Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Auto-Negotiation Testing Procedure


The purpose of this guide is to determine a device’s auto-negotiation abilities using an oscilloscope.

Equipment used in this test:
  1. RIGOL DS1054Z - 4 Channel Oscilloscope
  2. Siemon MODAPT- 8pin “banjo”

Connecting the Oscilloscope
  1. De-energize the device under test.
  2. Connect a copper patch cable (Cat5e or better) to the device under test.
  3. Using a “banjo” as shown above connect probe to pin 1 and ground to pin 2.
    1. If no bajo is available a patch cable with a standard RJ-45 Male connector on one end terminated using TIA-568B can be used. Strip back the other end of the cable exposing the 4 pairs of conductors. Strip back 1” of insulation on the wh/orange and orange conductors. Connect the probe to the wh/orange and ground clip to the orange conductor.
  4. Energize the device under test

Setting up the Oscilloscope

Initial settings:
5ms/div
2V/div
Trigger-2V (auto on most scopes will work best)
This will show the Auto-negotiation pulses also known as Fast Link Pules (FLP). This is shown in the screenshot above.


Analyzing FLP
After capturing a set of FLP’s, change the settings on the oscilloscope.
200us/div
2V/div

Note the 17 clock pulses. The time between each clock pulse is 125µs +/-14µs. These will be accompanied by 16 data pulses. These 16 data pulses represent one 16-bit word. The presence of the data bit represents a binary 1. The lack of data pulse
represents a binary 0.  We can analyze the data bits to see what the device under test is advertising as it’s abilities. The screenshot above represents a device that is capable of 100Mbs Full-duplex.

Auto-negotiation uses the greatest common denominator between each side of the link to establish the best possible connection.

If you have any questions, please contact:

Shawn White - Shawn@teamtech1.com

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

PROFINET: Good, Bad, or Ugly?

Is PROFINET right for your application?

Image result for good bad ugly

The short answer, maybe. There are so many options out there right now, it's hard to choose the right communications protocol. Hopefully, this article will help shed some light on to PROFINET, and whether it could be a good fit for your applications.

There are 3 main criteria that must be considered when choosing or designing an industrial communication network; performance, installation, and availability/support. All items that you may want to consider can be boiled down to one of these items. Let's start from the top and work our way down.

Performance

The performance of any network is important, but in an industrial application, it can be extremely important. The requirements may vary greatly. If you are only wanting to turn on or off a light indicating the status of a device, speed of the network may not be all that important. Latency of 300-500ms probably won't be an issue. However, if you are performing precision motion control 300ms is unacceptable. One of the great things about PROFINET is that it has several different ways to accomplish communication depending on the requirements. If you need precise and ultra-fast communications PROFINET is for you. With some of the best update times available, PROFINET offers it's Isochronous Real-Time (IRT) protocol that can be seen in this video from Siemens.  I'll spare you the exact details (although if you are interested, feel free to email me here), but the idea is that it uses a time-sync feature and skips multiple layers in the OSI model to speed up transmissions. From simple motor control to complex syncing operations PROFINET has the flexibility you need.

Installation

Let's face it if it's hard to install you probably don't want it. PROFINET, like it's predecessor PROFIBUS, is extremely easy to install. Quick and efficient installation of industrial communications networks is essential. PROFINET fits the bill. From the easy to install hardened connectors (seen here) to the robustness of the cable, PROFINET is designed with the installer in mind. Installation guidelines must be followed, however, to ensure proper performance. It's never a good idea to run communication cabling with unshielded VFD cabling (I've seen it done!) With support for Fiber and copper, PROFINET can be easily implemented.

Availability & Support

Image result for support Possibly the most important factor of any installation in an industrial setting is the support and maintenance of the network. PROFINET is believed to make up approximately 8-9% of the overall field control networks which equates to 23% of the industrial ethernet networks currently installed according to IEN. What's this mean for you? As one of the most common industrial networks used, devices and components are readily available. Also, PI (Profibus and Profinet International) established a strict guideline required for certification of devices. This certification process is mandatory for any PROFINET device carrying the PROFINET name. Certification of devices ensures that the device has been tested and works according to the specifications set forth by PI. This helps make the task of choosing devices easier, knowing that if it carries the PROFINET certification it will work with your PROFINET network. PI also offers a network of certified engineers and installers to make support and troubleshooting an existing network as simple as possible.

The Bottom Line

For most applications, PROFINET is a great choice, but it's important to look at the criteria you require for your network. If you find yourself with questions regarding PROFINET capabilities or compatibility, please feel free to reach out to our team here. We are dedicated to providing your facility with the most reliable, secure, and profitable network possible. We understand the challenges faced by many industrial environments and are certified by PROFINET, Hirschmann, Panduit, & Belden, and have a BICSI RCDD on staff. We offer emergency services and FREE consultations. You deserve more up-time and we GUARANTEE it!



Thursday, December 1, 2016

4 BIG Reasons why you should consider surveillance for you business

$32 Billion lost!



$32 Billion! That’s right, businesses across the U.S. lost a total of $32 Billion in 2014 due to theft according to the National Retail Federation. Reducing the amount of theft is just one great reason to consider a surveillance system for your business. Keep reading for other great reasons you may not have considered.


Employee Theft

This is always a tough subject. Business owners want to believe that their employees can be trusted, and for the majority of employees, this is true. However, just one or two dishonest employees can cost your business thousands of dollars a year. 1 out of 40 employees was apprehended for theft by their employer in 2012, that’s according to a retail theft survey conducted by Jack L. Hayes International, a loss prevention consulting firm. It’s also suggested that thousands of incidents occur without ever apprehending the employee at fault. Even more startling is that one-third of small business bankruptcies are the result of employee theft, according to U.S Chamber of Commerce.


This is one area where security and surveillance cameras have been extremely effective. Just knowing that the cameras are there and recording reduces the likelihood of employees stealing cash or inventory. One local business experienced significant losses of certain small items. We installed a very cost effective CCTV system for them, and immediately the manager noticed the loss of inventory stopped! The system has paid for itself in less than 2 months. Now that’s return on investment!


Shoplifting

$13 Billion of goods are shoplifted every year. That is $35 Million per day, according to a study by the National Association for Shoplifting Prevention. Shoplifting has affected 75% of small retail businesses. While many small businesses can not afford to pay for a full-time loss prevention officer, the installation of a small security camera system can prevent thousands of dollars worth of losses. Many small businesses are finding that a camera system pays for itself in 6 months or less. Shoplifters take notice of cameras and know that shoplifting from a store with a good camera system is more likely to  land them behind bars.


Liability 

Slip and fall, sexual harassment, assault claims, and anything else you can imagine. People are suing businesses every day for fraudulent reasons. Without having a way to prove these claims as false your business may be out thousands or more. A simple video showing exactly what actually occurred could save you time, money, and frustration caused by these often frivolous suits.


Quality Assurance

Cameras allow businesses like yours to verify quality is maintained. This can be anything from customer service or experience to the quality of a manufactured product. We have installed cameras for facilities to ensure that the customer is greeted and treated as expected. We have also installed high-speed cameras to detect flaws in a manufacturing environment. Cameras and recording can be accessed to go back and identify a cause for a malfunction or bad customer experience. Detect and correct issues early to save thousands of dollars.


Protect and Secure your  business today.

If you would like to see how we can help protect and secure your business, call today. We focus on you and your business. With our free, no-obligation consultation, we’ll put you in the driver's seat and find creative ways to reduce your losses while increasing productivity.

Shawn White- 812-773-TEAM (8326)
  Email: Shawn@teamtech1.com
   Learn More Here












Monday, October 3, 2016

Why I took the plunge and started my own business

Why I took the plunge and started my own business.

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Passion, obsession, drive, experience, and opportunity. These are the things that made me want, even need, to start something new. When the opportunity arose to start something with a great partner that has drive, work ethic, and skills that complement my own, it was an opportunity that couldn't be passed up. A few of these ideas really stand out as the heart of why I made the leap.

Passion

A burning passion for a better experience. A better experience, not for me, but for the customer. I knew there had to be a better way. A way to put the customer first. A way to do a better job. A way to build long-term relationships based on honesty, integrity, great service, and professional results. A service that's not based on getting the job, getting paid, and moving on, but a deeper desire to actually help! From all the research I've done, one thing always seems to ring true for every successful entrepreneur: they have passion. Passion in their product or service. Passion for the customer. Passion to be better.

Obsession

I'm a self-proclaimed (and often confirmed) nerd. I love technology. I'm obsessed with staying up to date with all the new technologies. I enjoy finding solutions to business' problems utilizing technology. Integrating multiple systems to create a seamless and effective solution is my goal. I thrive on challenges and am obsessed with overcoming them. A healthy obsession is a prerequisite for anyone wanting to start their own business.
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Opportunity

I'd still be grinding away right now. I'd be wishing and wondering, but not acting on the desire to make a change if the right opportunity had presented itself. This opportunity arose, as many do, in the most unexpected way. Thoughts of doing my own thing had been dancing in my head for over a year. I wasn't sure what to do about it. I was afraid of making a change, taking that leap to entrepreneurship. The uncertainty was crippling.

Then a respected co-worker, unprompted by me, mentioned she was having these same thoughts! Really!? I thought I was alone, even crazy, in my thinking that there was a need that was unfulfilled in this area. We bounced ideas off each other and to my amazement found that we had the same passions. The passion for better customer experience. The passion for better projects that focus on the customer. The passion to help! This was it, this was the opportunity of a lifetime. I couldn't pass this up. She has strong skills in areas I feel weak. She is driven to succeed and always does what it takes to go the extra mile. With this newly found partnership Team Tech was born.
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Where we're headed

It's been 6 months so far, and what a wild ride it's been already! We are seeing the difference we can make. Our customers are noticing too. We get compliments on our service regularly. Our customers are enjoying being the center of attention. We are growing in leaps and bounds. We have already accomplished more than I thought possible so quickly. As we continue to learn, serve, and build relationships there is only one direction for us to go, UP! If you or your business would like to be part of our ongoing commitment to excellent customer service please schedule a time for your FREE solution walk-through today.

Friday, September 30, 2016

Who cares about the customer?

Who cares about the customer?

That's right! Who cares about the customer? At least that's what most construction projects would leave you thinking. There is a strong sense of project centric attitude among contractors in all trades. There are several reasons that this lack of customer service exists, but I will only cover the 3 most common.

3 Main Reasons for lack of customer service

  1. Project focused- Their is no real focus on how or why the customer will use the product or service.
  2. Poor Scheduling- No coordination between trades leaves contractors rushed and unable to be as attentive as they should be.
  3. Indirect Communication- On many projects the subcontractors are unable to communicate directly with the customer or end-user and most go through a General Contractor or Manager.

How do we fix this?

Project Focused. Being project focused is not always a bad thing. Focus on the project at hand to ensure a proper installation is a requirement. However, being solely focused on the project is like wearing blinders. The ultimate focus should be on how to make the installation as useful and helpful for the customer as possible. It's necessary to not just look at the specifications and drawings for a project, but also what the customer is ultimately trying to accomplish.





Poor Scheduling- This is not an easy issue to tackle. Luckily, more and more of the great General Contractors out there like Hannig Construction and Garmong Construction in Terre Haute,IN are really focusing more on coordination of the trades from day one. This really helps set the stage for a successful project in which the trades have sufficient time to not only complete their tasks, but focus on how to make them GREAT for the customer! If you find yourself as one of the poor souls working on a mismanaged project it's imperative that you make it clear how much time you expect you will need to satisfactorily complete your tasks.


Indirect Communication- Over the years I have heard many contractors give many excuses for why the project wasn't exactly what the customer wanted. One of the most common excuses is that they were not able to communicate directly with the customer. My answer to this? Poppycock! I have yet to see a General Contractor not allow you to ask specific questions regarding end usage of an installation. Afterall, the General Contractor wants the customer to be happy as well. Now that being said, should you be asking the customer if you can paint the walls blue because it looks nicer than tan, or use carpet instead of tile because it's easier to install? Absolutely not! Those are things that should be directed to the G.C., or Architect. What I'm talking about are questions that relate to identifying possible shortcomings of the system or task at hand. If the G.C. or C.M. maintains that you must send all correspondence through them (usually this is for documentation purposes), don't be afraid to go through the process. Take the time to ask your specific questions. Send them through the proper channels. The great thing about this method is that everyone becomes aware that you are truly putting the customer first. It shows a true interest in a successful project for contractors and customer alike.

The bottom line

The bottom line is that the customer is paying for this project. Don't they deserve the best possible installation? Wouldn't you want that if you were the customer? Together we can place the customer back in the center of what we do. We can give better customer service, build long-term relationships, and generate more revenue all by focusing on the customer and placing their needs first. If you would like to be put first on your next project book an appointment with Team Tech now and put our Team to work for yours.