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How to Improve Industrial Automation Security

The history of industrial automation fascinates me. Continuous innovation and new technologies have taken manufacturing processes that originated in the Industrial Age and catapulted them straight into the information age. Just as productivity seemed to be topping out, the Internet helped boost productivity and efficiency to previously unimaginable levels. Unfortunately, as industrial automation roared into […]

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ISA Members Develop Key Standards That Advance the Industrial Automation Industry

In my discussions with users, they express the desire for automation and control systems with useful, consistent features and interfaces that satisfy real-world needs. Automation professionals have the opportunity to influence and improve automation industry directions when they are active members of ISA, participating in the development of high-quality, unbiased automation information, standards, and technical […]

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New Industrial Standards for Robotic Safety

The past few years have been marked by significant changes in industrial safety standards in the U.S. Safety managers, plant managers, and others who are not carefully monitoring these developments may not be keeping pace with the latest codes and regulations. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), “machine guarding” that pertains to […]

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Modular Systems Speed and Simplify New Plant Programming

Getting out the cake and candles may have been overdoing it, but ISA-88’s 20th birthday was 28 February 2015. Since 1995, it has served countless manufacturers, primarily in batch process industries, while growing and evolving to cover new areas, and even spawning other standards. The first batch control standard in the ISA-88 series was approved […]

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How to Achieve More Value from Your Automation Projects

The industrial automation industry is largely a project-centric business. Over the past three decades automation suppliers, system integrators, engineering procurement contractors, and industrial automation users have become extremely proficient at executing automation projects. Unfortunately, in numerous interviews in which I have participated with industrial company executives, many indicated that although they believe automation should add […]

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Product Lifecycle Management and Automation Are Being Drawn Together

The worlds of product lifecycle management (PLM) and automation are being drawn together by a series of technological developments that are beginning to have far-reaching effects, not only in manufacturing, but across all industries. For PLM vendors, this combination is manifesting itself in an upsurge of research and development activity, acquisition, and partnering. For those […]

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HMI-design

Design Tips to Create a More Effective HMI

There are many ways to develop human-machine interface (HMI) screens for machine and process automation applications. Effective implementation requires discipline in design. The look, feel, and ease of use of an HMI can vary widely given all the tools, object libraries, animations, and colors available with modern HMI software—but there are guidelines to improve HMI […]

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Steps to Navigate the Industrial Internet Journey

In today’s connected world, machines can communicate and coordinate with each other in ways that were not possible before. These brilliant machines are changing the way businesses work, enabling them to optimize efficiencies, boost productivity, reduce costs, and bring products and services to market faster. This major transformation is powered by the industrial Internet—which combines […]

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Advanced Control as Operations Support

In operating plants, process engineers, also known as production or operation engineers, are usually heavily engaged in day-to-day operations support. They are more likely to be found in their hard hats, in ad hoc meetings, or working with operators than sitting at computer terminals. Their job description typically involves a good understanding of process economics, […]

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