Data collection, reporting from production lines, material handling and automatic testing is made simplified by using a SCADA system. It allows authorized personnel to access data at any point in the production cycle,to obtain performance figures and test results at every stage on the production line; reports can be automatically generated on production output and performance reports and created at specific periods of the day, end of week or month, and all this is done in real time.
The introductory level to SCADA used to be quite steep, several thousand dollars, however - Mitsubishi have now joined with CITECTSCADA, many years selling into the Australian market, jointly they have now released MX4 HMI, this is a low end package costing a few hundred dollars and allows the monitoring of production lines and reporting etc that a SCADA package provides. The product is still young so expect a steep learning curve, overall it is not bad. The next level above MX4 HMI is MX4 SCADA.
All SCADA packages if developed correctly enable you to increase your company's return on assets by delivering highly scalable, reliable control and monitoring systems to reduce your operating costs and increase profits.
There are several alternative SCADA packages also worth considering:
· Wonderware’s InTouch - a US product. Reliable & easy to use, support is worldwide. Works with all PLC’s including Mitsubishi. UK support is Pantek whose technical support was very poor 2years ago and expensive, however they have claimed they are now providing a much improved support to their customers.
Wonderware's Industrial tablets
InTouch applications on Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers can provide visualization and control in many automation scenarios previously serviced only by closed proprietary 'dumb' terminals. Wonderware Industrial Tablets and Touch Panel Computers work out of the box, without additional configuration.
· Intellution iFix32 - again works with any PLC, an improved product based upon its most popular previous platform FixDemacs, extensively used in a large Automotive manufacturer, which is a good guideline for reliability. Support was excellent back in 2000
· Siemens WinCC, German product, launched in 1997. Works again with all PLC’s, a very powerful product but back in 1997 when it launched a difficult platform to get to grips with, expensive and support was disastrous. They claim to have a much improved product now. Siemens products do have a good name for reliability, but their customer support need serious attention.
RSView32 another US product, works on any PLC, from what I saw in 2000 it looked very good, however I have not used it since.
Rockwell claim it is an integrated, component-based HMI for monitoring and controlling automation machines and processes. Available in English, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Korean, and Spanish. RSView32 expands your view with open technologies
more RS VIEW 32
CitectSCADA - Australian company one of of the world’s leading industrial automation software packages, the development package is quite good, fully integrated for ease of project development. Used in a wide range of industries. CitectSCADA.
MX4 is the latest SCADA software from Mitsubishi and Australian Software Giant Citect. It's designed to deliver real productivity gains while reducing operating costs in a flexible, scalable and reliable package.
LC Automation provide a FREE! demo copy email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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