I/O help: software adds functions to input / output devices

Opto 22 today announced the release of PAC Project version 8.1, what the company calls its flagship automation software suite for control programming, HMI development, OPC connectivity, I/O modules, and more. The latest version of the software features several new distributed control functions and support for new hardware including serial networked Snap PAC I/O, a new Snap PAC S-series programmable automation controller (PAC), and new 8-channel analog input modules. There's a basic version for free.

10/02/2007


Temecula, CA --

Opto 22

today announced the release of PAC Project version 8.1, what the company calls its flagship automation software suite for control programming, HMI development, OPC connectivity, I/O modules, and more. The latest version of the software features several new distributed control functions and support for new hardware including serial networked Snap PAC I/O, a new Snap PAC S-series programmable automation controller (PAC), and new 8-channel analog input modules-all part of the Snap PAC System, an integrated family of software, controllers, I/O processors (or "brains"), and I/O. There's a basic version for free.

The new distributed control functions and programming methods featured in PAC Project 8.1 are unique in the industry, Opto 22 says, where the use of distributed I/O processing combined with powerful programmable automation controllers can effectively increase control system performance, reduce single points of failure, and help control system designers and programmers address the needs of today's sophisticated automation applications. Opto 22 is a developer and manufacturer of hardware and software for industrial automation, remote monitoring, and data acquisition projects.

Opto 22 says the most significant enhancement to PAC Project 8.1 is the addition of new distributed I/O commands and functions to PAC Control, the control programming component of PAC Project. These new commands offer programmers powerful functions that can be distributed to independent I/O processors used in Snap PAC system architectures. This distributed architecture is unique to Opto 22 PAC-based control systems and offers the features and functionality of a traditional Distributed Control System (DCS) at a fraction of the cost and complexity, the company says.

New functions that can be distributed to networked, remote I/O processors include:



Each function executes at the I/O brain level, Opto 22 says, off-loading the PAC from these time-sensitive tasks and significantly reducing I/O network bandwidth. These new commands add to other Snap PAC System distributed I/O functions like analog scaling, thermocouple linearization, digital counting and latching, analog clamping, alarming, and event reactions.

The distributed I/O functions and capabilities are quickly and easily implemented using PAC Control's integrated development environment (IDE), in which control system functions are defined and configured using intuitive, easy-to-complete dialog boxes within the programming software, and then distributed to corresponding I/O brains automatically during strategy download, company says. All functions are available for Snap PAC Serial and Snap PAC Ethernet I/O brains, offering multiple choices for I/O network design within one development environment.

PAC Display-the HMI development and runtime software portion of PAC Project 8.1-als has been significantly upgraded:




PAC Project 8.1 also includes support for Opto 22's latest control hardware, like the new Snap PAC Serial I/O brains (the Snap-PAC-SB1 and Snap-PAC-SB2); the new Snap-PAC-S2 standalone programmable automation controller, and the new Snap-AIV-8, Snap-AIMA-8, and Snap-ICTD-8 8-channel analog input modules.

Opto 22 says PAC Project 8.1's affordability and multitude of features make the software suite a powerful, easy to use, and economical choice for customers looking to design control, monitoring, data acquisition, and other industrial applications that require sequential control, batch and continuous control, motion control, third-party device communications, PID loop control, and more.

PAC Project Basic is free for download or with purchase of any Snap PAC System controller. It includes control programming, configuration, and human-machine interface (HMI) development tools, free training, and free product support. PAC Project 8.1 Professional is available at a list price of $999, and adds components, features, and functionality for Opto 22 legacy hardware and the ability to exchange data with enterprise databases.

Individual PAC Project Professional software components, PAC Control Professional, PAC Display Professional, OptoOPCServer, and OptoDataLink are available separately at $399 each.

—Edited by Mark T. Hoske, editor in chief
Control Engineering News Desk
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