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Where PLC Programmers Go to Grow

Stay up to date with our most recent informative videos and blogs on PLC programming and automation

 

How to Program a Basic PID Loop in ControlLogix

In automation programming, we are often required to program a control loop for a given process to control temperature, pressure, flow rate, etc. This requires a target set-point with a controlled feedback process variable.1. Introduction to PID Control LoopA PID...

What is OSI Model?

OSI stands for Open Systems Interconnection and is a conceptual framework for how applications communicate over a network. There are seven layers within the model and the layers depiction is used to help users identify what is happening within a networking...

What is ControlNet?

Need a solution to talk on your industrial network? Let’s look at ControlNet. ControlNet is an open industrial network protocol and is managed by “Open DeviceNet Vendors Association” or ODVA. ControlNet is based on a "token-passing" bus control network and we will...

What is Sensor Calibration and Why is it Important?

When engineers design modern process plants, they specify sensors to measure important process variables, such as flow, level, pressure, and temperature. These measurements are used to help the process control system adjust the valves, pumps and other actuators in the...

What is Ethernet?

Have you heard of IEEE 802.3? It has a long history and has to do with our topic today, Ethernet. 1. Introduction to Ethernet Ethernet is a communication standard that was developed in the early ’80s to network computers and other devices in a local environment such...

What is Fieldbus?

Fieldbus isn’t really one thing but more of a collection of things. Fieldbus is a group of protocols that are used in the industrial arena. The Fieldbus protocols have been standardized as IEC61158.Basically, Fieldbus works on a network that permits various topologies...

What is a Control or Function Block?

Have you ever heard of a control block? How about a function block? Different programmers call them by different names, and that can be confusing, but I hope to clear things up for you in this article. So, what exactly is a control or function block? They give us...

What is DeviceNet?

DeviceNet is an application-level protocol used in the automation environment. It is a communication tool that allows you to logically talk between a PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) and many control devices, such as motors, conveyors, flowmeters, level sensors,...

How does Modbus Communication Protocol Work?

In the previous video, you learned about what Modbus communication protocol is and the types of Modbus communication used in the industry. Now, as promised, in this video you are going to learn about How Modbus communication protocol works between devices. 1. Modbus...

What is a PID Controller?

Today you will learn about PIDs. Specifically, what they are and when do we use them with automation and PLCs. So what is a PID controller? PID is an acronym that stands for Proportional, Integral, Derivative. If you need to keep something constant, like a temperature...

What is Modbus?

In the real world of the device to device process automation communication, a dialogue or conversation between devices occurs systematically, in many cases, over different types of communication networks and in different languages. Modbus as an "Open Protocol"...

What are the Most Popular PLC Programming Languages?

There are 5 languages that are all a part of the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) Section 61131-3 Standard. This IEC Standard allows some ground rules that standardize PLC’s and their languages. Let’s take a deeper look into all these PLC Programming...

What is the Difference between Profibus and Profinet?

Profibus and Profinet are industrial communications protocols used extensively by Siemens control systems. While they may sound similar, don't let the names fool you! Profibus and Profinet are very different protocols that use different cables and connectors. Let's...

How to Determine the Motor Size for Your Project?

In this lesson, we will continue the discussion on the topic of motion control. All of us at RealPars, hope you have been following our previous lessons on motion control and have begun to benefit from these lessons. Now you will apply your base knowledge of Servo and...

What is a VFD?

Today you will learn about VFD.  Specifically, what it is and when do we use it with automation and PLCs. So what exactly is a VFD? Well, it stands for Variable Frequency Drive. They are used for running an AC motor at variable speeds or let them ramp up their speed...

What are the Major PLC Manufacturers?

Today we will discuss several of the top PLC manufacturers from around the world. There are quite a few, and hopefully this video will clear up some of the differences of the major brands. As technicians, engineers, and programmers, we have several choices when it...

PLC Analog Inputs and Signals

      Welcome to another to another blog post on industrial automation and PLCs. In this lesson, we are going to be talking about PLC Analog Inputs.   What do we mean by PLC analog inputs? Analog values are continuous values, such as temperatures and pressures....

What is a Linear Motion Control?

I hope you have been following our lessons on Motion Control related topics. Recently RealPars have published blog post lessons on what are Servo and Stepper Motors and how they work. I hope you have a had an opportunity to read. Now that we have learned about Motion...

What is RS232 and What is it Used for?

Today you will learn about RS232. It is a phrase you may hear fairly regularly in industry, especially by the older guys. Hopefully this video will clear some things up for you.   What exactly is RS232? First and foremost, it is a form of serial data...

Stepper Motors Advantages and Disadvantages

This lesson is a continuation of a series of lessons involved with learning about Stepper Motors and Servo Motors. If you haven’t already, please review our previously released lesson on, what is a Stepper Motor and How it works? In this lesson, we will discuss the...

What is RTU?

RTU stands for Remote Terminal Unit, sometimes also called Remote Telemetry Unit or Remote Telecontrol Unit. A RTU is a microprocessor based device that monitors and controls field devices, that then connects to plant control or SCADA (supervisory control and data...

What is a Servo Motor and How it Works?

Have you ever thought about how a robotic vehicle commonly used in military application with bomb detention is controlled or how metal cutting and forming machines provide precise motion for milling, lathes and bending for metal fabrication or how an antenna...

What is Ladder Logic?

If you are involved in any way with industrial machinery, you almost have to have heard of ladder logic. Since there are almost never ladders involved, it probably doesn’t make a lot of sense that we call it that, but the reasons for the name are buried in the history...

What Is a Safety Instrumented System?

      In this video and blog post, you will learn what a Safety Instrumented System is, how it is constructed, and how it plays an important role in keeping our chemical, refining, and other manufacturing plants running safely and as productive community partners and...

PLC Basics | Programmable Logic Controller

      Today we are going to talk about PLC basics. The programmable logic controller, or PLC, is a special purpose computer. It has no display, no keyboard, no printer, no hard drive, and hides in the control panel out on the factory floor, but it is still a computer....

What is the difference between SCADA and HMI?

Today, you will learn the difference between SCADA and HMI. We will talk about the differences as well as the similarities, and also when each is used. There is usually some confusion because of the similarities. So let’s dive in to SCADA for now. SCADA stands for...

What is the Difference Between PLC and DCS?

In a nutshell, a PLC or programmable logic controller is a ruggedized computer used for automating processes. A DCS or distributed control system is similar to a PLC in that it has rugged computer controllers however the DCS contains multiple autonomous controllers...

What Are the Advantages PLCs Have over Relay Systems

There are many advantages that a PLC system holds over a relay system. Today, we will dive into some of those advantages. One of the first and simplest advantages is reliability.   1. Reliability The internal relay systems of a PLC are solid state. This means...

What is a Stepper Motor and How it Works?

In this lesson we will discuss what a stepper motor is and how it works, so let’s first determine what a stepper motor is and examine some unique features of a stepper motor. Have you ever thought about how a robotic arm moves with precision or how graphic printers...

Types of Sensors

In this article, we are going to familiarize you with the types of sensors that we frequently use in industrial equipment. We intend this to be an introductory video for a new engineer just getting started, or for anyone looking for a general understanding of some...

What is HART Protocol?

In this article, you will learn what a HART protocol is, how HART is used with analog sensors, how a HART analog sensor works, and what advantages a HART analog sensor can give your operation. Current-loop technology has been used for analog sensors for the past 4...

How to Wire Discrete DC Sensors to PLC – Part 2

In this blog post, you will learn how to wire a 3-wire DC sensor, like an inductive proximity sensor, to a PLC input card. You will also learn what a 3-Wire Discrete sensor is and recognize some of the common types of 3-Wire Discrete sensors. DC sensors can be used to...

What is the Automation Pyramid

Today, I will try to teach you about the Automation Pyramid. More specifically, the devices used to make up the automation pyramid. So what exactly is the automation pyramid? It is a pictorial example of the different levels of automation in a factory or industry. It...

How to Wire Discrete DC Sensors to PLC- Part 1

How to Wire Discrete DC Sensors to PLC- Part1  Learn about 2-wire discrete DC sensors and how to connect them to a PLC input card In this blog post and video, you will learn how to wire a 2-wire DC sensor, like a switch or a contact, to a PLC input card.  You will...

PLC Programmer Salary

As I’m sure you may know, PLC programmer salary will be based on several factors including years of experience, proficiency in the specific platform such as Siemens, Allen Bradley, or Modicon, and so on. Other factors may include your ability to draft/design...

What is Process Automation?

What is Process Automation? Today we will dive into Process Automation, so you can learn all about it for yourself.  We hear about new things and processes becoming automated almost every day. But what does that actually mean? Today, we will dive into Process...

What is a Relay System?

What is a relay system? Learn all about relay systems, such as what they are, and when we use them.  Today, you are going to learn all about relay systems, such as what they are, and when we use them. Hopefully by the end you will have a pretty good understanding of...

How a Flow Meter Works | RealPars (Video Animation)

How a Flow meter Works Get some basic idea of how a flow meter works. In this article, you will get some basic idea of how a flow meter works. There are many types of flow meters available for use in industrial automation. Depending on the product to be measured,...

What is Analog Automation?

What is analog automation? In this blog post and video, we describe, in depth, what analog automation is and some of the industries it’s used in.   In this blog post, I want to talk about Analog Automation and things that may be processed with this method of...

How to Setup an Endress+Hauser Picomag Flow Meter

How to Setup an Endress+Hauser Picomag Flow Meter? Setting up Endress+Hauser Picomag flow meter using the SmartBlue app In today’s fast paced environment, it’s always appreciated when you have awesome tools at your fingertips when integrating your control system....

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