One way or another, every manufacturer must solve a basic optimization problem—how to produce the most valuable product at the least possible cost. Particularly in high volume, low margin industries like petrochemicals and consumer products, profits depend on squeezing every bit of finished product out of the available raw materials and saving every dime on labor and material costs.
Legend has it that certain divinely inspired engineers in the automation industry are capable of producing bug-free control code on the first pass. Their programs always work as intended the first time the control system is powered up. I am certainly not one of them.My programs inevitably fail to account for some unforeseen sequence of events or some combination of inputs that only happen...
Control systems integrator Kata Corp. (Evansville, Ind.), working with Process Control Concepts (also Evansville, Ind.), a controls engineering firm, recently provided an economical and energy saving control system solution for one of the newest U.S. soybean processing facilities. The project involved CGB Enterprises' (Mt.
Corrections and additions to the Control Engineering 1998 Automation Hardware Guide follow.
They may or may not beat the Texas heat, but visitors and exhibitors at ISA Expo/98 will certainly find what they need to clobber competitors at this year's event.Billed by organizers as the biggest control and instrumentation show ever, ISA Expo/98 is the second alternate-year-format event for ISA, the international society for instrumentation and control (Research Triangle Park, N.
Sometimes it's fun to imagine what the world might have been like if John von Neumann had a room full of Crays or if Galileo had the Hubble telescope. On a somewhat smaller scale I wonder what my own career might have been like if I'd had something besides machine code back in the days of designing embedded control systems for microwave ovens, simple RTUs, and steam-driven chiller packages.
Data acquisition software is hardly a "new kid on the block." The commercial use of software-configured control systems dates back to the 1970s, when the first large-scale proprietary control systems debuted. As the control industry has evolved, so have software-based systems.With the evolution of the personal computer and the networks on which they "reside," software developers are produ...
Joining seven earlier registrants, three more fieldbus devices recently completed the Fieldbus Foundation's device registration process. The newly registered, FOUNDATION fieldbus-compliant products are: Fieldbus Controller, Model UCR-501, from Fieldbus Inc.; Pressure Transmitter, Model IASPT10, from the Foxboro Co.
Invention Machine Corp. rolled out its first enterprise solution software June 8 at the Second Annual User Group Conference. The software, TechOptimizer 3.0, includes two new modules—Internet Assistant and Process Analysis—as well as the addition of more than 1,000 new scientific effects and examples to its knowledge base.
Whenever a new control system is proposed for an automated plant, a manager, engineer, or operator invariably asks how the system will react to certain events or conditions in the plant. What happens when the ambient temperature drops below freezing? What will the control system do if the conveyor suddenly stops? Will the robot arm be able to squeeze through that opening with a part in it...