Press Release

August 15, 2013
Key updates to PC-based control hardware and software offerings at packaging industry’s top trade show
Beckhoff to Showcase New Solutions for eXtended Automation at Pack Expo 2013

SAVAGE, Minnesota, August 15, 2013 – Continuing to push the multi-tasking performance of powerful PC-based controllers and software, Beckhoff Automation will exhibit expanded eXtended Automation solutions, a refreshed range of stainless steel automation devices, industrial multi-touch technology and the landmark TwinCAT® version 3.1 software at Pack Expo 2013.

From September 23 – 25, 2013, the Beckhoff booth # 2927 in the Las Vegas Convention Center’s Central Hall will be a one-stop information hub for companies devoted to packaging, food processing, manufacturing and more to find cost-cutting and performance-enhancing methods to implement world-class automation. Everything from the game-changing eXtended Transport System (XTS), to TwinCAT 3.1 PC-based control software with eXtended Automation, to eXtreme Fast Control (XFC) with EtherCAT, to high performance PC-based controllers and more will be demoed for Pack Expo’s global attendees in Beckhoff’s sizeable booth.

eXtended Transport System (XTS) – driving circles around linear motion

By introducing XTS Beckhoff has truly broken new ground with a drive technology innovation because it represents the convergence of two well-known drive principles, rotary motion and linear motion, into a single system. XTS is a high performance system that can provide advanced EtherCAT-based control technology for product packaging with variable product flow, complex material handling lines and much more.

TwinCAT 3.1 adds valuable new features for eXtended Automation

One of the core concepts of eXtended Automation in TwinCAT 3.1 involves the convergence of automation with time- and cost-saving tools from the domain of IT and computer science. A key update with TwinCAT 3.1 is support of 64-bit operating systems and the Microsoft Windows 8 operating system specifically. Support of IEC 61131-3 programming languages is continued, providing numerous optional tools to the TwinCAT programmer such as object-oriented programming (OOP), C/C++ and Matlab®/Simulink®. TwinCAT 3.1 also provides the ability to reserve individual CPU cores of a multi-core processor exclusively for TwinCAT. This feature, known as “CPU Isolation,” gives the full performance of the reserved cores solely to TwinCAT.

“At this year’s Pack Expo, the combination of TwinCAT 3.1 and the revolutionary eXtended Transport System will reenergize packaging automation,” said Joe Martin, Packaging and Converting Sales Manager, Beckhoff Automation. “Visitors to Beckhoff’s booth at Pack Expo 2013 will join the ever-growing movement toward modern PC-based controls and EtherCAT industrial Ethernet technology to multitask and reduce the reliance on various expensive, dedicated devices. This helps drive out cost, facilitates the evolution of automation, improves performance and enhances system flexibility.”

Beckhoff Demos – still solving tomorrow’s packaging needs today.

Of course, major highlights in Beckhoff’s Pack Expo 2013 booth (Central Hall, # 2927) will be the demos. The many Beckhoff innovations on display will include:

  • eXtended Transport System (XTS), the dynamic linear transport system that is integrated into the standard Beckhoff control platform (Industrial PC controller, EtherCAT network, TwinCAT software)
  • TwinCAT 3.1 demo stations – See how Beckhoff is driving the convergence of automation and computer science/IT by adding Microsoft Visual Studio®, Matlab®/Simulink®, C/C++, C#, Java options and more to the traditional IEC 61131-3 programming environment.
  • Scientific Automation for robots – a high-performance, low-cost pick-and-place robot controlled by one Beckhoff Embedded PC running TwinCAT Software
  • Stainless steel solutions from Beckhoff including: Control Panels, Panel PCs, EtherCAT I/O modules, servo motors with One Cable Technology (OCT) and gearboxes
  • Multi-touch-enabled industrial displays with dynamic HMI Software
  • Compact EtherCAT Servo Terminals that support OCT (servo drive in 12 mm wide I/O terminal format)
  • Compact EtherCAT Stepper Terminals for stepper motors that feature current reduction with field-oriented control
  • Scientific Automation with PC-based controllers and EtherCAT Terminals covering functions such as vibration, temperature and energy monitoring as well as condition Monitoring
  • Cloud connectivity from packaging machinery on the plant floor
  • OPC-UA connectivity for packaging applications
  • And much more


Press picture

  • <p>The XTS drive system (eXtended Transport System) from Beckhoff offers new options and increased flexibility for the design and construction of automatic assembly and handling machines.</p>

    Picture caption:

    The XTS drive system (eXtended Transport System) from Beckhoff offers new options and increased flexibility for the design and construction of automatic assembly and handling machines.


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