Simatic WinCC flexible combines the benefits of the open and expandable WinCC with those of the simple and rugged ProTool, supplemented by innovative technologies. Tools such as "graphical configuring of the picture hierarchy" or HMI blocks offer high efficiency in configuring. Expanded functions allow remote operator control and monitoring as well as plant-wide access to process data, using Ethernet or the Web. This solves applications at the machine level, such as those involving distributed operator stations, or tasks in small, centralized control rooms. Service and diagnostics over the Web, using downloads, for example, or automatic e-mails in the event of a fault, increase machine availability and reduce cost-intensive use of personnel.
Efficiency is especially high when it comes to configuring. At the start of configuring, a complete project is set up with just a few inputs, and all other configuring steps are then carried out using editors. Pre-configured objects and picture blocks favor standardization, facilitating re-use in other projects. There are tools for graphically configuring the picture hierarchy and moving objects. Data is generated quickly with mass data editors, using Autofill, for example, and automatically incremented addresses. Applications can be translated easily into other languages using a powerful text library. WinCC flexible is scalable system-wide – from micro panels right up to solutions on the PC. This means that a configuration for one device can also be used for others. Stage two also supports Scada applications, for multi-user solutions with distributed and redundant servers, for example.
Future-oriented automation concepts such as mobile devices that communicate via Ethernet or Wireless LAN can be implemented with WinCC flexible. Local panels can be accessed from a PC using the HTTP protocol, for example. Remote operation of a station is possible with the Sm@rtAccess
option. Another possibility is a "distributed solution" on a large machine operated from several operator stations with only one configuration. The devices also communicate over Ethernet and exchange process data with a higher-level station over a TCP/IP connection, the intranet, or the Internet. In the central control room, the data are analyzed and displayed using WinCC flexible or standard office applications.
Diagnostics and service can also be simplified over the Web. Remote operation of the local panels from a PC is possible over Ethernet or the intranet/Internet using the Sm@rtService
option. The Web server integrated into the panels sends e-mails and provides service engineers with HTML pages for the purposes of, say, diagnosing devices, downloading configuration data, or accessing recipes.
Diverse conversion facilities simplify the transition to Simatic WinCC flexible. ProTool V6 projects, for example, can be incorporated without compatibility problems. There is also a range of new panels available with Simatic WinCC flexible Version 1:
- Simatic OP 77B: operator panel equipped with a 4.5" graphics display,
- Simatic TP 170micro: the micro panel with a 5.7" STN touch display, tailored to the Simatic S7-200 mini PLC
- Simatic MP 270B 6" Touch: the small multi panel with a 5.7" TFT touch display.
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