Size Matters When Selecting the Right Enclosure

Jul 27, 2016 2:54:15 PM | Posted by Joe Weathers

Panel location and budget are always thought about when building control rooms, but aspects such as size, spacing, NEMA rating, mounting, and heating and cooling need to be considered, as well.

Control panel enclosure sizing almost always represents a challenge faced by automation system designers. Electrical room sizes tend to be established last after the floor plan, process areas, mechanical equipment, piping, etc., so they often tend to have too little space allocated.

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Storyboarding as the First Step in High-Performance HMI Migration

Jul 20, 2016 9:32:43 AM | Posted by Jim Ford

Storyboarding as the first step in high-performance HMI migrationThe first step in migrating to a high-performance human-machine interface (HP-HMI) should always be storyboarding, which offers a visual representation of the layout and hierarchy of the new high-performance graphics (HPGs). This helps operators become an active part of the migration planning process.

Human-machine interface (HMI) migration can be a painful process—especially for operators who have resisted the move from 1st or 2nd generation CRT-based graphics to the new world of gray-scale, ASM-compliant displays with little color and greater concentration of process and instrumentation. One of the prime benefits of migrating to high-performance HMI (HP-HMI) is a reduction in the total number of graphics by as much as 25 to 50%.

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Binary Math and Absolute Encoders

Jul 13, 2016 10:00:00 AM | Posted by Jeff Monforton

An absolute encoder, while necessary and useful, can offer some challenges if the user doesn’t understand the mathematics of how they work and function.

There are numerous applications that employ encoders in automation control. The purposes are too numerous to list. However, there is one type of encoder that is used that does offer some challenges to those unfamiliar with the mathematics of how they work: The absolute encoder.
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Things to Consider When Creating a Deployment Plan

Jul 6, 2016 9:57:16 AM | Posted by Jeff Haywood

Too much work goes into project planning to forget about a deployment plan. The deployment plan should include safety requirements and be used by both your team and the customer to ensure project success. 

In this day and age, everyone has a plan. People have one-year plans, five-year plans, ten-year plans, and other plans designed to help them forge ahead and prepare for the future and the unexpected.

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Using Test Cases as a Cost and Risk Control Tool

Jun 29, 2016 3:54:24 PM | Posted by Jason Sampers

Bugs going unseen until production end up costing even more time and money. Testing should be viewed as a cost and risk control tool upfront during project planning.

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Simple Tips for Project Estimating

Jun 23, 2016 3:00:00 PM | Posted by Jason Montroy

estimate.jpgFor successful automation projects, lean on subject matter experts and historical data to develop the most accurate project estimate possible.

Many who have been in automation have likely encountered a project that ran far astray of estimates. This can cause the project team undue stress, derail the project schedule, and harm working relationships with clients and co-workers.

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Managing processes with the IIoT

Jun 16, 2016 3:00:00 PM | Posted by Michael Zhang

IIoT.jpgThe Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is creating more streamlined and efficient methods to manage processes.

It is becoming more and more advantageous to switch from legacy technology to Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technology because of the widespread innovations and the growing amount of data each plant needs to handle. IIoT technology can provide access control through many mediums (Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Ethernet, etc.), providing a flexible and powerful interconnected system.

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You’re Agile or You’re Dead

Jun 15, 2016 8:00:00 AM | Posted by Paul Galeski

The world is changing, and the companies unable to adapt quickly will simply vanish.

Strong words, but the message is true. Our times and the ways we do business have changed, and it is critical to understand how. In years past, a company unable to keep up might be left behind, but now it will simply be gone. As Bernard Baruch described the challenge of the Atomic Age, “We are here to make a choice between the quick and the dead.”

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