Drives and Controls Magazine

Historian module keeps an eye on machine performance

08 February, 2010

Rockwell Automation has announced a machine-level data historian that helps manufacturers to reduce the risk of machine downtime and achieve continuous process improvements. The FactoryTalk Historian ME application is a solid-state module, hardened for on-machine data collection, which has no moving parts and a low risk of data loss due to network or other system interruptions.

A module (shown above) fits into an Allen-Bradley ControlLogix backplane. The software detects controllers automatically and configures all relevant tags. Communication via the backplane is said to make data collection quicker and provide more detailed information than is possible with traditional, network-connected plant historians.

The application is part of a distributed, tiered architecture that allows employees in different locations and at different levels to view and analyse historical data tailored to their roles. Operators, for example, can view data from the machine they are using while plant-level supervisors can view individual machines or complete lines to build real-time comparisons.

Senior management can use the technology to develop executive dashboards that compare key performance indicators of production activity across several locations.

The software “improves manufacturing intelligence by providing a new level of visibility into production operations,” says product manager, Jan Pingel. “By integrating data from a machine-level historian with data from a plant-level historian, operations can now locate and correct sources of inefficiencies more quickly to improve manufacturing consistency, energy use and first-pass quality.”