June 14, 2015
June 14, 2015
June 17, 2015
Electrical and Computer
26.526.1 - 26.526.10
Development of a Programmable Logic Controller Training Unit for Engineering Technology CurriculumBackground: Central Washington University offers an undergraduate course in Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC). Until recently, the department relied on out of date, rack mounted PLC equipment to support this class. While this allowed the students to develop PLC based projects, it did not provide the students experience with current technology. For that reason, the department, in particular, the Electronics Engineering Technology program, which supports the class, developed a set of PLC training units utilizing the Allen-Bradley CompactLogix L30ER processor.Purpose: This paper presents an overview of the development cycle of the programmable logic controller (PLC) training units created to support the undergraduate engineering technology programs. It provides a comparative analysis of the previous and updated training units, design considerations, and an overview of the development of the lab sequence and curriculum for the course.Scope/Method: This paper provides a summary of the development cycle of the PLC unit and the curriculum and labs used in the course. In addition, it presents evidence in the form of student feedback from course evaluations that the student experience in the course improved as a result these improvements. This paper does not provide vendor or pricing information for components used to develop the units.Conclusions: The course evaluations are used to conclude that the updated PLC units have improved the student experience in the class. Analysis of three primary metrics from the course evaluations will be used to form this conclusion.
Davis, N., & Pringle, C., & Holden, L., & Whelan, M. L. (2015, June), Development of a Programmable Logic Controller Training Unit for Engineering Technology Curriculum Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.23865
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