Time-to-market is crucial for packaging machine builders due to the fast-paced nature of demand for packaging, changes in regulatory requirements, and rapidly developing technology. Reducing time to market is critical for the success of a packaging machine product line.
One key way to reduce time to market is to begin with flexible HMI software. Here are some important factors to consider when choosing your HMI software platform for your machines:
- Is it possible to develop applications quickly?
- Can you create screen graphics with the flexibility to change depending on customer requirements?
- Can you create/modify reusable graphic symbols to build projects that look and feel consistent
- Can you deploy the same HMI project on many different size machines?
- Can you deploy the same project on various size and resolution touch screens without any changes at all?
- Will your HMI software allow you to change machine components and support new configurations?
- Will your software support changing technology?
- Will your HMI software help you meet government and organizational regulations?
InduSoft Web Studio was developed to offer a solution for rapidly changing industries like the packaging machine industry. Our development environment makes it easy to create application templates that can be easily changed and adapted for each new set of customer requirements. Sample applications on the InduSoft web site offer examples of how to implement functionality quickly including OEE and PackML examples. In addition, the full training course for InduSoft Web Studio is available online. It’s possible for machine builders to start developing interfaces quickly and easily. The flexible nature of InduSoft Web Studio also makes it possible to change applications easily, adapt to new configurations, or keep the look and feel of applications similar across product lines.
InduSoft Web Studio includes over 240 native drivers for PLCs and controllers, making it easy to communicate with almost any PLC, including Allen Bradley, Omron, GE, Schneider and Siemens. With a flexible driver configuration that allows you to change communications throughout a project, changing PLCs and other hardware in the machine is much easier. InduSoft Web Studio is also 100% backward compatible, which allows you to protect your investment in development time. When you move to a new version of InduSoft Web Studio, you can be certain that your old applications will be supported. InduSoft also integrates with historians, databases, ERP and EMS systems, making it part of a complete automated packaging solution.
An important set of tools in InduSoft Web Studio will also make it easier to adhere to regulations regarding food, beverage, and pharmaceutical packaging. InduSoft Web Studio can generate reports required to meet regulatory standards such as FDA CFR Part 11. InduSoft Web Studio also supports integration with Microsoft Active Directory and LDAP. Applications can be protected by username and password authentication, and user activity can be recorded. InduSoft Web Studio supports security measures for individuals and groups, meaning that users with different credentials may only see certain parts of the application.
Other features make for rapid deployment and setup:
- A powerful recipe tool can facilitate easy product change over, and provide the operator with clear, concise information.
- Logging and trending of things like temperatures, accumulator levels, and OEE stats can help commission equipment in record time
- Special setup screens just for installers; put all of the necessary information on one, easy to read screen. Also, use an iPad, iPhone, or Android tablet or phone to install long or large machines
For packaging machine builders flexibility is often a key factor in bringing new machines to market. Let InduSoft Web Studio help by providing a solid platform for rapid HMI development that will allow your machines to make it to market quickly, and change as often as customer requirements.