RSTechED 2011 Event Invites Innovation

June 15, 2011
Rockwell Automation's annual educational event, RSTechED 2011, began on June 12 in Orlando, Fla. and offered more than 100 different educational sessions on its products, services, tools and customer applications.  

The event started with a keynote address from Frank Kulaszewicz, senior vice president architecture and software, Rockwell Automation. He cited the company's integrated architecture development over the last ten years as the key to unlock manufacturing innovation to its customers. With more than 1,500 attendees in the Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel ballroom, Kulaszewicz stressed control engineers can "own" this space with the right information architecture. Via the correct infrastructure, Kulaszewicz says," Plant engineers could drive more value across the lifecycle: system design, operations and maintenance. The way to drive value is to turn data into information that can be acted on."

This year's RSTechED event featured eleven educational tracks, including customer speakers, integrated architecture and automation software, manufacturing intelligence, manufacturing operations management (MOM) (links to a MOM search on, networks and security. There were eleven customer sessions. The customer sessions included discussions on migrating legacy process systems, data management, network virtualization, control systems for process and packaging. One takeaway from these customer sessions was management acceptance and willingness to invest in major migration projects or networking initiatives as long as it moved toward integrated architectures and scalability. Companies presenting at the event were Eli Lilly, Covidien, Kraft Foods, Genzyme, Kimberly Clark Corp and Sara Lee, to name a few.

Inspiration and Challenges

Inspiration was on the mind of Dr. Jerry Linenger, keynote speaker and NASA astronaut. On Tuesday, he addressed audience and said, "he felt at home" because "engineers get things done." He discussed "major" challenges when he encountered a fire on the Mir space station and how master alarms were a daily occurrence on the 14-year old space station. See below for the entire list of "challenges" aboard the Mir space station. The event runs through Friday, June 17 at the Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel. For more information visit Rockwell Automationwww.rockwellautomation.comChallenges Aboard the Mir Space Station:While living aboard the space station, Linenger and his two Russian crewmembers faced numerous difficulties-the most severe fire ever aboard an orbiting spacecraft, failures of onboard systems (oxygen generator, carbon dioxide scrubbing, cooling line loop leaks, communication antenna tracking ability, urine collection and processing facility), a near collision with a resupply cargo ship during a manual docking system test, loss of station electrical power, and loss of attitude control resulting in a slow, uncontrolled "tumble" through space. In spite of these challenges and added demands on their time (in order to carry out the repair work), they still accomplished all mission goals-spacewalk, flyaround, and one-hundred percent of the planned U.S. science experiments. (Source:

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