Top 5 Control Engineering articles, October 14 to November 13: Smart devices, tuning PID loops, automation vs. headcount, more

Articles about manually configuring smart devices, tuning PID loops, automation vs. headcount, support-focused enterprise controls, and optimizing servo controls were Control Engineering’s top 5 reader favorites from October 14 to November 13. You can catch up here.


Control Engineering Top 5 most read articles online, for Oct. 14 to Nov. 13, covered manually configuring smart devices, tuning PID loops, automation vs. headcount, support-focused enterprise controls, and optimizing servo controls. Link to each article below.

1. Automating automation: Why do smart devices have to be configured manually?

While smart instrumentation and field devices have highly sophisticated capabilities, configuration is still a mostly manual process. Users want to know why they still have to perform this action (and many others) the hard way. 

2. Tuning PID loops for level control

One-in-four control loops are regulating level, but techniques for tuning PID controllers in these integrating processes are not widely understood. 

3. How many people will be running your plant?

Process manufacturers have to deal with basic head count challenges. The answer may be fewer people than you think, but how do you find the right number? 

4. Support-focused enterprise controls series

This article is the introduction for a series of five articles that explore the critical components of a support-focused controls system. 

5. Optimizing servo control with an adaptive nonlinear algorithm

Servo control software improves applications requiring accurate path tracking and low settling time, such as CNC and cutting, conveyor tracking, pick-and-place operations, PCB mounting, welding, as well as painting, coating, and gluing. 

The list was developed using CFE Media's web analytics for stories viewed on, October 14 to November 13, for articles published within the last two months.

- Chris Vavra, production editor, CFE Media,

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