Product Focus: Industrial Process Control Training with the IPA Compact & IPA Virtual

Mechatronics Technicians and Engineers working in industry today require the practical skills to optimise and control a range of production process variables based on data being rapidly acquired and communicated. An understanding of sensors, principles and control logic are among the factors critical to their success in modern smart factories and production environments.

The Industrial Process Automation (IPA) Compact Station is designed to fit in any laboratory and allows students to explore the professional automatic control of pressure, temperature, volumes and flow-rates.

The system uses genuine industrial components and can be combined with any open-loop and closed-loop systems from industry. The Siemens S7-1500 and HMI TP700, supplied with the PLC-based version of the panel, are as used in industry but have also been extended to offer additional educational benefits. The extensive capabilities offered by the accompanying access to Siemens TIA Portal, makes this a very powerful and practical resource.

Suitable for both University and TAFE learning environments, the IPA Compact Station and IPA Virtual provides our clients with a flexible, industry-relevant training system catering for their needs.

“The Industrial Process Automation (IPA) bench is an excellent resource for our Institute. It offers a range of industry-relevant process automation activities that directly benefit our students in their current studies and future careers” said Associate Professor Preethi Preethichandra, who is Discipline Leader of Mechatronics Engineering at CQUniversity.

Some of the benefits include:
  • P-, I-, D-, PI-, PID-, Two-step- and Cascade control.
  • Real hands-on practice thanks to the use of industrial components and typical process engineering sensors for temperature, liquid level, flow-rate and pressure.
  • Pump control direct or speed-controlled.
  • Can be expanded using additional IPA stations: mixing, filling, corking and uncorking or integrated into an Industrial Mechatronics System.
  • Separate operation of the 4 controlled systems possible
  • Measurement of electrical and process variables.
  • Understanding deployment and connection of transducers.
  • Setting parameters and optimising P-action, PI-action and PID-action controllers
  • Principles of designing, wiring and commissioning a process engineering plant.
  • Analysis of controlled systems and control loops.
  • Activation of the individual controlled systems simply by adjusting the ball valves.
  • Manual operation without additional devices direct or via simulation switch
  • And more…

The equipment can be complemented with the IPA Virtual, a realistic PC-based simulation of the IPA hardware. It allows a whole class of students to concurrently develop, deploy and analyse process control applications.

This software includes two variations of the model. The first is a so-called stand-alone version, in which the model operates with integrated closed-loop controllers and functions without any external control or software.

In the second, the virtual model is programmed using Step 7, exactly as an authentic station would be. The virtual model can then be controlled using software called PLCSIM. The program developed to operate the simulation system can then be uploaded to work directly with the real compact station.

To learn more about these systems or our instrumentation, automation and process control training systems in general, please contact Training Systems Australia on +613 9557 7993.

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