Control Engineering hot topics, March 2021

Hot topics in Control Engineering, for March 2021, included the top 5 VFD parameter changes explained, 2021 Engineers’ Choice Awards, the evolution of control systems with artificial intelligence, free PLC programming software for education, and more. Links to each article below.

1. Top 5 VFD parameter changes explained

Programming variable frequency drives (VFDs) to fit most industrial applications require only the most basic settings to operate the motor. Understand these 5 VFD parameter changes to optimize VFD programming to fit most motor-drive applications.

2. Spotlight on Innovation: 2021 Engineers’ Choice Awards

Control Engineering announces the best automation, control and instrumentation products in the 21 categories of the annual Engineers’ Choice Awards program.

3. Which IEC 61131-3 programming language is best? Part 1

With so many programmable logic controller (PLC) programming languages and standards from which to choose, what is the right choice for automation and controls applications? Part 1 provides an overview and focuses on Ladder Diagram (LD) and Sequential Function Chart (SFC).

4. Evolution of control systems with artificial intelligence

Cover Story: Can artificial intelligence (AI) prove to be the next evolution of control systems? See three AI controller characteristics and three applications.

5. Evolving control systems are key to improved performance

Flexible computing, contextual data and modular architectures will change the face of control systems and improve overall plant performance, helping to lower risk from retirements.

6. Free PLC programming software for education

Available programmable logic controller (PLC) software that is free for users is crucial for users and students who can’t currently access a lab. See table with a breakdown.

7. Which IEC 61131-3 Programming Language is best? Part 2

With many programmable logic controller (PLC) programming languages and standards from which to choose, select the best language for specific automation and controls applications. Part 2 focuses on function block diagram (FBD), continuous function chart (CFC) and structured text (ST).

8. Six steps for supporting an automation system

There’s nothing revolutionary in this six-step process; however, it is a workable model for helping to find, analyze and correct system issues.

9. Direct drive vs. geared rotary servomotor: A quantification of design advantage: Part 2

Testing a direct drive and geared rotary servomotor shows there are some significant differences between the two when actually put into practice.

10. Five digital transformation trends in manufacturing for 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has supercharged the demand for digital offerings and Industry 4.0 technology.

 

On Mondays, see the top 5 articles of the prior week.

Keagan Gay, digital media & production coordinator, CFE Media, kgay@cfemedia.com.

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