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DMC at AWC Best Fest in San Antonio
Jason Mayes

DMC at AWC Best Fest in San Antonio

DMC is excited to exhibit at AWC Best Fest on February 21, 2019. This event will take place at Top Golf in San Antonio, Texas. DMC is proud to help sponsor this event. AWC's Best Fest will include four different tech seminars, a technology tradeshow, entertainment with a high-tech driving range and multiple games.  Come check out DMC's table at this event and network with our engineers. Our Tilt Table Demo will be live at our table. Event Details and Registration:...

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Tips for a Successful Synchronous Serial Communication Driver using Siemens SCL
Alex Bernard

Tips for a Successful Synchronous Serial Communication Driver using Siemens SCL

Modern industrial communication is often performed over Ethernet protocols, especially within the Siemens product ecosystem. However, some external devices (especially non-Siemens devices) communicate using serial protocols. Luckily, Siemens provides communication modules and a library of communication functions to facilitate communication. All that said, smooth implementation requires a stable driver which predictably handles requests, responses, and edge cases. I recently implemented such a...

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Mayhem is Loose at DMC St. Louis
Caleb Stoll

Mayhem is Loose at DMC St. Louis

Every month, all DMC offices meet via video conferencing to share information and catch up together. The most anticipated part of the meeting is the office update video. Each DMC office takes a turn updating the rest of the company on their new projects and fun events. They typically close out with a hilarious video.  As a nod to the Allstate “Mayhem” commercials, DMC St. Louis did a parody of the notorious series, but with a factory automation twist. In what could&rsquo...

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Setting up a new Allen-Bradley PLC and HMI: Tips and Tricks
Kevin Best

Setting up a new Allen-Bradley PLC and HMI: Tips and Tricks

In this blog, I’ll walk you through the basic commissioning steps to get a brand-new Allen-Bradley PLC and HMI up and running. All the information covered here is also available in Rockwell’s help documentation, but I tried to distill out the most important bits to get you off the ground as fast as possible. Before we start, you'll need all of the components networked together and powered on. You'll also need a PC with all the relevant Rockwell software installed. Once you...

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Chicago WIT Chapter To Host Panel Discussion of Women in Technology
Molly Graham

Chicago WIT Chapter To Host Panel Discussion of Women in Technology

One of DMC's resident SharePoint and Dynamics 365 experts, Anjali Bharadwa, is also co-chair of the Chicago chapter of WIT or Women in Technology. Anjali will be hosting a WIT panel discussion on February 19th, 2019 from 4-6 PM. Past panel members have included a CEO, Sales Execs, an IT Systems Manager, as well as a Partner of a tech firm. These discussions are a great chance to hear women share their experiences working in technology, ask questions, and network. Wh...

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DMC Holiday Parties: Celebrating Our Biggest Year Yet
Jamie Sorensen

DMC Holiday Parties: Celebrating Our Biggest Year Yet

Every January, the team in each of our offices gathers to celebrate the accomplishments of the previous year with a holiday party. All year, team members look forward to getting dressed up, reflecting on all their hard work together, and spending time with colleagues they don't always work with. It's one of our favorite DMC traditions! This year was no exception. From the opening of our Seattle office, to announcing our next location in Dallas, and hiring a record number of emplo...

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DMC Quote Board - February 2019
Jessica Mlinaric

DMC Quote Board - February 2019

Visitors to DMC may notice our ever-changing "Quote Board," documenting the best engineering jokes and employee one-liners of the moment.

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DMC Boston goes Ice Skating
Karen Hsu

DMC Boston goes Ice Skating

As winter came, DMC Boston's office couldn't wait any longer to hit below freezing temperatures, so the office decided to go ice skating together. The skating activity was favored by just one more vote over the other option, which was a cozy board game night. But who's counting? Activity fund outings are fun events everyone is encouraged to plan and invite other employees and their friends to, and DMC helps cover the cost. DMC's activity fund is an excellent way to b...

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DMC To Lead "Dashboard in a Day" in St. Louis
Rick Rietz

DMC To Lead "Dashboard in a Day" in St. Louis

After leading a Power BI "Dashboard in a Day" Chicago workshop in November and an upcoming Chicago workshop in February, Microsoft has invited DMC to lead a third workshop in St. Louis. On March 27, 2019, Senior Consultant Michael Dannemiller and others from the Digital Workplace Solutions team will lead the Power BI hands-on training workshop at the Microsoft Technology Center in St. Louis from 9 am - 5 pm. The goal of this workshop is to help ...

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Introducing the #DMCSWAG Challenge
Jessica Mlinaric

Introducing the #DMCSWAG Challenge

Here at DMC, we love sporting fun and useful stuff stamped with the company logo. From our DMC Athletics hoodies to our dancing robot, we have a blast designing new items and sharing them with team members, clients, partners, and friends.    So far, DMC SWAG has made it all the way to China and Africa! We'd love to see where in the world DMC SWAG goes next. So, we're introducing a photo contest featuring DMC branded items.  Need DMC SWAG? Email us and we&r...

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How To Disassemble and Fix a Fried S7-1200 PLC
Jirka Hladis

How To Disassemble and Fix a Fried S7-1200 PLC

Don’t you hate it when your coworker inadvertently wires up a 24V PLC to wall power and lets out the magic smoke? Just such a mishap happened in our lab a while back and the broken PLC was sitting around in the junk bin for a while. Figuring there wasn't anything to lose, I decided to try my luck and see if it could be revived.  Fortunately, the Siemens S7-1200 series PLCs are quite easy to disassemble, and I was able to replace the damaged components and restore it t...

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Employee Spotlight: Heather Talbert
Jessica Mlinaric

Employee Spotlight: Heather Talbert

Meet HR Coordinator Heather Talbert! Heather is based in the DMC Chicago office as a member of the Internal Operations team. She helps recruit top talent for DMC and implement internal improvement initiatives, like DMC Cares. Heather loves hanging out with her dog Rosco, who spreads smiles across the Chicago office. Learn more about DMC's company culture.

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Simultaneously Flash 8 ECUs with LabVIEW and Vector
Cecilia Brookshier

Simultaneously Flash 8 ECUs with LabVIEW and Vector

Flashing an ECU can be a time-intensive process, so it’s no wonder that automotive OEMs are looking for ways to speed up production. Luckily, Vector has released a set of C/C# API commands called vFlashStation. This library has the capability to simultaneously flash up to eight ECUs on separate communication channels. Additionally, these APIs are compatible with several application environments, including LabVIEW. Learn vFlashStation API Calls This blog explains how we were able t...

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Using Digital Inputs and Command Data Set 1 to Control a Siemens G120 CU240
Ryan Lake

Using Digital Inputs and Command Data Set 1 to Control a Siemens G120 CU240

I was recently on site with a client to commission a Siemens G120 VFD. This particular VFD was being used to drive a blower motor and inflate an airbag. The client required hard-wired manual control of the motor, in addition to controlling it from the main 1500 PLC. Manual mode control would simply turn the motor on and off at a specified setpoint. Before arriving onsite, DMC decided to use control data set 0 for Profinet control, and data set 1 for hard-wired control. This required some pa...

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DMC Writes a Custom MQTT Driver for Siemens PLCs
Jimmy Condon

DMC Writes a Custom MQTT Driver for Siemens PLCs

DMC has found that more of our customers have the need for their PLCs in remote locations to be able to not only report data to a central server but also be capable of accepting commands from the central server. If this sounds a lot like the Internet of Things, that’s because it is. Only instead of the more common “things” such as light bulbs or thermostats, DMC is connecting large industrial equipment. The PLC library only requires a few blocks to get up and runni...

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Importing CSV Recipe Files into Siemens HMI and Iteratively Downloading Multiple Data Records from HMI into PLC
Andrew Neill

Importing CSV Recipe Files into Siemens HMI and Iteratively Downloading Multiple Data Records from HMI into PLC

Similar parts in production can be processed with small changes by a machine using part data to define variables for each part or set of parts. For example, a machine may need to produce 30 widgets at 90º angle, 20 mm length then 20 widgets at a 45° angle, 15 mm length and so on. The part data can be used to create a list of these operations which the controller will reference to execute the correct instructions to make these resulting parts. Often the controls syste...

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Siemens PLC to Sick IO-Link Sensor Through Beckhoff Coupler
Will Todd

Siemens PLC to Sick IO-Link Sensor Through Beckhoff Coupler

Working at a client site alongside Andrew Neill, we came across an unusual integration scenario. The machine we were providing commissioning support for was equipped with a Siemens 1518 safety controller and had numerous Siemens and Beckhoff components. The hardware setup for one portion of the machine included several Sick IO-Link sensors. These sensors were used to measure the location of mechanical arms on the machine and move them accordingly for different machine setups. Before divi...

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DMC Office Update: Whassup in Houston?
John Michael Frullo

DMC Office Update: Whassup in Houston?

DMC has an all company meeting every month where everyone in our regional offices and our Chicago office gets together via video conferencing or in person to share knowledge, introduce new employees to the company, celebrate anniversaries, and talk about the future.  Each month, we close out the meeting with a much-anticipated video update from one office. This DMC tradition started in our Boston office, and now everyone takes turns. This month, DMC Houston stepped up and ...

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Easy Alarm Generation in RSLogix and FactoryTalk View Studio ME
Kevin Best

Easy Alarm Generation in RSLogix and FactoryTalk View Studio ME

Manually adding alarms in FactoryTalk View can be tedious. When you have a system with lots and lots of devices, as DMC often does, this can become nearly impossible. That’s why during one of our annual FedEx days, DMC engineers built a custom Windows application to do all the grunt work for us. Quick Summary This tool takes in a CSV file of the controller tags, which is easy to generate in RSLogix (Tools -> Export -> Tags and Logic Comments). In this example, we will use any b...

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Redundancy in WinCC + Process Historian Connection
John Michael Frullo

Redundancy in WinCC + Process Historian Connection

Certain control systems require operation 24/7, 365. That is: these systems should always be in action! In such applications, a fault in the controller or computer could prove disastrous. Therefore, redundant systems are introduced to handle automatic fail-over in the case of a primary system fault. SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) systems are a prime candidate for redundant applications, as they monitor and control the status of the entire operation. DMC has worked with sever...

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