For manufacturers in the process industries, the pro- cedure for selecting the best automation technology is not as easy as it once was. In the past it was fairly easy to determine whether a PLC or a DCS was right for your application, because their strengths and weaknesses were well understood. In recent years this has become more dificult, thanks primarily to the advancement of the microprocessor, which has allowed the technologies to merge. Let’s forget about the classic stereotypes and look beyond technology to find the “sweetspots” where each system is best applied.
When considering one of these systems, you should ask yourself these 7 questions, designed to make you think about your company’s operating philosophy and application requirements. We will provide a list of possible answers per question.