Automation is vital in industrial and commercial settings. It helps improve quality and consistency while reducing costs. However, the automated components need to communicate with each other and function properly to maintain productivity. However, some issues can arise that can impede productivity and cause costly downtime.
Here are the top three things an electrician can help you with when it comes to industrial automation.
Automated systems often rely on sensors to function properly. Sensors can detect the presence or absence of an object, measure speed, count products on a conveyor belt, or measure levels of liquids or gases.
If a sensor is not working properly, it can cause communication issues that can throw off the whole system. For example, a misaligned optical sensor can cause a machine to misread barcodes, resulting in products being sorted incorrectly. A failed inductive sensor can also cause a machine to improperly read the diameters of parts, resulting in machining errors.
An industrial electrician can troubleshoot and repair sensor issues quickly and efficiently to minimize downtime. They can calibrate sensors to make sure they are functioning properly and make adjustments as needed.
Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) Issues
A programmable logic controller (PLC) is the "brain" of an automated system. It controls and monitors all the components in the system. This includes input/output devices, sensors, actuators, and motors.
PLCs work by reading input signals and executing a set of instructions or " "programs" to produce the desired output. The output can be anything from activating a motor to opening or closing a valve. PLCs can be used in a wide variety of industrial applications, from packaging and assembly to material handling and process control.
If a PLC is not working properly, it can cause a whole host of issues. For example, if the PLC is not reading the input signals correctly, it can cause the system to produce incorrect or faulty output. This can result in defective products, safety hazards, and production stoppages.
An industrial electrician can troubleshoot PLC issues and make repairs as needed. They can also program PLCs to meet the specific needs of your application.
Motors are used in industrial and commercial settings to power a wide variety of equipment, from pumps and fans to conveyors and machine tools. If a motor is not working properly, it can cause the equipment it is powering to malfunction. This can lead to production interruptions, safety hazards, and costly repairs.
For example, if a conveyor belt motor fails, it can cause the belt to stop moving, resulting in a production stoppage. Similarly, if it fails to regulate the speed of the belt, it can cause products to be damaged or even cause harm to workers.
An industrial electrician can troubleshoot motor issues and make repairs as needed. They can also replace motors if they are beyond repair to ensure the smooth operation of your automated equipment.