Our complete collection of free, educational articles for automation and controls engineers covering introductions to important concepts, courses and step by step tutorials.
Articles and tutorials about Factory IO, my favorite simulation environment for learning PLC programming.
Articles explaining important engineering and automation concepts in an easy to understand way.
Articles to teach you everything you need to know to be productive with the C# programming language.
Articles about Rockwell Automation's control solutions including Logix 5000 and Connected Components systems.
A step-by-step guide to installing Factory IO by Real Games on your machine. Factory IO is a cutting-edge 3D simulation environment for simulating industrial automation applications and testing PLC programs from all manufacturers.
A step-by-step guide to installing Connected Components Workbench by Rockwell Automation, the free development environment for Micro800 PLCs, PanelView Component HMIs, Kinetix 300 Servo Drives, and PowerFlex 525 variable frequency drives.
In this post, we learn what RSLinx Classic is, what is used for, and what types of drivers can be configured using RSLinx Classic to set up communication between a programming device and a Logix 5000 system.
A complete step by step tutorial for solving Factory IO's "Mixing Tank (Timers)" scene using Control I/O and a few challenges to test your programming knowledge
In this post we learn the difference between a continuous process and a batch process and discuss the reasons why a manufacturing facility would choose to design a process as a continuous process or a batch process.
An explanation of what PLC programmers do in their day-to-day work during each stage of a project, based on my 5+ years of working as a PLC programmer.
In this post, we learn what a DCS is, what components make up a DCS, and why a DCS is supplied as a single unit to end-users
In this post, I explain visualization in industrial automation including the difference between HMI and SCADA systems and the common features found in visualization applications.
In this post, we compare the various I/O systems available from Rockwell Automation including 1756 ControlLogix I/O, 5069 Compact 5000 I/O, 1769 Compact I/O, 1734 POINT I/O, 1794 FLEX I/O, 1732 ArmorBlock I/O, 1719 Ex I/O, and 1715 Redundant I/O and talk about the questions you should ask when selecting an I/O system for an application.
In this tutorial, I provide you with a complete, step by step guide for integrating SINAMICS drives in TIA Portal projects including how to commission the standard and safety features of SINAMICS drives in Startdrive, how to integrate and control SINAMICS drives in your TIA Portal projects using standard telegrams and blocks, and how to control and visualize the status of SINAMICS drives in a WinCC HMI application.
In this post, we learn how to debug a C# .NET Console application using the Console messages and Visual Studio Code's debugger. We also learn how to use conditional statements to avoid exceptional situations.
In this post, we learn how to use OPC UA to communicate between two PLCs by setting up an S7-1500 as an OPC UA Server with a dedicated server interface and user authentication.
In this post, we compare the various families of PLCs available from Rockwell Automation including the Micro800, CompactLogix, and ControlLogix family of PLCs to understand when each family of PLC can be used in automation applications.
In this post, we take an in-depth look at the Logix 5000 CompactLogix system and the components that make up the system including controllers, I/O modules, and communication modules.
In this part of the series, we learn how to add interactivity to our application. Along the way, we will learn about methods, arrays, and string manipulation in C#.
An introduction to I-Device communication and a step-by-step tutorial for setting up I-Device communication in TIA Portal with two S7 PLCs.
In this post, we take an in-depth look at the Logix 5000 ControlLogix system and the components that make up the system including controllers, I/O modules, and communication modules.
C# From Scratch Part 2.0. In this part of the series, we learn how to set up Visual Studio Code, edit our C# code, run our application through VS Code.
An introduction to Open User Communication for TIA Portal and S7 PLCs and a step-by-step tutorial for sending data between PLCs using the TSEND_C and TRCV_C blocks.
In this part of the series, we learn how to run a C# .NET Console application from the Command Prompt and what happens behind the scenes when you execute the dotnet run command.
Advantages, Disadvantages, and an Application Example of Modbus/TCP Communication in TIA Portal.
In this post, we learn the fundamentals of electric power including how electromagnetism is used to generate both single-phase and three-phase electricity.
This post explains the concepts of and relationship between current, voltage, and resistance in a way that is easy to understand for people who don't have an electrical background or specialization.
In this part of the series, we learn how to create a new C# .NET Console Application using the .NET CLI.
C# From Scratch Part 1.2. In this part of the series, we learn how to interact with .NET using the .NET Command Line Interface, or .NET CLI.
A first look at the security by default features of TIA Portal version 17
A detailed look at how to work with the new CEM programming language available in TIA Portal and the advantages of this new high-level programming language.
C# From Scratch Part 1.1. In this part, we learn how to install .NET on your machine.
A step-by-step guide to working with Fast Commissioning, the new tool for efficiently modifying safety programs in S7-1200F and S7-1500F CPUs available from TIA Portal version 17.
C# From Scratch Part 1.0. In this post, we get an introduction to .NET and the major components that make up .NET.
Part 3 of Software Standardization for OEMs
A first look at the new View of Things (VoT) mechanism for creating web applications for S7-1500 PLCs in TIA Portal v17 and greater.
An introduction to the C# From Scratch series.
Part 2 of Software Standardization for OEMs
Part 1 of Software Standardization for OEMs
How Reducing Engineering and Commissioning Costs Can Dramatically Impact Your Profitability
Thoughts on the value of a well-structured engineering team for engineering managers
A hands-on guide to working with the new Project Trace function available in TIA Portal version 16.
How engineering managers can empower their teams to create more value and reduce costs with systems, standards, and automations
A first look at how to use the S7–1500 Web API to interact with a CPU using JSON RPC2.0 and HTTP Requests
Make your engineering processes more efficient by exchanging, instead of recreating, data used by different engineering systems like the TIA Selection Tool, EPlan Electric P8, and TIA Portal.
By 2025, there will be a shortage of skilled, train people available in the automation sector. Here's what you can do to prepare.
How industrial OEMs and SIs can get a handle on increasingly complex automation software
The value of standardization for industrial OEMs and SIs
Using TIA Portal and the Openness API to reduce engineering cost and time while increasing quality
Advantages, Disadvantages, and an Application Example
The powerful new way to use Openness functions directly in TIA Portal