Friday 12 September 2014

Suite of integrated software components launched!

Industrial automation manufacturer Opto 22 has announced PAC Project 9.4, an upgrade to its PAC Project suite of software applications and utilities that provide control programming, HMI development, OPC connectivity, and database integration. This latest PAC Project upgrade supports Opto 22’s new HART protocol SNAP I/O modules, adds the option of logging HMI data to SQL and other ODBC databases, and uses Unicode (UTF-16) text to support Asian, Middle Eastern, and other languages in an HMI. Also, all PAC Project software components now work on PCs running Microsoft Windows 8.1. PAC Project is part of the Opto 22 SNAP PAC System, an integrated system of hardware and software for industrial control, energy management, remote monitoring, and data acquisition applications.

HART SNAP I/O Module Support

PAC Control, PAC Project’s flowchart-based programming application, and other PAC Project components add support for Opto 22’s new HART protocol SNAP I/O analog input and output modules. HART is the most widely used digital communications protocol in process automation, and process engineers and other end users can use new HART-specific commands in PAC Control to exchange status and command data with HART “smart devices” such as field-mounted process transmitters and analyzers. Data from smart devices can be incorporated into a control system just like the analog, digital, and serial signals received from other SNAP I/O modules. This information can be used by the automation system as well as other enterprise systems to increase uptime, improve productivity, and enhance safety.

Database Data Logging and Unicode Support
PAC Display, PAC Project’s HMI development and runtime application, can now optionally write data from trends, historic logs, and operator logs to an ODBC database. This makes realtime control system and plant-floor data readily available for ERP (enterprise resource planning), MRP (manufacturing resource planning), and other business systems. Supported databases include MySQL, Microsoft Access, and Microsoft SQL Server. Database data logging is only available in PAC Display Professional.

PAC Display also adds support for the Unicode (UTF-16) text standard, which expands the languages that can be used in a PAC Display HMI. On-screen objects such as trends, windows, buttons, and labels can now use text from many different languages, including Asian, Middle Eastern, and other languages with non-Roman character sets. Data logs that record information from trends, alarms and other sources can also use these character sets.

All PAC Project software components now support Microsoft Windows 8.1 (both 32-bit and 64-bit versions). Microsoft Windows 8.0 is not supported.

Pricing and Availability
PAC Project 9.4 software will be available September 22, 2014. PAC Project 9.4 Basic is free for download or with purchase of any SNAP PAC controller. It includes control programming and configuration software, HMI development and runtime applications, and an EtherNet/IP communication tool. PAC Project 9.4 Professional is available at a list price of $999 USD and adds a software-based controller for PC-based control, an OPC server, an application for exchanging controller data with enterprise databases, and functionality for upgrading from Opto 22 legacy hardware. PAC Project Professional is required for controller redundancy.

Individual PAC Project Professional software components—PAC Control Professional, PAC Display Professional, SoftPAC, OptoOPCServer, and OptoDataLink—are also available separately at a list price of $399 USD each. All PAC Project components, both Basic and Professional, come with free training and free product support.

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