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Increasingly smart and integrated

February 27, 2020

Gefran presents the updated Performance Series of double loop PID Controllers, with control functions of motorised valves and generation of setpoint profiles. The range is made up of models 850, 1650 and 1850, enhanced by new features in terms of connectivity and usability that allows the PID controllers to become smart devices, particularly suited for installations in 4.0 modern automation architectures.

Paolo Buzzi, Product Marketing Manager - Controllers & Power Controllers at Gefran, commented: “The technical performance of the new double loop PID controllers have been further enhanced to adapt to the new 4.0 industry standards, where interconnection plays a key role in increasing the productivity and efficiency of companies”. He then continued: “In this sense, two main innovations have been introduced to make the Performance Series even smarter: firstly, the Remote service, which uses a Web Server to monitor the PID Controllers and remotely access data with a computer, smartphone or tablet. Secondly, the Modbus TCP slave protocol, relying on Ethernet technology, which ensures a reliable information exchange for industrial automation networks. Finally, the Modbus Master is an additional asset, allowing a direct connection to Modbus Slave devices, making the Performance Series controller a useful tool for the integration of data monitoring and visualisation, also from third-party devices”.

 

This is the most comprehensive series on the market in terms of features, and its compliance to regulations AMS2750 for the Aerospace sector and CQI9 for the Automotive sector makes it ideal for applications where it is crucial to guarantee reliability and high precision of the measuring and control input, such as in metal heat treatment. Furthermore, PID Performance controllers are perfect for the management of sterilisation process within the food industry, as well as of climatic chambers and incubators, test benches, steam generation plants and dryers.

 

The range embeds some of the functions which are normally distributed over several devices, such as PID controllers, PLC and HMI, which allow the management of control logics aimed at PID controlling through the configuration of Boolean and mathematical functions. Furthermore, double loop PID controllers can generate independent setpoint profiles, both synchronous and asynchronous, which is particularly useful for the management processes of climatic chamber, where two variables, such as temperature and humidity, must be monitored independently.

 

Additionally, the new series is equipped with three inputs, which allow increasing flexibility in using the controller, for example in the process of milk pasteurisation. In this application, two inputs are used to implement the cascade control between the PID loops (steam pressure and milk temperature), while the third one is used to read the position of the steam pressure control valve. The availability of cascade control for the monitoring of saturated steam pressure entering the exchanger and of the temperature when exiting the pasteuriser guarantees constant temperature values, adjusting in advance any deviation of the pressure of incoming steam that might arise due to potential variations in network pressure.

Finally, the core integrated features also include an energy counter to monitor energy consumption, and a cycle counter to measure the lifecycle of actuators for a preventive maintenance without any additional devices. Further benefits of the Performance Series include the easy reading and the simple, quick set up, thanks to an operator interface characterised by a large high-resolution LCD screen and to the possibility to configure personalised, multilingual alphanumeric messages which allow the operator to use a terminology that is most familiar to them, also in case of an emergency. Finally, GF_eXpress, an easy and intuitive dedicated Gefran software employed in all applications by the brand, is also an important asset.

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