Wednesday May 15, 2013

Brand Independent PLC Programming on the NetBeans Platform

Most modern automation installations, such as controlers of machinery on factory assembly lines, amusement rides, or light fixtures, are driven by Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs). Low level programming languages that have been used for decades, such as Ladder Diagrams (LD), are still being used to develop new PLC software. Together with the ageing techniques inherent in such programming constructs, there are hidden  penalties, such as the fact that PLC software is brand dependent.

PLC-PROG is the first tool for PLC programming to enable a completely brand independent and user-friendly object oriented approach, resulting in a reduction of development cost and an increase in the reliability of developed programs. It is valid for all PLC brands which comply with the IEC 611131-3 standard, is based on graphical programming methodologies, requires no specific programming skills, and makes it possible to perform both monitoring and visualization from the tool.

PLC-PROG has been developed using the NetBeans Platform, to take advantage of the benefits that its libraries offer. Below you see the PLC-Prog Visual Editor with the rack concept, which is a base element on top of which fuctions and input/output modules can be dragged: 

Other tools, such as a Tree View for tracking programming flow, is shown below:

Further info:


Geertjan Wielenga (@geertjanw) is a Principal Product Manager in the Oracle Developer Tools group living & working in Amsterdam. He is a Java technology enthusiast, evangelist, trainer, speaker, and writer. He blogs here daily.

The focus of this blog is mostly on NetBeans (a development tool primarily for Java programmers), with an occasional reference to NetBeans, and sometimes diverging to topics relating to NetBeans. And then there are days when NetBeans is mentioned, just for a change.


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