Many industrial processes use Allen Bradley (AB) PLC s. The plants often feel they are stuck with using the Allen Bradley equipment even for add-ons due both to the complexity of the Allen Bradley networks, and the cost of a new network . Not to mention that their existing AB PLC network is stable and reliable.This issue can arise when the process has obsolete VFD s and DC drives running, and the customer wishes to use a different brand than Allen Bradley of VFD or DC Drive due to price, features, or availability. Or, he simply needs to add an additional drive to the system. The question is at that point.. can I do a simple and inexpensive protocol conversion to allow my Allen Bradley (AB) PLC network to communicate with the VFD or DC drive?
The answer is most assuredly- yes. There are a number of devices and systems that allow this, but the one we like here at EMA is the Bardac ” Speedy” system. The Speedy is an inexpensive, surprisingly small footprint device that works great, is easy to program, and has amazingly powerful built-in software .
The Speedy is a product that was developed for integrating two different networks. Recently, EMA had a customer, very frustrated by the fact that his ControlNet AB (Allen Bradley) network running TCP/IP needed to add a DC drive to the machine and network. He was finding this very difficult, until we suggested using the Speedy.
By integrating the Speedy into his existing Allen Bradley PLC Network, were able to easily establish communication between the DC drive and the AB network using Ethernet TCP/IP. In essence the Speedy became a protocol converter from the AB ControlNet network to MODBUS, which is the protocol that the DC drive used.
For larger systems, we might suggest the Bardac “Smarty” which is a full fledged system controller.
At EMA we’re proficient on machine controls, coordinated drives, and network communications. Contact us by one of the methods on the right of this page, OR call your nearest EMA facility listed at the bottom.
No-One, Anywhere, is Better at Drives than we are.. no brag.. just a fact..