PROGRAMMABLE LOGIC CONTROLLERS AND LADDER LOGIC

Greg Zimmerman Electrical Engineering Undergraduate

• Programmable Logic Controllers control most of the mechanical processes in many areas of production • Very simple in operation, complex in design

Overview

1. 2. 3. 4.

PLC and Controls History PLC Components Ladder Logic Programming of Ladder Logic

1. PLC and Controls History
• • • • • Large amount of work required connecting wires Difficulty with changes or replacements Difficulty in finding errors; requiring skillful/experienced work force When a problem occurs, hold-up time is indefinite, usually long Too many moving parts

Advantages of PLCs
• • • • • • • • Number of wires reduced by approximately 80% Fast and easy error detection. No change in wiring to change program Needs fewer spare parts Cheaper when large number of I/O instruments are needed Less moving parts Compact Cost effective for installation/maintenance

2. PLC Components

• Definition • Components • PLC Operation

Definition
• A Programmable controller is a solid state user programmable control system with functions to control logic, sequencing, timing, arithmetic data manipulation and counting capabilities.

Components
• CPU • Memory Areas • Circuits to input or output data

• Basically, a big box of math

Specific Components
• Input Relays (contacts) • Internal Utility Relays

• Output Relays (coils)

• Counters

• Data Storage

• Timers

PLC Operation
• Continually scans ladder diagram • Consists of 3 important steps

Rung Scanning

3. Ladder Logic
• Definition • Introduction • Comparison to Relay Logic

Definition
• One form of drawing electrical logic schematics • Very popular for PLCs • Originally invented for use with relays

Comparison to Relay Logic
• First used for technicians, electricians & engineers • Still first choice for most technicians, electricians, etc.

Relay Logic
• Ladder Logic 

• Relay Logic

• “Jog” function added to previous relay circuit • 1 component added • 3 wires added

• Two status indicators added • 6 additional wires

• Most widely used program • Shown here as a very small program

4. Ladder Logic Programming
• • • • • Introduction Basics – NO/NC Contacts/Coils AND & OR Gates Timers and Counters Building a PLC Ladder Logic Programming

Introduction
• First PLC programming system used • Borrowed heavily from relay diagrams plant electricians already knew • Each rung solved left to right

Basics
• NO Contact • NO Coil (Output) • NC Contact • NC Coil (Output)

AND Gate

OR Gate

Timers
• Very simple concept, it times • 2 basic types, ondelay and off-delay • Still sends logic as its output

Counters
• Counts number of times a lever is pulled, a button is pushed, etc. • 3 types • Up Counter • Down Counter • Up-Down Counter

Building a PLC/Ladder Logic Program
• To illustrate, will start in relay logic, convert to ladder logic at end • Will need to remove/replace some components

• Overload Device Removed • All components in relay diagram because wires are run to them • Is not addressed in ladder logic • Motor relay is not a physical entity in ladder logic as in relay logic

• ‘Jog Function’ added • Usually added for ease in troubleshooting purposes only. • Now two ways to run motor – press start, or press and hold Jog button

• Status Indicators added • Green for output on • Red for output off

• Relay Logic converted to Ladder Logic Diagram • Much fewer hard wired components • Double Pole Pushbutton for Jog switched to Single Pole • Instead of motor relays, PLC just checks state of motor output

Conclusion
1. Programmable Logic History 3. PLC Components 5. Ladder Logic 7. Ladder Logic Programming

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