Steeplechase secures patent for graphical execution viewer
Steeplechase Software Inc. was recently granted a U.S. patent for Execution Tails, an addition to its Visual Logic Controller debug system that allows users to program in flowcharts and then graphically view control program execution.Creating automation control programs requires developers to understand how programs execute their logic.
Steeplechase Software Inc. was recently granted a U.S. patent for Execution Tails, an addition to its Visual Logic Controller debug system that allows users to program in flowcharts and then graphically view control program execution.
Creating automation control programs requires developers to understand how programs execute their logic. This phase of control application development is called debugging. To debug an application, developers must inspect variables and view and/or change their values. Developers must also be able to analyze the logic's execution.
Typically, developers must analyze data and correlate it with the control program execution, which can be difficult and time-consuming. The control program usually executes many times per second, while developers comprehend information much more slowly. Multiple variables may also change values several times in rapid succession during control program execution.
"Using Execution Tails allows simultaneous evaluation of multiple data points, while identifying execution paths on a graphical flow chart," says Mike Klein, Steeplechase's president and ceo. Less debugging time reduces time required to implement that control program. This gives manufacturers faster design cycles than are possible with existing PLC technology or existing graphical user interface programming tools.
In other news, Steeplechase has announced the development of a SERCOS (SErial Realtime COmmunications System) interface to its motion driver by Robotic Systems Integration (RSI, Chicago, Ill.). SERCOS' one digital fiber optic cable configuration enables its interface to decrease system startup time. Standard analog systems require wiring of multiple ribbon cables.
"SERCOS gives users a digital, open standard for synchronized motion control," says Jeff Greaves, RSI's motion control specialist. "SERCOS enables easy, noise-immune wiring of motion control systems."