformation strategy.

Mitigate Cybersecurity Threats with the NIST Cybersecurity Framework

5/17/2023 - Anita O'Brien, Services and Solutions Business Manager

Do you know how secure your industrial network is? Can anyone come into your facility and make changes on your network? This blog post highlights the challenges of network security and how you can build a roadmap to maintain control of your cybersecurity.

Industrial Manufacturing and Robotics: 5 Tips to Getting Started

5/11/2023 - Robert Werkman, VP of Automation

Robotics are a smart investment for industrial manufactures looking to increase productivity without sacrificing quality – not to mention the improvements to workplace safety. This post offers five essential tips on how to industrial manufacturers can get with robotics. If you’re considering implementing robotics technology in your facility – this is a great place to start.

3 Ways You Can Achieve Your Sustainability Goals

4/5/2023 - Rexel

This post details three ways you can get started with achieving your sustainability goals. With this approach, you’ll be able to reduce waste, lower costs, increase productivity, and promote sustainability throughout the manufacturing process.

Turn Your FactoryTalk® Historian Data into Up-to-Date Actionable Information 

4/4/2023 - Marcia Pohl, Process Development Manager

This blog post highlights the benefits of FactoryTalk® Historian Vision as a powerful tool to streamline manufacturing operations by turning data into actionable information. The add-on provides you with easy access to dynamic and relevant data across different devices, allowing you to make informed decisions.

Bridge the Skills Gap, Save Money, & Reduce Downtime with Remote & Hybrid Learning Tools

3/27/2023 - Anita O'Brien, Services and Solutions Business Manager

With unemployment at a low, technology advancing faster every day, and experienced employees retiring, that can leave a huge skills gap in your workforce. Learning + and the new Learning + Enhanced can bridge this gap and keep your facility running at peak efficiency.

3 Tips to Protect Your Industrial Manufacturing Facility from a Ransomware Attack

3/7/2023 - Greg Powell, Director of Enterprise Solutions

Cyberattacks on critical infrastructure and industrial manufacturing are a pressing concern, with ransomware being the most popular among threat actors. This post highlights three effective strategies for safeguarding your facility against such threats.

Security Posture for IoT

2/8/2023 - Greg Powell, Director of Enterprise Solutions

This post provides basic steps to improve and optimize IT/OT security posture by following the standards of a security framework such as the NIST Cybersecurity Framework. The steps include asset identification and visibility, network segmentation, continuous threat detection, and incident response and disaster recovery.

2022

Going the Distance: SineWave Filter Applications

12/20/2022 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Part III of our In and Out Trilogy, This blog post discusses the benefits of using a Line Reactor on AC Drives, specifically the SineWave filter, to address issues such as motor heating, motor insulation stress, audio sound, common mode current, and reflective wave.

How Far Can You Go Safely? Intro to dv/dt Filtration

11/30/2022 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Part II of our In and Out Trilogy, this post discusses how dv/dt filters can be used to address motor failures caused by the reflected wave phenomenon.

Don't Let Skills Gaps at Your Facility Hold You Back

10/12/2022 - Anita O'Brien, Rexel Technical Consultant

Gaps in skills and knowledge in your facility don't have to hold you back. There are convenient training options to keep your employees at the top of their game.

Benefits of Using a Line Reactor on AC Drives

8/10/2022 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Part I of our In and Out Trilogy - Line reactors may be optional for your drive installation, but there are several benefits you may be missing out on.

Scaling Analog Inputs to PowerFlex 525

7/1/2022 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

This article addresses analog scaling to the analog input to the PowerFlex 525 drive. The example is a 4-20mA signal with a different minimum or maximum frequency output from the drive.

Energy Savings Using VFDs: Just the Facts

6/2/2022 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

60% of all electrical energy is from electrical motors. Learn how you can save energy that exists with air compressors, fans, and pumps in your facility.

Complications with Multiple Motors on One VFD

5/24/2022 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Learn the facts about multiple motors on one VFD solutions to reoccurring issues.

Migrating from SERCOS to CIP Motion

5/20/2022 - Chris Williams, Rexel Technical Consultant

Discover how to increase performance and flexibility with ethernet-based servo drives.

Improving the Performance of Your VFD in Heavy Duty Applications

5/18/2022 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

This blog will address the three operation models and when to use each mode of the VFD drive in a variety of heavy-duty applications.

Methods for Machine Safety & Access Control That Work Together

5/5/2022 - Will Cole, Rexel Technical Consultant

Machine safety is an important topic whenever you have moving hazards like motors and conveyors. This post will discuss using trapped key interlocks and access/control locking modules.

Improving the Performance of Pumps and Fans

5/4/2022 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

This post will discuss two of the three operations modes to allow for the best and most reliable characteristics of the drive, improving the performance of pumps and fans.

Horizon Solutions Wins the Ecosystem Award

3/31/2022 - Horizon Solutions

Horizon Solutions won the inaugural Ecosystem Award at the Rockwell Automation PartnerNetwork conference for our Business Intelligence in a Box offering, which is a solution bundle.

5 Reasons to Try FactoryTalk Logix Echo

3/8/2022 - Joe Amorese, Rexel Technical Consultant

FactoryTalk Logix Echo emulation software for ControlLogix 5580 controllers offers a convenient way to save time during prototyping, design, and testing. Let's look at reasons to try it.

The Importance of Solid Patch Policies

3/2/2022 - Eric Haff, Rexel Technical Consultant

Are your patch policies set up to protect your production computers? Are you on top of upcoming patches? Learn how to manage your patch policies to avoid costly downtime.

Terminating a VFD Cable

2/22/2022 - Horizon Solutions Partner

Did you know that terminating a VFD cable differs from terminating other shielded cables? Terminating the cable and its shield correctly is essential to system performance and reliability.

Selecting the Right Studio 5000 Edition

2/15/2022 - Austin Desmond, Rexel Technical Consultant

Making the right Studio 5000 software selection can be confusing. This post breaks down the selection process for Logix Controllers, including CompactLogix and ControlLogix.

What is an IDMZ?

2/1/2022 - Eric Haff, Rexel Technical Consultant

If you work in an industrial setting, an IDMZ (industrial demilitarization zone) might be the cybersecurity component you need to protect your employees and productivity.

Sleep Better with a Process Controller

1/18/2022 - Marcia Pohl, Rexel Technical Consultant

Is unexplained downtime costing you sleep, productivity, and money? A process controller can help! Learn how to gain more visibility and find issues faster to get up and running quickly.

Cybercrime and Industrial Facilities

1/4/2022 - Anita O'Brien, Rexel Technical Consultant

Why are industrial companies a target for cybercrime? In the industrial world, we have a lot of systems that are more than 20 years old. These legacy systems often have insecure designs.

2021

140M to 140MT Motor Protection Circuit Breakers

12/14/2021 - Will Cole, Rexel Technical Consultant

Rexel Technical Specialist Will Cole talks about the move from Allen-Bradley Bulletin 140M to 140MT motor protection circuit breakers (MPCB).

Going from a Starter to a PowerFlex 4M Drive

12/7/2021 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Are you ready to move away from mechanical starters to a solid-state, non-wearing drive that can do so much more than a starter? Learn how to convert to a PowerFlex 4M drive.

Unexplained Downtime? It Could Be PQ Issues

12/1/2021 - Tom Hopkins, Rexel Technical Consultant

Are phantom issues plaguing your machines and causing downtime? PQ issues could be to blame. Learn how to improve power quality in your facility with the right solutions.

Applying CIP Safety with Rockwell Automation

11/23/2021 - Scott DeVost, Rexel Technical Consultant

CIP Safety devices confirm data integrity and go into a safe state when errors occur. Learn how to apply CIP Safety in your facility with Allen-Bradley products from Rockwell Automation.

Downloadable Resources from Our Experts

10/26/2021 - Rexel

If you read our blog, you know we put our specialists to work. But did you know we also provide downloadable resources that you can take with you? We have a free growing library.

Lockout/Tagout Requirements Made Easy

10/12/2021 - Michael Martinson, Rexel Technical Consultant

Meet lockout/tagout requirements with help from the experts. Learn how Rockwell Automation can help you maintain compliance at your facility with several convenient options to choose from.

Dual-Loop Servo Control Explained

10/5/2021 - Chris Williams, Rexel Technical Consultant

In this blog, first we’ll look at single-loop control and its potential issues. Then we’ll learn about dual-loop servo control and the circumstances under which it may be a good solution.

3 Easy Steps to Using FactoryTalk Edge Gateway

9/28/2021 - David Kew, Rexel Technical Consultant

To stay competitive in today’s rapidly changing marketplace, manufacturers need fast access to intelligent, actionable operational data. Learn how FactoryTalk Edge Gateway can help.

Using E-Stops Over Longer Spans

9/14/2021 - Tom Hopkins, Rexel Technical Consultant

We all know e-stops on automated machinery are a requirement. But what is the best way to apply and position them, especially for long spans? Cable pull switches are an option.

5 Reasons to Start Your Digital Transformation NOW

8/31/2021 - Jim Bischoff, Rexel Technical Consultant

Let’s look at five reasons to start your digital transformation. Even if you’re working within a budget or have limited capital, there is always a way to start or continue your journey.

Redundant Power Supply Options for 24V DC Power

8/24/2021 - Scott DeVost, Rexel Technical Consultant

For applications requiring a steady 24V DC power source, a redundant power supply is a backup power supply in the event of a failure. This blog looks at your options for avoiding loss of power. 

VFD Cable Update: NFPA 79 2021 Edition Changes

8/17/2021 - Kevin Beach, Rexel Technical Consultant

When it comes to cables between VFDs and AC motors, the rules have changed dramatically in recent years. And now with the NFPA 79 2021 edition, there have been some more minor changes. 

Drive Modernization Part VII: PowerFlex 4 to Powerflex 523

8/3/2021 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Go from the PowerFlex 4 drive series to the PowerFlex 523 drive series with step-by-step instructions. This is the seventh installment of our Allen-Bradley drive modernization series.

Decoding FactoryTalk Activation

7/27/2021 - Joe Amorese, Rexel Technical Consultant

Over time, Rockwell Automation deployed different software activation techniques. The original FactoryTalk Activation used Flexera technology and most recently moved to CodeMeter.

Motion Control: Demystifying Simple Control Theory

7/0/2021 - Andy Lussier, Rexel Technical Consultant

In this blog, we discuss the control theory in servo and motion control systems at a high level, covering a wide variety of topics. It is this very control theory that makes a servo a servo. 

Drive Modernization Part VI: PowerFlex 40 to Powerflex 525

7/13/2021 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Go from the PowerFlex 40 drive series to the PowerFlex 525 drive series with step-by-step conversion instructions. This is the sixth installment of our Allen-Bradley drive modernization series. 

Creating a Subnet

5/25/2021 - Eric Haff, Rexel Technical Consultant

Learn about subnets, breaking your industrial network into smaller networks, reducing broadcast traffic. This post will increase your networking knowledge, helping you improve your networks.

Optimize Your Maintenance with Fiix CMMS

5/19/2021 - Anita O'Brien, Rexel Technical Consultant

Ready to streamline your maintenance process while reducing downtime and lowering costs? Learn how to make scheduling, organizing, and tracking maintenance easier than ever with Fiix CMMS.

Pros and Cons: Networking Safety Solutions

5/27/2021 - Mark Brant, Rexel Technical Consultant

When it comes to industrial networks, finding the right solution can be tricky. Let’s compare networking safety solutions, including relay-, PLC-, and ethernet-based safety solutions.

SMC: Do You Need a Reduced Voltage Soft Starter?

4/20/2021 - Tom Hopkins, Rexel Technical Consultant

Consider the features and cost savings of an SMC. There are new SMC platforms that you should be aware of. For applications that don’t require variable speed, take a second look.

Choosing a Servo Motor Brake

4/6/2021 - Chris Williams, Rexel Technical Consultant

There are a number of types of servo motor brakes and choosing the right one depends on your needs. Let’s look at some types, including holding brakes, dynamic brakes, and safety brakes.

5 Benefits of FactoryTalk AssetCentre

4/1/2021 - David Kew, Rexel Technical Consultant

FactoryTalk AssetCentre software is a centralized tool, featuring change and version management, disaster recovery, lifecycle management, operator track and trace, and system security.

Torque Regulation with PowerFlex 750 Series Drives

3/23/2021 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Learn torque regulation with PowerFlex 750 drive series from a drives specialist. This blog will take you through a deep dive, complete with diagrams, system screenshots, and instructions.

5 Reasons to Use an Electronic Circuit Protector

3/9/2021 - Scott DeVost, Rexel Technical Consultant

Are you protecting your 24-volt loads? Let’s go through five reasons to use an electronic circuit protector: design, class 2 protection, reset and monitoring, manual current, and IO-Link.

Is it a VFD or Servo Application?

3/2/2021 - Andy Lussier, Rexel Technical Consultant

A deeper understanding of your application typically dictates the technology direction: VFD or servo. This blog outlines some of the technology differences between the two solutions.

IO-Link, The "T" in IIoT

2/3/2021 - Jim Bischoff, Rexel Technical Consultant

Have you heard of the Internet of Industrial Things (IIoT)? Learn how IO-Link makes manufacturing smarter, helping people make better decisions to improve productivity and profitability. 

VFD Series Part 8: EMC Filtering

2/9/2021 - Kevin Beach, Rexel Technical Consultant

In this high-tech manufacturing world, the issues of electrical noise and methods to mitigate it are of high importance. In this one, we look at the EMC filtering options available in VFDs.

High Availability Logix-Based Control Systems

2/2/2021 - Joe Amorese, Rexel Technical Consultant

Your control system must be able to withstand disruptions. A high availability Logix-based system may be the solution. Rockwell Automation has two offerings: redundancy and hot backup. 

Breaking Down Network Acronyms

1/26/2021 - Rexel

Networking manuals can look more like alphabet soup than instructions. This blog breaks down the definitions of the network acronyms you may see as you build your industrial network.

Drive Modernization Part V: PowerFlex 700 to PowerFlex 750

1/20/2021 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

The fifth blog in our AC drive series covers Allen-Bradley architect drives modernization, converting PowerFlex 700 series drives to PowerFlex 750 series drives.

2020

The Power of the E300 Electronic Overload Relay

12/15/2020 - Tom Hopkins, Rexel Technical Consultant

In this new age of manufacturing, you need more data. Learn how you can diagnose issues and prevent downtime with the Allen-Bradley E300 electronic overload relay from Rockwell Automation.

The Power of My Equipment by Rockwell Automation

10/20/2020 - Michael Martinson, Rexel Technical Consultant

Empower yourself. With the My Equipment by Rockwell Automation tool, you can make informed decisions at your facility to ensure a bright future for your business. Let's look at the benefits.

What Goes into an Industrial Control Panel?

9/22/2020 - Rexel

Let’s look at industrial control panel basics. The components for your panel will depend on your applications. This post provides basic descriptions of the most common components. 

Calculations for Sizing a Servo Axis

9/15/2020 - Chris Williams, Rexel Technical Consultant

With the right equations, you can calculate by hand—and we’ll show you how. In this blog, we go through calculations for sizing a servo axis step-by-step using a simple application example.

Migrate Your HMI: Replacing PanelView Plus 6

9/1/2020 - Joe Amorese, Rexel Technical Consultant

Rockwell Automation plans to discontinue PanelView Plus 6 in September 2021. With the change a year away, consider upgrading your HMI to the PanelView Plus 7 or PanelView 5000 families.

Decoding Industrial Network Jargon

8/18/2020 - Austin Desmond, Rexel Technical Consultant

A lot of industrial network jargon is simple to explain but rarely are. This post tackles some of the more common jargon to help demystify the language of networking from DHCP to VLAN.

Considerations for Selecting a Photo Sensor

8/4/2020 - Tom Hopkins, Rexel Technical Consultant

Photo sensors are presence sensing devices. And successful application starts with an understanding of the physics of light. Let’s look at some considerations for selecting a photo sensor.

Plan for the Future with Installed Base Evaluation

7/28/2020 - Ryan Beauchemin, Rexel Technical Consultant

An installed base evaluation (or IBE) can help you make data-driven business decisions to ensure your plant can stay up and running even if you experience an untimely failure.

Drive Modernization Part IV: PowerFlex 70 to PowerFlex 525

7/21/2020 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Is it time to upgrade your PowerFlex 70 to PowerFlex 525? This post will give you the instructions and information you need to modernize your drives.

Small Starts: Digital Transformation Baby Steps

7/14/2020 - Jim Bischoff, Rexel Technical Consultant

Every journey starts with a first step. Learn how one food manufacturer took the first step on its digital transformation journey when obsolete equipment slowed productivity.

FAQ: Virtual Coaching

7/8/2020 - Anita O'Brien, Rexel Technical Consultant

Virtual coaching provides teams convenient access to experts. It’s a custom, flexible support option that is conveniently available wherever you need it—with just an Internet connection.

How to Size a Servo Access

5/13/2020 - Chris Williams, Rexel Technical Consultant

Do you know what information you need for sizing your servo system? Part one of a two-part series, this post walks you through the data, values, and calculations needed to size a servo axis.

Networking with Remote Connectivity Appliances

5/5/2020 - Joe Amorese, Rexel Technical Consultant

Remote connectivity is more critical than ever. One challenge is connecting into the plant control network for monitoring, troubleshooting, and making modifications to procedural issues.

Do You Know Your Lifecycle Status?

4/14/2020 - Austin Desmond, Rexel Technical Consultant

There are several tools available to help protect you and your company, prevent unplanned downtime, and help you understand the lifecycle status of equipment in your facility.

Light Curtain or Laser Zone Scanner?

4/7/2020 - Tom Hopkins, Rexel Technical Consultant

Always consider the application. A light curtain is a great safety device when it’s applied correctly. Depending on the application, a safety laser zone scanner could be a better choice.

Accessing Critical Spare Parts at a Distance

4/2/2020 - Michael Martinson, Rexel Technical Consultant

Social distancing is the new reality for doing business. Let’s look at how you can access the critical spare parts you need quickly, easily, and at a distance and the benefits of a PMA.

Now More Than Ever - You Need Remote Support!

3/24/2020 - Anita O'Brien, Rexel Technical Consultant

Are you struggling to keep your manufacturing facility up and running? If you are, you are not alone. We're here for you with remote support.

Breaking Down Circuit Breakers

3/17/2020 - Scott DeVost, Rexel Technical Consultant

Why are there so many different types of circuit breakers? How do you know which one to use? This post walks you through common types, what the differences are, and when to use them.

Basic Rules for Dynamic Braking Resistors

3/10/2020 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Dynamic braking with VFDs allows for long life without mechanical wear on your braking system. Braking resistors are cost-effective and don't require any downtime maintenance.

Motor Encoders Explained

2/4/2020 - Chris Williams, Rexel Technical Consultant

Without a feedback device, the motor will run in an open loop and not reliably position the load, or even move at all. Let’s look at motor encoders, one of the most common types of devices.

What is a FactoryTalk?

1/28/2020 - Joe Amorese, Rexel Technical Consultant

Please quote me a FactoryTalk. I get that request often, so I thought I’d explain what it is and isn’t to increase your understanding. The post breaks down the various FactoryTalk services.

5 Steps to Digital Transformation Success

1/23/2020 - Jim Bischoff, Rexel Technical Consultant

Make your digital transformation a success with a five-step plan. Start your journey by learning what digital transformation is and how to make the right choices for your organization.

Exploring Lightly Managed Network Switches

1/14/2020 - Austin Desmond, Rexel Technical Consultant

The middle ground between managed and unmanaged, lightly managed network switches offer the ease of an unmanaged switch while providing some of the major benefits of managed switches.

2019

Avoid Ground Loops with Signal Conditioners

12/11/2019 - Tom Hopkins, Rexel Technical Consultant

Erroneous input data in your industrial processes can cause problems, and ground loop noise can adversely impact process data. Learn how you can avoid ground loops and remediate issues.

Best Practices for Large Enclosures

12/3/2019 - Will Cole, Rexel Technical Consultant

If you work with complex electrical and automation control devices, this post will help you understand large enclosures, including dimensions, sizing, weight, logistics, and safety.

Software Subscriptions: A Modern Delivery Method

11/26/2019 - Jim Bischoff, Rexel Technical Consultant

The IoT and smart manufacturing have all impacted the way automation software is developed and deployed. Software subscriptions make deploying these innovations scalable and affordable.

Capacitor Reforming for Legacy Drives

11/12/2019 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Having a back-up is always a good practice, but you may have to perform a step or two before installing a stored legacy drive that has been gathering dust. Let’s examine capacitor reforming.

3 Reasons to Upgrade Your Color Sensors

11/7/2019 - Scott DeVost, Rexel Technical Consultant

When color sensors detect a color value, a pre-determined action takes place. Let's look at three reasons why it might be time for you to upgrade your color sensors.

Connecting a VFD to a Power System

10/31/2019 - Tony Saporito, Rexel Technical Consultant

There are many installation considerations when applying a variable frequency drive. One important thing to consider is making the right selection when connecting a VFD to a power system.

What is CIP Security?

9/17/2019 - Joe Amorese, Rexel Technical Consultant

Rockwell Automation released the first phase of their CIP secure enabled products. With the networking possibilities on the modern plant floor, CIP security allows for device-level security.

How to Tune a Servo Motor

9/12/2019 - Chris Williams, Rexel Technical Consultant

Do you need to tune a servo motor? On many servo systems, manual tuning is still the go-to method for attaining optimal performance. So, let’s walk through tuning a servo motor.

Exploring Network Switches

9/3/2019 - Austin Desmond, Rexel Technical Consultant

Network switches allow devices to be connected on a network by using packet switching. Let's explore the types and features of network switches for an industrial automation environment.

FAQ: Ask Shelby

8/22/2019 - Seth Pratt, Rexel Technical Consultant

The technical name for “Shelby” is FactoryTalk Analytics for Devices. Shelby is named after a dog, which is why the symbol is a dog. So, why ask Shelby? This FAQ will walk you through.

VFD Series Part 7: How to Connect the Shield in VFD Cable

8/20/2019 - Kevin Beach, Rexel Technical Consultant

We're often asked, “Do I need to bond both ends of my motor cable, or do I leave one loose?” This is part seven of our on-going series and it will show you how to connect the shield in VFD cable.

5 Best Practices for Drive Enclosures

8/8/2019 - Will Cole, Rexel Technical Consultant

From conveyors to pumps, drives are an efficient piece of automation technology. These best practices for drive enclosures will save you time—and frustration. Just follow these five steps.

Reliable DC Power Systems

8/6/2019 - Tom Hopkins, Rexel Technical Consultant

Control devices are more sensitive to power interruptions, causing data loss and long restart times. When downtime is not an option, you need a reliable DC power system.

Juggling Space and Time with Terminal Blocks

7/23/2019 - Will Cole, Rexel Technical Consultant

If you’ve ever investigated the guts of a control panel, you’ve seen terminal block arrays. Learn ways to save time and space when you’re building or modifying control panels.

Drive Modernization Part III: 1305 to PowerFlex 525

7/16/2019 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Part three of a series on drive migration, helping you avoid legacy drive failure which can put your facility at risk. Let’s explore the path to converting a 1305 to PowerFlex 525 drive.

4 Signal Conditioner Benefits

7/2/2019 - Scott DeVost, Rexel Technical Consultant

In industrial environments, signal conditioners isolate, transmit, convert, split, and amplify to improve process reliability. Let’s look at a few of the top benefits of using them.

5 Reasons to Choose High-Performance Processors

6/20/2019 - Joe Amorese, Rexel Technical Consultant

Is it time for an upgrade? Though the initial focus was for high-performance motion applications, the increased CPU is advantageous in discrete manufacturing and process applications.

Assessment Services are Facility Check-Ups

6/13/2019 - Jim Bischoff, Rexel Technical Consultant

Manufacturers invest in assessment services for modernization, compliance, safety, and security. Let’s look at how one customer prepared for the future by assessing the present situation.

End of Support for Windows Embedded CE 6.0

6/6/2019 - Ryan Shenk, Rexel Technical Consultant

On April 10, 2018, Microsoft announced the end of extended support. This boils down to no more security patches issued by Microsoft. No, this isn’t the end of the world.

Robot Support: Automation Equipment Repair

5/28/2019 - Ozzie Reichardt, Rexel Technical Consultant

Robots have supported manufacturing for over 50 years. Though robots withstand wear and tear, there will be times when manufacturing facilities require automation equipment repair.

Top 3 Remanufacturing Benefits

5/21/2019 - Ryan Beauchemin, Rexel Technical Consultant

Today, manufacturing facilities are challenged with doing more with less—less staff, less capital, and of course, less time. Remanufacturing can help you achieve these goals. 

Comparing PanelView Terminals

5/16/2019 - Dan Simpson, Rexel Technical Consultant

There's a lot to take in when comparing Rockwell Automation PanelView operator interface terminals. This blog condenses an overwhelming amount of information into a readable synopsis.

Inertia Ratio: Avoiding an Inertia Mismatch

5/9/2019 - Chris Williams, Rexel Technical Consultant

In a motion control or servo system, both the motor and load have inertia. The ratio between their inertias impacts system performance. This ratio is often overlooked.

The Birth of Edge Computing

4/16/2019 - Marcia Pohl, Rexel Technical Consultant

Edge computing is the collection and crunching of data on the plant floor close to devices. With this concept, you can use an edge appliance on the floor to collect and analyze data.

Drive Modernization Part II: 1336 PLUS to PowerFlex 525

3/26/2019 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Unfortunately, most electrical departments aren’t prepared for legacy drive failures. This strategy will help you migrate 1336 PLUS to PowerFlex 525, step by step.

6 Components of a Secure Industrial Network

3/19/2019 - Kyle Carreau, Rexel Technical Consultant

Network security can be a lot like safety; too much and your production may suffer, too little and you leave yourself exposed to cyber-attacks. There needs to be a balance.

It's Time to Migrate Your Disconnect Switches

3/11/2019 - Scott DeVost, Rexel Technical Consultant

Many of the Rockwell Automation visible-blade disconnect switches were discontinued on May 31, 2019, including 1494V, 1494C, and 1494F. Let’s look at your migration options.

The Benefits of Electric Actuation

3/7/2019 - Andy Lussier, Rexel Technical Consultant

Traditional pneumatic and hydraulic actuators have hidden costs over their life. Electric actuators offer significant efficiency, simplicity, and design advantages—and savings.

Manufacturing Annunciation: Breaking Through

2/21/2019 - Robert Serano, Rexel Technical Consultant

From smartphones to alarm clocks, differentiating the importance of each alert is increasingly difficult. Manufacturing annunciation is yet another layer. The challenge is breaking through.

Safe Stopping Options Explained

2/19/2019 - Chris Williams, Rexel Technical Consultant

Newer safe stop functions bring high-inertia loads to a more controlled stop. There are two options: safe stop 1 (SS1) and safe stop 2 (SS2). They differ once the motor is at a standstill.

VFD Series Part 6: Is Safe Torque Off for Me?

2/14/2019 - Kevin Beach, Rexel Technical Consultant

Is safe torque off (STO) something you could really use? Right off, I’ll say, given the minimal cost involved, the investment is a no-brainer even if you don’t use it at first.

VLANs: Why Do I Need Them?

2/7/2019 - Ryan Shenk, Rexel Technical Consultant

A VLAN allows a group of Ethernet devices (subnet) to be physically separated by many Ethernet switches but communicate as if they were all connected to the same physical Ethernet switch.

Finding the Right Training Options

2/5/2019 - David Kew, Rexel Technical Consultant

Employers are concerned about filling skill gaps and keeping up with technology. Let’s look at the costs and benefits of different types of training for your employment development plans.

Choosing VFD Cables Just Got Easier

1/29/2019 - Gary Sargent, Rexel Technical Consultant

Cables connect VFDs to motors. In the past, manufacturers used their own judgment to classify their products as VFD cables. This all changed in 2018 when NFPA updated NFPA 79.

Upgrade vs. Modernize: How to Decide?

1/24/2019 - Rockwell Automation

If you’re using the terms “upgrade” and “modernize” interchangeably, we should talk about the differences. Knowing what you need and when you need will help you meet your goals.

Confused by RSLinx Rebranding?

1/22/2019 - Joe Amorese, Rexel Technical Consultant

As an authorized Rockwell Automation distributor, we’re your go-to source for questions on RSLinx, FactoryTalk, and everything automation related. Let’s look at what RSLinx rebranding means.

3 Reasons to Upgrade to GuardLink Technology

1/15/2019 - Scott DeVost, Rexel Technical Consultant

Traditional systems don’t provide much in the way of diagnostics. When you upgrade to GuardLink, a modern safety system, you’ll enjoy simplified troubleshooting and increased uptime.

The Advantages of Photoelectric Sensors

1/3/2019 - Robert Serano, Rexel Technical Consultant

Photoelectric sensors detect the distance, absence, or presence of an object by using a light transmitter, making them an ideal alternative to inductive proximity sensors. 

2016 - 2018

Drive Modernization Part I: 1336 PLUS to PowerFlex 750

6/14/2018 - Scott Savage, Rexel Technical Consultant

Legacy systems operate in isolation and outdated equipment is costly to run. This blog post will teach you how to convert a 1366 PLUS to a PowerFlex 750 drive.

VFD Series Part 5: How do I Choose an Electric Motor?

4/17/2018 - Kevin Beach, Rexel Technical Consultant

If you’ve ever looked at an industrial motor catalog, then you know finding the right motor can be a daunting task. With the huge selection of motors, we can make choosing one a bit simpler.

VFD Series Part 4: Good Panel Design

3/10/2017 - Kevin Beach, Rexel Technical Consultant

If I had a dollar for every time I’ve seen a complete mess of an electrical panel, I’d have a whole lot of dollars for sure. This post will walk you through the secrets to good panel design.

VFD Series Part 3: Motor Cable Length Matters

8/19/2016 - Kevin Beach, Rexel Technical Consultant

How long can my motor cables be when using a VFD? Well, the simple answer is, there really isn’t a simple answer. This post looks at motor cable lengths and how to get the longest length possible.

VFD Series Part 2: The Environment Can Kill You

7/29/2016 - Kevin Beach, Rexel Technical Consultant

This blog takes a deep dive into the environmental issues that pertain to VFDs. While it is essential to make certain the motor is properly selected for its environment, this post addresses only the VFDs. 

VFD Series Part 1: What the Heck is a Variable Frequency Drive?

7/8/2016 - Kevin Beach, Rexel Technical Consultant

VFDs how can you use them? How do you benefit from their use? This blog series will look at the uses and cautions when implementing variable frequency drives.