Vance VanDoren, Control Engineering


Motors and Drives January 1, 2007

Model-following process control

All feedback controllers are designed to eliminate errors between the process variable and setpoint. Model-following controllers do so by forcing the process variable to reach the setpoint along a specified trajectory. The user defines the desired trajectory by creating a mathematical model that represents an idealized process—a process that would be easier to control if it could somehow ...

By Vance VanDoren, Control Engineering
HMI, OI April 1, 2002

Integrator Registration Aims to Promote Excellence

For lawyers, it's the bar exam. For doctors, it's "the boards." For control system integrators, there's the Professional Engineering (PE) exam, at least for the engineers on staff. But is it enough for a system integrator to have an office full of technically competent PE's designing control and automation systems for their clients? Does that guarantee that the end-users will get what they paid...

By Vance VanDoren, Control Engineering
Control Systems December 15, 2001

Control System Integrators Expand Their Horizons

Back before "control engineer" was ever used as a job title, process controls were the purview of mechanical engineers, who installed pneumatic feedback devices to regulate continuous variables such as temperatures, pressures, and flow rates. There were often hundreds, if not thousands, of such "loops" in a large processing facility, but each operated independently of the others and gener...

By Vance VanDoren, Control Engineering
Workforce Development November 30, 2001

System Integrators wear many hats

Automation system integrators talk about what it takes to succeed in their business.  

By Vance VanDoren, Control Engineering
Control Systems September 1, 2001

Real-World Applications of Advanced Process Controls

As a rule, engineers live by the KISS rule—Keep It Simple, Stupid. Sometimes, though, a simple solution isn't good enough.In many process industries such as petrochemicals and food processing, advanced techniques are required to solve feedback control problems that are too tough for simple PID loops.

By Vance VanDoren, Control Engineering
DCS, SCADA, Controllers June 1, 2001

Mathematical Models Aid Process Control

KEY WORDS Process and advanced control Modeling Model predictive control Process control theory Process controllers Loop tuning In its simplest form, a mathematical model is nothing more than an equation that relates the value of one variable to that of another. A model is used to describe the behavior of a process in quantifiable terms.

By Vance VanDoren, Control Engineering
Process Safety December 15, 1999

Integrator Partnerships Offer Pros and Cons

Anyone who has ever taken a car, a PC, or a sewing machine in for repairs knows that some service options are better than others. When replacement parts or product-specific expertise are required, the best choice is often the original vendor or one of the vendor's "authorized" service centers. These are typically independent service contractors who have been trained, supplied, and endorse...

By Vance VanDoren, Control Engineering
Project Management June 1, 1998

How to Work with a System Integrator

System integrators earn their keep by solving their clients automation problems. They provide the time, talents, and technology required to turn a plan into a completed project. But no matter how skilled they may be at designing, implementing, and testing industrial automation systems, integrators can do nothing of value until they know what their clients expect.

By Vance VanDoren, Control Engineering
System Integrators June 1, 1998

How to Find the Ideal System Integrator

Proliferation of low-cost, high-tech automation equipment has left some end-users in a quandary. How can they take advantage of the latest automation technology without investing their own time and effort to stay abreast of every new development? How can they benefit from all these new hardware and software products if their in-house engineering staff is already too busy to use them? More...

By Vance VanDoren, Control Engineering
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