MrPLC Member
  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

2 Neutral

About CapinWinky

  • Rank
  • Birthday 09/17/83

Profile Information

  • Gender Male
  • Location Virginia
  • Country United States
  1. Ha, the solution is it doesn't work. Awesome.
  2. I was just about to search for B&R posts and offer any help I could and despite a very recent post containing 'B&R' in the title, no results were returned. B&R is the number 5 or 6 controls company by controls revenue and has been for almost a decade, so it's a bit weird they're in the 'Other' category anyway, but they're fairly small outside of Europe, so I get it. When it's impossible to search for their company name, that's a whole other level of exclusion. It's a high-tech platform and used for primarily complex and high-end machines, so people are going to need from the community.
  3. B&R SDM manuals

    Really, most things are covered in the help under Motion -> Reference Manuals -> ACP10SDC. A few details that you can easily miss are closing the loop on axes that usually don't have encoders (VFDs) and how to tune a stepper axis with an encoder so it doesn't just stall all the time. When you add an inverter, like a P74 as an SDC axis, it will make an entry in the axis parameter table for PCTRL_S_ACT_PARID (230) = PTCRL_S_SET, which makes it open loop. Just remove that line and setup the SDC encoder stuff and it will use the encoder position and close the loop. I do this with X67 encoder modules to better maintain set speed for intermittently loaded conveyors. For stepper tuning, you have to get into the axis tuning and set p_max to a real value that prevents stalling instead of 1e30 (no limit). With map axis control, p_max must be set from code after the map initialization until they fix the initialization step always writing down the default values for parameters not in the map config, which p_max isn't because you never use it unless you are doing a closed loop SDC stepper axis. You will also want to set t_predict/t_total to some multiple of your cycle time to give time for the encoder feedback to reach NC Manager. I usually use 8xEPL cycle and this is recommended in the help. Just try different values to find the one that minimizes lag error spikes up or down on a high accel move, which is the same tuning procedure as a servo (the difference being that the value you find for a servo will be 1x or 2xEPL_cycle, not 8x).
  4. B & R Acopos Drive 1090 Lag Error

    The torque loop doesn't need to be tuned, just the speed, position, and possibly feed forward if you are using it. If the motor isn't even trying to move, you may have an issue with a cable. You can check the cable by doing a phasing command.
  5. B&R C70 HMI

    There actually is a Mapp User function that will handle logging in, but in the past you had to write your own login code. Once you have a login level, you use the locking datapoint to lock or unlock page change buttons. You can also use the page change variable to programatically change to the secure section automatically when they login.
  6. Top Wildly Used PLC right now ?

    The top few are currently: Rockwell Siemens Mitsubishi Schneider-Electric B&R Omron Beckhoff Rockwell and Siemens are clearly the top two and account for 50% combined though who is bigger at any one point in time is up for debate and the numbers are fuzzy because they sometimes include crap that is outside of core PLC products, like buttons and terminal blocks. They mostly trade market share with each other since they are similar ideology. Mitsubishi used to have Asia wrapped up, but is in rapid decline as Asia branches out to foreign platforms and Mitsubishi fails to penetrate other markets. They are also the more traditional paradigm, like Rockwell/Siemens. Schneider-Electric keeps buying other brands and then running them into the ground, so they're constantly losing market share only to buy more of it. The core of that problem is that they carry wildly different PLC lines but upper management doesn't seem to realize that lines like Modicon and ELAU (now PacDrive) are completely different paradigms. You can't sell these two completely different controls to the same customer and set them up with the expectation that they are in any way similar or you will end up with a frustrated customer looking for a new platform. B&R, Omron and Beckhoff are all scrapping it out for 5th place with similar numbers. B&R and Beckhoff are eternal rivals with very similar offerings; both growing rapidly as they win over customers looking for a more advanced platform. B&R was clearly winning this fight until Beckhoff managed to win over a lot more 3rd party support for their EtherCAT fieldbus than B&R has secured for their Ethernet Powerlink fieldbus. However, a chip from TI that supports both of these and more and is priced to corner the component market will likely mean 3rd party support for both fieldbuses and nudge B&R ahead again. Omron is the most interesting case. It seems like they are trying to transition from a Rockwell-like platform to a B&R-like platform, but are doing it in a much smarter way than Schneider-Electric; they seem to fully realize the magnitude of the change they are making and doing damage control with existing customers, managing expectations of new customers, and training their existing sales force. I'm not sure if their middle ground tech offering is going to cut it though; engineers comfortable enough to go that far would be comfortable enough to go the whole 9 yards to a B&R or Beckhoff. I have no idea if they are growing, but I know they aren't growing as fast as B&R and Beckhoff both have long since passed the 2006 Omron numbers (the last publicly available numbers on global market share).   There are tons of other platforms of almost the same size as B&R/Omron/Beckhoff, many with larger total company sales, but smaller PLC sales. Here is a full list of anyone with noticeable market share: ABB, Altus, B&R Industrial Automation, Beckhoff, Bosch Rexroth, Delta Electronics, Eaton, Festo, Fuji Electric, GE Intelligent Platforms, Hitachi, HollySys, IDEC, Koyo Electronics Industries, Lenze, LS Industrial Systems, Mitsubishi Electric, OMRON, Panasonic, Phoenix Contact, Rockwell Automation, Saia-Burgess Controls/Honeywell, Schneider Electric, Sharp, Siemens, Sigmatek, Toshiba, VIPA/Yaskawa, Yokogawa I know of a few that don't make that list because their current market share is tiny, but are worth noting anyway, but right now, only Keba comes to mind. They tightly combine PLC and Robotics through traditional robot controller commands rather than CNC style commands (like B&R) or function blocks (like Elau/PacDrive/Schneider-Electric).
  7. B&R cp 474

    That's a fairly old processor (the System 2003 line came out in the mid 90's, despite the name implying it came out in 2003), but it might support OPC, which would work with basically any HMI. If it doesn't support OPC, you could do a .NET HMI and use B&R's free API to talk to it.  I assume you have the original PLC program (B&R HMI program is part of the PLC program) and a copy of Automation Studio so you know what all the variable names are and whatnot. I'm curious why you would go through the time and expense to replace the B&R HMI on such an old PLC line. If the HMI broke, you can just slap on a new one and it will upload the HMI from the PLC.
  8. I don't think there are any IP67 machine mount blocks with relay outputs. Those IO blocks are usually completely filled with epoxy and solid state relays that could do the job are a bit big to fit into that form factor. You're better off putting the relays with the lights and supplying normal IP67 outputs to them (unless you're telling me you have IP67 lighting). EDIT: B&R has an IP67 Modbus bus controller that acts as a ModbusTCP server (slave) to control any of their IO. It should work with any Modbus TCP master; the only annoying thing is you can't control which registers it uses, those are automatically generated based on how you connect up the IO hardware.
  9. Thanks a lot for that Sparky, it was super useful. I did notice it was missing the MPC parameter to select if you are using Cos Phi or Rated Power (the embedded webpage is also missing it). I'm guessing is 16#91/16#01/16#0F or similar and may do some experimenting to find out, but for now I'm just hoping I don't need to use it.
  10. Schneider doesn't have the Sercos 3 interface out for the Altivar 32, and I'm going to use the Ethernet/IP interface until they do (not my choice). I found documentation on the CIP basic and CIP advanced control, and honestly, I will probably use one of those two, but I'm curious about the "Native" control, which seems sparsely documented. SoMachine Motion doesn't label any of the input/output words and it looks like you're supposed to custom select parameters that will be read/written using the drive's web server. Just wondering if anyone has an app note, bonus if it's explicitly for PacDrive3. Related, I'm a little fuzzy on explicit messaging with Ethernet/IP, but it seems that's what I'll need to do to setup the motor parameters and possibly to configure the "Native" control words. Any examples of that on PacDrive3 would be nice. I have a manual with the file name: ATV32_Modbus_TCP_EtherNet_IP_Manual_S1A28701_02.pdf that has been really helpful and may even answer all my questions, but it looses me in a few spots, such as how a parameter is addressed with explicit messaging.
  11. Just the other day I was saying I didn't know why anyone would by a B&R PLC from Schneider instead of B&R. How did you end up with an M258?
  12. Ethercat

    EtherCat, ProfiNet, and Powerlink (and to a lesser extent Sercos III) are real-time, deterministic, ethernet protocols. They all have a cycle time and they refresh at that cycle time, every time, or they shut down with a major fault. Just because your PLC program isn't running as fast as them, doesn't mean that the EtherCat interface in the PLC isn't or that the drives you're connected to don't need to share position data faster than the PLC. I come from the B&R world where the drives do their own set point generation and function largely without interference from the PLC. It is very common to run electronic camming on Powerlink at 400microsecond cycle times so the master can send the slave it's position with a high resolution and fastest task on the PLC to be much slower at a few milliseconds cycle time.
  13. PLC Programming with C++ or C#

    There are a few higher tech PLCs like B&R and Beckhoff that offer ANSI C programming standard. I know B&R also offers C++, but that is an add-on more geared for automatically generating code from MatLab/Simulink. ANSI C actually lends itself very well to PLC work, but C++ and C# start getting very object oriented which starts to veer away from the point of hard real time processing that PLCs normally do. That's why you don't typically see newer, high level, PC languages in industrial automation, they are geared around PC type operation with interrupts and events. PLC programs run all the way through, over and over, a completely different type of programming.
  14. When talking about the IO cards, sourcing means they send out 24V and sinking means they are expecting 24V in. Sensors are generally not referred to as sinking or sourcing and instead referred to as PNP or NPN. PNP = Sinking inputs (you put in 24V to turn an input on) and Sourcing outputs (24V comes out of them when you turn them on).NPN = Sourcing inputs (24V comes out of the input and connecting that 24V to common turns the input on) and Sinking outputs (when turned on, the output connects to common).Generally, you always use PNP, Sinking inputs, sourcing outputs. The reason NPN stuff exists is because low powered microchips with inputs and outputs built right in can't provide any power themselves, so they are always sinking no matter if they are outputs or inputs. That explains sinking outputs, I forget the very legitimate reason sourcing inputs exist, but there is one. I am of the opinion that if you are not in the very rare case of actually needing NPN for a legitimate electrical reason, you should always use PNP. It makes a lot more intuitive sense (put voltage into inputs take voltage out of outputs) and there is a much wider selection of sensors available. The next thing to think of is Normally Open or Normally Closed (NO or NC). NC sensors always give you 24V until they see the thing they are supposed to sense. That way, if the sensor is broken or the wire is cut, it will behave as if it is sensing the thing (in your case, everything will be an over height truck, which is better than missing an over height truck). NO are the opposite, only giving 24V when sensing the thing/event. These are better for when a you are waiting for a thing to happen rather than making sure a thing isn't happening. For example, you're looking for a cylinder to extend would use NO, but making sure a cylinder is not extended would use NC.
  15. B&R Automation Opinions Needed

    I've been working with B&R for several years and have nothing but good things to say about them. I recently changed jobs and now work mostly with Rockwell and Elau/Schneider PacDrive3 and frankly, I miss B&R because their platform is so much more capable than Rockwell and has a better programming environment than Schneider. Automation Studio (I'll shorten to AS) 3.X is a HUGE step up from AS2.X and AS 4.0 has introduced more improvements. I actually copy and past ST code from RSLogix/Studio 5000 and EPAS/SoMotion into an evaluation copy of AS to work on them and then past them back into where I need it because the AS editors are so much better. If you worked with B&R before 2008, you should check them out again.AS covers programming everything, no need for separate HMI, drive, commissioning, or simulation software and the AS does the entire product line, (so much better than Rockwell's dozens of separate programs/license). Programming the SafePLC does use a 3rd party editor (I'm sure for liability reasons), but it is integrated into AS. Unlike most, AS works easily with standard version control (Subversion, Git, etc) and allows multiple people to download different parts of a project to the same PLC. It really is the best) IDE of any PLC platform by a very wide margin.They are #4 or #5 world wide for PLC sales (behind Rockwell, Siemens, and Mitsubishi) and most likely past Mitsubishi for servo control sales, maybe even past Siemens. World wide, they passed Omron in total sales a few years back. You don't see the B&R name on a lot of equipment because they make it very easy to re-brand to the OEM's company name. In the US market, they frequently end up on systems with a do-nothing MicroLogix thrown in to make end users feel better since so many places spec AB because AB programmers are a dime a dozen in the US.They're an advanced platform; that makes the learning curve steeper, but there is nothing they can't do. You don't tend to see B&R on really simple machines, even though they can be cost competitive at the low end; I think the reason is OEMs making simple machines don't want to spend money on training and Automation Direct or ProFace is more geared toward the low end, no-training-needed market.Their advanced camming and servo control in general is just flat out amazing. Their only weakness has been robot control, though they've been able to do it for many years, they kept it all pretty much in house. Now they are starting to make standard robot geometries available (a lot like Elau) for easier, wide spread use (probably because they snagged so many Elau guys when Schneider bought them).I haven't done anything with their CNC capabilities, but I hear they just overhauled that and it is very capable.Their Visual Component HMI editor (built into AS) is really good in some respects, but bad in others. They had plans to move to web based HMI, which would be a huge step up and a big advantage over the competition. However, I fear that will make their learning curve even steeper.Honestly, I no longer have any connection to B&R and don't even use their products anymore, but I want them to succeed because they are, hands down, the best product on the market at a really great price point and a good company filled with good people The better they do, the more likely I am to get to work with them in the future. What's extra frustrating is I'm using the PacDrive3 platform because my company is locked in with Schneider, and all the IO is made by B&R but programmed in Schneider's inferior software package! There are already comments about ladder; I think B&R's early mindset was that ladder was dying out as new engineers (already familiar with text based programming) entered the workforce and machines got complicated enough that you didn't want just anyone poking around in the code. This has been largely true at advanced OEMs, but B&R quickly realized that the US automation industry is slow to change and low-end OEMs buy a lot of PLCs. B&R's first cracks at a ladder editor were barely usable because they just didn't expect people to really use them that much. Now, their ladder editor is very good, comparable with other big brands, but their ST editor is world class and should be the model that all other brands steal from. I could talk all day about how bad ladder is for the industry and the terrible ST implementation of Rockwell is the biggest blockage the death of ladder, but I'll save that for another post.