SPS Show Report 2010, Welcome to the PI Booth

The SPS/IPC/Drives Show gets bigger every year.  It is eclipsing the Hanover Fair as the premier global automation trade show.  It would be nice to not have to travel to Germany over Thanksgiving week for it, but the North American shows are gone as I lamented before.

The show itself is huge with 90,000 square meters of exhibits (970,000 square feet), 1,323 exhibitors, and 52,028 visitors (10,304 from abroad, a 34% increase).  The PI booth is one of the larger booths (called stands in European parlance).  Here’s an introduction and short look around part of the booth:

It was great to see a couple of our members from North America make the trip to exhibit in the booth.  Comtrol was showing their PROFINET master for IO-Link; Innovasic, their scalable PROFINET tools.  Here are the Comtrol and Innovasic displays:



[Click the pictures for larger versions.]

Other PI North America members were represented by their European counterparts, including MESCO, Phoenix Contact, Emerson, and more.

A large North American press contingent was also there, so we bumped into Walt Boyes, Dave Greenfield, Gary Mintchell, and others.  I had a chance to visit briefly with Leo Ploner of the Industrial Ethernet Book, too.  Our friendly competitor, ODVA, was there with Katherine Voss and Adrienne Meyer also missing Thanksgiving. 

Many heads of our Regional PI Associations were in town, giving us the opportunity to meet on Thursday night after the show for dinner and then Friday morning for a formal meeting.  At dinner Thursday we had a serendipitous encounter.  We surrounded one of two tables in the wine cellar of a Nuremberg restaurant.  We naturally mentioned PROFIBUS and PROFINET frequently and were surprised when the six folks at the other table toasted PROFIBUS and PROFINET!  Turns out they were with a System Integrator in Turkey and were doing PROFINET and PROFIBUS projects there and in northern Africa.  New friendships were made and an application story was promised.

Other, more general reports from SPS are available from Gary Mintchell (text and podcast) and Leo Ploner.

Coming up next: Technologies in the PI Booth.

–Carl Henning