Article
Seems like something right out of popular science fiction movies. But in
 reality, automation controls are starting to play more of an active 
role rather than being a silent partner.<br><br>We are quite familiar 
with automation controls that guide processes. More like a logic flow, 
when a product reached point B, it was time to start a new process that 
moved it to point C.

See, Think, and Do – Automation Controls

Steve Maurer, IME
Seems like something right out of popular science fiction movies. But in reality, automation controls are starting to play more of an active role rather than being a silent partner.

We are quite familiar with automation controls that guide processes. More like a logic flow, when a product reached point B, it was time to start a new process that moved it to point C.

Many of these machines or devices were self-contained. They operated in a vacuum, doing their own thing in their own time.

Or in some cases, the device needed input from a human to know the next steps. It would encounter a situation, then ask the operator, "Now what?"

That's changed, due in a large part from the invention and development of the Industrial Internet of Things, or IIoT.

And it's changed the way industries operate, from the hospital operating room, to wind-powered energy, to manufacturing.

Take the mighty wind turbine, for example. By using sensors for input and relaying that info to smart controllers, an optimal setting for the turbine propellers is achieved. Minute and instantaneous adjustments are made to account for wind speed, turbulence, wind direction and more.

The automation controls "sees" the current conditions, "thinks" about what setting would optimize efficiency, and "does" what's necessary to achieve it.

All without the need for human intervention.

Of course, humans are still needed to monitor activity and make some necessary decisions concerning the automated processes. However, unlike the old days, the operator no longer needs to be in the same room, or even the same building as the controlled equipment.

In fact, since the IIoT enabled automation control is on what is being called "the edge of the Internet," distance or proximity is no longer a factor in running and maintaining an efficient, smoothly running operation.

Now, we often think of the Internet as the wild west of digital technology. With black hat marauders lurking around every corner, we worry about our data streams being compromised.

However, many of the IIoT systems run on a private cloud, a subset of the Internet. Since they are separated, with closely guarded portals into the "mainstream" pathways, they can be secured more easily.

Automation control, coupled with intelligent optimizing capabilities, saves time and money, and can be one more step toward a more profitable, stable business model.
Alignment Markings Slug-Buster® and Standard Round Knockouts
advertisement
Mersen's Fused Coordination Panelboard
advertisement