Coming soon: new EPL300!

Between custom and standard, a virtuous synthesis.

Companies interested in purchasing process control devices in industrial applications evaluate since ever the solutions available on the market by taking into consideration two main factors: on the one hand the perfect technical and functional correspondence to their own standards, systems and processes; on the other a competitive cost for development but also for maintenance and future updates.

The challenge for these technological solutions is to meet the needs both of technicians and of purchasing managers. We manufacturers too must balance out the employment of resources devoted to the development and the production of these tools, but also to the technical support needed during the entire product and systems life cycle.

As we can easily deduce, in order to conduct these evaluations, the degree of differentiation of each product and the quantity of supply required are fundamental. As many other companies in our sector, also Pixsys initially started by developing tailor-made solutions for the client: highly customized products in terms of features and quantities. However, soon on a business level this strategy turned out to be unsustainable: too often the client had to rethink his requests in progress, thereby messing up our previous efforts to optimize resources, meet efficiently the demand and guarantee a satisfactory return on investment in terms of time, money and energy. This resulted sometimes in a partial reciprocal dissatisfaction, both felt by the client company and by us suppliers.

This is the reason why over time the market has generally been led towards an opposite trend: we suppliers have gradually developed more and more complete catalogues with standard products and solutions. These allowed a wide choice, speed in the creation of prototypes and a decrease of costs and development times; client companies have positively welcomed this type of offer, and the activity of designing customized boards has been concentrated only on customers with medium/high quantity needs and rigorous attention to cost control and to the perfect matching with very specific features.

A few years ago, in Pixsys, we have wondered: why don’t we try to work on a third approach, by putting together some pros of the standard production and some positive aspects of the custom production? Thus, the first EPL101 line was born: we can define this new concept as a modular standard, that is a board model that we offer largely in a standard version, but with the possibility to easily customize some details, characteristics, configurations. To sum up, the effective synthesis between a standard and a custom board: a standard board that can be customized. The market has immediately appreciated it.

Therefore we have now decided to implement and update this range with two new EPL300 models: for applications in AC current (110/220 Vac power supply and Relay outputs) or in DC current (12/24 Vdc power supply and 24 Vdc/2W static outputs).

The basic board with power supply and power control can be implemented with the addition of different digital/analog resource slots used to read the digital or analog inputs (probes and process sensors) besides control solutions for inverters or actuators (analog outputs and/or pulse train). The availability of a specific slot for the CPU connectivity also guarantees the scalability of computing performance and simplifies future hardware and software upgrades.

The Logic-lab development tool is ideal for creating the logic application in compliance with widespread IEC61131-4 standard: it is already supporting other Pixsys PLC series, this allows to rely on existing libraries and to take advantage of contributions generated by the great community of designers and system integrators.

EPL300, the smart development of control electronics.