The Connected Enterprise creates new opportunities for productivity and efficiency gains by reducing costs, time to market and risk.
Realizing those opportunities requires advancements in technology to keep pace with the speed of change.
One important development: a software environment that combines engineering and design elements into one standard framework, enabling designers to build smart machines and systems based on real-world automation design workflows.
That evolution requires a change in thinking – moving away from the outdated set-it-and-forget-it mindset and adapting in real time to account for personalization and the ability to link smart machines with enterprise systems.
Now, to increase automation productivity, designers should be able to:
- Build a system framework in three layers – control, supervisory and network – using a single location where users can set up and configure their system
- Utilize an electronic operator interface that supports usability and productivity, and makes it easy to create HMI applications through tight integration with the programming software
- Integrate engineering and project creation tools with a focus on quickly developing new projects based on established libraries of code
As devices become smarter and create more information that’s used to control things, this approach creates a solid foundation for improving productivity. And since applications range in sizes, with varying degrees of complexity, it’s important that design teams can share a common approach. You can design a motion control system one day and a safety system the next day and a batch system the following day, and they all have a common environment. Good modular design makes it easier to build upon a foundation that sets you up for the future.