Joe E.

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About Joe E.

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  1. safety relays

    Brief summary... A manual reset requires operator action to restore operation, like pushing a "reset" pushbutton. An automatic reset will restore operation as soon as the safety channels and any feedback circuits are closed. "Monitored" means that the reset circuit (whether it includes a pushbutton or not) is wired through feedback contacts on the devices being controlled. This would typically be normally-closed auxiliary contacts on force-guided contactors. If a contactor sticks closed, the aux contacts remain open and the circuit will not reset. Multiple contactors controlled by the same safety circuit will have their aux contacts wired in series to make sure they all drop out. We have also used redundant pneumatic dump valves with feedback contacts.
  2. Allen Bradley/RS Linx

    If you're using a USB adapter (like the UIC), connect it to the VM, then open Device Manager inside the VM to determine the COM port. Then use that in RSLinx.  
  3. Panelview Plus 600 problem

    Contact the person who locked it with a password.
  4. Produced/Consumed Tag Communications Active

    You are on the right track. The Studio 5000 help file has a list of the status values. Before I investigated the GSV instruction, and when communicating between machines where produce/consume isn't possible, I use a heartbeat flasher. Have each machine blink a flag that the other has access to read. If it stays in one state too long, you have lost communications.
  5. Logix 500 math instruction with Decimal Point

    I couldn't get it to work dividing an integer by a literal decimal number and storing in a decimal. What does work is dividing an integer by a literal and storing it in a float register or dividing an integer register by a float register and storing the result in a decimal:  
  6. My background: My first job (almost 2 years) working with PLCs was as a multi-craft maintenance tech in an AB plant. I rarely used the PLCs for diagnostics. Most of the time when I did, it was a system with a Soft Logix controller running on a PC that was always online and which we could only look at, not change. About 70% of my time was fixing mechanical issues, 30% electrical issues (sensors, cables, damaged wiring, etc.). I probably used the PLC code to help with 5% of my repairs total. It was very very little. I never made any changes to PLCs or HMIs. My second relevant job (almost 4 years) was as an Automation Specialist in a plant that was mostly AB Logix 500 but was about 20% Siemens S7-300/400. The company sent me to the 1-week programming 1 classes for both the SLC500 and S7-300 within the first few months of my time there. I worked with both, probably a 70/30 AB/S7 split for time spent online. I did very little original programming in the S7s and what I tried was very difficult. To be fair, some of the difficulty was just the way the programmers went about things, doing the entire machine in STL instead of LAD. There were some other things they did that made it extremely difficult to track down problems that I can go into if you're interested. My third (and current) relevant job (8 years in November) is Electrical Engineer in a manufacturing facility that's about 60/40 AB/Siemens. The AB stuff includes PLC2, SLC150, MicroLogix, SLC5/xx, ControlLogix, and CompactLogix PLCs and Panelview Standard and PV+, PV+6, and PV+7 HMIs. The Siemens equipment is almost all S7-300 (with a few S7 Technology processors) in Simatic Manager with a few newer ones having S7-1500s in Portal. The HMIs are the obsolete MP series (in WinCC Flexible 2008) and some of the newer Comfort Panels (in Portal). For drives, we just replaced the last AB 1370 DC drives but still have a lot of 1336x drives left. We've mostly moved on to PowerFlex 700, 700s, 4, 525, 755, and DC. Siemens drives include MicroMaster 420/440 and the newer Sinamics S120/G120s.   All that follows is my opinion, based on my experience. I have not encountered anything that the Siemens systems do better or easier than AB with only one very limited exception: their HMIs can communicate with AB PLCs out of the box, while the AB HMIs can't talk to S7s without adding some licensed software and jumping through some hoops. Unfortunately, their HMIs are far less robust and sturdy than the PV+. Other than that, Siemens is more cumbersome and more difficult to train people to use reliably. There are a LOT more ways for an electrician to mess up and break things in Siemens than AB. Software versioning is an absolute nightmare, due in large part to the Technology processors. The S7-Technology software (necessary for the motion control they're doing) supersedes and replaces the drive Starter software and is NOT backwards compatible with older versions. IOW, if your S7-T software is newer than the project, you have to upgrade the project to open it and you then can't go online with the drives without downloading to them from the upgraded project. I'm maintaining 5 virtual machines on my laptop to handle all of the versions of S7-T. If someone accidentally opens a drive object and upgrades it, then saves the project after making PLC changes, there's no way to fix the archives. It's a mess that Siemens tech support gave up on fixing. I can provide more details of that process as well, if you're interested. Bottom line: I can get far better results far faster using AB hardware/software than I can with Siemens. Outside North America, AB's distributor network is lacking, in our experience, which gives Siemens an edge overseas, especially in Europe. That doesn't make their hardware/software any better, though.

    Sorry I couldn't help more. The only Kinetix I've worked with is a 6500 and it's controlled by a CompactLogix L33ERM. I've never used the MotionView software.

    One of the things that annoys me the most about AB is their paid support system. If you don't have a contract with them, I think your best next step is to go to your local distributor. They're supposed to have experts on staff to help with different products. Our distributor has been very helpful with issues we've had, in some cases better than AB.

    Your local AB distributor is probably the best bet if you want to talk to a live person. I just searched for MotionView on Google and found Rockwell TechNote 823180 (Access level: everyone) that referred to this manual: A quick glance through the manual shows some references to MotionView and how to use it, but I didn't examine it in detail.
  10. Message Read from GE RXi to 1756-L74 (v20)

    Look in the Red Lion manual for gateway blocks. That's what you would use to get information from one device to another.
  11. S7-1214C All LED Blinking

    You can use a program called Nmap to run a ping scan. It will take a while and it helps if you know the subnet. You can use a BOOTP type utility to see if it's sending DHCP requests to see if it's configured to get an IP address automatically. I've never used a 1200, but if the CPU has a DP port, you can connect via a PC Adapter and upload the station to the PG/PC.
  12. SLC 100

    We have about 8-10 of these things in service. If you have or can get a copy of SLC Logistics, it will run on an XP computer (or virtual machine) and this adapter will connect via USB: I think one of our electricians even got it to work using DOSBOX on a Win7 x64 machine, but that may have just been the PLC2 software.
  13. In these processors, some of the module configuration (especially analogs) is handled by writing values to the output image table. That's what the COP instruction is doing. It's writing to the module configuration registers on the PLC's first scan.
  14. Panel view plus

    On some PV+ HMIs, while it's booting up, there will be a small square lit up in one of the bottom corners of the screen while the rest is dark. Touch that, and it should get you to the configuration screen. If the folks who built the HMI for you didn't add a button in the project to shut down the runtime, the only other way I can think of is to create a new project with just the shutdown button on it and download that mer file to the HMI. The original mer file will still be there on the HMI, accessible and copy-able from the configuration screens. Once you have it, delete the empty shutdown mer and go to the startup menu inside the configuration screens to set it to run your original runtime on boot-up.
  15. ASCII Question

    Where does the data come from? Is there a reason to use a UDT instead of the predefined STRING data type?