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AutomaNews 2024
April 2024
Number 14 April 2024 - MB5201, the ModBus TCP <=> RTU smart gateway, also for collecting electricity consumption
MB5201 is a compact and intelligent ModBus TCP <=> ModBus RTU gateway that can also network your energy meters MB5201
equipped with the ModBus RTU protocol over a serial line.

Energy meters often still have a serial line and support ModBus RTU, but the need is always to put them on an Ethernet network and possibly connect them to more modern SCADA or data collection systems that generally support the ModBus TCP protocol.

MB5201 is easily configured via a browser and transparently handles conversion between ModBus TCP and ModBus RTU over RS232/422/485.

Metal housing, EMC protection and support of a wide temperature range make it easy to use even in industrial environments.

On these converters Automa offers its full technical support to facilitate the customer in their first use.

The product datasheet can be downloaded at this link.

For more information on Ethernet to serial converters or to request a quote you can contact our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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Number 13 April 2024 - April 25 holiday, suspension of telephone support service
We would like to inform you that during the upcoming holidays, the telephone support service will be suspended on April 26, 2024.
The activity will resume regularly on April 29. However, for any urgent service requests, we invite you to send an email.

For more information on the various technical support services provided by Automa , you can contact our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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Number 12 April 2024 - Super-Flash: your made-in-Italy SCADA, reliable and flexible
Super-Flash, Automa's SCADA development system, is the ideal choice for companies looking for reliable, flexible software with high-level technical support.
Why Super-Flash is the best choice for you, too:
  • Reliability: a mature, field-tested product with a decades-long history.
  • Flexibility: a solution adaptable to your specific needs, thanks to its modular structure, intuitive interface and powerful MicroC language provided as standard with the system.
  • Affordability: a Royalty-Free formula that saves you money on the already competitive cost of Runtime licensing.
  • Compactness: light applications that install with a “copy” and don't require too many hardware resources.
  • Independence: compatible with all versions of Windows (from XP to W11), with no constraints whatsoever.
  • Backward compatibility: imports projects from all old versions, even old DOS projects. Guarantee that your projects can always be enhanced, evolved and updated in the future as well.
  • Technical support: product developers answer our phone, without long waits or intermediate steps.

Super-Flash and Automa: not only a valuable software tool, but also a reliable partner for your business.
  • Technical support and application consulting
  • Training plans for each technical topic with different levels of depth
  • Active support for Industry 4.0 interconnections, Transition 5.0 and general integration projects

Super-Flash Runtime: the free version of the development system, downloadable at this link.

Contact us for a free demo!

For more information on Super-Flash Runtime and to request a Price List, quotation or technical sales demonstration, you can contact our staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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March 2024
Number 11 March 2024 - SE5201 - Serial Server: networks even meters with RS232/422/485
SE5201 is an ethernet serial server that allows you to connect devices with only an RS232/RS422/RS485 serial interface SE5201
to the Ethernet.

This allows old peripherals to be interconnected to the information system even in case of machine and plant revamping.

Energy meters are often still equipped with a serial line, but the need is always to put them on an Ethernet network.

SE5201 is configurable via a browser, and through the use of VirtualCom, the insertion of these devices is possible without the need to modify existing software, except in special cases.

On these converters Automa offers its full technical support to facilitate the customer in their first use.

On our website in the hardware section, you can view the list of ATOP products distributed by Automa and download the relevant technical documentation.

For more information on Ethernet/serial converters or to request a quotation, you can contact our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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Number 10 March 2024 - X-GatekW: electricity consumption collection from meters
X-GatekW is a Super-Flash application that can collect electricity consumption data from energy meters and publish it to a database. Also supplied with sources, it can be easily installed on SCADA stations or anywhere on the network. An Edge software that interacts with meters and publishes to a DB, local or remote, the precise consumption data.

More information about X-GatekW can be obtained by contacting our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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Number 9 March 2024 - Transition 5.0
A few days ago, DECREE-LAW No. 19 of March 2, 2024, on "Ulteriori disposizioni urgenti per l'attuazione del Piano nazionale di ripresa e resilienza (PNRR) was finally published in the Gazzetta Ufficiale. (24G00035) (GU n.52 del 2-3-2024)", Vigente al: 2-3-2024.

Inside there is also the article titled "Transizione 5.0", which organically outlines the eligible interventions.

Now there are still two important steps:
  1. Conversion into law, within 60 days, under penalty of forfeiture
  2. Enactment of implementing decrees, within 30 days, a deadline often missed.

In any case, it seems clear that the provisions focus everything on one of the possible aspects of production sustainability: energy consumption.

In addition to the I 4.0 requirements, the eligibility for the benefits is linked to the reduction of electrical consumption, requiring an initial and a final energy audit. Only after detecting the actual reduction in consumption will it be possible to claim the tax benefit.

Therefore, it becomes essential to have an electrical consumption monitoring system in place to facilitate audits and document the maintenance of energy savings.

Furthermore, it is part of the news that monitoring systems, including software, can also be included in the calculation of the benefit.

Another absolute news, yet to be interpreted, is the possibility of bringing under “b) software related to business management if purchased together with the software, systems or platforms referred to in (a).” Where (a) mentions electricity consumption monitoring systems.

For this news, which could have a very significant impact for many companies, we will have to wait for the publication of the implementing decrees. Only then will it be possible to understand the actual force of impact of the measure.

Automa is available both for advice on this matter and for setting up efficient electricity consumption monitoring systems, which are essentially necessary to access the various benefits.

For more information about Transition 5.0 you can contact our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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February 2024
Number 8 February 2024 - Super-Flash: the SCADA, all-Italian, km 0
Super-Flash is the Development System created by Automa for building applications for industrial supervision (SCADA) and human-machine interface (HMI).

For product evaluation are available:

  • Super-Flash Runtime, full and free version of the development system
  • Demo applications “STARTSF” and “TREND” downloadable at the following link
  • Dedicated online call with demonstration viewing and illustration of functionality
  • Informative Brochure

Benefits of Super-Flash

Thanks to the WRUNFILE engine, applications have high level of security and operating continuity.
Maintains compatibility over time: it is always possible to upgrade an application from an older version to a newer one.
With the RUNTIME sales formula, the development system is free of charge.
It comes in 11 different sizes to optimize purchase costs.
It is user-friendly even for users who do not know any programming languages.
Applications are installed with a “copy” and uninstalled with a “delete”
It is versatile and suitable for creating applications for the following sectors: industrial, home automation, building automation, power generation, infrastructure and services.
Thanks to MicroC, the embedded C language compiler included in the supervisor's package, Super-Flash's already numerous capabilities are further extended.
The applications are very compact: the small size, in addition to requiring few hardware resources, simplifies remote service operations.

Super-Flash's business proposal

Automa offers two complementary offers for its SCADA HMI package: RUNTIME and ROYALTY-FREE.

Development Sysem License
License for the applications
at zero cost
on payment
on payment
at zero cost

With Super-Flash Runtime , the development system is free. It is downloaded from the site's FreeDownload. A built-in Runtime license allows you to launch the developed application, each time for up to 15 minutes, for the purpose of testing its operation. After development, in order to install the application at the end customer, a Runtime license of the desired size (number of variables and alarms) is purchased.

With Super-Flash Royalty-Free you purchase a development system and there are no Royalties on individual applications. The investment is thus spread over the applications made to zero cost. Those who choose the Royalty-Free mode purchase a specific version of the development system. It is possible to subscribe to an annual upgrade service that allows them to secure new versions issued by Automa.

Automa provides various customized online training services. Training modules of 2-4 hours each that can be structured, even “realtime,” based on the specific needs of participants.

Automa offers various application support and consulting services. It can share expertise in implementing Industry 4.0 and Transition 5.0 interconnections with its customers.

Book a call for an online demonstration of Super-Flash's functionality here

For more information or for an offer for Super-Flash you can call our sales staff at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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Number 7 February 2024 - Price List 2024
In recent days, the February 2024 Price List was released by Automa, which collects products from the lines:
  1. Supervisione Libera - Product and services: SUPER-FLASH ROYALTY-FREE, RUNTIME, optional drivers, notification and data publishing modules, training, telephone support, customer application support, etc
  2. Communication Tools: industrial communication drivers (OPC-UA, ModBus TCP, Ethernet/IP, Industrial Ethernet, FINS, etc.) for software developers
  3. AirGriDaCo: wireless, low-cost system for collecting data from PATLITE's light towers via WD system receivers and transmitters
  4. MAINTEX: software for preventive maintenance management
  5. Industrial communication products: serial server, gateway, switch, etc.

You can make a request for the new Price List by calling our sales staff at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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January 2024
Number 6 January 2024 - SE5202-Sis: 2 serial ports in ethernet with 3 kV isolation
ATOP's SE5202 series serial servers are reliable and compact industrial products that easily enable Ethernet networkingSE5202
of devices that use serial line (RS232/RS422/RS485) as a communication medium.

For outdoor or heavy-duty industrial applications or in areas with noise and surge problems, Automa recommends the use of the SE5202-Sis model, which adds serial port isolation up to 3kV to all the functionality and technical features of ATOP serial servers.

Product generally available for prompt delivery.

For more information on SE5202-Sis or for orders you can contact our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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Number 5 January 2024 - OPC-UA Client driver for software developers of Interconnections Transition 4.0
Anyone offering enterprise Digital Transformation solutions cannot ignore the direct connection with machines and plants. The exchange of information between production management systems (MES-ERP) and the SCADA/HMI-PLC layer has become indispensable. OPC-UAC

To facilitate interconnection, most machines have been equipped with OPC-UA servers, and OPC-UA is the most widely used protocol for these integrations.

To benefit developers of production MES or management systems, Automa has made available the OPC-UAC (DLL) driver, an OPC-UA Client for the Windows environment. A ready-to-use driver that allows you to be quickly able to communicate with machines.

Using the built-in configuration tool, you can browse the various OPC-UA servers and items found on networked machines and make them available to your software.

Component Source Partner

The OPC-UAC driver is available in the freedownload of our site. The download is free of charge. Without activating the license, the driver will run for 15 minutes each time, so you can check functionality before purchasing.

For developers who prefer, for the MES-ERP side, to use SQL Databases, Automa is able to develop specific software gateways that act as a pure interface between MES and SCADA/HMI or that also implement typical application logic to meet the peculiar requirements of I4.0 interconnections

The driver is also available on th Component Source platform is the world's largest superstore of developer software, of which Automa is a Professional Partner.

For more information on OPC-UAC drivers and I4.0 interconnections, you can contact our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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Number 4 January 2024 - SUPER-FLASH station revamping facilitated by record-breaking backward compatibility!
The request for revamping old Super-Flash applications is a phenomenon that has been occurring with increasing intensity for 10-15 years already. In recent years there has been a further push due to the ever-increasing demand for interconnection of all machines and plants with the information systems of end customers. Italian Industry 4.0 has equivalent phenomena in almost every country in the world, with few exceptions now.

Machine and plant manufacturers often see these upgrade requests as a small grit to deal with, rather than a big opportunity. For customers, on the other hand, if machines and plants are running without problems, upgrading the HMI-SCADA workstation only is a real necessity.

Let's say up front that, unlike other SCADA systems, the cost of revamping a Super-Flash station is quite low and can range from a few hundred to a few thousand.

Revamping features with Super-Flash:
  1. Possibilità di recuperare vecchi e vecchissimi progetti, anche DOS
  2. Low costs
  3. Short lead times for implementation
  4. Generally no need for modifications on PLCs
  5. Substantial maintaining of the graphical user interface. Highly appreciated by customers because then operators do not have to do new training

Revamping are opportunities for:
  1. Remove all internal cards from PCs (e.g., Applicom cards and serial ports)
  2. Improve communication with PLCs by eliminating S7-HMI adapters and all serial communications
  3. Make the application run on any standard PC with Ethernet-only communications
  4. Use Recent and Microsoft-supported Windows Versions
  5. No more problems of creating dedicated backup locations
  6. Collect process data
  7. Integrate with the customer's MES
  8. Improve the graphical interface while keeping it fully recognizable to the operator
  9. Using recent monitors, more space, wide screen, with automatic adaptation of old graphics
  10. Set up a workstation that is easier to put on remote assistance
  11. Arrange for a workstation that can also accommodate other recent individual/company productivity software
  12. Provide the end customer with a development system to make them autonomous in changes to the graphical interface
  13. Having a workstation already capable of working even in the event of subsequent PLC revamping

Requests for revamping old Super-Flash stations are a great opportunity-Automa is there to support you as fully as possible. Even doing the porting work and application changes directly for you. Thus these requests can be handled without creating an excessive commitment for your Technical Department, which is certainly more productively engaged in new implementations.

For more information on Automa's services for revamping old applications, you can contact our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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Number 3 January 2024 - Low cost Ethernet Gigabit industrial switches!!
Ethernet is increasingly being used for automation, and the 100 Mbit of simple Fast Ethernet is no longer enough. Often however, the Gigabit switches are too expensive and too big.

ATOP, the specialist in industrial networking, has clearly identified this need and has made available an excellent solution at low cost, with limited dimensions.

These are EHG3305 and EHG3005 5-port Ethernet Gigabit switches, respectively with metal or plastic casing and different temperature range.

  • 5 x 10/100/1000 Base-T(X) RJ45
  • Supports 10K Jumbo frames
  • Support 802.3zx Energy Efficient Ethernet for energy savings
  • Double power supply (2 x 12-24VDC)
  • Assembly on DIN guide
  • Compact, 23x94x72 mm

  • Working temperature from -40 °C to 70 °C
  • SPCC steel case

  • Working temperature from 0 °C to 60 °C
  • Plastic case

These switches are certified CE, FCC and UL/IEC.

For further information or a quote on ATOP Ethernet industrial gigabit switches, you can contact our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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Number 2 January 2024 - Super-Flash Runtime, Zero Cost HMI Development
To facilitate the development of HMI and SCADA applications, with a view to Transition 4.0, Automa offers the Super-Flash development system free of charge, in RUNTIME mode.
Just download it from the freedownload section of our site and start using it for development and testing, without having to anticipate costs.

At the end of development, the necessary size is detected and the purchase of the Runtime license is made. This mode is also valid for optional communication drivers: you can download them, try them out and purchase the license only at the end of the work.

Main benefits:
  • No cost until the actual final installation of the developed application
  • Secure and optimized choice of license size, made with the application already developed
  • HMI workstation with everything needed for subsequent interventions, local or remote
  • Possibility of free download of all new versions of Super-Flash

Automa provides various customized training services. Training modules of 2-4 hours each that can be structured, even "realtime," based on the specific needs of the participants. To optimize technicians' time Automa offers customized training modules online, with Skype, Google Meet or other platforms. So the technician can stay onsite or connect directly from home and there are no costs for time and travel expenses.

As a reminder, training on issues related to Transition 4.0 comes with an important tax credit.
Often the training can be fully financed by interprofessional training funds to which all companies have, for some time, been compulsorily enrolled.

For more information on Super-Flash Runtime and the training modules, you can contact our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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Number 1 January 2024 - Industry 5.0
It has been talked about for a while now and specific decrees defining more concretely both the facilities and the requirements for accessing them are still missing. But, what does Industry 5.0 consist of and how does it differ from Industry 4.0?

Industry 4.0 aimed to interconnect production machines to achieve optimization of production processes, even for small orders. So maximum efficiency and flexible production systems.

Industry 5.0, while using the same enabling technologies, adds the themes of sustainability and better quality of work for operators.

Sustainability is a rather broad concept that would require, starting with Agenda 2030 and its 17 goals, a specific in-depth study.

We try to summarize by saying that sustainability implies "a state of well-being, environmental, social, and economic, that can be maintained and possibly increased, with the prospect of leaving future generations with a quality of life that is at least not inferior to the present one".

Some concrete points that can classify a company as "sustainable":
  • Uses waste from other processes as inputs;
  • Minimizes or eliminates the use of new materials extracted from the earth/environment;
  • Creates outputs that can be used by other processes or returned to a natural state and eliminates waste that cannot be used or returned to a natural state;
  • Uses as little energy as possible to achieve the desired result;
  • Uses energy essentially produced from renewable sources.
In addition to sustainability, Industry 5.0 involves improving the quality of work for operators. Machines and systems that collaborate with operators to put them in the best position to do their jobs with efficiency and satisfaction. Machines that do not replace but help (robots, cobots); evolved HMIs; workstations appropriately configured for each operator; ergonomics and ease of use; immediate availability of all the information needed to operate safely with the highest possible efficiency.

The shift from replacement automation to human-machine collaboration represents a fundamental change in the industrial landscape. It shifts from the goal of increasing efficiency and reducing costs by replacing physical human labor with machines to redefining the role of "machine" as a collaborative partner that can support and amplify human capabilities rather than replace them.

For more information on Industry 5.0 you can contact our sales staff directly at + or via e-mail at sales@automa.it.
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