After years of energy management products with wide applicability being released to the industrial sector, Schneider Electric has taken a different track and is focusing its newest release on industrial machinery OEMs. The product, known as the MachineStruxure architecture is based on flexible hardware platforms and a single software suite. Schneider Electric says the intent behind MachineStruxure is to help OEMs design machines that are optimized for cost, energy efficiency and performance.The MachineStruxure architecture, part of Schneider Electric’s EcoStrucure energy management portfolio, is said to provide OEMs with tested, validated and documented architectures for machine design.
To provide these architectures, MachineStruxure accesses the four machine control platforms that are part of Schneider Electric’s SoMachine software suite. SoMachine is a modular and reusable software suite that is said to enable the MachineStruxure system to cut design and implementation time up to 50 percent by streamlining the controller design and development process. As a single software package used to program all machines, SoMachine allows the design, commissioning, and maintenance of logic, drive, motion, and HMI controllers in a single environment.
The architectures and function blocks in SoMachine are designed for generic or process-specific applications including hoisting, packaging, and material handling.
Four hardware control platforms can be configured to work with MachineStruxure:
• The Magelis XBT GC HMI controller which combines human machine interface technology with control system functions.
• The Altivar IMC integrated controller card for Altivar 61 and 71 variable speed drives has Ethernet accessibility, Schneider Electric’s SoMachine programming software, and the CANOpen Configurator for a drive solution that is said to be 30 percent less costly than a conventional PLC-based controller.
• The Modicon LMC058 controller is a combined motion controller and a programmable logic controller (PLC) that has been developed for machine builders in packaging, conveying and/or storage, textile, and woodworking.
• The Modicon M238 and M258 PLCs are geared, respectively, towards small automation systems and OEMs in packaging, conveying/storage, textile and woodworking.
Schneider Electric claims, with the release of MachineStruxure, that it is the only manufacturer offering embedded intelligence within logic controllers, HMI controllers, drive controllers, and motion controllers for optimization of machine design energy efficiency.