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To: Subscribers PLCopen Newsletter

Subject: PLCopen newsletter Issue April 2008


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PLCopen Newsletter - Issue April 2008.

1. PLCopen publishes Motion Control Part 4 - Coordinated Motion as Release for Comments

2. PLCopen releases update of Motion Control Part 3 - User Guidelines

3. PLCopen Logic, Motion and Safety: Results published now !

4. Meet us at the BIAS in Milan, May 27-30


1. PLCopen publishes Motion Control Part 4 - Coordinated Motion as Release for Comments

Part 1 and Part 2 of the PLCopen Motion Control suite deal with master / slave motion control, a type of coordinated motion control where the master axis position is used to generate one or more slave axis position commands. For three dimensional movements, one goes beyond this point via a grouping of a set of axes, without a master axis. In order to work in 3D, one has to use several coordinate systems, as well as a kinematic model of the mechanics involved. The coordinated systems include the axes coordinate system, the machine coordinate system and the product related system.

The current Master/Slave axes have the problem that if an error occurs, the other axes have no knowledge about this, and continue their movement. By combining axes in a group one knows upfront which axes are involved and has the basis for a better error behavior.

The level of the PLCopen Motion Control Function Blocks are specified at the user level: the PLC programmer quickly recognizes the functionality of the function block and what happens if it is activated or connected to other blocks in a sequence of motion commands. Nowadays, path oriented movements are programmed either with specific robot oriented programming languages, or “G-code” (for instance cf. DIN 66025) as used in the CNC world. Both consist of a relative small number of users. But without a doubt, the movements which can be described in these languages are applicable to a broader area of use. This PLCopen initiative transforms the functionalities as known in the CNC and Robotic world to the PLC world. With this, an additional part is added to the range of PLCopen Motion Control specifications.

Part 4 has now been released for comments as version 0.99 and can be downloaded from our website .

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2. PLCopen releases update of Motion Control Part 3 - User Guidelines

This document is the third part of a set of documents of the PLCopen Task Force Motion Control. Currently, the set consists of 5 documents:

  • Part 1 – Basics Function Blocks for Motion Control
  • Part 2 – Extensions
  • Part 3 – User Guidelines
  • Part 4 – Coordinated Motion
  • Part 5 – Homing Procedures

The first two parts are released as official documents, and part 4 is released for comments.

This document Part 3 is released on an on-going basis. With every release new examples are added. The first release was as version 0.3, in April 2004. The second release in April 2008 as Version 0.4.

The objective of this document is to define a set of examples and clarification for user of the other PLCopen Motion Control documents. It is not intended as an IEC 61131-3 tutorial – basic understanding of IEC 61131-3 is seen as a pre-requisite.

Essential to the examples, and the usage of the motion control function blocks, is the usage of User Derived Function Blocks. The IEC 61131-3 defines Program Organization Units, or POUs, consisting of Function, Function Blocks and Programs. With this concept, a user can generate own libraries of POUs. Of particular interest are the User Derived Libraries of Function Blocks. Within such a library, a user identifies the reusable parts of an application program, created with the standard available POUs, as well as with the PLCopen Motion Control Function Blocks.

This document shows how a user can generate an own library, dedicated to their own application area. By creating such a library, and making it available throughout their organization, one can save a tremendous amount of time in the next project. Moreover, the usage of own libraries enhance the readability and transparency of the application programs generated.

The examples include Master Engine, Camming, Registration Function, Capping Application, Jogging, Flying Shear, Shift Register, FIFO Function Block, and from the OMAC PackAL definitions the Dancer Control and Wind / Unwind are mapped.

The specification is available for download at no costs from our website .

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3. PLCopen Logic, Motion and Safety: Results published now !

The combination of logic, motion, and safety in one environment provides the user with a harmonized view to the overall application in one software environment, for both the safety and the functional applications.

In practice this offers less educational efforts and simpler transfer of knowledge and application software between different peoples as well as different locations and controls. Also, it tackles the ‘not-invented-here syndrome’, which is often a cause of errors and additional costs, in particular in the safety application. By using pre-defined and tested functionality, combined with support in the programming environment, one is able to add the safety related aspects to the application programs for easy commissioning. And that saves money.

This activity provides examples of the combination of Logic, Motion, and Safety, making it easier and more natural for the user to integrate safety in their motion and logic application. Safety functionalities like mode selector, safely reduced speed, and several stop functionalities, have a direct link to the motion control application. However in practice different people are responsible for these sections.

The published document provides examples and guidance for the combination of the different technologies.

The document is published at as version 0.41 on April 17.

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4. Meet us at the BIAS in Milan, May 27-30

PLCopen has a booth during the upcoming BIAS in Hall 9 – H21/K24.

The BIAS (Biennal International Exhibition of Automation, Instrumentation, Microelectronics and ICT for Industry.) takes place at the Milan Trade Fair Centre from May 27-30.

Eelco van der Wal, as Managing Director, will be at the booth during the whole event.

Feel invited to step by at the booth to check the status of the specifications , and discuss your benefits in using the PLCopen specifications.

For your complimentary ticket to the BIAS, please register on .

Hope to see you all at this event.

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Kind regards,

Eelco van der Wal

Managing Director PLCopen

PO Box 3009
NL 4200 EA Gorinchem, the Netherlands

tel.: +31-183-660261
fax: +31-183-664821 


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