EC: A3200 MotionPAC software-based PLC and motion controller
Machine and embedded control – PLCs: The A3200 MotionPAC from Aerotech is a software-based PLC integrated with the A3200 motion controller. This is a Control Engineering 2012 Engineers’ Choice honorable mention.
The A3200 MotionPAC is a software-based PLC that is completely integrated with Aerotech's A3200 motion controller. The MotionPAC can be used independently for full machine control or in conjunction with AeroBasic programs. MotionPAC complies with IEC61131-3 and PLCopen. Users can program in ladder diagrams (LD), function block diagrams (FBD), or structured text (ST). The MotionPAC's tight integration with the A3200 motion controller allows users to command asynchronous, coordinated, blended, geared, or cammed motion directly from LD, FBD, or ST, or directly start, stop, or share Tags with AeroBasic programs. Programmers can create shared variables and tags that are referenced by Name in all of the A3200 tools, operator interface and existing AeroBasic programs, as well as in .NET programs. MotionPAC tools like user definable libraries (LD, FBD, ST, or .NET), integrated axis manager for readout and manual control, global Tag database, automatic memory management, and virtual execution of the PLC dramatically increase programming efficiency and quality, and can reduce programming and commissioning time by 30% to 50%.
Standard fieldbuses, drive I/O, and high-end data acquisition are integrated into the MotionPAC and can be shared among all applications by Name. The development environment includes an axis manager for axis readout and manual control during the development of LD, FBD, or ST, eliminating the need for separate readout and development applications. All of the usual hardware associations, task assignments, and programs are organized in an easy-to-use tree structure.
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2012 Salary Survey
In a year when manufacturing continued to lead the economic rebound, it makes sense that plant manager bonuses rebounded. Plant Engineering’s annual Salary Survey shows both wages and bonuses rose in 2012 after a retreat the year before.
Average salary across all job titles for plant floor management rose 3.5% to $95,446, and bonus compensation jumped to $15,162, a 4.2% increase from the 2010 level and double the 2011 total, which showed a sharp drop in bonus.