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Omron Helps Environmental Technology Company Upgrade Prototype with Cutting-Edge Technology and Cut Costs by 30% with Solution Using NX-I/O

A leading provider of research and development services for engineering and life sciences companies sought to improve upon the design of an initial prototype for its production machinery. The company initially wanted to implement a solution using DeviceNet and contacted Omron for assistance.

Omron found that it would be more effective to introduce EtherCAT technology by means of the NX Series I/O System. This ultimately led to a demonstration of the Sysmac platform and subsequently a bill of materials proving that the NJ Series Machine Automation Controller and NX-Series I/O System would save 30% of costs compared with the previous design.

Omron gave preference to EtherCAT over DeviceNet because the latter is a slower CAN-based protocol designed for sensors and it uses screw-type connections that can be difficult to install and maintain. EtherCAT, an Ethernet-based control protocol with RJ45 connectivity, is easier to implement in large part because customers can leverage their understanding of Ethernet.

Although it was too late to convert from using a different supplier for prototype production, Omron secured the remote I/O and began to actively work on transitioning the R&D company to a full Sysmac solution. The company was so impressed with the new solution’s potential that they paid for a three-day, on-site training event for their engineering staff. Omron worked with the customer to develop a complete plug-and-play solution that worked within its timeline.

Business Need

A leading provider of green research and development services for engineering and life sciences companies needed a plug-and-play automation solution to improve its Generation 1 machine that converted flare gas to methane for the oil and gas industry.

Unique Solution

Omron proposed an EtherCAT-based solution employing the NX-Series I/O System for the customer’s remote I/O needs along with temperature control and machine automation controllers from the NJ family.

Customer Benefits

The solution cut costs by 30% and boosted machine performance, and the NX temperature control allowed the customer to scale up the design from a 250kW reactor to a 1mW reactor in their Generation 3 machine.

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