March 2012 
STW Technic, LP Newsletter
In This Issue
New Happenings at STW
J1939 and CANopen sensor
TC3 Board Support Package
Please be sure to browse our new and improved website!
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STW Technic is the premier manufacturer of mobile electronics for off-highway work vehicles. The STW ESX line of freely programmable controllers and I/O modules combines German Engineering and American software ingenuity to bring you the most cost effective and capable controller solutions on the market today.
STW provides:
  • Freely programmable controllers and I/O modules for off-highway vehicles
  • Freely programmable, mobile rated displays
  • Freely programmable telematics controllers
  • Robust sensors for pressure and force measurement


STW Technic's New Location!


STW Technic recently moved into new office and warehouse space.  The new space happens to be right around the corner from the old, so our address is only different by a suite number:  Suite 240 instead of Suite 260!  This new area accommodates our rapid growth and future plans for expansion



New Team Members!


Last year was a great one for STW Technic.  We experienced significant growth and built many new business relationships with excellent companies.  We continue to add new team members on a regular basis.  Here are our two newest staff:


Michelle Kennedy



 Michelle Kennedy has joined our team as our Accounting Professional.  She is responsible for processing our Accounts Payables and Receivables.  She also assists our VP of Finance/HR with various tasks.  Michelle has obtained a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration and is currently pursuing a Master's degree in Accounting.  Her skills in previous accounting and customer services positions afford her the ability to bring an ample amount of experience to our team.



Hugh Zinsmayer   


We also welcome Hugh Zinsmeyer to STW as a Senior Sales Engineer who will be responsible for supporting the Southwest.  Hugh brings 19 years of sales experience to STW, which includes 10 years in the industrial automation and motion control market.  His former experience includes working for Minarik Automation and Control as an OEM Sales Engineer in Dallas, TX.  Hugh was responsible for developing and supporting strategic OEM accounts with motion-control and automation product technologies. Hugh's strong technical aptitude and strategic sales experience will allow STW to continue to develop key business partnerships in Texas and Oklahoma.


STW offers Mobile Rated Pressure Sensor with J1939 and CANopen Output




There is a growing enchantment with CAN sensors in the pressure transducer world.  The flexibility and ease of use of these sensors make them very attractive for mobile applications.  CAN sensors reduce the number of inputs that a controller or I/O module must support and they can dramatically reduce the wire harness challenges in a vehicle. 


The M01-CAN is especially designed to be used in off-highway applications. The EMC, shock and vibration protection is especially designed for these machines and the extreme environment they operate in. It is available for pressure ranges from 0 ... 10 bar up to 0 ... 1000 bar. Within the compensated temperature range the overall accuracy is 1%. The M01-CAN can be used with a medium temperature of up to 150C (302F) and the maximum permissible ambient temperature is 125C (257F).


For the J1939 sensors, the PGN and SPN (and source address in the future) are configurable with our tool, within the limits of the sensor capabilities. The CANopen sensors are also configurable with our tool (within the limits of the particular sensor), including Node ID, Bitrate, and units. 


STW has long been a leader in the M01-CAN market.  Our offering covers a full range of pressure, a variety of mechanical fitting. Our PC-based configuration tool puts you in control of your environment and allows you to adapt individual sensors to your network in an optimal manner.


Click Here for More Information.



New Board Support Package (BSP) for the ESX-TC3



The STW Teleservice Team has published the new Board Support Package (BSP) 2.0 for the highly advanced telematics and data capture module the ESX-TC3.  In addition to dramatic improvements in the linux boot times and improved WLAN support, the BSP provides an extensive programming interface that accelerates the development of advanced applications on the ESX-TC3.


This interface, designated the Telematics Application Framework (TAF), offers all the required functions for developing sophisticated telematics applications.  With ample application (code) examples and help files, BSP 2.0 is easily mastered and exploited by linux-familiar developers.


Here are the most important new features of BSP version 2.0:


  • Improved boot-up time (approx. 6 sec)
  • uclibc support
  • WLAN support
  • Bluetooth data transfer mid-OBEX
  • Support for various communications protocols (e.g. ssh, ftp, nfs)
  • UBI file system - rapid mounting of the 1GB NAND flash memory
  • Telematics Application Framework - TAF (including lib)
  • Complete development kit, including tool chain, code examples, help files
  • Easy to use update package 
 Click here for more about the TC-3


New Expansion Boards for 32 bit Controllers


A new expansion board, the EB10, has been developed for the STW ESX-3Xx family of 32 bit controllers.  The EB10 has two configurations - one with four additional CAN ports and an extra serial port, and a second with two additional CAN ports and eight multi-function digital inputs.  This board will go into series production in May, 2012. 


This new addition to the family of 32 bit expansion boards will be joined by an analog output expansion board, the EB11, later this year.  Details about this expansion board will be in our next newsletter, or are available through your sales representative. 



Debugging Options with STW Controllers


Embedded controls programming in a mobile application environment is not a trivial exercise.  However, the tools and development frameworks that STW offers with its products facilitate rapid programming and debugging and make the task much less daunting.


If a programmer has chosen the CoDeSys development platform, then CoDeSys itself offers many debugging, visualization, and simulation capabilities.  Before a program is even downloaded onto the controller it may be run in simulation mode on the PC using the CoDeSys simulation mode.  This allows a developer to check basic logic and flow of the program.  The next step is to login to the controller and run the program on the controller in 'live' mode, which allows one to monitor the program fully from the PC, seeing all of the variable values, stopping and starting the program, setting breakpoints, even stepping through the program one line at a time.  The controller hardware (inputs, outputs, LEDs, etc.) and networks (CAN, RS-232, etc.) can all be tested in this mode.  Additionally, CAN bus traffic can be viewed from the PC with PCAN Viewer, which is included with the STW development package.


CoDeSys also provides a visualization package that can be used to debug a program graphically using such visualization techniques as lights, analog and digital meters, gauges, and assigning variables to these graphical elements. Input elements are also provided, making configuration of parameters fast and easy.


Another more sophisticated simulation technique is to use a CAN software package such as PCAN Explorer.   Not only can all CAN traffic be viewed, recorded and analyzed, but other CAN bus components such as engines, transmissions, valves, pumps, etc. can be simulated and their predicted CAN messages can be generated to allow full testing of the system without requiring a full test bench.


In the C environment, the typical debugging technique is to use the serial port (RS-232) or the CAN port to send debug information (variable values, etc.) from the controller to the PC at critical points in the code.  This is one of the primary reasons there is an RS-232 interface on every STW controller.  Of course PCAN Viewer and PCAN Explorer can also be used for a C program to perform the same functions as for a CoDeSys program.


If more thorough debugging is needed, STW offers a Lauterbach tool - Trace32 Debugger - which can be used as a software-only debugger via a ROM monitor or as a hardware level debugger with a special hardware interface into the controller.
Upcoming Tradeshows
STW will be exhibiting at the Offshore Technology Conference in Houston Texas from April 30th to May 3rd and at the Global Petroleum Show in Calgary, Canada from June 12 to June 14, 2012. If you happen to be at either of these shows, please stop by and meet with our wonderful sales staff.  

Dale Albee
STW Technic, LP