Two controller ranges prepare for Industry 4.0

The MELSEC iQ-R PAC (programmable automation controllers) and the MELSEC iQ-F range of compact PLCs (programmable logic controllers) are interconnectable with other iQ models and a unified programming environment.

The iQ-R model enables users to build automation systems developed from the ground up to address user issues focused on increasing productivity and reducing development costs, maintenance effort and operating costs. Improved processing performance will guarantee increased security, enhanced safety, reliable production processes and reduced downtime, says the company.

Designed to meet the needs of 'Industry 4.0' automation concepts, the PACs including embedded database functionality for recipe, batch or other process data to be stored in a user-friendly format. It is also claimed to optimise production or preventative maintenance.

The first model in the iQ-F series is the compact FX5U, offering new and existing add-on options which further enhance the built-in functions of Ethernet, analogue I/O, data logging, position control, security, communications and networking functions incorporated as standard. It is also claimed to offer functions which, to date, have only been available on larger PLCs, such as motion control, data logging and sophisticated security features.

Both controllers are programmed using the GX Works3 software which provides a graphical, structured programming environment. Programming options including dynamic labels, parameterisation instead of programming, and the automatic creation of hardware function blocks and visual function blocks, including HMI templates. This drag-and-drop hardware and software configuration reduces overall configuration time by over 60%, claims the company.