Rockwell Automation Blog

Technology and Industry-related Trends

The Rockwell Automation Blog helps our employees and guest bloggers share technology and industry-related trends with you. Be sure to sign up for bimonthly updates with the latest posts.

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Choosing the Right Vendor for Your Repair

March 21, 2018

Consider these key things when deciding to repair your industrial automation equipment.

Converting Traditional Starters to Soft Starters

March 19, 2018

Using soft starters can be an easy way to reduce waste in your operation by minimizing the time and expense associated with servicing the equipment.

Connectivity and Digitization Transform Mining

March 14, 2018

Three insights into the future of mining based on broad market trends: data, analytics and safety and security.

Supermarket Insights Into F&B Manufacturing

March 12, 2018

How do you shop in a supermarket? Have you noticed how digitisation of manufacturing is changing the experience?

Managing Energy Use in Pipeline Operations

March 7, 2018

Energy is the largest operating cost for pipeline companies. Anything that can be done to reduce energy usage while maintaining throughput can directly impact your bottom line.

Holistic Approach for Power Plant Cyber Security

March 5, 2018

Follow these three key considerations for a holistic approach to cyber security in your power generation systems.

Is Your Smart Machine Plug-and-Play?

February 28, 2018

Smart machines help transform data into knowledge. For OEMs, easy machine integration is pivotal to success. Here’s what to consider before you start.

Chemical Producers: There’s a New Plant in Town

February 26, 2018

By prioritizing investments around smarter technologies, a connected chemical plant can help you monitor and improve production performance.

Supporting Minority Engineers Reflects Priorities

February 23, 2018

For new graduates and seasoned professionals, being among the minority can make job searching difficult. Questions to ask to pick the right company.

Innovations Improve Drilling Efficiency

February 21, 2018

Nabors Drilling is using Rockwell Automation technology to power innovative services, software and rigs.

Real-Time Insights Deliver Revolutionary Results

February 19, 2018

Digital transformation is driving improved productivity, quality, compliance, and profitability for manufacturers.

Increase Your Value with Certified Training

February 16, 2018

Specifically designed coursework can increase your value in the workforce and improve opportunities for hire or advancement.

The Key to Your Digital Transformation

February 14, 2018

As IIoT continues to drive growth, successful power generation operations will need to reconsider information and control methodologies, worker training and technology implementation.

Does Your Company Value Diversity and Inclusion?

February 12, 2018

When building your career, remember these three things: diversity and inclusion matter. Find leaders who listen (and act). Be patient and empathic.

STEM is Saving Lives

February 7, 2018

STEM is changing, and saving, lives. Bringing together invention and production is giving people new hope.

Why Gender Balance in Industry Matters to Me

February 5, 2018

Industry faces a big challenge to improve gender diversity. A challenge that leaders of industry must accept at a personal level, and companies at a company-culture level.

Helping an Aging Facility Find New Life

January 31, 2018

Aging systems at the Pettit National Ice Center meant skyrocketing energy costs. An upgrade would improve sustainability and ice conditions.

My Generation! Skills for IIoT Adoption

January 31, 2018

As we strive to unlock the power of IIoT, it’s important to unlock the potential of what we already have.

You Are as Strong as Your Weakest Link

January 29, 2018

To fully realize the benefits of smart manufacturing we must harmonize standards. It’s how we will address both interoperability and cybersecurity.

Driving on the Edge

January 24, 2018

Scalable analytics platform delivers insights tire manufacturers need to improve quality, performance and productivity – from the edge to the cloud.

Suffering from Data Overload? There’s a Cure

January 22, 2018

Pharmaceutical plants generate a staggering amount of data. See how scalable analytics can cut through clutter to accelerate innovation and improve quality assurance.

My Career in Automation: A Numbers Game

January 15, 2018

What defines Rockwell Automation for me? Our corporate ethics culture and customer intimacy.

UK Industry: Keep Calm and Carry On

January 15, 2018

In 2017, industry in the UK was exploring the potential of the Industrial Internet of Things. Now it is implementing it.

Ten Worker Safety and Productivity Tips for 2018

January 10, 2018

As we begin the new year, we’ve compiled a list of ten tips to help you improve safety and productivity.

Migrate or Modernize? How to Decide

January 8, 2018

If your plant is aging, you have a choice: migrate specific equipment, or modernize to realize the value of new technologies.

Our Top 10 Most Popular Blog Posts in 2017

January 1, 2018

Our most popular blogs in 2017 were about drives, Logix, sensors, smart manufacturing and our company’s culture of diversity and inclusion.

Get Smarter Automotive Manufacturing Faster

December 20, 2017

Scalable analytics closes the loop between big data and the plant floor to speed the impact of smart devices.

Creating a Modernization Plan That Works for You

December 18, 2017

Modernization can help companies increase output and productivity of their operations.

What’s Your Integration Strategy?

December 13, 2017

To create a “facility of the future” that pays dividends for years to come, biotech companies must first take a close look at automation and integration strategies.

Proactive Maintenance Can Help Fuel Profitability

December 11, 2017

Managing the maintenance tasks through specialized software and other tools can help reduce manual entry of device readings, and share vital information with other areas of production.

Design Your Safety System for Improved Uptime

December 6, 2017

Improving your lockout procedures by just one minute can save you $2.8 million annually. Find out how.

Prevent Downtime With Just Your Voice

December 4, 2017

Companies driven by fast-changing consumer demands soon won’t have a choice about connectivity; it will be essential to stay competitive.

Hour of Code: It’s for Everyone. Join Us

December 3, 2017

Join the Hour of Code and help a student experience the thrill of computer science. You don’t need to be an expert.

We Don’t Talk Product at Our Customer Centre

November 29, 2017

There is an often overlooked distinction between technology and innovation. True innovation is about much more than technology.

The Safe, Connected Enterprise

November 27, 2017

The Connected Enterprise helps manufacturers monitor and improve safety while boosting plant productivity.

Are You Measuring OEE?

November 22, 2017

Are you procrastinating when it comes to modernization? You are risking lost opportunity for greater productivity.

Manufacturing Finds Its Swagger

November 15, 2017

The lines between engineering disciplines blur in the fourth industrial revolution. New careers require new ways of looking at manufacturing. Find the right career fit.

What Does the IIoT Workforce Look Like?

November 13, 2017

For the future workforce, the ability to gain knowledge will be more important than knowledge itself.

Three Ways You Can Save With Paperless Operation

November 10, 2017

Modern MES can simplify quality challenges. Let’s take a look at how you can save in three areas: labor/people costs, quality/recall costs and downtime.

Women in FIRST: Inspiring Young Minds

November 8, 2017

We need women to get involved with FIRST so this generation of students is inspired to pursue STEM careers and be the next generation’s mentors, coaches, judges and referees.

Are You an Employer of Choice in the Digital Era?

November 6, 2017

Is your most vital asset, your staff, helping you enter the digital era? Here are three recommendations for becoming an employer of choice for tomorrow’s talent.

Modernize So You Can Know More – and Do More

October 30, 2017

Over the next five years nearly a third of maintenance staff will retire. The next generation expects a dashboard experience. Are you prepared?

Is Your Safety System’s Lifecycle Healthy?

October 25, 2017

Understanding and implementing a safety architecture, performance levels, integrity levels and reaction time calculations can improve the health of your safety system.

IIoT on the Plant Floor? There’s an App for That

October 23, 2017

Take a look at how commercial apps are revolutionising teamwork in industry and how young workers needed to meet the skills gap are changing industry from the inside.

Does Automation Take the Craft Out of Brewing?

October 20, 2017

Learn how craft brewers can automate an existing two to five barrel system to produce more – more consistently, and save money and time.

Better Safe (and Secure) Than Sorry

October 18, 2017

The Connected Enterprise helps manufacturers minimize the potential for employee safety and business security problems while improving productivity.

Bringing Smart Factories to Life

October 16, 2017

Packaging plants can become connected, flexible and responsive and bring smart factories to life.

Benefits of Soft Starters on Resistive Loads

October 9, 2017

Learn how soft starters utilize the phase angle control on resistive loads.

How IIoT Can Improve UK Industrial Productivity

October 9, 2017

What lessons can be learnt from the automotive sector following their adoption of IIoT?

The Road to IIoT Isn’t Always Costly

October 9, 2017

Although many companies realise the value of IIoT-compliant technologies to be profitable and competitive, there is still uncertainty about how upgrading should be achieved.

World Class Food & Beverage Manufacturing?

October 9, 2017

The rapidly growing food and beverage industry offers insight into the dramatic cultural and consumer changes happening in the Middle East.

Seven Steps to a Successful Digital Transformation

October 6, 2017

Creating a connected enterprise requires extreme cohesion. The digital journey of our customer highlights seven steps key to successful digital transformation.

How are You Managing Stormwater Recovery?

October 4, 2017

As cities grow, so does interest in better managing stormwater. Local governments need a plan for effectively capturing, storing, and treating stormwater.

Visual Math for the Future of the STEM Workforce

October 2, 2017

If we want to close the skills gap and encourage students to pursue careers in STEM, it’s our responsibility to provide them with the tools and opportunities to reach those goals.

Keep Industrial-Security Threats in Check

September 27, 2017

Digitization and connectivity can transform pharma operations, but first require a robust industrial-security strategy.

Are You Sure it’s GMO-Free?

September 25, 2017

Trends – like gluten- and GMO-free recipes – affect the entire supply chain and require food companies to re-examine processes around traceability.

Company Culture Matters for Your Career

September 22, 2017

Looking to grow your career? Make an inclusive culture a priority when picking your next company.

Get in the IIoT Game with Current Equipment

September 20, 2017

Manufacturers must keep equipment and automation current to leverage the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) as they build a Connected Enterprise.

Three Steps to Better WAGES Performance

September 15, 2017

Companies can reap the benefits of digital transformation with a strategy that unifies energy and industrial process information to support world-class production.

4 Ways to Improve Pipeline Data Quality

September 13, 2017

Too much data? Poor quality data? Here are four tips to help pipeline operators take data collection to the next level.

Greenfield Observations for Industry Leaders

September 11, 2017

Greenfield industrial projects in the age of IIoT require new, flexible and productive plant solutions.

Take the “Wait” Out of Powder Blender Drying

September 8, 2017

This new high-efficiency centrifugal blower system can dry powder blenders and tanks used in pharmaceutical manufacturing in 30 minutes or less.

Master the Balancing Act of Powertrain Assembly

September 4, 2017

A more distributed control architecture plus new design and configuration tools speed line load balancing in powertrain assembly – and enable more flexible manufacturing.

Turning Machine Data Into Operational Intelligence

August 30, 2017

Real-time information and analytics can help prevent production problems from occurring and drive improvement efforts, provided manufacturers have digitally enabled operations.

Four Tips for Bringing IoT to Your Modern Mine

August 25, 2017

For mining companies, IoT promises to help reduce maintenance costs, minimize downtime and enhance safety, but fully embracing IoT requires careful planning.

Women in Engineering? Women in Engineering!

August 25, 2017

Women are great at roles that are historically considered to be "male," therefore, young girls need to be educated about different opportunities where they can get involved.

Connecting Upstream Operations

August 23, 2017

Upstream oil and gas producers can connect operations and optimize production with Connected Enterprise solutions.

Are You Skilled Up for Digital Transformation?

August 21, 2017

Building the tech talent pipeline is about more than re-training current employees – it’s a combined effort that starts in K-12 and reaches beyond college.

Where Man Meets Machine, Potential Risk Follows

August 18, 2017

Know what to do (and what not to) when it comes to documenting product design changes, and understand the safety hierarchy so you can limit your company’s risk profile.

Where Should My Process Analytics Solution Run?

August 16, 2017

Producers in the process industries need to answer these three questions to arrive at a viable analytics solution.

What Industry Can Learn from Theme Parks

August 15, 2017

The challenges of providing amusement park thrills while keeping guests safe pushes the edge of technology. Lessons here are applied across industries improving uptime, security and safety.

Have We Lost Our Appetite for Exploration?

August 14, 2017

By supporting STEM-related education through mentors, financial and product support, we’re creating the explorers of tomorrow.

Is Your Network Meeting Your Performance Needs?

August 11, 2017

Choose the right industrial switch to optimize performance in your network infrastructure.

Cement Your Profits with Kiln Optimization

August 9, 2017

Modelling and controlling production with MPC technology can lead to improved kiln stability and overall production rate, reduced material loss, and energy costs.

F&B Companies Need to Address the Skills Shortage

August 7, 2017

We’re getting smarter, but the convergence of existing systems and the adoption of new technology is placing new burdens on workforces. Here’s how one company solved the problem.

Beat the Heat When Mounting AC Drives

August 4, 2017

Giving careful thought to thermal management when deciding where and how to mount VFDs can help protect the VFD and its performance, and reduce unexpected downtime.

Find Your Inner Inventor

August 3, 2017

If you’re new to innovation, learn what you can do to explore the possibilities and inspire yourself and others about your idea.

Safety and Security in a Connected Enterprise

August 2, 2017

Safety and security have traditionally been viewed as separate entities, but in industrial production, your safety and security programs are inextricably linked.

Honor Your Inner Inventor

August 1, 2017

Engineering merges art and science. Are you a creator, inventor or innovator? Join the Meant To Invent competition.

3 Ways Enforceable Workflows Improve Profitability

July 31, 2017

How can manufacturers improve production and profitability? Let’s review 3 ways manufacturing production management software with enforceable workflows can help.

Multi-Well Pad Control: RTU vs. PLC

July 31, 2017

PLCs can deliver operational and cost advantages over RTUs in increasingly demanding multi-well pad operations.

Approaching Change One Step at a Time

July 28, 2017

How modern is your mining operation? Connecting your mining operations allows you to gather data in real-time so you can make better business decisions.

Connecting Real-Time Production Data

July 26, 2017

Instead of physical consolidation under one roof and one owner, production can now be digitally consolidated using the Internet of Things.

Changing Culture Starts with Conversation

July 24, 2017

Creating a more inclusive workplace culture doesn’t require a big splash, or even everyone on board. It takes courageous conversations.

Phosphate Plant Reconstructed with a Modern DCS

July 21, 2017

PCS Phosphate, a chemical processing facility, went through a complete process control migration allowing better and faster decision making capabilities with PlantPAx DCS.

Value for Packaging – More Than Equipment

July 21, 2017

Packaging equipment manufacturers can better serve customers by understanding their bigger challenges instead of relying entirely on technology. Everything starts with a conversation.

Smart Technology in Food Manufacturing

July 19, 2017

Online competitors, informed customers and changing regulations are driving the need for food and beverage manufacturers to rapidly respond. Smart technology can help.

When To Enable IO-Link in Your Operation

July 17, 2017

The latest smart sensors communicate detailed data and diagnostics, allowing machines to operate more effectively.

Ransomware Attacks: Are Your Operations Safe?

July 14, 2017

It’s said the best defense is a good offense. Protecting industrial control systems from attack requires a plan to both prevent and respond. Are you adequately prepared?

Automotive Machine Builders: Deliver Smart Value

July 10, 2017

Thanks to enabling technologies, automotive machine builders can deliver more value than ever before. Two smart questions are key to success.

OEMs Can Use Machine Safety as a Differentiator

July 7, 2017

OEMs can use best-in-class safety to set their machines apart from the competition, streamline their business and achieve near-universal compliance.

Tips for UL Standards and Exporting to the U.S.

July 5, 2017

As an "IEC thinker," there is a tendency to assign characteristics to certain products. When used in countries like the U.S. or Canada, it is necessary to scrutinize these in detail.

Round Up Your Pumping Application

July 3, 2017

Pumping water is an application where system dynamics play a big part in the selection of what type of pump control is needed.

Smart Sensors and IOT: Lining Up the Pros and Cons

June 30, 2017

The latest smart sensors communicate detailed data and diagnostics, allowing machines to operate more effectively.

Givaudan Reaps Sweet Rewards of DCS Migration

June 28, 2017

By partnering with a trusted vendor, companies can more quickly migrate to modern DCS technologies and begin realizing lower total cost of ownership.

Six Trends Engineering a New Pharma Reality

June 26, 2017

With pressures faced by pharmaceutical producers coupled with added legislation you would be forgiven for thinking the industry is in decline.

Time to Modernize Your Power Gen Control Systems

June 19, 2017

As the power generation industry experiences challenges, producers can take advantage of the latest modern technologies to prepare for the long term.

Want STEM-Ready Learners? Question Everything

June 16, 2017

STEM thinking starts early. Encourage the passion and build the confidence that fuels our next generation of innovators.

Motor Slow Speed: Tortoise and the Hare Scenario

June 14, 2017

Several considerations must be taken into account for slow motor speed, such as motor branch supply, motor type and controller type.

Does the Middle East Have an Appetite Beyond Oil?

June 12, 2017

The Middle East has a vision and a strategy for growing and diversifying its industries based on innovation and collaboration.