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Topic Title: PLC Advice
Topic Summary: Substation Automation
Created On: 16 July 2012 04:47 PM
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 16 July 2012 04:47 PM
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martra

Posts: 29
Joined: 25 July 2008

Hi,
Am currently studying at University and have some free time over the summer, so with this time am thinking about taking some plc training. I have done basic plc programming before when I was studying for my HNC with a Melsoft test rig at the college plus I used to be a panel builder so I some knowledge of control. But I was thinking with this time and a bit of money saved this would be a good thing to add to my CV. What am asking is this a good use of my time as am wanting to become a power system engineer and if so what package would be best to learn e.g. Siemens or Allen Bradley? I am of the understanding PLC and SCADA are now more widely used in substation automation and that's why am interested.

Many Thanks,
Martin
 16 July 2012 05:30 PM
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ArthurHall

Posts: 737
Joined: 25 July 2008

SCADA is widely used in substation automation now. However it often uses functions in the protection relays to interface, i.e. the relay acts as the PLC.
The main UK suppliers of relays are Alstom, Siemens and Rayrolle.
Having said that any PLC course would be a good investment as the principles are the same.
 16 July 2012 05:57 PM
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martra

Posts: 29
Joined: 25 July 2008

Thanks for reply, I've looked around and a local training provider does a training course with Siemens PLCs which could be worth a shout. Also i've see their are SCADA training courses but I would of thought that would have been a too big of a jump for me as i've had no prior knowledge of the subject.

Thanks Martin
 17 July 2012 08:06 AM
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ArthurHall

Posts: 737
Joined: 25 July 2008

I would agree about doing the Siemens PLC course. It should give you a good understanding of the concepts and give you some hands on experiance. When you come to market yourself on graduation the more skills you have the better.
 17 July 2012 09:40 PM
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martra

Posts: 29
Joined: 25 July 2008

Cheers, thanks for the insight and am getting on the case of chasing a place on the course.
 18 July 2012 12:41 AM
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alancapon

Posts: 5810
Joined: 27 December 2005

I agree with Arthur. Although you may end up with another manufacturer's equipment, the principals will be the same, even if the hardware and configuration tools are different. An ability to "code" using either a logic diagram or writing in a language such as C++ can also be an advantage (I use both).

Regards,

Alan.
 18 July 2012 02:36 PM
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thomda

Posts: 2
Joined: 16 December 2008

If you go down the road of focussing on a single manufacturer, you might struggle if you end up working on another type straight away.

Perhaps focus on learning the basics of PLC lanquages such as Satement lists, ladder diagrams and flowcharts.
Lets face it, an AND gate is an AND gate no matter what the PLC, and most programmers will use Function Plans or Flow Charts to develop logic, so if you have that as a basic, switching PLCs should not be a challange in later years.

Arthurs comment on substations makes a good point, internal to the bay/breaker in the substation there will be a series of relays each performing the "programmed" job, mini-PLC's in effect, but he is right. The principles and the logic used will be very similar between manufacturers.
 18 July 2012 07:07 PM
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martra

Posts: 29
Joined: 25 July 2008

Cool thanks for the advice guys, I've coverd c++ this year in uni and can't say I enjoyed it. That said it possible more to do with how badly it was handled but the uni. Also I've done work with Zelio and melsoft so I'll take the chance to work with some Siemans systems. As you guys say it very much just learning the basic for me at the moment.
Thanks
Martin
 18 July 2012 11:54 PM
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alancapon

Posts: 5810
Joined: 27 December 2005

I am not sure that many people enjoy C++, but I can recommend "Sams Teach Yourself C in 21 Days (6th Edition)" as a very good well written book. It teaches from the basics to an advanced level, without appearing to "talk down" at the reader, which some of this type of book seem to do. I found this text, together with the equipment manual of the device I was programming (this gave additional commands, and how to refer to I/O points on the device) was all I needed. I still keep the book on my desk as a useful reference source.

Regards,

Alan.
 19 July 2012 05:36 PM
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21703459

Posts: 6
Joined: 02 July 2003

Hi Martin,

It is putting good use of your time. I do take some undergrads when they return during the summer breaks. A quick appreciation of ladder diagram and hand-ons exercise on the PLC is a good starting point. I have used a couple of PLC's , and the OMRON ZEN which comes with a trial software is a popular one. Once you get familiar with ladder programming, you can begin to convert hard-wired relay diagrams to ladder program.

Have a go and tell us how you get on.

Regards,
Terry

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terryjay
 19 July 2012 08:30 PM
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martra

Posts: 29
Joined: 25 July 2008

Cheers, again guys. I've actually got Sam's teach yourself already from my C++ module so i'll have to force myself to work threw the exercises over the next couple of weeks and also download the C++ program again.

Thanks again.
 28 September 2012 06:04 PM
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martra

Posts: 29
Joined: 25 July 2008

Hi guy, I just finished my Siemens course and it was an eye opener of how different it is to previous plc programming I.ve down and one of the biggest challenges was working with the system and making sure the program was set up correctly. Also I found I have a lot to learn on the more advanced methodology of the PLC programming. But hopefully I can pick this up if ever have to use the program regularly in my future graduate role. I've also taken the chance over the summer to do an introduction to HV switching and IOSH managing safely.

Thanks again.
 26 February 2013 11:35 AM
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judio

Posts: 1
Joined: 04 August 2011

please i love plc training can someone guide me on how to start the skill .i am an electrical technician but running my HND program in polytechnic and i do not have any prior knowledge on programing before, but i design control panels such as star delta starter,reversible starter for electric motors.

julius.
 11 March 2013 02:12 PM
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COllson

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Joined: 20 February 2013

could anyone provide a resource on PLC courses to get an idea on where to start?
 11 March 2013 05:05 PM
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dlane

Posts: 690
Joined: 28 September 2007

To be honest I would just use google to find the training places near to where you are.

Some ONC/HNC courses may cover the basics of PLC systems and ladder logic but most training on these systems tends to be based around the specific manufacturers apparatus.

Although the concept of the PLCs may be similar, each manufacturer has their own way of implementing various program instructions and software operation.

Kind regards

Donald Lane
 03 June 2013 09:53 AM
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AkshayK26

Posts: 1
Joined: 03 June 2013

We have emerged as the leading trader and supplier of a broad array of Industrial Products such as Control Panels, PLC, SCADA, AC & DC Drives, HMI, Automation Components and many more items from India. These products are fabricated using premium quality raw material in compliance with the set international quality standards. The offered products are available in various specifications and can be customized as per the requirements of our clients.

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Edited: 06 June 2013 at 11:54 AM by AkshayK26
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