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SOLUTIONS SPOTLIGHT – ECMA: ‘Dynamic and Growing’ Behind the Scenes

ECMA: ‘Dynamic and Growing’ Behind the Scenes

* By Katie Kuehner-Hebert *

Need an electrification or controlling device for your application? Consider working with the Electrification and Controls Manufacturers Association (ECMA) Industry Group of MHI. ECMA is a group of manufacturers that provides standards, safe practices and education for the use of power and control systems.

“As the material handling industry grows it has become very critical to become more collaborative between suppliers, system integrators and application users to solve problems with applications,” said ECMA’s vice chair Joseph M. McAdams, Jr., operations director of MHI member Vahle Inc. “ECMA is a group ready to work in a collaborative fashion to support this effort.”

Most applications in the industry need the ability to provide power and controls to their moving components, he said. For example, an automobile factory requires thousands of components to be processed through an assembly system, and the member companies of ECMA provide the electrification systems to make that happen. ECMA members also make control systems such as frequency drives, positioning systems, communication systems, sensors and more.

“ECMA member companies are working to support the demands of the material handling industry growth,” McAdams said. “As the industry becomes more automated, applications are becoming intelligent, which will require the member companies of ECMA to collaborate and develop components and systems that meet the demands of the industry as it moves toward automation and IoT.”

The ECMA can serve as an extension of other MHI Industry Groups in providing professional advisement, specification development, technical and safety reviews on related subjects, added Kevin R. Hadley, president and director of sales, service and marketing at MHI member Cervis Inc.

“ECMA has been open to and willing to entertain initiatives and serve the needs of other MHI industry groups,” Hadley said.

Over the past three years, ECMA has made an effort to provide expertise in the fields of electrification and control through the release of standards such as ECMA 15, ECMA 25 and ECMA 35, said Anthony Di Tommaso, Cervis’ director of product development.

“The first case study was released in 2019 with more to follow in the future,” Di Tommaso said. “The members of ECMA are interested in the pursuit of publishing standards, case studies and other material for the betterment of industries served by MHI.”

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This issue of MHI Solutions tackles the important topic of digital technologies in the supply chain industry, especially as it relates the transportation and logistics. Transportation plays a central role in supply chains, whether they are local or global enterprises. And just like the overall supply chain, transportation is facing a digital revolution including new solutions for tracking road, rail, sea and air freight and parcel transportation. These digital technologies are disrupting the industry, but they are also providing im-portant new solutions for transportation inefficiencies and urban logistics challenges. They are also creating new digital business models that enhance transparency and sustainability and contribute to end-to-end supply chain visibility. Like the innovations impacting supply chains, these trends are being driven by the growth of e-commerce and the consumers’ never-ending need for better, faster and cheaper. Ignoring them is done at your own peril.

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