SolarVac® Controls & Automation
SolarVac® control systems are a new generation of enhanced controls and automation developed to simplify the operation of vacuum furnaces and expand their capabilities.
SolarVac® controls institute a Programmable Logic Control (PLC) system with PC based operator interface, recipe storage, alarm management, supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA). The SolarVac® control system was created after extensive collaboration with numerous captive and commercial heat treat operations identifying key functions and controls that would enhance the automation, repeatability, safety, energy conservation and programming capabilities of existing and new furnace control systems. The extensive memory capacity allows an abundance of unique cycle recipes that can be stored for future use and programmed effortlessly either locally at the furnace or remotely programmed from virtually any location utilizing essential protective security features.
SolarVac® Control System Package Features and Benefits:
- Allen-Bradley CompactLogix PLC
- Large color touch panel HMI with an industrial PC control Windows® 10 utilizing Wonderware InTouch supervisory-level software
- Digital recording with Eurotherm hi-resolution color screen, Ethernet Communications, multiple channels and Advanced Data Archiving
- Vacuum and partial pressure monitoring and controlling
- Digital Trim Control of independent heating zones for precise temperature uniformity throughout the furnace working zone
- Internally mounted work thermocouples for accurate part temperature measurement with advanced work temperature alarming
- Remotely monitor recipe status and alarms; receive real-time notifications and manage system operations
- Modifications and troubleshooting capabilities by Solar Manufacturing engineers and technicians remotely through TeamViewer
- Maintenance screen displaying run time indicators of critical components, reducing the need for comprehensive maintenance monitoring and log books
- Multiple levels of security to permit access by users based on authorization or security clearance
- Intuitive HMI design including Home, Maintenance, Recipe, Alarm and Work Thermocouple Screens
Upgrade to the SolarVac® Polaris Control System Package for these Features and Benefits:
- Mass flow controllers and modulating vacuum pumping valve for enhanced partial pressure flow rate and pressure control
- Capability to backfill the vacuum chamber with a mixture of gases and adjust gas cooling speed for optimal quenching performance
- Increase thermochemical process capabilities including low pressure carburizing, nitriding and combustible gas usage
- Digital recording and monitoring of voltage and amperage of the hot zone including smart alarming for heating element failures
- Increased work thermocouple recording capabilities from 12 up to 48 channels
- Simplified calibration of the PLC analog signals directly from the HMI
- Vacuum system integrity easily checked with an automatic leak up test function
- ConserVac® control system reducing energy consumption of pumping system for power saving capabilities
- Increased CPU memory for virtually limitless unique recipe storage
The home screen shows a comprehensive overview of furnace operations with positive visual indicators highlighting operations. The user can manipulate sub-menus from this screen for other furnace functions.
The maintenance screen provides the operator/maintenance personnel with visual indicators for run times on critical components. This system reduces the need for comprehensive maintenance monitoring and log books. The maintenance indicators are interconnected with the furnace alarm screens and alarm logs.
Recipes are created through the HMI, using graphical interface. This user friendly system requires no programing experience and allows all setpoints to be clearly defined. The SolarVac control system allow for 24 segments in each recipe.
Clearly defines active and past alarms with audible and visual indicators. The alarm log notes the time and date of the alarm and the acknowledgement timestamp.
Work Thermocouple Screen
Shows real time status of the work thermocouples currently being used as a graphical display and a numerical value. Thermocouples can be disabled or enabled through this screen.