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MAR-APR 2019

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MEMBERS: Be sure that your membership is current and not in grace by 4 May 2019 . AUTOMATION COMMUNITY SUBSCRIBERS: Upgrade now to gain valuable benefits and solutions—and make your voice heard in choosing ISA's next generation of leaders. VERIFY or UPGRADE Your Status: info@isa.org . Are you ready to vote? All professional members can vote in leader elections. Don't miss out! Society voting begins 4 June 2019 INTECH MARCH/APRIL 2019 25 Human-machine interface The HMI shows vital information about machine conditions using graphical and textual views. HMIs can be in the form of touch panels, text panels, message dis- plays, or industrial monitors. They are used for monitoring, control, status re porting, and many other functions. The purpose of the HMI must be clearly defined. Some machines may only need a fault message display with few control functions. Other machines may demand a detailed view of ma- chine status, access to system param- eters, and recipe functionality. Clearly defining the need of the machine will help determine HMI size and capabili- ties, and this should be done early in the design process. HMIs can also act as data hubs by connecting to multiple networked devices. In some machine control ap- plications, multiple protocols may be used, and often HMIs can be used for protocol conversion. This functionality can be used to exchange data, such as status and set points, among different controllers and other smart devices. Some HMIs can also send data to the cloud or enable remote access function- ality through the Internet, given proper user name and password authentication. Work together Machine automation systems consist of multiple subsystems and compo - FACTORY AUTOMATION nents to provide the required power distribution, safety, and real-time control. Each of these subsystems and components must work together, and many are often networked to each other via either hardwiring, or increas- ingly via digital communication links. Careful design, selection, integration, and testing will ensure the automation system performs as required, both ini- tially and throughout the life cycle of the machine. n ABOUT THE AUTHOR Chip McDaniel (mcdaniel@automation- direct.com) works in technical marketing for AutomationDirect and is a graduate of Georgia Tech. His 33 years of experience in the industrial automation field include designing, building, and commissioning multi-axis servo systems, as well as market- ing a wide range of automation products. View the online version at www.isa.org/intech/20190403. RESOURCES "Start with risk assessment to enhance safety" www.isa.org/intech/20181003 "Explaining AC drives" www.isa.org/intech/201806basics "Remote access to automation system components" www.isa.org/intech/20180205

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