A wider range of open control platforms now available
Ulm, Germany, September 21, 2005 Open, PC-based controls that adhere to the IEC 61131-3 standard are now available for more than just the ThinkIO top-hat rail PC: box PCs, panel PCs, 3U and 6U CompactPCI from Kontron are all now supported. Kontron Industrial Control has adapted the SoftPLC CoDeSys for these system families and provided it with open communications standards for the field level as well as for vertical integration. Any existing CoDeSys application can now run on these systems without the need for any additional development work. This allows for solutions to be customized to meet customers needs exactly. Kontron thus makes the majority of its wide range of industrial PCs available to users of controls found in machine and plant construction, and their suppliers, who prefer open control solutions.
Investment has also been made in field busses, so that the option of Profibus, CANopen, DeviceNet and Sercos, and industrial I/O support is available. The package is complemented by optional OPC functionality (also for CE) for open, flexible communication, and by visualization software. The latter can operate on the control system itself (target visualization), on remote computers (HMI), or as web visualization via intranet or Internet.
The adaptation of the SoftPLC for our industrial PCs has opened up a large potential market for us and offers real benefits to our customers: automation providers can now purchase SoftPLC bundled with our systems. They no longer need to modify the CoDeSys libraries themselves so save considerable cost and effort because, when new hardware requirements arise, they can run their applications immediately on our Application-Ready Platforms, says Heinz Egger, General Manager of Kontron Industrial Control with Kontron Applications in Ulm, explaining the primary benefit that this development offers to customers.
Kontron also offers its customers the certainty that appropriate hardware will always be available, because the choice of open IEC 61131-3 platforms is now very large: a total of 22 configurations with six different product families are currently possible and hardware development at Kontron is certain to continue in the future. The following products have now been adapted: the compact JRex-IBOX product family, which is approximately the size of a car radio; the panel series Microclient and V-Panel, which already have field buses on board; the 3U and 6U CompactPCI systems, which are particularly robust and can be flexibly equipped with front-side I/O assemblies; and the whisper-quiet high-performance KISS industrial server family. The ThinkIO top-hat rail PC for the Wago I/O System 750 rounds out the range of open, IEC1131-3-compliant control solutions from Kontron.