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Manufacturing cables – with help from a modernization gateway

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Manufacturing cables – with help from a modernization gateway

ProSoft Technology’s EtherNet/IP™ to Remote I/O™ and DH+™ Gateway is something of a superstar. We’re not just saying that: The gateway serves many functions in helping users opt for a Phased Modernization approach when updating the extensive installed base of legacy Allen-Bradley® control systems, including PLCs, PanelViews, Drives, and FLEX™ I/O adapters. 

But even we hear about new uses for it from time to time. An India-based manufacturer needed a new way to monitor the manufacturing process of its communication cables, and sought help on finding a solution from Concord Technologies of India. 

The company wanted to create a data visualization, analysis, and reporting portal, but it needed to gather process data from 16 PLC-5® controllers spread across 3 areas to a ControlLogix® PLC to do so. The ControlLogix controller used the EtherNet/IP protocol, creating a communications issue with the legacy PLC-5 systems, which utilized DH+. 

That’s where ProSoft Technology’s Migration Gateway came into the picture. The Migration Gateway has been enhanced a few times with new capabilities since its initial arrival on the market, and a few months before this project, support for the DH+ protocol was added to the gateway. This meant that the gateway could be used to connect the PLC-5 and ControlLogix controllers.

Due to the distributed nature of the PLC-5 controllers, three gateways were used to connect each DH+ network to the EtherNet/IP network. This setup helped the company meet its needs: scrap reduction, quality improvement, proactive decision-making, and a reduction in manual activities. The information passed through the gateways into the ControlLogix helped the customer realize benefits from the Industrial Internet of Things: By connecting the components involved in the production of the fiber optic cables, they were able to identify and troubleshoot inefficiencies and redundancies in the process, optimizing their resources and improving the overall production process. (Discover the step-by-step process that can help you leverage IIoT data and make measureable business improvements.)

Beyond extending the company’s Connected Enterprise, the gateways met more technical requirements as well. 

“This solution has helped gather data at the required speed, without much change in the existing PLC hardware and software,” said Concord Technologies Manager Sameer Ambegaonkar, who also praised the gateways’ quick installation.