Top 5 Control Engineering articles, December 22-28: PLC and DCS programming, MES or batch manufacturing, industrial automation video, more

Articles about PLC and DCS programming, MES and batch manufacturing, an industrial automation video, system integration insights, and modulation and coding schemes were Control Engineering’s five most clicked articles from last week, December 22-28. Were you out last week? Miss something? You can catch up here.


Control Engineering Top 5 most read articles online, for Dec. 22-28 covered PLC and DCS programming, MES or batch manufacturing, an industrial automation video, system integration insights, and modulation and coding schemes. Link to each article below.

1. Improve PLC and DCS programming with a mental model

Develop a mental model to address real-time programming, which differs from web development or classical programming. Base real-time programmable logic controller (PLC) and distributed control system (DCS) programs on models of functional programming, encapsulation, hierarchy decomposition, and petri nets. Do not accept unstructured and poorly designed PLC and DCS code. 

2. MES or batch: What is the best answer?

A small set of decision points can determine the most commonly used models for selection or integration of ISA 88 batch execution systems and ISA 95 manufacturing operations management (MOM) systems. Ask these questions to decide. 

3. Automation 101 video explains industrial automation

Opto 22 explains automation simply with a basic cartoon video, "Automation 101 - What is Industrial Automation?" Adding intelligence, quality, and safety to a process is easier with automation, especially for doing things that humans cannot.

4. System integration insights: Oil and Gas

CFE Media spoke with representatives from some of the 2014 System Integration Giants to get their views on how the oil and gas market will evolve and what role their companies expect to play with automation and control system integration. 

5. Understanding modulation and coding schemes

Industrial Wireless Tutorials: Modulation and coding schemes (MCS) are used to determine the data rate of a wireless connection using high-throughput orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (HT-OFDM). 

The list was developed using CFE Media's web analytics for stories viewed on, December 22-28, for articles published within the last two months.

- Chris Vavra, production editor, CFE Media,

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