-------------------------Monitor------------------------ The Newsletter for PC-Based Data Acquisition and Control Issue 153 www.windmill.co.uk April 2011 --------------------ISSN 1472-0221---------------------- Welcome to Monitor. This month we are pleased to launch the new version of the Windmill Test Sequence software at the greatly reduced price of 50 pounds, 60 Euro or 85 US dollars. Test Sequence lets you automate measurement and control tasks using a sequence of commands: for PID control, alarm monitoring, control signals and so on. Read more below. We hope you find the newsletter useful, but should you wish to remove yourself from our mailing list please go to Monitor Newsletter CONTENTS ======== * Windmill News: New Version of Test Sequence Software * Excel Corner: Starting Windmill from Excel * DAQ News Roundup * Data Acquisition and Control Exhibitions ________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________ Windmill News: New Version of Test Sequence Software ________________________________________________________ Today we are delighted to launch a new version of our Test Sequence software. This adds many facilities to the Windmill and Streamer suites of software. For example, Test Sequence lets you: - Perform PID control - Monitor alarms and take appropriate action - Send key-presses to other Windows programs like Excel - Start and stop logging according to conditions or time of day - Log data more frequently when readings exceed an alarm threshold - Ramp output values up and down To use Test Sequence you simply create a text file containing a list of commands, and tell Test Sequence to run it. The new version adds several new commands, making Test Sequence even more powerful. For example, you can now - Loop several times through a command sequence, useful, for instance, if you wanted to slowly rotate a head one degree at a time - Check if a condition is true before doing something - eg if a temperature is greater than 20 degrees C then switch off the heater - Wait until a specified amount of data has been collected - Show instructions to a user - Let a user manually adjust the value of an analogue output - Branch to a different part of the test sequence The commands are very straight forward to implement. For example, to tell Test Sequence to wait until a specified channel meets a condition you would use Wait Pressure > 15 Where: Wait is the command Pressure is the name of the channel and >15 is the condition to be met The Help file supplied with Test Sequence gives loads of examples on how to perform tasks with Test Sequence, and we are happy to help you if your application isn't covered. Furthermore, if Test Sequence does not do what you require, we will give you your money back. For a trial period we have reduced the price of Test Sequence from £195 to £50 (60 Euro or $85) at our on-line shop - https://www.windmillsoft.com/daqshop/test-control.html. Test Sequence is for computers running Windmill or Streamer data collection software under Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, XP, 98 and 95. It works with any hardware supported by Windmill or Streamer, for example almost any RS232, RS422, RS485 or Modbus device, and Windmill or Microlink USB and Ethernet hardware. For more information or to try Test Sequence go to https://www.windmillsoft.com/daqshop/test-control.html, e-mail [email protected] or telephone +44 (0)161 833 2190. ________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________ Excel Corner: Starting Windmill from Excel ________________________________________________________ You can use Excel to open a Windmill program and tell it to start collecting or displaying data. We covered how to do this in issue 58 of Monitor (http://www.windmill.co.uk/monitor58.html), but last week one of our readers told us that it didn't work properly for him. He could load the Windmill DDE Panel but it wouldn't start reading data. The issue was with Windows 10, 8, 7 and the location of DDE Panel's setup file. This setup file (*.wdp) contains all the details you need to use DDE Panel; for example the speed of sampling and which channels to display. The setup file in question was in the Windmill folder, under C:\PROGRAM FILES (X86)\. Instead of loading this file as requested, Excel gave an error message. The solution was to save the file in a different folder, away from \PROGRAM FILES (X86)\. You would therefore use a line like this in your Excel macro, to launch Windmill DDE Panel and start displaying data. Shell "C:\PROGRAM FILES (X86)\Windmill Software\Windmill\WMDDE.EXE c:\MySetups\ddepanel.wdp" To change the default folder where Windmill stores your setup files, use the ConfIML program. 1. Run ConfIML. 2. Click the Directory button. The Default Directory message box appears. 3. Click OK. 4. Open a new folder and click Save. Windmill will create two sub-folders under this choice, called setup and data. Any questions on this or any other Excel topic? Fill in the Excel help form. Further Reading: Using Excel for Data Acquisition http://www.windmill.co.uk/excel/ ________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________ DAQ News Roundup ________________________________________________________ Welcome to our roundup of the data acquisition and control news. If you would like to receive more timely DAQ news updates then grab our RSS newsfeed at https://www.windmillsoft.com/monitor.xml. Read http://www.windmill.co.uk/newsfeed.php for notes on how to display the live news on your own web site. Tiny sensor could make it easier to collect ocean data Scientists could use live fish to monitor the temperature and saltiness of the oceans thanks to a tiny new sensor. Researchers have created a highly accurate and cheap device that can be attached to a fish, boat or buoy. Source: The Engineer https://www.theengineer.co.uk/ OGC Announces Common Standards to Simplify Sensor Web Development The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) has announced a new standard for when sensors need to be accessed and managed through service interfaces. It provides a standard model (and XML implementation of the model) for the representation, nature, structure and encoding of sensor related data. Source: OGC http://www.opengeospatial.org/pressroom/pressreleases/1378 Wireless Energy Harvesting Now Interopable with TCP/IP The EnOcean Alliance has announced that its wireless, battery-less energy harvesting sensors and associated control systems are now fully interoperable with TCP/IP. This allows people to manage and monitor building automation controls over IP networks Source: Sensors http://www.sensorsmag.com/ Secure OPC keeps attackers at bay Automation systems remain vulnerable and exposed. According to ISS Source, past experiences like Stuxnet and last month's revelations about SCADA system vulnerabilities show networks are sitting ducks to any aggressive and sophisticated attack. A new white paper discusses how different defensive layers can provide high security when using OPC technology. Source: ISS Source http://www.isssource.com/secure-opc-keeps-attackers-at-bay/ IEEE Launches 40GB/S Ethernet Optical Interface Standard IEEE responding to industry needs quickly develops a 40Gb/s interface to enable smooth transition and fast adoption of Ethernet technologies on carrier networks. Source: IEEE Standards Association http://standards.ieee.org/news/2011/8023bg.html ________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________ Data Acquisition Exhibitions and Conferences ________________________________________________________ The quarterly update of data acquisition and control exhibitions around the world. Metrology Malaysia 2011 4-8 May Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia International precision measurement and testing exhibition. http://www.mtamalaysia.com/ Balttechnika 17-19 May Vilnius, Lithuania Exhibition of mechanical engineering, industrial equipment, electronics and electrical engineering, measuring and control devices. CIEN 24-26 May Paris, France Range of measurement and instrumentation solutions for research and industrial applications. http://www.cien-expo.com/ National Manufacturing Week 24-27 May Melbourne, Australia Includes process control and instrumentation zone. Factory Automation 23-26 June Bangkok Thailand Factory and industrial automation exhibition. http://www.assemblytechexpo.com/ ISA Expo Control México 24 June Mexico City, Mexico For companies specialising in instruments, manufacture, control and automation of industrial processes. Industrial Automation 20-23 July Kuala Lumur, Malaysia International exhibition on industrial automation, manufacturing process, control and measurement equipment & technology. http://www.asean-ia.com/ ________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________ * Copyright Windmill Software Ltd * Reprinting permitted with this notice included * For more articles see http://www.windmill.co.uk We are happy for you to copy and distribute this newsletter, and use extracts from it on your own web site or publication, providing the above notice is included and a link back to our website is in place. An archive of previous issues is at http://www.windmill.co.uk/newsletter.html and an index of articles at http://www.windmill.co.uk/monitorindex.html Windmill Software Ltd, PO Box 58, North District Office, Manchester, M8 8QR, UK Telephone: +44 (0)161 833 2782 Facsimile: +44 (0)161 833 2190 E-mail: [email protected] http://www.windmill.co.uk/ https://www.windmillsoft.com/
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