Frequently Asked Questions
How do you connect to equipment?
PLCs are most often connected via OPC protocol. Kors Engineering includes the Kepware Manufacturing Suite -which includes support for hundreds of the most popular global makes and models. We’ve also integrated using OPC UA, Matrikon’s OPC, numerous 3rd party OPC, and have even written our own OPC drivers when necessary. We’ve also interacted with controllers through serial to Ethernet conversion, message parsing, FTP, CSV, SQL, XML, UCON. We’ve also got one or two sites doing OPC UA with Euromap 77. Our tools are inherently open architecture, and designed specifically for integration and normalization of diverse systems
Can existing/legacy equipment and systems be taken over?
Our preference is to leverage existing legacy systems. These systems carry localized expertise, are known variables for the plant, in operation, and provide the least amount of disruption of operations. We extend every effort to communicate, or provide gap solutions, to preserve existing systems. This makes for smoother transitions.
Can you do wireless?
Most of our customers prefer wired due to the nature of the plant floor – lots of metal can make things difficult for good wireless coverage, and as machine communications can be critical, most of our customers don’t want to risk missing an event. We do have more and more customers that are strictly interested in performance/OEE/target vs actual/etc. In these cases, capturing the cycle count isn’t as sensitive so we’re able to recommend the Advantech Wise or similar device. These have built in counters, so even if the wireless drops for a second, the device can still count, and we can pick up where we left off. These are nice in that they’re inexpensive (under $250) and up to 8 cycles can be capture by a single device – handy if you’ve got a number of presses in one area.