I’m an area service engineer for food packaging machines instead of an automation specialist, however can give you few hints.
For many automation systems to work, you need to first use a clear and detailed mechanical plan wonderful details finalized. Once you do so, you should specify the kind of motions involved, e.g.: linear or rotary. This lets you know the number and kinds of motors and actuators you may need(servo, ac single phase, ac 3 phase, pneumatic actuator).
For every motors you might need relay contactors (for single speed discrete/on-off type motors like blower fans and liquid pumps), VFD for speed controllable ac 3-phase motors(a lot more like conveyors, liquid tank level control pumps or rollers).Servo motors need Servo drivers to control their precise movement.
These are your output devices, you will want your input devices to become put down. This is often level sensors, flow sensors, proximity switches and also other devices as needed. The key reason why i’m stating out this routine is always to enable you to define the specifications essential for your control system hardware requirements. All PLC manufacturers layout their product line-up based on system complexity.
Most PLC hardware is sold as reconfigurable rack chassis. Basically there is a CPU the actual master brain which is supplemented with I/O device that could be slotted in like cards. Additional complex systems which needs servo motor could have servo card to connect with servo driver, communication bus cards like CAN-BUS, PROFIBUS and DEVICENET and sensor cards for special sensors like RTD temperature sensors and level sensors.
So exercise you IO devices list, then receive the necessary hardware and software needed. You will need additional hardware required for for fancy touch screen HMI, line automation and internet based diagnostic and asset monitoring functions. That’s what sort of guy with mechanical background can approach complex automation problems.
The solutions may differ according to different manufacturer offering specifically if you use beckhoff based systems. The best way to start may be to work on existing machines so that you will educate yourself on the basics. Go obtain a few catalogs from reputable manufacturers to understand what the market industry provides. I usually suggest visitors to go through Omron catalogues. They likewise have a no cost automation online course that will teach you the child steps needed.
You need to be capable of design complete PLC systems: architecture design, hardware specfications and selection, logic narratives, logic programming, connection drawings. Everything. Perhaps you just need to additional training on the specifics of every bit of apparatus, regarding how to program or properly connect them, however it is not rocket science, a good mechanical engineer should probably excel on this because other engineer. The most crucial aspect of control system design is usually to view the process you will control and also the goals you would like to achieve.