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DL05 and DL06 Applications
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Application: PLC Network Pays Big at Popular Casino
Products used: DL06 PLC, LookoutDirect, EZTouch operator panel
Description: A seven-PLC serial radio and Ethernet network that monitors and controls a casino water system has improved both system reliability and water quality. Three wells with chlorine and fluoride addition, four reservoirs, and the fire system are controlled by this PLC network. The seven PLCs are networked to the LookoutDirect platform, which provides full SCADA/HMI for the system operators, both locally and remotely via a dial-up connection. Previously, monitoring and control functions were mostly manual with the use of some standard pool timers. Typical problems were water shortages – or no water – and overflow of the reservoirs. One overflow incident even caused a traffic accident due to water running across the highway. As for water quality, it had been unpredictable because data on actual chemical feed rates was lacking. The integration of AutomationDirect products, use of automated alarms, and access to readily available information has yielded significant improvements.
Application: DL06 helps clean and calibrate pH probe
Products used: DL06, EZ-Touch, F0-04AD-1
Description: A DL06 PLC is used to automatically clean and calibrate pH probes. The efficiency of pH probes and drift is measured with the PLC retracting the pH probe from process injecting known pH buffers and reading the 4-20mA inputs. The PLC is able to compensate for drift (bias/shift) and decreased efficiency (slope) over time to log and report an accurate pH measurement.
Application: Intelligent alarm unit sends alarm messages with help from DL05 PLC
Products used: DL05 PLC
Description: We use the DL05 as an intelligent alarm
unit that makes use of data modems to send alarm messages if alarm situations
occur. The DL05 is used for two solutions: one where alarms generated
are transmitted directly to a GSM mobile phone, and another where the
DL05 sends messages to a predefined number to a modem we have at our site.
From there we distribute the alarm as mail messages to different receivers.
We also keep a log of messages that can be viewed by the customer at a
web-address we provide. The solution is very simple to install, and the
customer knows that he's notified if something happens. (We even provide
battery backup for the solution in case of power break down.) Areas of
use for this application include: Water & wastewater, burglar alarms,
ventilation systems, fish farming, farmers, household, etc.
Application: DL05 replaces traditional thermostats to monitor and regulate facility temperature
Products used: DL05 PLC, F2-Unicon converter and EZTouch Panel
Description: We recently used DL05 PLCs to replace the conventional thermostats in our building, using a FO-04AD-1 analog input module to monitor the room temperature. The PLCs are linked to the EZTouch panel through F2-Unicon RS232/RS422 converters and a single, 2 twisted pair shielded wire. The EZ Touch panel is located in the maintenance department, so all temperatures can be monitored and adjusted as needed through the panel. This also allows alarm indicators for early warning of equipment failure.
With the use of AutomationDirect products, we have eliminated thermostat
tampering, and gained easy access to room temperatures control throughout
Application: DL06 and EZTouch panel help move cement at bulk handling facility
Products used: DL06 and EZTouch
Description: We recently installed a bulk cement handling
facility at our Joliet, IL location. The facility offloads cement from
river barges and pneumatically conveys the powder into a massive storage
dome, and truck loading facility. The concrete dome, which will hold 30
barge loads of cement powder, was erected using an inflatable air form
system. A MODBUS network of four DL06 PLCs, controlled by an EZ Touch
Operator Interface outloads the cement from the dome. A 4-20 ma PID loop
implemented by one of the DL06 processors is used to control the speed
of two hydraulically driven sweep augers. An analog radar sensor monitors
the cement level in the truck-loading silo. All three primary functions
are graphically animated and displayed on the EZ Touch panel. The “supervisory
master” DL06 controls the pneumatic conveying system and acts as
the communications hub for the slave processors. Each processor runs local
functions independent of the master. One feature that is particularly
useful is the Alarm History feature of the EZ Touch. Future planned expansions
of this facility will be simply and easily added to our system network.
Application: DL05, DL06 and EZTouch panel offer remote control for hydraulic unit that controls helicopter model at NASA Ames
Products used: DL05, DL06, EZTouch operator interface
Description: NASA Ames Wind Tunnel Division in Moffett
Field, CA has a new 3000 psi 200 GPM hydraulic unit to control the blade
angle of a helicopter model. But the new hydraulic unit was delivered
without remote control and facility controls system interlock. The DL06,
DL05, and EZTouch were chosen to implement remote control of the unit
and to interface with the wind tunnel facility control system. The DL06
with optional 2-channel analog input and 2-channel analog output card
was mounted inside the hydraulic unit main control cabinet. The DL06’s
built-in digital I/O is used for local start/stop, light indications and
interlocks of the hydraulic unit. The analog input of the option card
is used to check the temperature of the unit and the 0-10 VDC output is
wired to control the servo valve for flow and pressure adjustment. The
DL05, with optional 4-channel analog input is used as the remote master
PLC to talk to the DL06, which is about 500 feet away. The DL05 analog
input card is wired for temperature, pressure, and flow sensors at the
test section of the wind tunnel. The EZTouch is connected to Port 1 of
DL05 and is used as a control interface and parameter display inside the
control room of the wind tunnel.
Application: DL06 provides flexible control for positioning system
Products used: DL06 PLC
Description: I have implemented a full PLC to DC motor
communication protocol over the DL06 platform. The DL06 is manipulating
the DC motor using an RS422 communication interface, which enables the
end user to master a full scale positioning system comprised of multiple
motors over a network, while each is assigned a specific unit ID. One
system currently runs in a big plastic factory in Israel, controlling
multiple amounts of DC motors over a network. The communication protocol
is binary by nature, and thus cannot be implemented with PLCs that do
not having the PRINTV function. It also uses some very restrictive and
non-conventional error detection methods. The system implements a binary
communication protocol using the PRINTV and AIN of the DL06, which means
that basically any binary communication protocol can be implemented, and
not only simple ASCII exchange between PLC and other devices. The complexity
of the protocol was overcome using the flexible functions of the DL06
and the ability to output hexadecimal characters without the HEX to ASCII
conversion made necessary by the regular PRINT command.
Application: Injection molding machines get productivity boost from DL06 and EZTouch panel
Products used: DL06 PLC, F0-04AD-1 analog input module, 6” EZTouch operator interface
Description: We recently added ten injection-molding
machines to our plant. These are high-volume machines that require a material
feed and distribution system that will keep up with the demand for material
(virgin plastic pellets). I designed a control system using a DL06 PLC
interfaced with a 6” EZTouch color touch panel. This system controls
two vacuum pumps, six material lines, and 10 feed hoppers. The system
can be configured via the touch panel to run two types of material and
to control which press to deliver it to. We are also capable of controlling
the distribution of material based on frequency of demand. The most useful
feature of this system is self-diagnosis of problems and data acquisition.
Since vacuum leaks are detrimental and hard to locate on this type of
system, I also installed a vacuum transducer on each vacuum system that
compares vacuum as each hopper is loading. Any critical reading is written
to the touch screen’s database. The performance of the system is
displayed on the touch screen as a historical trend graph and holds two
hours of information. What used to take considerable time to troubleshoot
this system now only requires a glance at the touch screen.
Application: Thermolaminating press wraps furniture with the help of DL05 PLC
Products used: DL05 PLC and Optimate panel
Description: The DL05DR controls all functions in a
3D Thermolaminating Press. A quartz infrared heater on the machine carriage
heats up thermoplastic decorative film whose purpose is to wrap furniture
components like cabinet doors, headboards and tabletops. Once the film
reaches the programmed temperature, a solenoid valve opens so that a vacuum
tank communicates with the machine tray where the parts are laid. The
pre-applied glue on the parts is reactivated by the film temperature and
promotes the adhesion between film and substrate. The DL05DR controls
the machine carriage position, vacuum pump, pneumatic valves and vacuum
valves, and sends a remote setpoint to a PID temperature controller, which
sends an analog signal to a solid state power control. The DL05DR stores
the programmed cycle parameters, like film temperature, pressing time,
cooling time, etc. and stores the recipes for future uses.
Application: DL05 protects “sound” investment at summer theatre
Products used: DL05
Description: Timber Lake Playhouse, a non-profit summer theatre in northwestern Illinois, needed a foolproof way to power up and power down their sound system in the correct order. If the system was turned on or off incorrectly, speaker damage might result. A DL05 PLC was used to control five 20 A relays. Now, instead of having to flip switches on eight different racks of sound equipment in the proper order, the operator only has to momentarily push one master control button. Sound system operation is simplified, and the theatre's investment in speakers is protected.
Application: Museum gopher taunts visitors with help from DL05 PLC
Products used: DL05 PLC and photoelectric sensor
Description: I own a small controls integration company near St. Paul, MN. Some time ago I received a call from a customer who managed the Bell museum at the University of Minnesota. Part of the museum was a wildlife landscape exhibit. One of these landscapes was a scene of an eagle in its natural environment. Below the eagle was a gopher that was slightly popping out of his hole. The request was to make the gopher move when a person walked by. The gopher was to go to its fully extended position, then reverse and go back into its hole and wait for a period of time before assuming a half out position. One of the larger challenges was the budget. The customer had only $800 for this project. Since I am a small integrator, my costs are low, and I decided to do it. I stayed well within the budget.
I used an AutomationDirect DL05 PLC for the primary control and the stepper output function to drive a small step motor. Attached to the step motor was a simple plastic rack and pinion. The pinion was on the stepper and the end of the rack was attached to the base of the gopher. All the controls and mechanics were in one small enclosure (10 x12). I used a small step drive and motor from Superior Electric and an AutomationDirect photoelectric sensor to detect a person walking by the exhibit. The photoelectric sensor was inconspicuous as it was buried within the landscape. It was a hit! The animated gopher taunted the visitor, then ducked out of site. It added that extra spice to an exhibit that often can inspire a child or student to further explore the museum.
Application: DL05 micro PLC simplifies laboratory sterilization process
Products used: DL05 PLC with AC power supply, F0-04AD-1
analog input module, OP-1212 Optimate combo panel
Application: DC-powered DL05 helps extract resin from pine trees
Products used: DL05 with 12-volt power supply
Description: We needed to automate the control system for a hydraulic tree drilling and tapping system used to extract the resin from pine trees (a common practice in the southern US.)We mounted a control box on top of a John Deere tractor with a DC-powered DL05 controlling three drills and three chemical sprayers. Each drill has two limit switch inputs and a solenoid out and had to drill in a set sequence. Needless to say, the 05 was the only device compact and rugged enough to meet our needs.
Products Used: DL05
Description: We have developed a product named "SenseIT Firemaster",
a wireless system that takes care of fire and gas alarms for shipyards.
The application consists of several DL05 PLCs, each connected to a radio
modem. If an alarm occurs, the location of the alarm shows up on a PC,
and all the other DL05s are notified by the DL05 that received the alarm.
Special programming was necessary since all DL05s operate as Modbus masters
(in order to meet radio silence demands with a lot of nodes connected).
The system is easy to install and can be moved to different locations
Products Used: D0-05DD Micro-PLC, D0-01MC memory cartridge, 18MM Proximity switch
Description: D0-05DD Micro PLC controls plasma cutting head height over plate using proximity sensors and stepper motor drive in a closed loop stand-alone control. Used on CNC plasma cutting machines. Control accuracy is less than .021" resulting in consistent cuts and eliminating operator observation and intervention in cutting process. PLC also controls plasma start and stop commands and allows for fully automatic operation without a "babysitter". Inexpensive PLC was the key to bringing this product to market. This complete system is half the price of the competition.
Products Used: DL05, IEC limit switches
Description: An older hydraulic press was upgraded. In the past, the operator had to reach in behind the unit to switch the electric motor on, then position the stock in the press, and manually operate a lever to raise and lower the cutting deck. Once the cutting for the day was finished, the operator had to reach around and switch off the motor. Our preliminary evaluation of the system found that the motor was also underprotected as it lacked overload protection. Our new system, with a DL05, now does all of this. A simplified operator station at the front of the unit does everything via switches, pushbuttons and indicating lights. The DL05 intelligently controls the raising and lowering of the deck by operating an electric solenoid bank via isolation relays. It also turns the electric motor on and off as required, performs system diagnostics with digital inputs for deck position via the limit switches and digital inputs for the motor status, and will even reset the system properly if a fault should occur. The results were an increase in productivity, safer working environment (we eliminated the tennis elbow developed by the press operator), and reduced maintenance requirements. The reduced maintenance is a result of the intelligent fault handling of the DL05. We sub-divided the system into four distinct parts so that if a fault should occur, troubleshooting occurs quickly and easily and the right maintenance person is then called if follow-up maintenance is required. All of this is done with just one indicator light and one push button. We attribute the success of this project to the DL05 family because of its low cost, ease of interface, the ability to expand in the future by adding one communications cable to another PLC, and the ladder logic structure utilizing stage programming.
Products Used: DirectSOFT software, DL05 micro PLC, FA24PS power supply, AMI-AN-1A proximity sensor, 22mm selector switch
Description: Customer had a problem with a cotton coiler head not dispensing an even coil of cotton rope. This problem resulted in coils too large for the boxes in which they were packaged. Also, this dual coiler produced only one coil at a time because it required an operator to hand shake the canister. The solution was to design and build a positioning table which would automatically move in 3 preset continuous movement sequences. The DL05 Micro PLC was the low cost answer. It almost seemed that some of the instructions in the software were made for this application! The low cost and durability of the proximity sensors were ideal for homing movements. The end result was that a custom made piece of equipment was developed for under $3,500.00. Better yet, a very satisfied customer was able to double production on that coiler by running two cylinders instead of one. It also allowed the operator to run other equipment in the area rather than "babysit" this machine!
I have now standardized my PLC based applications on Automationdirect.com equipment due to the quality and cost. I have found few other PLC vendors whose cost would let me keep the competitive edge that is needed in today's market.
Products Used: DL-05 PLC, Optimate operator interface
Description: A marine vessel's main engine alarm system was defective, with a replacement alarm unit priced at well over $10,000. We were able to supply a DL05 PLC and operator interface for less than $2,500, including all parts and programming. This solution provided great savings for the marine vessel, and Versatile Electronics has developed a reconfigurable alarm system for almost any monitoring application.
This particular installation was fast, professional looking and functioned without a glitch. For the price and performance of these PLCs, we foresee the use of these in many applications that could be accomplished at a considerable cost savings without compromising performance.