Micro-PLCs benefit from upgraded motion control

Paul Boughton

Mitsubishi Electric is further advancing its ability to provide dedicated networked positioning via its micro-sized range of PLCs (programmable logic controllers), with an upgrade to its 20SSC-H motion module for the FX3U.

The original 20SSC-H module, launched on 2007, was a success because it gave small systems the benefits previously the exclusive domain of sophisticated systems. Connection to the MR-J3-B (SSCNET III) range of servo amplifiers was possible using cost-effective fibre-optic cable. Suddenly a high level power and precision was available for even the most modest applications. Customers also benefited from standard features of the servo amplifiers such as real-time autotuning, adaptive filters and machine analysis functions.

Now an upgrade (version 1.20) to the FX3U-20SSC-H module is being launched with enhanced features. This will enable even more users to adopt advanced servo systems designs and add new capabilities to existing installations.

The new version contains 13 new internal buffer memory locations, all of which can be utilised via a standard PLC program. New features include: sudden stop selection; interpolation with different gear ratios; monitor options for current target address and current speed; detection flags for changes to positioning parameters; and enhanced detection of completion flags.

Many of the new features bring multiple benefits. For instance, sudden stop could be used for high-speed positioning or delivery of small parts. The interpolation between different gear ratios will reduce programming and reprogramming effort and allows handling/sorting of irregularly sized materials. The ability to work with actual addresses also guarantees positioning and provides absolutely accurate records for production analysis, accounting and business functions.

Dave Ramsay, a motion specialist with Mitsubishi, says: "Too often cutting-edge developments are more to do with pushing the technology than with addressing real-world user requirements. But this version 1.20 is all about picking up what users have told us and integrating it into the technology.

"The original 20SSC-H made networked positioning control a reality for a whole swathe of new users. The new version 1.20 makes it even easier, more powerful and – perhaps most important – more flexible. It is so easy to use that reprogramming to adapt to changing needs can be achieved in a matter of minutes."


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