Drives and Controls Magazine
Rockwell releases its first machine-mounting controller
Published:  24 January, 2014

Rockwell Automation has announced its first machine-mounting safety controller, promising that it will simplify system architectures and save panel space. The Allen-Bradley Armor GuardLogix PAC (programmable automation controller) is a multi-use controller in a hardened package that can be installed directly onto a machine.

The IP67-protected PAC is SIL 3, PL(e) and Cat 4 rated. As well as reducing the number of components needed in the machine’s control cabinet, Rockwell says it will cut wiring time and increase uptime by allowing faster maintenance and repair using pre-configured, quick-connect systems and simpler wiring layouts.

“With this controller, manufacturers can tap the power of our information-enabled Integrated Architecture system in a simple-to-use, but fully loaded on-machine controller,” says Geoff Sieron, Rockwell’s GuardLogix controller product manager. “Additionally, as manufacturing control systems evolve, our customers are replacing ageing equipment with simplified systems. Quick-connect cabling greatly streamlines system wiring so the system is easier to install, troubleshoot and maintain. This can be especially crucial to machine- and equipment-builders looking to improve time-to-market, testing and commissioning.”

The PAC provides access to a controller-mode switch. It includes a USB port, an SD memory card slot, and a power-supply switch, along with 24V DC power pass-through to supply power to other Rockwell On‑Machine products. Power can be routed from one machine device or module to another, eliminating the need for a power supply for each device and simplifying the system architecture.

Rockwell's IP67-protected GuardLogix PAC can be mounted on a machine

Innovative mounting tabs can be rotated vertically or horizontally, giving flexibility on where and how the product can be mounted. The controller has 4MB of application code storage space and two EtherNet/IP device-level ring (DLR) connections. It is programmed using Rockwell Software’s Studio 5000 design and engineering environment.