Omron PLCs and the SYSMAC-SCS SCADA package have enabled a supplier of solar shading control systems to step into the light.
Omron PLCs and the SYSMAC-SCS SCADA package have enabled one of
Europe's leading suppliers of solar shading control systems
to take a major step forward with the launch of their new PILOTpc
Modern buildings, with their extensive use of glazed
walls and atria, impart a light, bright and airy ambiance, but to
prevent glare from low sun and to cut excessive solar gain,
controllable solar shading is needed.
Guthrie Douglas of Warwick
has developed a reputation for their innovative approach to the
control system programming, which anticipates low sun angles as
well as detecting and reacting to changes in the atmosphere.
Their latest advanced desktop PC-based solar shading control
system is PILOTpc.
Guthrie Douglas were looking to upgrade their
10-year old purpose-built intelligent interface for controllable
Senior Electrical Engineer, Howard Weaver takes up
"Over a six month period, I looked at many
SCADA-type packages, most of which were tag limited, which made
them expensive for the amount of data transfer we needed.
found Omron's SYSMAC-SCS software package, which offered
unlimited tags for the same price.
It was very cost-effective and
more than flexible enough for our needs.
I found it easy to
set-up and configure with its intuitive programming - and its
pre-set functions and animations saved a lot of programming time
too." The PILOTpc system with the SYSMAC-SCS SCADA package
gives a display of the blinds throughout the whole building and
provides all communications, data logging, calculation of the
sun's position and many other functions.
glare and regulating solar heat gain, solar energy heats the
building only when it is desirable.
The system can also be
configured to close the blinds in dull/dark conditions and signal
to the lighting system that back-lighting is required.
this, the PILOTpc system is configured with information about the
global position and orientation of the building and the types and
positions of shading equipment fitted to it.
It uses this data in
conjunction with the time-of-day and date to determine where, at
any moment, the sun will affect the building.
External light and
temperature sensors provide the environmental information to
enable the system to decide when and where to deploy blinds.
Omron's compact CPM1A micro PLCs and SRMI remote I/O PLCs
are used as motor control outstations around the building for the
local adjustment of blinds.
The outstations control and switch
the power to the motors in a local area, which might be a single
floor on a multi-storey building or a single building in a
This substantially reduces wiring costs
and the overall installed system costs.
Each outstation initiates
a 'drive' cycle to open or close tension (fabric) or
vertical roller blinds, gives timed pulses to tilt Venetian
blinds or, using a closed loop drive sequence, with feedback from
motor-mounted potentiometers, adjusts the movement of external
rotating louvres to a fixed position.
The PILOTpc system combines
ease of use with a versatility that enables the user to set and
modify threshold values and other variables and its unique
built-in history enables the operator to optimise the settings.
It is easily tailored to any customer's own requirements and
even incorporates diagnostics to assist with maintenance.
"We know that we have a winner with PILOTpc," concludes
Howard Weaver, " and this, in part, is thanks to the help
and support we've had from Omron.
The SYSMAC-SCS software is