Systems 22 Pty Ltd
Unit 1, 10-12 Montore Road
MINTO NSW 2566
PO Box 5991 MINTO NSW 2566
Ph +61 2 9603 4022
Fax +61 2 9603 7622
SNAP PAC Systems
Systems 22 was founded in March 1993 to promote Opto 22 automation products to the Australian market. For more than 30 years, Opto 22 has been developing quality hardware and software solutions for thousands of automation applications around the globe. Opto 22 was one of the first companies to recognize and implement solutions involving personal computers. Today Opto 22 is meeting complex industrial automation and information technology challenges by providing solutions for companies who use commercial computer technology. In Australia, Systems 22 has supplied Opto 22 for applications as diverse as I/O for the Sydney Harbour Tunnel and Solid State Relays in petrol pumps.
What is a PAC?
Programmable automation controllers—PACs. You've been hearing a lot about them lately. But what are they really, how do they differ
from the hardware you're using now, and why should you be interested?
Let's take that last question first: Why should you be interested
The answer lies in the demands of today's industrial applications, where interfacing with signals from sensors and actuators
is now just the starting point. Advanced control features, network connectivity, integration of remote and distributed subsystems,
device interoperability, and enterprise-wide data integration are all requirements you may be called upon to meet.
If there's a simpler
way to meet these requirements, you'd probably like to know about it. And today, PACs seem to be emerging as that simpler way.
How are PACs different?
PACs differ from the hardware you're probably using now in several ways. In effect, PACs expand the capabilities of hardware you're
using now by merging features of more traditional PLC , DCS (Distributed Control System) , and RTU systems, plus adding some capabilities
from personal computers (PC (personal computer)).
PLC. Traditional programmable logic controller (PLC (programmable logic controller)
) systems provided discrete-logic-based control of input/output (I/O) signals, using ladder logic programming.
DCS. Distributed control
system (DCS) technology traditionally provided process control—batch control where product variations are made according to recipes,
or continuous process control.
RTU. The traditional remote terminal unit (RTU—also called a remote telemetry unit) provided multiple
communication options for monitoring remote assets, such as radio towers or pipelines.
PC. PC-based control traditionally linked an
adapter card on a computer to I/O, with custom applications written for control and communication.
So, what is PAC?
It's generally agreed that industry analyst ARC Advisory Group originated the term PAC. ARC coined the term for two reasons: to help
automation hardware users better define their application needs, and to give automation hardware vendors a term to more clearly communicate
the capabilities of their products.
ARC defines a PAC as having the following characteristics:
Operate using a single platform in multiple
domains, including logic, motion, drives, and process control. Because a single PAC can do all types of control , monitoring, and
data acquisition, system expansion and change are simplified.
Employ a single development platform using common tagging and a single
database for development tasks across a range of disciplines. The same software is used for all development; this IDE (Integrated
development environment) reduces development time.
Tightly integrate controller hardware and software. When hardware and software are
designed together, systems are easier and faster to build. Some PAC manufacturers, such as Opto 22, include surprisingly capable software
with a PAC purchase.
Be programmable using software tools capable of designing control programs to support a process that "flows" across
several machines or units, integrating multiple domains into a single system.
Operate on open, modular architectures that mirror industry
applications, from machine layouts in factories to unit operation in process plants. Since each installation is different, the system
must be able to add or change modules easily.
Employ de-facto standards for network interfaces, languages, and protocols, allowing
data exchange as part of networked multi-vendor systems.
Provide efficient processing and I/O scanning. A PAC's first duties are efficient
monitoring, control, and data acquisition. Traditional continuous scanning, for example, is often less efficient than exception-based
scanning performed only when control logic dictates.
Proud Australian distributor of Opto 22 since 1993
Website by Systems 22