PLC is an abbreviation for programmable logic controller. In recent decades, PLC systems have become more and more standard in industry. Newly developed industrial plants practically always use PLC elements in one form or another to enable automation or to create interfaces for connecting production plants to IT. Compared to classic connection-programmed controls, PLC systems are much easier to maintain and expand.
Since the vast majority of the actual wiring can be reconfigured digitally, it is often no longer even necessary to open the control cabinets. Both bus and network solutions such as Profinet are used to communicate individual PLC components with each other. At Heicktech, we take care of the PLC programming and configuration for you. No matter whether you want to have an Omron PLC programmed or a programmable logic controller from Siemens (S5/S7) in use: We are at your side with professional competence. We are also happy to take on other systems on request.
A PLC has advantages, that is undisputed. But how can you use the technology for yourself? Typical PLC application examples make it a little clearer. For example, the synchronisation of conveyor belts can be improved via the input interfaces of PLC-capable devices. If, for example, a photoelectric sensor detects when a component is ready on a conveyor belt, another belt can be informed that it should now move on. This simplifies the control of the different sections of a production hall enormously. Manual correction is only necessary in exceptional cases.
Compared to link-programmed production systems, the planning of the production and the hall layout is also considerably simplified. PLC components are more space-saving than other control components. PLC application examples from practice show that machines can communicate with each other more easily using the technology and that explicit wiring between two devices is no longer necessary. The spatial proximity of certain machines to each other can thus be broken up. This also makes it possible to reschedule production steps at short notice. For example, when a product is changed or replaced by a successor.
One of the most important PLC advantages is, of course, more efficient machine control. In particular, the use of industrial Ethernet systems such as Profinet has the advantage of significantly simplified wiring and cabling of the different machines. Instead of planning each cabling precisely for its intended purpose, as is usual with connection-programmed controls, with the PLC setup it is sufficient to connect the devices digitally to the network. Signals can then be exchanged with any other machines, control devices or IT systems via the input and output interfaces. Communication with IoT devices is also possible in this way. You can even retrofit obsolete systems with PLC components and make them fit for the future.
The programmable logic controller also allows the control technology to be connected to the IT. Via the input interfaces, for example, requirements of your ERP system (such as SAP) can be transferred directly to the process engineering systems. Conversely, data collected by the PLC control system can be passed directly to the responsible departments for analysis purposes. Any delays can also be communicated more quickly to the office staff and from there to your customers. Unnecessary friction losses in internal communication can thus be reduced to a minimum.
At Heicktech we specialise in programming Omron PLCs and configuring Siemens programmable logic controllers. Accordingly, we are particularly pleased about orders in this area. Of course, we are also familiar with other common standards. We support you in the planning and programming of your programmable logic controllers and, if required, we also familiarise ourselves with the products of other manufacturers. The PLC construction or the extension of systems with components from different manufacturers is also possible, but sometimes requires additional effort. For example, Omron and Siemens components are addressed with different addressing methods, which makes it necessary to translate the signals. This can also play a role in retrofitting, when older machines already have simple PLC components that are now to work with a more modern frame system.
We develop customised programmable logic controllers for you. Depending on your needs, we either take care of the PLC programming of your existing systems or implement the complete PLC structure. In the latter case, we decide together with you how the PLC control system should be set up and which components make sense for you and your system. Within the scope of retrofitting measures, we are also happy to take over the subsequent modernisation of old production systems for you and expand them with PLC components in a targeted manner. The modernisation of bus-based PLC controls is also possible. Using special interfaces, the bus components can usually be integrated into a network-based PLC system with little effort.
Do you have further questions about our PLC programming services or are you interested in using them in conjunction with one of our other services? We will be happy to answer your questions by phone, e-mail or via our contact form. On request, we can also prepare an individual offer for you, with which we offer services such as PLC programming, retrofitting of older manufacturing systems or the construction of control cabinets as a bundled service package tailored to your needs.