Machines and assembly lines are used within different areas of industry, that assure modern systems of control. Due to their work, it is possible to gather information about the particular stage of production process as well as make the production process better. PLC or DCS – which will be better for your company?
What is PLC?
PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) is one of the devices that have microprocessors, which enable controlling the work of the machine. Within the construction of PLC drivers, we can differentiate elements such as user program, interface memory, as well as entry boards and exit boards. The functioning of the system guarantees proper preparation of the instruction of the program (consistent with the specification of the controlled object), stored in the memory of the processor. PLC driver handles subsequent tasks, including reading the information about entries and exits, saves all the data in order to verify the occurring changes of the algorithm. As opposed to other computer drivers, it has a cyclic information circulation.
The characteristic of DSC
In automatics industry, DCS (Distributed Control System) is used more and more often. Its functioning is based on sending information from the main of the system to the particular operating stations and then to diverse processing systems. The processing system includes a lot of devices, e.g. PLC driver or regulators of the machines, that directly cooperate with its main server. Besides, an engineer station is responsible for the configuration of the whole system, which also takes care of gathering current documentation. However, the configuration of DCS requires the operator to have solid knowledge about the specification of the given process.
PLC or DSC – which one to choose?
Choosing the effective system of control of the certain industrial machine, should be dependent on a characterisation of the product as well as on its organisation. Moreover, the crucial issues are the value of the manufactured product, assumptions concerning the efficiency of the system and the range of services, including the ones performed by engineering service. Dispersed systems are relatively hard to modify, albeit they work very well for pharmaceutical companies, chemical companies, food and drink companies as well as energetical companies, as DSC allows to avoid unprofitable idle time or a waste of resources. On the other hand, cheaper PLC systems are suitable for those fields of industry that require high level of product support in the longer period of time. The software and the development of drivers may be indeed fully-controllable, whereas the installation of new programs and the diagnostic are easy to perform.
Modern systems that enable control and exchange of data are a base of functioning of complex industrial processes. Presently, specialist are able to choose the most comfortable type of control of the machines in a way that enables them to minimise the input of work. Depending on the specification of the company, it is worth choosing the complex DCS or simpler and well-tried over the years – PLC.