PC-Based Control and Automation

Engineers and scientists commonly use data acquisition hardware and software to automate the operation of processes and machinery without human interaction. Applications range from simple on/off actuator control to advanced closed-loop control with multiple inputs and outputs. The following case studies illustrate the flexibility and productivity provided by NI data acquisition (DAQ) hardware and LabVIEW software for PC-based control and automation.

Bloomy Controls Automates Fuel Cell Catalyst Research

Developing a flexible, user-configurable control and data acquisition system based on LabVIEW, so HydrogenSource can automatically control and collect data from a wide range of process control elements in experimental catalyst reactors.

“We estimate that these automation systems using National Instruments products have cumulatively saved in excess of 10,000 man hours of manual control, monitoring, and data collection.” – Robert Hamburger, Bloomy Controls

Designing a Cool/Heat Therapy Strap System

Using LabVIEW and DAQ to control the cooling and heating properties of a thermoelectric device by acquiring the temperature of the thermoelectric surface, applying proportional integral derivative (PID) control to the VI, and using pulse width modulation (PWM) to achieve thermoelectric cooling and heating for therapy purposes.

“With LabVIEW and the USB-6009 data acquisition device, the cool/heat therapy strap system can support the medical field with its flexibility to provide cooling and heating therapy instantly.” – Lee Thean Chai, UCSI University

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Controlling and Automating a Continuous Process Industry Plant

Using LabVIEW software to create an automation and control system that reduces inputs, manpower, power consumption, and downtime.

“The ideas behind our system are an accumulation of years of industrial experience, but they could only become a reality with LabVIEW. LabVIEW turned our dreams into a real system.” – Balvinder Rai, Tajna River Industries Pvt. Ltd.

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