Four years ago I relaunched my old company, Automation Consulting Services, Inc. as Automation Consulting, LLC. For the first year or so I spent a lot of time contracting for machine builders and engineering firms, mostly writing PLC and HMI/SCADA …

Teaching and Consulting Read more »

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Today’s topic derives from a project I have become involved in in my “spare” time. Lately I have been spending a lot more time teaching classes. My project in Miami is mostly complete, so I have been able to get …

Fieldservers and Protocol Converters Read more »

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The following story is from my book Industrial Automation: Hands On (McGraw-Hill, 2013). I wrote it to illustrate how a machine or production line is concepted, purchased, designed, built and delivered. This is a pretty typical description of the procedures …

Building The Machine: A Bedtime Story Read more »

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As many of you know from reading this blog, I spend about 40% of my time teaching software programming classes for Automation Training, a Canadian company. I started out teaching the Allen-Bradley SLC and ControlLogix platforms and Siemens Step 7 …

Wonderware Read more »

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When designing a control system, sometimes it becomes necessary or advantageous to communicate with devices that were not made by the PLC manufacturer. If these devices need to be placed on an Ethernet, DeviceNet or Profibus network there are methods …

Non-Native Devices: .eds and .gsd files Read more »

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When mapping out a new machinery or system project it is critical that the correct decisions are made before beginning design. The choices of products, vendors and service providers can make or break a project before it even gets off …

Finding Project Resources Read more »

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Today’s topic involves a project I have been working on over the last few months. The project consists of adding process equipment including tanks, pumps, valves and instrumentation to an existing system… while it is running. Because production runs 24 …

Ladder Logic 303: PLC Forensics Read more »

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