PLCs, PACs

Figure 1: Robotic material handling and custom automation was part of an upgrade for a thermoforming customer in the food and beverage industry. The new automation was to fit between and connected to two existing manufacturing processes on multiple production lines in a 24/7 operation. Courtesy: Applied Manufacturing Technologies
HMI, OI December 13, 2019

Revamped HMI provides better process control, operator compliance

System integrators should do a deep dive into the customer’s manufacturing process with detailed conversations and clarification of expectations during the design phase of any project.

By Rick Vanden Boom
Figure 1: This figure depicts how a single Type 1 hypervisor manages two virtual OSs on an industrial controller, a RTOS for real-time control and a guest OS for edge processing. Courtesy: Emerson
Virtualization, Cloud Analytics December 4, 2019

Industrial virtualization heads to the plant floor

End users are comfortable with virtualization in their information technology (IT) server rooms and desktops, and many similar benefits now can be realized with industrial programmable logic controllers (PLCs) and programmable automation controllers (PACs).

By Vibhoosh Gupta
Optimation provided engineering, controls programming and design, and skilled trade’s installation services, which included mechanical, electrical and construction management support, as well as control panel, pipe supports and frame fabrication. Courtesy: Optimation Technology Inc.
System Integrators November 27, 2019

System integrator upgrades complex batch system

Canadian food & beverage company, Grober Nutrition, expanded to the U.S. with the help of Optimation Technology Inc., and keeps growing.

By Jennifer Palumbo
Figure 1: Data acquisition network connections. Courtesy: Maverick Technologies
Data Acquisition, DAQ November 26, 2019

Eight data acquisition best practices

To discover which real-time data adds value to improve operational efficiencies and increase competitive edge in the marketplace, first understand data acquisition systems and consider the eight essential best practices for data acquisition success

By Brian E. Bolton
Courtesy: Chris Vavra, CFE Media
Maintenance October 17, 2019

Predicting the end of unplanned downtime

Any unscheduled downtime will cause a major headache for engineers in the food and beverage manufacturing sector, but predictive maintenance can be a remedy.

By John Rowley
Control system trends drive the future of automation by easier integration, connectivity, and advanced intelligences. Courtesy: L&T Technology Services
IIoT, Industrie 4.0 September 13, 2019

Future of industrial automation: discern the possibilities, potential

Industrial automation is on the threshold of a new revolution, moving through rapid technology changes, adoption of new systems and networking architectures and looking toward interoperability of devices and systems.

By Dr. Keshab Panda
Cybersecurity August 29, 2019

Industrial controller cybersecurity best practices

Protecting industrial automation systems is easier when controllers offer built-in cybersecurity features.

By Benson Hougland
Up to four communication protocols, including leading IT protocols such as Modbus TCP/IP and FTP, can be used simultaneously with high-performance HMIs. Courtesy: IDEC
IIoT, Industrie 4.0 August 29, 2019

Control system connectivity update

Digitalization, IIoT and Industry 4.0 implementations need communication hubs, a role well-suited to PLCs and HMIs.

By Don Pham and Linda Htay
After the male and female snaps have been inserted, the UR5 places the fabric under a vision camera lens for quality inspection and sorts it in either a “good” or “reject” pile. Courtesy: Universal Robots
Robotics August 15, 2019

Do-it-yourself collaborative robotic project

Case study: Collaborative robots at a thermal wrap manufacturing company deliver a zero-defect rate while doubling production output. Installation, integration and use has been a do-it-yourself (DIY) project.

By Joe Campbell
Figure 2: The moving platen (yellow structure) is visible above the fixed lower bolster of the 2,430-ton Hoesch press. Courtesy: Delta Computer Systems Inc.
CNC Motion Control August 12, 2019

Motion controller gives old presses new life

Case study: Retrofit controller on four hydraulic presses used a new programmable logic controller (PLC) to control the moving platen and the levelling cylinders would be controlled by a new electrohydraulic motion controller.

By Bruce Coons