Does any of this sound familiar? It’s the middle of the night, and your machine that tightens caps on bottles has gone down for no apparent reason. The machine operator recognizes that the machine has stopped and goes over to investigate. After searching through all the HMI screens, there is no indicated reason for the machine stopping. With no other options available, the operator is forced to call you to help diagnose the problem. After a few hours of sorting though PLC code that the OEM developed, you discover that the cause of the fault was that a fluid level sensor was not reading the amount of juice in the bottle because the sensor is dirty. It seems that the programmer had forgotten to program a diagnostic message for this particular fault. After locating the sensor, and wiping it clean, the machine was up and running.
Maybe this situation is familiar, too: Let’s say a slitter re-winder goes down, and the operator who normally tends that machine is on break. The operator for the web press goes over to the slitter re-winder to try to diagnose the problem. However, the HMI screens for the slitter re-winder have a completely different look and feel than the ones he is familiar with for the web press. That’s because a different OEM programmed the slitter re-winder. These dissimilar HMI screens can cause a good deal of confusion and downtime.
Both of these situations are not a problem when you use the SIMATIC S7-PDIAG. The S7-PDIAG is an add-on software tool for the STEP 7 engineering environment that makes adding diagnostics messages to an automation program as easy as a couple of mouse clicks. To add process diagnostics to an already completed automation program, you simply complete a monitoring configuration window for the points in your program that need diagnostics, and PDIAG does the rest automatically. Clear, concise messages are automatically transferred to the HMI, along with a ladder logic representation of the controller code of the fault location. No need to plug in a programmer!
Not only is configuring the diagnostics easy, you’ll see consistency of messages and graphics on the HMI. This means that no matter what language the machine is programmed, or who programmed it, or even how the program is organized; the diagnostics will always work the same and the HMI diagnostics screens will also all look the same. That’s because S7-PDIAG generates the screens automatically. Now machine operators can quickly recognize why a machine is not running, how to locate the problem and what to do to get the machine up and running again….fast!
You’ll be able to quickly diagnose and fix line problems. Your line will run more smoothly and you will experience better throughput. Only through Siemens Total Integrated Automation is a product like S7-PDIAG possible. That’s because of the common TIA core intelligence integrated in all of our automation products, and the common database built into all of our engineering products. These all make unheard of concepts like automatically generating machine diagnostics simple and easy.
Here’s your chance to be the Doctor of Diagnostics without going to medical school! Find out more about how PDIAG can make your process diagnostics run error-free all while dramatically reducing machine coding. Click here for more information on PDIAG.
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Filed Under: Factory automation, HMIs • operator interfaces • monitors, Motion control • motor controls, Software, Test + measurement • test equipment