Control Upgrade

PLC and PC Based Control Systems

Much of the equipment you use is custom designed specifically for your product or process. You are used to its’ operation and support-needs. The thought of ever having to replace it can cause grave concern. While you can handle the physical aspects of its maintenance and keep it running, the schematics are now either missing or so far out-of-date as to be useless. The wiring is getting stiff and breaking more and more often. Electronic components are getting harder to find and the OEM is either out of business or does not care to support such outdated equipment anymore.

Obtaining a replacement system is often very time-consuming and expensive. Many manufactures or other end users have mechanical and electrical capabilities already in house. You have explored the option of having your maintenance department perform the needed upgrade but came to realize your in-house people are not qualified to make the needed changes. While they are excellent at combining the mechanical and electrical needs of a solution, they often are weak in the area of programming and technology integration.

ElectroTech can design and build Programmable logic controllers (PLC) and Personal Computer (PC) based control systems for any application. As an independent systems integrator, ElectroTech is not locked into providing a single manufacturer's products. This allows more reliable system that meets all project requirements at substantially lower costs. Whether you are making changes to an existing control scheme, upgrading outdated technology or replacing an old relay system, ElectroTech specializes in custom control systems for industrial production and process machinery and can help you with your next automation project.

Operator Interface

With any retrofit or upgrade the operator interface to the new system is essential. Control panel interfaces can be designed using a variety of options. Some applications may only require updating the pushbutton panel with new or additional pilot devices, pushbuttons, selector switches, potentiometers, visual and audible indicators. When the application requires a more advanced operator interface then an HMI (Human Machine Interface) is the answer.

HMI's provides a dedicated control interface of various levels to a new system. High-speed communications and graphics allow the operator to observe conditions and operations that are absent with pushbutton panels.

All HMIs, PLCs and PC base control systems have program files and that the customer should access to those files. ElectroTech believes that customers own the code and will NEVER prevent customers from modifying or using the programs developed in any way they see fit and will supply customers with all the information they need to install, maintain, modify and use the systems provided.

However to access these files which are uploaded to a PLC or HMI requires the programming software that created the files. Each device manufacturer has their own proprietary programming software which could cost the customer $400 to $5000 or more. Some offer an annual subscription plan. Without the programming software you will have to rely on the contractor who design the control system.

There is a solution to this dilemma depending on how complex the control system is required for the application. PLC manufactures have started to offer HMIs and PLCs with FREE programming software. The PLCs range from small projects to more advance control. This makes designing a control system from the ground up more affordable.

ElectroTech specialize in AutomationDirect supplied components and offer systems based on Omron and Allen Bradley based controls.