Top Control Engineering articles, October 2011

Most-visited articles at during October 2011 included how control engineers may not be following NFPA rules, Coriolis flowmeter market, getting parts for aging control systems, a control tutorial, PLC design trends, and surviving control system failure, among other articles.


A system integrator suggests that new rules are needed for working on control panels with less than 600 V ac with proper fused power disconnect. Does a qualified person really need PPE when programming with a PC? Note that an electrical distribution panelMost-visited articles at during October 2011 included how control engineers may not be following NFPA rules, Coriolis flowmeter market, getting parts for aging control systems, a control tutorial, PLC design trends, and surviving control system failure. Descriptions and links to those most-visited articles follow.

October 2011 most popular Control Engineering online articles

Codes and regulations: Electrical Controls’ Dirty Little Secret: We Don’t Follow NFPA Rules - Take the survey! Of course safety is important, but most don’t follow NFPA 70e safety rules for working on an energized electrical panel. Risky? Yes. Unsafe? No, according to this system integrator. Perhaps industrial control panels need their own arc flash standard. (Do you follow the rules when working on control panels? Link to anonymous survey. See related articles.)

Control Engineering Leaders Under 40, Class of 2011, profiles and photosLeaders Under 40, Control Engineering class of 2011 - This generation of manufacturing automation and controls leaders includes 19 young professionals excelling in control system design and teaching others about the fun in engineering, while resolving local and global challenges through smarter applications of automation and control technologies.


IO Module Replacement: What You Need to Know – When upgrading processors, do I/O modules also need replacing? Many processor brands will communicate with legacy I/O systems and provide most or all functionality of modern control platforms. This may not be the case if changing processor brands, according to this system integrator.

Before: Old control panels make troubleshooting and maintenance very difficult and time-consuming, in addition to posing problems with downtime and potential safety issues. Shown is an old control panel with dated hardware and hardwired pneumatic solenoid

Coriolis flowmeters continue to gain market share - About to displace magnetic flowmeters, Coriolis designs are poised to move into the number-two spot. Continuing growth says number-one is inevitable.


When your parts supply for an old system runs out - Providing geriatric care for an aging control system or piece of critical equipment can require you to be creative when your parts supply dries up. There are alternatives.


Disturbance-Rejection vs. Setpoint-Tracking Controllers - Designing a feedback control loop starts with understanding its objective as well as the process’s behavior.

Design trends in PLC-based control systems – Advances in electronics manufacturing are supporting higher functionality levels in industrial automation hardware.


Control Engineering Process Control and Instrumentation

Control system failure survival strategies – When bad things happen to good control systems, it’s best to know in advance which of several strategies will be used, why, and how.

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- Compiled by Mark T. Hoske, CFE Media, Control Engineering,

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