Temperature Control Units Updated
Included in the new Thermalotor TCUs from Conair are the first units available with the company’s new “common control”—a company wide initiative to standardize HMIs.
Auxiliary equipment supplier Conair (Cranberry Township, Penn.) introduced new TW series temperature control units (TCU) in a virtual press conference, including models that will adopt the company’s new “common control” initiative, which seeks to eventually outfit all of its products with a familiar, intuitive control for all equipment utilizing PLCs.
As before, the Conair Thermolator TCUs are available in three standard configurations. The TW-V (V stands for value) are offered with ¾- and 2-hp models, both with a 12kW heater and 3/8-in. solenoid valve. The updated versions offer a smaller footprint than previous iterations. The TW-S mid-range units are sized from ¾ to 10-hp. TW-S units up to 2hp also have a smaller footprint. Finally, the premium TW-P comes in the same size ranges as the previous two lines but with more advanced features.
All the new Thermolator units feature an ergonomic angled face panel for better viewing of the HMI. The TW-S and TW-P models are the first units available with Conair’s new “common control,” offering a consistent user experience regardless of the machinery. The TCU menu structure and navigation, set-point entry, alarm notification, icons, colors, communication protocols, and back-end hardware will essentially be the same as other Conair equipment, including blenders, dryers, and more. Conair says these common features will simplify operator training and make it easier employees to learn to use different auxiliaries.
In terms of communications options, the new Thermolators offer a wide range, including Modbus RTU RS-485, Modbus TCP Ethernet and, on the TW-P, OPC UA communication compatible with Industry 4.0. The TW-P is also compatible with Conair SmartServices—the company’s cloud-based IoT platform for machine monitoring and data collection.
The TW-P units can be equipped with solid-state relay (SSR) heater controls, which Conair says provide the highest levels of precision and long-term operation. These incorporate heat sinks inside the control enclosure and include an augmented ventilation fan to help further dissipate heat. More tradition mechanical contactors, which Conair notes represent a proven technology, will continue to be offered as standard on all Thermolators.
Modulating valves for cooling in the place of more conventional solenoid valves are available as well. Here instead of controlling flow by periodically opening and closing like solenoid valves, the modulating valves operate from independent open and close signals so that flow is continuous but controlled. The modulating valves can be opened or closed partially in a linear fashion for greater precision and to eliminate water hammer when flow rates change.
In addition, standard programs can be loaded into the TW-P controller for simplified recall. Electrical phase monitoring, an optional flow meter with HMI readout, intuitive help screens for all functions are also provided.
The Conair TW Series Thermolators offer an ergonomic angled face panel with a wide range of communication platforms.
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