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Program your PLCs in PowerPoint

01 January, 2007

Program your PLCs in PowerPoint

A German PLC-maker has come up with a technique for programming its controllers using Microsoft`s PowerPoint presentation package. Hiquel says that this approach offers a graphic programming environment with a dramatically shorter learning curve than using proprietary software.

Another attraction is that other types of file such as videos, Excel files and photos, can be embedded in the PowerPoint file to create comprehensive plant documentation. For example, a programmer can dictate an audio file describing an operational sequence, or create a video showing how to operate a machine. This will be easily accessible to maintenance staff, operators and other programmers.

Hiquel`s SLS-500 configurator software combines PowerPoint`s graphic capabilities with an easy-to-understand graphic computer language. It integrates PLC programming elements such as flags, inputs and outputs, counters and edge detection functions. There are also special symbols for the graphic parts of a program. The software also allows users to simulate and test programs online.

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