PLC-5 and SLC500 controllers have been around a long time but there comes a time when they no longer provide the capability that modern production systems demand. Support for these systems becomes very expensive as spare parts become harder or impossible to obtain, and people with the right experience leave the field. Though refurbished equipment may be available from specialty companies, its quality is always an issue. There is simply no way to equate its reliability with that of a new control module that has a full warranty. Manufacturers may no longer support their old PLC-5 software, making programmability and security a very real concern. Eventually it becomes time to upgrade to the current technology and Grantek is ready to help.

Grantek’s extensive industry experience ensures that your system will experience minimal downtime during migration of legacy systems to new controllers. Grantek is a certified Rockwell integrator; we are experts at replacing out-of-date PLC-5 equipment with current Rockwell ControlLogix equipment. We can help you replace even older systems you may still have in production if necessary, such as PLC 2 and PLC3.

We start by auditing your current system to determine whether it is actually providing the functionality needed. This determines the extent of the equipment requiring upgrading, including an analysis of whether some new design is required. We can rewrite your control processes as part of the migration, improving efficiency and maintainability going forward.

After discussing your requirements, Grantek meets with machine/process operators and maintenance staff at your facility after which we analyze the PLC programming code and any other inputs that interact with the system. We also perform network analysis to move legacy communication protocols onto Ethernet where possible.

Our next phase is to do the necessary re-engineering, including interactive panel design, custom panel build, equipment procurement, risk analysis, and creation of the site acceptance test. We can provide recommendations on upgrading system sensors and adding/improving safety systems to comply with current industry standards.

Further, we will analyze your system documentation for completeness and accuracy. Grantek will provide accurate updated documentation reflective of the new system after migration is complete. Complete and accurate system documentation is extremely important but too many companies do not maintain it, thus increasing the difficulty of supporting the system as time passes.

During the design and build process we perform dry-runs to ensure performance prior to actual installation. This helps ensure a seamless build at your plant. Grantek Manufacturing IT Engineers are certified in various platforms and fully capable of ensuring connectivity between your existing network and your new ControlLogix systems. The new modules are designed for simplified integration and a number of communication modules are available to meet your specific needs.

Advantages of working with Grantek include our extensive experience, our close relationship with Rockwell Automation which ensures that our engineers receive ongoing training on current Rockwell products; our Cisco network certifications; and our vast experience with Festo, SMC, SICK, and other sensor manufacturers.

Grantek’s systematic and holistic approach to legacy system migration provides an upgraded system that will do what it has always done, but with reduced risk of failure and better performance. It will also be easier and less costly to maintain as your production environment changes.