Today, engineering and deploying industrial control panels is more complicated than ever. As the level of automation and digitalization of systems rises, so does the need of machine manufacturers and operators for smart electrification solutions. Add to that the requirement to meet specific standards for the various markets as well as rising cost and competitive pressure. With Control Panel Design from Siemens, a new feature in the TIA Selection Tool, electrical engineering is fully digital for the first time, and thus considerably more efficient.
Today, engineering, design, and documentation account for nearly half of the costs in control panel construction. While the mechanical design and automation of machines are largely software-driven, many electrical engineering tasks, however, are still performed manually, like selecting components and calculating cable cross-sections and short-circuit currents. These tasks are time-consuming and frequently lead to errors. As a result, the potential for optimization is very high.
With the new Control Panel Design software from Siemens, electrical engineering is entirely digital for the first time. This innovative feature was integrated into the TIA Selection Tool configuration and ordering software, allowing engineers to select and dimension all the components for an industrial control panel. In addition to the mechanics and automation technology, they can also design the electrical components using one platform and one set of data.
Intuitive and standards-compliant electrical engineering with Control Panel Design
Electrical engineers are often faced not only with selecting the right components for a motor starting application but all the parameters for the motor feeder as well, including appropriate cabling and short-circuit and overload calculations. Cable design is particularly difficult. It must consider all the relevant regulations and standards for the IEC and the UL market.
The Control Panel Design Assistant in the TIA now makes it possible to design and dimension the main electronics of a machine with software support. All the required standards are already stored in the tool. Electrical engineers only need to specify the motor data and the desired cable parameters, such as type of routing, grouping or ambient temperatures. Protection and switching components suitable for the motor, including accessories, cable cross-sections and short-circuit values for motor feeders, are automatically displayed at the click of a button. Whether fuseless or fused IEC feeders up to 250 kW or fuseless UL feeders up to 500 hp, Control Panel Design is perfect for projects for the IEC market as well as systems destined for the North American market where the UL 508A, NFPA79 and NEC standards apply. Tool-based engineering is extremely quick and easy and allows virtual testing to determine the effect of different parameters, such as control panel air conditioning on the required cable cross-sections.
The Control Panel Design Assistant displays not only standards-compliant calculation results and the appropriate switching devices, but also conveniently assembles an order list in a subsequent step. Even the main current can be designed visually. In addition, the complete system is represented in a detailed single-line diagram.
Once the design is complete, all the technical data and calculation results needed for short circuit certification and other requirements can be output as complete PDF documentation, and the entire project can be exported to EPLAN. This makes engineering considerably easier: it saves time and ensures that all cables and short-circuit values comply with the applicable standards. All an electrical engineer needs to start the configuration is the current offline version of the free TIA Selection Tool and some information about the mechanical load, i.e., the motor.
Digitalization as a competitive factor
Control Panel Design in the TIA Selection Tool makes electrical engineering much easier and faster. Electrical engineers benefit from simple dimensioning, a consistent workflow, and a comprehensive standards library, available digitally for the first time. This reduces the electrical engineering effort considerably and avoids possible sources of error.
As a result, the tool creates the basis for noticeably more efficient development processes, faster throughput times and smart electrification solutions in the industrial sector. Machine and control panel manufacturers can make their value creation process significantly more efficient and thus strengthen their competitiveness.
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