A while back, a manufacturer of color picture tubes (CPTs) installed a new barcode tracking system in its India facility.
Using Rockwell Automation’s ControlLogix® platform and ProSoft Technology’s interface modules, the new tracking system allows better monitoring of the entire manufacturing process.
The company’s facility has a production capacity for manufacturing 3.2 million CPTs per year. Line one in the facility manufactures 21” and 20” CPTs. Line two is dedicated to manufacturing 14” CPTs.
In order to raise their market share to 50% in the next three years, the CEO wanted the company to have “more efficient capacity utilization and greater manufacturing efficiencies. Our mantra for success is to stay ahead of the competition using differentiation in products and services...We have taken many technological initiatives in order to improve our CPT market share.”
One of the ways the company found to help them improve their market share and increase the quality of their products was the implementation of a barcode tracking system in their facility.
The plant was already equipped with the Rockwell Automation® ControlLogix platform containing a 1756-ADN card. The company installed over 100 barcode scanners communicating via the RS-485 network. ProSoft Technology’s ASCII communication modules were added to connect the ControlLogix system to the barcode scanners.
“Since the barcode scanners are ASCII devices, an interface was needed to allow the data collected by the scanners to be transmitted over an RS-485 network to the ControlLogix system,” said the ProSoft Regional Sales Manager who worked on the application. “The ProSoft modules were installed (a maximum of 15 scanners per module), allowing the scanners to communicate over the backplane to the DeviceNet Adapter.”
“A ‘C’ application in the ProSoft module polls all of the scanners, reads the barcode ID and, using direct I/O instructions, writes to the ControlLogix PLC,” said the application’s Project Implementation Manager. “The data collected via the barcode IDs is presented as Crystal reports to the Main Server using an Oracle database. This information has helped the company achieve better monitoring of the manufacturing process, which translates into better-quality products.”
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