Program less, transfer more data with this appliance

Improve security and increase data flow among devices with easy setup.

02/18/2008


Knoxville, TN – The new

Appliance Transaction Module (ATM) platform

from

Online Development Inc

. focuses on eliminating costly, and complex custom programming between dissimilar plant-floor products and business systems, eliminating software updates and data security concerns.

The platform consists of hardware modules with embedded transaction software for exchange of data between specific dissimilar products such as a factory floor controller and a database. Each features an easy-to-use interface with automatic identification of connected products, such as controller tags and database tables. Intuitive screens and drag-and-drop operation contribute to simple setup and configuration of data transactions.

ATMs provide a low-cost, low-risk alternative to traditional custom programmed PC-based software and hardware bridges used to exchange data between dissimilar plant floor devices and/or business systems such as a database. The bridges traditionally use proprietary software that requires programming expertise, lengthy development, and testing to exchange the data. PC-based bridges are susceptible to software viruses, hackers, unintended operation, and ongoing maintenance.

Data exchanges support corporate-wide initiatives , such as ERP (enterprise resource planning), CRM (customer relationship management), data warehousing, and supply chain management. They also support in-plant applications, such as downloading of batch recipes, process line configuration, transfer of SPC (statistical process control) information, dynamic warehousing, assembly order, and bill of material processing.

Online Development has several additions to the Appliance Transaction Module platform under development that will include data exchange capabilities for more types and brands of factory automation and business system products. According to Ron Monday, president and CEO, "Our experience with the xCoupler eATM module over the past 18 months has shown that these modules take a lot of pain out of exchanging data between controllers and business systems for end-users. They do just one thing and do it well, exchange and manage data between dissimilar platforms. That's why we are aggressively expanding this platform to provide users the building blocks needed to easily connect and manage various sources of data."

ARC Advisory Group

research director Craig Resnick says, "For applications such as sending and confirming build orders from a database to a factory floor controller, many manufacturers are turning to automation appliances. Similar to computer data appliances such as routers, modems and Ethernet switches that have gained wide acceptance throughout the information technology industry, automation appliances are characterized by being simple to install and configure, which speeds up startup times, and offering longer product lifecycles, which minimizes the number of required maintenance upgrades."

First of these modules , the xCoupler eATM module for exchanging Allen-Bradley ControlLogix PAC (Programmable Automation Controller) data with business systems, was introduced in 2005. It has become popular as an easy way to exchange plant data with MySQL, IBM, Oracle, and Microsoft business systems. Manufacturers around the globe such as Nestle, 3M, Honda, John Deere, Caterpillar, Kraft Foods, Saint-Gobain, Nucor, and Whirlpool benefit from this module's ease-of-use and reliable operation. It has won awards and recognition from publications including Control Engineering, Plant Engineering, Automation World, and Industry Week.

Latest module, RA56-cATM, introduced in September 2007, exchanges data between the latest Allen-Bradley ControlLogix PACs and installed Allen-Bradley PLCs, including SLC 500, PLC-5, MicroLogix and CompactLogix. It economically maximizes the investment in installed PLCs while migrating to the latest PAC technology by eliminating programming message instructions between two control platforms.

Control Engineering News Desk
Register here and scroll down to select your choice of eNewsletters free .





No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
World-class manufacturing: A recipe for success: Finding the right mix for a salad dressing line; 2015 Salary Survey: Manufacturing slump dims enthusiasm
2015 Top Plant: Phoenix Contact, Middletown, Pa.; 2015 Best Practices: Automation, Electrical Safety, Electrical Systems, Pneumatics, Material Handling, Mechanical Systems
A cool solution: Collaboration, chemistry leads to foundry coat product development; See the 2015 Product of the Year Finalists
Digital oilfields: Integrated HMI/SCADA systems enable smarter data acquisition; Real-world impact of simulation; Electric actuator technology prospers in production fields
Special report: U.S. natural gas; LNG transport technologies evolve to meet market demand; Understanding new methane regulations; Predictive maintenance for gas pipeline compressors
Cyber security cost-efficient for industrial control systems; Extracting full value from operational data; Managing cyber security risks
Getting ready for industrial IoT; Visualizing the (applied) automation continuum; Preventing VFD faults and failures; Using wireless for closed-loop applications
Migrating industrial networks; Tracking HMI advances; Making the right automation changes
Understanding transfer switch operation; Coordinating protective devices; Analyzing NEC 2014 changes; Cooling data centers

Annual Salary Survey

After almost a decade of uncertainty, the confidence of plant floor managers is soaring. Even with a number of challenges and while implementing new technologies, there is a renewed sense of optimism among plant managers about their business and their future.

The respondents to the 2014 Plant Engineering Salary Survey come from throughout the U.S. and serve a variety of industries, but they are uniform in their optimism about manufacturing. This year’s survey found 79% consider manufacturing a secure career. That’s up from 75% in 2013 and significantly higher than the 63% figure when Plant Engineering first started asking that question a decade ago.

Read more: 2014 Salary Survey: Confidence rises amid the challenges

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
This article collection contains several articles on the vital role that compressed air plays in manufacturing plants.