Using the Micro PLC platform from Maxim Integrated Products, Inc. (NASDAQ: MXIM), designers now have the tools to implement Industry 4.0 with less power, parts, and total costs. The platform consists of five reference designs which can operate as stand-alone subsystems and be configured and tested with a laptop’s USB port.
A programmable logic controller (PLC) is the core building block that controls and coordinates sensors and machinery moving throughout a factory. Each year, $800 Billion is spent on factory maintenance and lost productivity. To reduce these expenses, the global Industry 4.0 movement is working to make manufacturing smarter and more efficient. Through “smart integration” (integration aligned with solving industry-wide issues) and proprietary process technology, Maxim’s Micro PLC platform delivers a 10x reduction in form factor, provides > 50% power savings, and processes digital I/O outputs up to 70x faster than ever before. The platform will immediately reduce industry maintenance costs and increase uptime.
Supporting the Industry 4.0 distributed model, Maxim has developed multiple products that are interoperable with the Micro PLC platform:
- MAX11270: a 24-bit, 10mW, delta-sigma ADC with integrated PGA offers the highest signal-to-noise (SNR) and lowest power in its class
- MAX17515: a 5A, 2.4V to 5.5V input, complete switch-mode power supply with built-in inductor that reduces energy loss and heat with 92% efficiency
- MAX17552: a 4V to 60V, 100mA, ultra-small, synchronous step-down DC-DC converter, compliant to IEC61131-2 PLC standard, that reduces heat dissipation and enables up to 50% cooler operation
- Faster throughput: up to 70x faster digital I/O provides increased production throughput
- Power efficiency: > 50% power savings, allowing fan-less operations and higher density of I/Os
- Compact size: 10x reduction in form factor brings the full capability of a modular PLC closer to the factory floor
- High integration: reduces component count, improves reliability, and provides diagnostics to help keep a line up and running 24/7/365
- “The Micro PLC platform is the result of smart integration. We used our system knowledge and analog process integration capabilities to move customers into Industry 4.0,” said Jeff DeAngelis, Executive Director of Business Management at Maxim Integrated. “Now our customers can build smaller, faster, and more efficient industrial controllers that bring the vision of Industry 4.0 into the palm of their hands.”
- “It is the right time to move towards Industry 4.0,” said Susie Inouye, Research Director at Databeans. “Maxim is responding to the growing importance of this trend by improving system efficiency, throughput and reliability.”
- The MAXREFDES61# 4-channel analog input board is $39 each. The schematics, layout files, and firmware are free and available for immediate use.