ICT has used the MCP platform to implement a control system for a company that makes air pressure machines. A compressor contains a number of components that have to be controlled and sensors that have to be read. These machines are located in production environments where the line will stop if air pressure is lost. Reliability is therefore very important. There are a number of models of this machine and the control system needs to be suitable for all these machine types.
It is important for the control system to have a control panel that is perfectly matched to the machine. The control panel must match the capabilities of the machine perfectly. The manufacturer also wishes to make this a product that is recognisable in the marketplace. Finally, the control system should continue to be available for a long period.
The situation is that the existing control system remains difficult to deliver due to component availability. A change is therefore needed and since there is also a desire to add new features, it was decided to develop an entirely new control system.
Important features of this new control system include more communication features, the ability to update software easily, an improved HMI and remote support capabilities. Another important change is reducing the amount of cabling in the machine. At present each sensor and I/O is fed back to the control system, but there is a need to change this to a remote IO configuration.
The price of the control system is also important. The machine is produced in large series, so that every economy in the control system immediately becomes highly visible.
The customer also wishes to be able to add applications himself. This makes it easier to expand functionality, serve their own customers better and stay up to date with the control system.
The company is very satisfied with the new control system and the new features that it offers. It has now been introduced and it is delivered together with the new machines. The customer has already added a number of his own applications.
Real progress was made in terms of reducing internal machine cabling, communicating with various industry networks, accessibility of the control system and software updates and error logging.
The ROI figures are positive due to cost savings in the control system and extension to new applications. The control system is now up to date again and offers a number of features that allow the customer to stand out in the market.