Red Lion Controls has expanded its Graphite series of Human Machine Interface operator panels with two new plug-in communication modules that will permit greater applications.
Designed for use with Graphite HMIs, which already support more than 300 major industrial protocols, the new modules provide greater communication and connectivity so customers can add HMI uses to automation applications such as lift control, embedded door controls and HVAC equipment.
Originally developed for in-vehicle networking of passenger cars, the new modules can also be used for heavy duty construction vehicles, trains and rail vehicles, maritime equipment and engine controllers. When added to Graphite HMI operator panels, these modules remove the need for external communication gateways, saving time and money by simplifying the programming and installation costs, Red Lion Controls said in a news release.
“From factories to extreme remote locations, Red Lion’s highly successful Graphite series is the industry’s first rugged HMI to allow customers to easily connect, monitor and control processes across a broad range of industries,” said Jeff Thornton, director of product management at the company. “With this expansion, we’re adding a new chapter of modular functionality to our Graphite offering.”
Launched last year, Red Lion’s Graphite HMIs offer a built-in Web server that enables users to monitor and control applications via PCs, tablets or smartphones. SMS text-messaging and email alerts provide early warning of process issues, which helps avoid costly downtime, the release said.
In addition, the ease of conversion lets programmers select 13 or more simultaneous protocols from a list of more than 300 to integrate devices such as PLCs, drives, barcode readers and panel meters.