Alicat PROFINET Release

This month Alicat Scientific has added PROFINET™ to its offerings of industrial protocols and, updated the backlight for new devices.

Alicat mass flow controllers

Alicat and PROFINET

 Alicat Scientific have added PROFINET™ to its offerings of industrial protocols for Alicat mass flow controllers, pressure controllers, mass flow meters, and pressure transducers. Through PLCs, manufacturers and industrial processes can control activities and collect data faster than humanly possible, from Alicat devices with industrial protocols.

Part of the fast-growing industrial ethernet-based spectrum of communication protocols, PROFINET is now perhaps the most widely used industrial protocol in the world. Automation engineers and integrators assembling PROFINET installations can now take advantage of Alicat instruments’ multi-variate, rapid response times, and large turn-down ratios. With Alicat’s complexity-reducing features like closed-loop pressure, PROFINET analyzers can use fewer devices at lower costs of materials, with fewer maintenance points. Fluid and gas processes with high-precision, low-pressure differential requirements will be able to benefit from Alicat’s Whisper™ series of instruments.

Alicat’s instruments with PROFINET have been certified conformant to the PROFI standard. Ferdi Faas, General Manager of Alicat Europe, said, “With the addition of PROFINET certified protocol, Alicat instruments are offered for most of the leading industrial communications. Altogether, our communications options are compatible with nearly two-thirds of Europe’s—and the world’s—installed industrial networks. Around the globe, labs and factories are making processes faster, smarter, and safer by using Alicat’s industrial instrumentation—adding PROFINET helps many more customers take advantage of our data-rich devices.”

Mass flow controllers

Mass flow controllers, including liquid controllers, as well as meters, have the dual RJ4 Ethernet connectors. But an IP 66 rated device will have water-resistant connectors.

Automation engineers, system integrators and factories using industrial protocols with Alicat flow and pressure devices are performing such varied activities as perfecting hydrogen-electric energy generation, spinning glass optical fibres for telecommunications, testing rocket parts for leaks, heating furnaces for ceramics, and generating pharmaceuticals through biochemical processing.

Alicat Monochrome Displays Standardized with Backlight On

Since 2017, Alicat has offered a monochrome display with a backlight for bright or dark areas. The light toggles on/off with a button behind the logo on the front of the device. With the release of 8v firmware in 2019, Alicat gave customers the ability to automatically turn on the backlight every time the device powers on – referred to as ‘Backlight on Power Up.’

Backlight on Power Up

Now, Alicat has made this beloved setting a standard. Any devices manufactured on June 19th, 2023 or later have Backlight on Power Up enabled at the factory.

How can I check if my devices will have a backlit monochrome display?

Devices with a backlit monochrome display have -D, -RD, or -RDE in their part number, which you can find in your quote. Devices with color TFT displays will not be affected by this change. CODA, BASIS, EP, and -X series devices are not offered with a backlit monochrome display. 

How do I turn this feature on for my existing devices?

Devices equipped with 8v firmware or higher can change this setting within the display’s menu. Devices with 7v firmware must be modified through a register. This can be done at the factory.

Will the devices I send in for service be affected?

No, devices sent in for unrelated service and recalibration will not have this option enabled. It must be requested by the customer in their service request.

How will this change affect the performance of my Alicat?

The impact on temperature from self-heating in a no-flow condition is +0.1 Celsius with the backlight on versus off. Since Alicats compensate for temperature change in their mass flow measurement, a 0.1 Celsius change will have no effect on accuracy. Current draw will also increase by .031 watts (or 1.3 mA at 24Vdc), which is well within stated specifications. Battery life specifications on portable devices are also unaffected.

What if I don’t want this feature enabled for future orders?

When requesting a quote, simply ask that Backlight on Power-up not be enabled. This will not affect the price of your device. 

For support or to discuss your process needs, contact Jonathan Orban at Duff & Macintosh Pty Ltd.