Getting Started with ControlLogix 2

Introduction to Getting Started with ControlLogix (Industrial Automation)

ControlLogix Chassis

The ControlLogix systemis an industrial solution for automation.  The processor is programmed with RSLogix/Studio 5000.   Unlike a regular computer, the ControlLogix processor does not run a normal operating system, so the system resources are dedicated to running the project, and reading and writing to Input and Output modules.

The Input module reads data from a machine, such as limit switches on a valve, or an input from the operator.  Based on this input, the program makes a decision on what to do next, such as stopping a motor, shutting off a solenoid, or starting the next part of a process.

Instruction Overview

Most of the program is written in ladder logic, which simulates schematic diagrams to some degree.   For example:  an XIC instruction can look at an input, such as a switch on an operator panel. If this input goes high, we can use the program to energize an output.  A high state means that we have a voltage on the terminal that the instruction is looking at.

The processor also supports timer instructions.  We can use this for delays in the process.   An example of where a timer might be used is when an operator starts a conveyor belt.   We might want to sound a warning horn for five seconds (while the timer is timing) before the conveyor actually starts.

Motion is also supported for servo motors.   This allows for precision movement on equipment, such as placing a product into a container, and gluing the container shut.

In the next posts, we will discuss each component of the ControlLogix hardware, and have tutorials on how to set up communication to the processor, and for programming.

Once the system is programmed, we will also have posts on how to maintain the system.  These posts will include the purpose of the status lights on the modules, and how to troubleshoot a ControlLogix system.

Before starting to read the next posts, please be sure you have a good understanding of Basic Electricity.  Basic electrical principles can be found in the beginner section of this website.

If you would like customized on-site training, please visit my employer’s website at!

— Ricky Bryce


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