June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
26.137.1 - 26.137.12
Academia and Industry Partnership: Building State-of-the-Art Industrial Control and Automation LaboratoryProgrammable Logical Controller (PLC) is an integral part of nearly all today’s industrialprocesses. A PLC is a digital computer used for automation of electromechanical processes andis designed for multiple inputs and output arrangements, extended temperature ranges, immunityto electrical noise, and resistance to vibration and impact. The most up-to-date PLCs haveendless functionality including programming using functional blocks, multitasking, andcommunication capabilities, and therefore are widely employed by the industrial sector. It is alsovery common that PLC systems are integrated with robotic solutions to enhance automationprocesses. As a result, the skills of newly employed industrial workers must include theknowledge of PLC, controls, and robotics. In addition, the knowledge on integration of all thesetools in one efficient automated process suiting the requirements of modern industrialenvironment is crucial.UNIVERSITY prepares the graduates with the skill sets which are up-to-date and relevant to themodern technologies widely employed by the modern industrial world. We strive to train ourgraduates on the most up-to-date laboratory equipment so they can implement their knowledgeon the day one once employed. UNIVERSITY collaborates with NUCOR Steel to update thecurrently outdated PLC laboratory with the state of the art equipment with the goal of providingour students with the best training solution possible. The EET program at UNIVERSITYcurrently offers two PLC courses: EET 3373 Introduction to Programmable Controllers and EET4373 Advanced Programmable Controllers. The ECE department offers EE3261 ControlSystems and EE 4262 Digital and Non-linear Control. The EET courses have a significant labcomponent and stress hands-on use of PLC’s, while ECE courses have more of a mathematicalflavor and also include a lab experience. The new lab facility would allow EET 3373 and EET4373 to be revised and enhanced to make the courses appropriate for both ECE and EETstudents. Students from both disciplines would benefit from using the most current PLCtechnology and would have the opportunity to interface the PLC’s with a new and muchexpanded set of digital and analog devices that are used in industry. In addition, the newequipment will allow us to develop industry-relevant learning materials, and provide state-of the-art knowledge and experience to students utilizing the facility. This knowledge and experiencewill result in a well-educated graduate with practical hands-on experience designing,configuring, and troubleshooting industrial control systems, with an obvious benefit toemployers of these graduates.In this articles we discuss the benefits of academia and industry collaboration, the structure ofnew industrial control and automation laboratory, state-of-the art PLC and mechatronics stationsintegrated with FANUC robots, and resulting curriculum modifications.
ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2015 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015