New modular high-performance control concept

Paul Boughton

Mitsubishi Electric's new control concept, MELSEC iQ-R, is a new modular high-performance controller.

With the MELSEC iQ-R control concept, intellectual property is guaranteed to be fully protected by the wide range of safety functions which include an additional security hardware key, an IP-based access filter and user authentication.

Improved debugging and error recovery functions will enable commissioning and maintenance work and associated costs to be reduced further.

The functions provided include the creation of an operating history as well as error and event logging, simple diagnostics, high-speed recording of analogue data and an integrated database for the safe storage of recipes.

The MELSEC iQ-R series can be programmed with the completely new GX Works3 programming software which will be part of the iQ Works integrated engineering environment. GX Works3 offers a wide range of options including dynamic labels, parameterisation instead of programming and the automatic creation of hardware function blocks as well as visual function blocks including HMI templates. These features help to reduce development costs and potential error sources.

The modular control concept MELSEC iQ-R will, says Mitsubishi Electric, increase plant productivity and reduce total operating costs at the same time. The modular Multi-CPU system is also faster and more efficient than its predecessor and uses synchronised output modules as well as synchronised PLC and network scans. The optimised system design allows the integration of standard and safety control systems on one single rack and it is also possible to connect to open networks such as CC-Link, CC-Link IE Field, Profibus, Profinet and a wide range of third party networks. Users will also have a range of integrated communication protocols to choose from in order to make the process of connection as simple as possible.

The PLC is equipped with an SD card slot, enabling production data to be recorded and processed quickly and easily as well as storage of all the parameters of the system, including intelligent modules and devices connected via CC-Link IE Field, on an SD card. The new controller is also equipped with digital safety I/O modules. Besides the enhanced connectivity permitting integration with other Mitsubishi Electric automation components, the MELSEC iQ-R is fully backward compatible, enabling the continued use of MELSEC Q series programs and enables seamless migration.

In addition, terminal compatibility will reduce wiring costs considerably. Adapter carriers permit the re-use of System Q modules while firmware updates will ensure that the new CPUs are kept up-to-date with the latest developments at all times.

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