Control perfection: Industrial controls for the digital transformation

17 June 2019

Powerful industrial controls are an important part of the digital transformation in industrial companies. With its comprehensive Sirius portfolio, Siemens can provide the right solutions for this, as Carolin Meuschel explains.

Industrial controls form a sort of central nervous system in industry – nothing works without them. With switching devices, electrical design engineers build solutions for protecting, switching and monitoring machines and plants. That has always been the case, but some new tasks for industrial controls have been added as digitalisation progresses. Everything has to work faster, more flexibly, more efficiently and more safely. Industrial controls are no exception.  To achieve this, Siemens offers the answer to the challenges of digital transformation with its Sirius portfolio. The devices are not only used for switching, protecting and monitoring machines and plants but also for acquiring and analysing machine data.

The portfolio of  industrial controls, primarily known for contactors and circuit breakers, is marketed as the brand Sirius, based on four pillars: Sirius Control, Sirius Hybrid, Sirius Command, and Sirius Monitor. 

Sirius Control – everything for switching and protection: With seven sizes up to 250 kW and numerous additional functions, Sirius Control offers the largest switching and protection portfolio on the market. The completely innovated generation of devices has over 50,000 tested and approved combinations for worldwide use. Universally available CAx data simplify and speed up the electrical design process.

Sirius Hybrid – everything for optimal motor starting: Sirius Hybrid offers the right device for starting motors for any purpose. The scalable portfolio has particularly compact sizes, which are also available as fail-safe versions in the same sizes. Always included: the energy-saving, low-wear hybrid technology that ensures long-lasting devices with a robust finish.

Sirius Monitor – everything for monitoring and reacting: Sirius Monitor devices make it easy to maintain a plant overview, improving availability through data analyses and preventive maintenance. The modular solutions can be flexibly expanded with minimal engineering and training. Sirius Monitor meets international standards and all machine safety standards.

Sirius Command – everything for commanding and signaling: The Sirius Command range has been designed down to the smallest detail to meet the specific requirements of many industries. The rugged products have an attractive modern design and function even under the most adverse conditions. They are also exceptionally easy to work with, especially during installation. Users can integrate communication interfaces flexibly and without additional expense.

Additional services – Integrated Control Panels: An important additional service is the Siemens offer of ‘Integrated Control Panels’. Here, expert knowledge is provided to users at any time to answer questions about frequently changing standards, the latest design data (CAx data), and open interfaces, and to provide perfect support on all issues relating to control panel building. This equips electrical designers to build the perfect control panel for their customers in every respect – from design to function to economical implementation.

Control perfection
As part of Totally Integrated Automation (TIA), the automation technology from Siemens, the Sirius portfolio is an essential driver of the digital transformation and supports the holistic approach of the Digital Enterprise Suite with the consistency of all its components: uniform design, unrestricted compatibility, worldwide deployability, and conformity with standards – control perfection at all levels. The Sirius portfolio is convincingly used in the most varied applications and industries.

The hybrid solution impresses
HES Erkert Präzisionsteile, one of the most important German parts suppliers for the car industry, has made substantial savings by using Sirius Hybrid: the modular motor starter Simatic ET 200SP controls the drives of the conveyor belts between the machine tools. The result: space requirement reduced by one-third due to the compact design, installation work cut by half, and simple engineering in the TIA Portal engineering framework. For Horst Schmid, head of the electrical engineering department, one further criterion is paramount. The motor starter provides important diagnostic information from the field. All these advantages are due to the extensive electronics incorporated into the starters, which ensure that the devices are also deeply integrated into the digitalisation strategy of HES Erkert.  

Blockage of pumps is a recurring problem in waste water disposal. Companies like the British water supplier Anglian Water can spend around 600 euros on each pump to clear such blockages. With around 100 cleaning operations per day, this mounts up to a huge total cost. With the Simocode pro motor management system from the Sirius Monitor portfolio, Anglian Water is able to reduce these costs by up to 70%. To achieve this, the system monitors the currents and the power factor at the pump motor and can ascertain the pump condition from these. If a certain value is exceeded, Simocode pro activates the pump cleaning function, which cleans the pump by reversing the direction of rotation completely automatically. 

Climbing summits with classy design
Leitner ropeways is a leading manufacturer of cableways for urban transit and winter sports. In its cableways, the Italian company pays particular attention to a user-friendly and attractive design. Development of the LeitControl operator control and monitoring system was no exception to this. For that reason, the Sirius Command devices must be able to cope with the tough ambient conditions and also needed to meet high design standards. Their design, which has won several awards, in conjunction with the high degree of protection IP 69K (very high water and temperature resistance) make them ideal for use by Leitner. 

Control panel building made easy
The Siemens manufacturing plant for systems engineering in Chemnitz is the European market leader in control panel building for machine tools. Among other things, switching devices for machine and plant building are manufactured here. The electrical design engineers make use of the Sirius Control portfolio. In this way, design engineers can ensure that the control panels built comply with international standards and can thus be exported to the whole world. Thanks to consistently available engineering data, the Sirius products can be perfectly integrated into the company’s modular panel design.  

Carolin Meuschel is marketing manager Control Products at Siemens Digital Industries.

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