The “Low-Cost“ Panel for your automation

While PLC’s have become cheaper in the last years, the prices for the touch panels haven’t changed at all.
Possible price reductions  
by the used processors  have been swept off by increasing requirements at the HMI design, which leads to the use of more powerful processors.

The new Cortex M3/M4 – SpiderControl embedded design brings now a breakthrough and implements functions as Alpha-Blending, transparency und capacitive multi touch, which are not fully supported by a standard Windows CE OS.

A new category of Web-(Server) Panels. How is this possible?

Until now, the hardware-architecture of a TFT-Display controller was always based on the design for a common PC: Microprocessor, external DRAM and Flash as multiple peripheral components and on top a graphical operating system as WinCE or Linux.

Even when the used Chips have become cheaper, the required multilayer design of the PCB shows a certain complexity, which results in a limit in further cost reductions.

Now the first devices have entered the market, based on an up to now rarely used embedded-microcontroller-architecture. Since microcontroller are used in huge quantities in nearly all electrical devices, they allow for very very cost-effective designs. The new highly integrated microcontrollers, as ARM Cortex M3/M4, have exactly enough memory and functions to realise a display controller, for implementing the panel function on such a lean system. The MicroBrowser was designed for such low footprint applications and can easily be ported on such a system without the need of an operating system.

This allows for the first time TFT-Panels for less than 100 Euro on the market.

How can a user benefit from this ?

If you use a CODESYS Webvisu or a SpiderControl-OEM-Product, you can easily connect the compatible MicroBrowser to the WebHMI of your PLC. No special effort is needed.

If the PLC hasn’t an integrated webserver, connect it by using a fieldbus protocol as for example ISO-TCP for Simatic or Modbus is another option.

In this case, the webserver resides on the panel and can be accessed by any HTML5 or SpiderControl capable client/Browser as a Smartphone, Tablet or PC.

Are Software-Redesigns required?

The company iniNet as the producer of the SpiderControl software can offer the complete HMI redesign for a fix price. The costs are calculable and there is no further risks. As a Bonus, you will get “free of charge“ the connectivity to smartphones and into the Cloud if this is desired.

Which devices are available?

When using Web-HMI, you are not bound to a specific supplier. There are different companies which offer panels from 4.3“ up to 15“, in resistive as in capacitive glass touch technology.

MicroBrowser Panels and WebServer Panels based on the Cortex M design are available from 4.3" up to 15".

Some samples:

Supplier:

You can obtain  panels based on the new Cortex M3/M4 design from several companies. We will send a list on your request.