Operator Interface Terminals (April 2006)

Research was undertaken to gain a better understanding of Control Engineering subscribers’ applications and needs regarding operator interface terminals.


Research was undertaken to gain a better understanding of Control Engineering subscribers’ applications and needs regarding operator interface terminals.

  • Among those specifying, recommending and/or buying operator interface terminals, 61% do so for in-plant requirements, 19% do so for a systems integrator, and 20% do so for OEM (resale) requirements.

  • Half of the respondents answered that both continuous and batch manufacturing are their primary applications for operator interface terminals. Fourteen percent of readers surveyed selected continuous manufacturing only and/or discrete manufacturing as their primary application.

  • Fifty-three percent of respondents have 12 NEMA-rated features in their operator interface terminals and 46% have 4/4X NEMA-rated features. Over one-third of respondents want 4/4X NEMA-rated features.

  • Nearly two-thirds of respondents have serial communications in their operator interface terminals. The next most common communications feature that respondents have is a proprietary network. The two most wanted communications features by respondents are an open network and wireless.

  • Results suggest that flat panel and touchscreen are the most common display features respondents already have in their present operator interface terminals. A bright ambient light readability and/or readability at a distance were chosen by over half of the respondents as features they want in their next operator interface terminal.

  • Over half of respondents have Microsoft Windows NT in their operator interface terminals. The two types of software most wanted by respondents are web browser and/or java enabled, with 39% and 24% choosing them respectively.

  • Eighty-one percent of respondents say they have UL certification in their present operator interface terminals. Nearly two-thirds want UL certification in their next operator interface terminal. Additionally, results suggest that CE Mark and UL will experience the most growth as respondents implement their next operator interface terminals.

  • Eighty-eight percent of respondents currently use Ethernet TCP/IP and 85% currently use RS- 232. Results suggest Ethernet TCP/IP will be the most widely used network a year from now.

  • The average number of typical I/O point’s respondents’ operator interface applications is 1,571.

Operator Interface Terminals 2006

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