April 18, 2022
Rockwell Automation, Inc., one of the world’s largest companies dedicated to industrial automation and digital transformation, recently announced the release of its new Allen-Bradley Armor PowerFlex AC variable frequency drives for industrial motor control applications. The on-machine drives provide quicker installation, simple commissioning and predictive maintenance.
As an on-machine solution, the Armor PowerFlex drives move controls and hardware out of a cabinet and onto the machine, closer to the application. This can help industrial companies simplify machine designs and minimize costs and time to deploy. The drives are also designed for harsh environments, where reducing installation time and cost are most critical.
The smart drives include an embedded EtherNet/IP dual-port switch, which provides fast collection of real-time data. The drives also monitor component life, allowing users to predict and schedule component replacements to help avoid costly unplanned downtime.
“Manufacturers can expect greater efficiency and productivity when using the new Armor PowerFlex drives, which have built-in technology that’s smarter, safer, more secure and easier to apply than other solutions on the market,” said Joe Azzolina, global product manager, Rockwell Automation. “Armor PowerFlex drives can reduce time-consuming tasks within the machine lifecycle. They can also help users realize greater profitability as part of a decentralized, zero-cabinet design approach.”
The Armor PowerFlex drives give users a motor control solution that replaces multiple components for easier integration into automation systems. The drives are available in standard and safety models. Both options provide built-in, dual-port EtherNet/IP and CIP Security functionality, and the safety option provides advanced safety functionality.
The safety model of the drive is designed for applications that require functional safety. It offers integrated CIP Safety and supports integrated and hardwired safe-torque-off (STO) or safe-stop-1 (SS1) safety functions. With integrated STO or SS1, no additional external safety monitoring or control components are required. Additionally, using the Armor PowerFlex drive with Allen-Bradley GuardLogix PLCs and encoders enables advanced safe-speed functions.
To help strengthen cybersecurity in industrial operations, the Armor PowerFlex drive is CIP Security capable. When implemented, CIP Security helps fortify a control system by providing data authenticity, integrity and confidentiality. This helps defend against the risk of someone remotely accessing a network and acting maliciously.