PACs to emerge as automation standard

To serve the expanding machine and industrial control needs of manufacturing lines

Special Correspondent

CHENNAI: Programmable automation controllers (PACs) are set to emerge as a new open standard for automation of manufacturing industries across various industry domains.

The concept of PACs, a new class of industrial controllers, was formulated at the initiative of leading automotive companies in the world. The objective is to serve the expanding machine and industrial control needs of the manufacturing lines.

Addressing a press conference here on Tuesday, Jayaram Pillai, Country Head, NI Systems (India) Pvt. Ltd., a subsidiary of Austin-based National Instrument, said quality had become a key word in the manufacturing arena. In this context, he said how various testing and measurement devices in the automation process of a production line remained as independent islands and did not talk to each other. This had prevented dissemination of information across the enterprise on a real time basis, resulting in the inability to take quicker action. This had lot of quality implications, he said.

LabVIEW, the open software with a modular architecture developed by National Instrument, could help enterprise address advanced automation applications.

Mr. Pillai said LabVIEW gave National Instrument PACs an advantage as they could be integrated with the existing automation system in a production line.

Mr. Pillai said the PAC products of National Instrument had elicited demand from big names in India like BEL, BHEL, Tata Motors, Eicher, Honeywell Automation, TVS Motors and Brakes India. With competition placing pressure on margins, PACs would become increasingly relevant in the Indian context in view of the cost savings they offered.

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