MRO Magazine

Software takes over role of print catalogue for motor selection

The U.S. Patent Office recently awarded Rockwell Automation's Reliance Electric a patent for the RPM AC Motor Wizard, variable speed AC motor application and selection software. This software is des...

February 1, 2000 | By MRO Magazine

The U.S. Patent Office recently awarded Rockwell Automation’s Reliance Electric a patent for the RPM AC Motor Wizard, variable speed AC motor application and selection software. This software is designed to perform complex motor selection tasks that in the past have been carried out manually by motor design engineers. Traditionally, customers have made motor selections from a printed catalogue that lists a variety of motors along with their basic operating ranges. Recently, software programs have been developed that emulate printed catalogues. This method breaks down when a user wishes to select a motor to operate under very specific conditions that may not be covered in the software catalogue.

The Wizard software overcomes this problem by automatically assisting in motor configuration/selection, in particular for specialized or customized motors, by taking into consideration the operating characteristics of the motor, as well as inter-relationships of environmental, operational and user-imposed limitations.

Said to be easy to use, this software allows the user to optimize the motor-drive combination to create the lowest cost, highest performance combination.

New on CD…


Colson’s caster selection guide on CD-ROM makes choosing the correct caster faster and easier than ever. The CD quickly narrows 35,000 caster choices down to the one model ideally suited for the application. For more information, call 1-800-643-5515.

Primedia Workplace Learning has released its Interactive Maintenance Training Series to the manufacturing sector. Originally provided to the process and utilities industries, this 72-CD-ROM library provides comprehensive training in electrical and mechanical maintenance for industrial maintenance personnel. Each CD-ROM is a stand-alone program that involves the learner in interactive exercises. For more information, call (617) 489-4084 or visit the web site, located at

An interactive, computer-based training program on crane rigging safety is available from Summit Training Source. This CD-ROM features full-screen, full-motion video that keeps learners interested in the subject matter–types of rigging, selection, care and use of rigging, load control and dynamics, and identifying and avoiding potential hazards. Previews are available at no charge by calling (616) 949-4343, toll-free 1-800-842-0466, faxing (616) 949-5720 or e-mailing:

Chromalox has expanded its catalogue, the Big Red Book, and made it available on a free CD-ROM. The CD-ROM contains comprehensive product specification, design and application information on the Chromalox line of more than 8,000 electric heat and control products. In addition, the company is offering complimentary copies of its Electrical Heat Tracing Systems Design Guide. Information in the guide allows users to design, specify and select a complete bill of materials for applications such as freeze protection and process temperature maintenance. Available as a loose-leaf binder, the guide contains more than 160 pages of design data, product specifications, installation instructions, worksheets and RFQ forms. Users can register with Chromalox to receive binder updates. Also, the company has expanded its web site, located at, to include its Big Red Book catalogue. For more information, contact Chromalox, Emerson Electric Company, 701 Alpha Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15238, tel. (412) 967-3800, fax (412) 967-5148, or visit the web site.

Miller Electric has introduced two interactive CD-ROM training modules for welders: TIG Fundamentals and MIG Fundamentals. Providing the insight and advice found in Miller’s training workshops, the CD-ROMs teach in-depth process theory, applications and electrical theory. Cost for each module is US$149.00. To order, call the Miller Training Systems order desk at 1-800-934-5148 or fax (920) 751-2121.

Bosch Automation has released Version 2.0 of the Electronic Reference Library CD-ROM. Included are the industrial, hydraulic, pneumatic and mobile hydraulic product lines, as well as company documents and overview materials. A number of new catalogues have been added to the upgraded version, in addition to a new search engine for faster look-ups. Direct links to the Bosch web site have been established in the areas of pricing, training, marketing, distribution and core products, and these should be fully functional in February.

New on the Web…

The web site at is a guide to educational, technical and practical information for couplings and coupling related products. The site is sponsored by Lovejoy. Questions and answers, educational pieces, training documents, technical papers and instructional items are planned for the site.

Lovejoy has upgraded its web site, located at, as a broader information resource for shaft-to-shaft couplings, U-joints, variable speed drive pulleys, plus elastomeric chain/belt tensioners and self-adjusting motor bases. Commemorating the company’s 100th anniversary, the site offers a new Design Corner for technical information, the complete Lovejoy catalogue, plus on-line, product-order status checking for customers, with plans to add on-line purchasing later in the year.

Plant maintenance personnel should find it easier to implement Computerized Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS) with the introduction of MegaMation Systems’ DirectLine Service delivered over the Internet on a pay-as-you-go monthly billing basis. This Application Services Provider (ASP) offers Internet access to maintenance management software from a central data centre, reducing the cost of implementing CMMS, ensuring predictable costs, eliminating software-related problems and providing flexibility to tailor services, support and training to specific requirements. DirectLine’s monthly service fee includes implementation assistance, on-line training, plus unlimited technical consulting and service support. Subscribers only require a modem and a high-speed phone line for access. For further information, contact MegaMation Systems at (905) 844-9947, fax (905) 844-0347.

In co-operation with the Electric Power Research Institute and Tennessee Valley Authority, Dranetz-BMI and Electrotek Concepts have developed the Signature System family of electric power quality and energy management analyzers. Designed for many applications, including in industrial facilities, the system consists of two major components, the InfoNode and the DataNode. The InfoNode, or web server, continuously retrieves data from multiple, remotely located DataNode power quality and energy monitors. The InfoNode provides visualization and analysis tools using a standard web browser on a PC. There is no need to load or learn proprietary software: the system can be accessed on line at

U.S.-based Motion Industries has announced a comprehensive Internet-based procurement solution, entitled, which gives customers Internet access to over 1.7 million parts. Users will be able to check stock, request quotes, view pricing, place orders and track order status 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The site is due to be active no later than the end of March.

The Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers (STLE) has set up a new e-mail address at <”>b> In order to contact anyone at STLE, type the first letter of their first name, followed by their last name (no spaces, all lower case), then the address (

Managing Automation Software Guides, a division of Thomas Publishing and an Internet developer of software selection tools for the ma
nufacturing enterprise, has announced the addition of a new, time-saving vendor comparison feature on, the MEA Software Selection Tool Online, at is a paid on-line subscription service that helps software buyers to locate vendors, build custom specifications, rank vendors based on specifications, create comparison tables that summarize vendor rankings and scores, and offers an RFP development tool. Over 70 application areas are covered, including ERP/MRP, supply chain management, advance planning & scheduling, MES, SCADA and CMMS.

Parker’s Hose Products Division has launched its web site, located at This new site offers product information and support for Parker Hose customers and distributors alike. Components of the site include a complete listing of hoses and fittings, technical data and support, new product information, safety data, and a toolbox section for specifying and installing Parker hoses and fittings. In addition, users can access Parker bulletins on line.

Expanding services for its members, the Ontario Electrical League has launched a web site, Currently, the site offers e-commerce opportunities for corporate contractor members, including a chat line, labour pool and used equipment for sale listing. In addition, it lists the League corporate members and chapters. The site is designed to grow and change in the future (links to the League’s corporate member web sites will be a feature).

The Open DeviceNet Vendor Association (ODVA) has announced a completely redesigned web site, at The upgraded site features quick and easy navigation, an extensive library of application case histories and PowerPoint presentations in HTML for faster viewing. Also included is specific information on choosing, installing and maintaining a DeviceNet network.

New in Print…

Jergens has announced the Lifting Guidelines Pocket Reference Card, designed to provide at-a-glance assistance for industrial lifting. This full-colour, laminated reference card includes recommended lifting angles, loads and thread torques for four styles of lifting products. Also included are the basic Do’s and Don’ts of lifting safely, providing on-the-spot reinforcement of good lifting practices for the shop floor. The cards are available free in limited quantities. Contact Jergens by phone at (216) 486-5540; fax (216) 481-6193; e-mail:; web site:

The Power Transmission Distributors Association (PTDA) has released the 1999-2000 PTDA Toolkit, a comprehensive catalogue of products available from the association. Redesigned for easier use, it features nearly 75 products, including over 20 new ones, to help PT/MC companies better run their business in today’s increasingly competitive environment. A free copy is available by calling PTDA at (847) 825-2000. The catalogue also may be viewed on line at:

Available from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), Failure Atlas for Hertz Contact Machine Elements, Second Edition, identifies the features of cracking, corrosion, surface defects and other failure modes in camshafts and other Hertzian machine components. The book is updated with images and text on ceramic components and assemblies that are lubricated with vapour. Containing 496 pages and more than 500 images, it is written for engineers and scientists in the fields of metallurgy, tribology, and machine design and maintenance. The list price of the book is US$259, ($208 for ASME members). Call ASME at 1-800-843-2763.

A technical paper has recently been published by Reliance Electric on the topic of variable speed motor technology. Paper no. B-7114, AC Induction Motor Insulation Issues in High dV/dt Environments, is a companion piece to B-7113, AC Induction Motors as Part of Variable Speed Drive Systems. Paper no. B-7114 further explores the impact of high-speed PWM switching circuits on induction motors and the insulation design considerations that must be implemented to deal with them. It demonstrates key issues in ensuring corona-free performance of inverter duty motors such as the RPM AC when operated with today’s fast switching controllers. This paper can be found on the company web site, located at:, in the Technical and Sales Literature section, under the Motors heading. Technical papers also may be ordered by faxing a request to (216) 738-3817.

Superior Die Set Corporation has produced a compact, 228-page, soft-cover catalogue containing the company’s full range of products for the metal stamping, plastic injection and die-cast-mould-building industries. The same catalogue is available on a CD-ROM, where it can be accessed directly or stored locally on the hard drive. Both catalogue and CD-ROM are free of charge. For a copy, contact the company at (414), toll free1-800-558-6040, or visit the web site at:


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