Factory floor data recording


#1

I have a system running factory floor and would like to be able to write data to a text file currently we are writing data to microsoft access and sometimes we have missing data.At my last job they had the pac system and I used FTP client factory floor doesnt seem to have that function. So my question is can you write to a text file or what communication can i use with the factory floor without replacing it?


#2

Hello “case-bt”,

Thanks for sharing this question/challenge.

You are correct, the older Factory Floor controllers do not have a file/ftp server like the newer PAC Controllers have. (Some of the new PAC Controllers now have MicroSD cards for storing data.)

But you still have lots of ways of communicating, and lots of options for data recording. What are you currently using to write data to the database? Do you know why some data goes missing? (Flaky network?) Can you (would you want to) change your Factory Floor strategy at all?

Could you perhaps use OptoDisplay to do Historic Data Logs? How much data are we talking, just one point, or lots of different kinds of data? If you are recording I/O Point data, what kind of I/O Unit(s)?

Without replacing the existing Factory Floor hardware, you could always drop another PAC controller in the mix (super easy if all your I/O Units are Ethernet, possible in some cases if not). Then you could do whatever recording you wanted on the PAC controller as you did before, and let the Factory Floor controller carry on, unaffected. (I’ve noticed sometimes the money I spend on a little new hardware is worth a whole lots of time saved trying to get old stuff to work.)

In any case, do tell us more about the problem(s) you’re trying to solve. Lots of friendly folks around here that are happy to jump in with suggestions and ideas.

Thanks & write on!
-Mary


#3

We are using opto connect to write to an access database.

We are recording i/o data points for thermocouples and pressure sensors we would also need a date and time stamp.

I would like to record all these and be able to change the record rate on the display which shouldnt be an issue. We usually only need one record a second at the most but on occation we might record faster no more than 5 a sec.


#4

Hi case-bt,

If OptoConnect is having a hard time recording some simple i/o data points, you might consider calling our Product Support Group (free!) for some troubleshooting help. However, if you’re facing network issues; then having a newer PAC controller record the data directly from your I/O units (like it sounds like you did before) might be more reliable, where you don’t need to worry about whatever network the database is on.

For that last part you mentioned, with variable record rate, you’d probably want to do that logic in a strategy, even better if it’s a strategy that can record the data locally (like a PAC).

Not to push the PAC even more, but including one with the mix with your existing hardware might be a good first step toward migrating that system to modern hardware. Our pre-sales support folks are also helpful for pondering options such as this.

Of course, there are always many ways to solve a problem. I’d be interested in what others have to say. Have you looked at using OptoDisplay to do Historic Data Logs, for example?

Thanks,
Mary


#5

Hey Case-bt,

I just have to jump in here and +1 what Mary is suggesting.

Adding a PAC controller (S1 for example) would be great way to get what you need done quick and painless.
I would have the LC4’s upload their data at the highest rate that you need. The chart in the PAC would then take that data and store it at the user set rate, slow as needed, faster as needed.
This way there is no having to send commands back from the PAC to the LC4. Just let them stream at a steady rate and throttle at the PAC.
Once the PAC is in you could store to the memory area and FTP the file as needed. You could email the file as needed, or you could throw in OptoDataLink and have it store the data as needed. The interesting thing about adding ODL is that you can set up ODL to change its store rate as well, so it could do the user throttling as required.
ODL will of course store data straight into Access as well, so the chart running on it could be a simple FIFO buffer.

Lots of good things happen when you throw a PAC into the same mix as the LC4’s. We have many customers in your position doing just that.

Cheers,

Ben.


#6

If adding a PAC is not currently an option for you, the OptoControl SDK provides example applications and header’s for accessing the OptoCOM DLL’s. With these you can create a custom app that will write data to a text file or anything you can imagine really : )


#7

Good point, Chrismec. And thanks also for starting this thread [click here] about the OptoControlSDK. We appreciate your input!
-OptoMary