Schneider Electric brings a new era of automation control with the Modicon M580


Johannesburg South Africa, 16 April 2019; Schneider Electric’s new high-end Modicon M580 Ethernet programmable automation controller (ePAC) features redundant processors, native Ethernet, and cybersecurity embedded into its very core. It combines native Ethernet capabilities, high performance, high availability for processors and networks, improved industrial cybersecurity, greater flexibility in design and improved agility for operations.

The Internet of things (IoT), is the extension of Internet connectivity into a plethora of devices and everyday objects we rely on to run our homes and businesses. Fitted with sensors and Internet connectivity, these devices can communicate and interact with each over the Web, and can be remotely controlled and monitored.

And the IoT has given rise to the Industrial Internet of things (IIoT), which refers to the billions of industrial devices, ranging from machines in a factory to the systems running oil pipelines that are filled with sensors, connected to wireless networks, and gathering and sharing data. The introduction of inexpensive sensors and high-bandwidth wireless networks means that even the tiniest devices can be connected up, and provided the intelligence that enables them to be monitored and tracked, sharing data and communicating with other devices. And this mountain of data can then be collected and analysed, and acted on in real time, to make better decisions, and to improve processes. As advances in technology make it more cost-effective to deploy Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), industries will need to acquire a strategic approach to integrating new sensor data with pre-existing data environments.

And the competitive advantage this data can bring, means that today, more than ever, industrial organisations are looking for ways to integrate controls, automation, and data analytics visualisation software to reap the benefits of IIoT, and gain operational and competitive benefits for their business.

With this in mind, Schneider Electric has spent decades developing solutions to help manufacturing organisations reap the benefits from their systems and harness the true power of the Internet. Firstly, the company’s ExoStructure empowers end-user customers to implement scalable and converged IT/OT solutions to deliver innovation at every level. This architecture and interoperable technology platform unites energy automation and software, ensuring that end-users are enjoy enhanced value around safety, reliability, efficiency, sustainability and connectivity.

The company’s commitment to innovation around digitisation over the last twenty years, has also inspired the development of IIoT solutions for edge control such as the Modicon M580, its flagship controller with Ethernet at its core, comments Marc Ramsay, VP – Industry Business at ‎Schneider Electric.

Moreover, a platform that optimises open networks, the M580 ePAC, provides industrial plant operators with the power to design, implement, and run a process that actively employs the benefits of open networking, helping customers to access consistent and accurate data for timely decisions, and reduce downtime with detailed insight into alarms and events. In addition, it enables customers to quickly diagnose and identify the root causes of issues, as well as make informed decisions about plant operations and energy management.

The M580 with the Achilles Level 2 Certification, was built with security, performance, and sustainable evolution in mind, as is the most advanced PAC ever designed by Schneider Electric in terms of industrial cybersecurity. It is tested according to Ethernet services and protocols such as ARP, ICMP, TCP, IP, and others, and firmware integrity is checked at every start-up and is compiled and stored in-memory, preventing its decompilation by an outsider.

Mark Williams, director of the Plant Solutions Competency Centre at Schneider Electric, says: “The M580 ePAC is leading the next generation of PACs that leverage open and fast Ethernet communications. Powerful performance is a core feature of the M580 ePAC, and the PAC delivers an incredibly high level of computing power through a multicore processor, allowing high speed connectivity to network devices, while enhancing resistance to cybersecurity threats.

In addition, upgrading to the M580 ePAC requires no additional investment in wiring, software development, or training.

The M580 ePAC is also compatible with the xBus communications of the Modicon M340 and Premium PLC. Users can easily switch between the different controller sizes in the Modicon range without changing their I/O racks and cabling.

Modicon M580 ePAC has been built for PlantStruxure a collaborative and integrated automation architecture developed by the manufacturing giant. PlantStruxure brings together the telemetry, PLC/SCADA, and DCS offerings with complete lifecycle services to help make operations more efficient and seamless. From initial design to modernisation, PlantStruxure transparently connects the control, operation and enterprise levels of the business.

To learn more about the Modicon M580, ePAC and other PLC and Dedicated Controllers here.

About Schneider Electric

Schneider Electric is the global specialist in energy management and automation. With revenues of ~€25 billion in FY2016, our 160,000+ employees serve customers in over 100 countries, helping them to manage their energy and process in ways that are safe, reliable, efficient and sustainable. From the simplest of switches to complex operational systems, our technology, software and services improve the way our customers manage and automate their operations. Our connected technologies reshape industries, transform cities and enrich lives. At Schneider Electric, we call this Life Is On.

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We have set up an ambitious program called Access to Energy, that combines investment in entrepreneurship, technological solutions and training:
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Schneider Electric South Africa

Marketing and Communications Manager for Global Marketing
Prisca Mashanda

Tel: +27 (0)11 245 6400

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Litha Communications

Lauren Holley

Tel: +27 (0)11 484 7663  

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