Category Archives: IoT Software

PLC Training Series – Tutorial for Everyone


Invented in 1968 by Dick Morley, the programmable logic controller (PLC) is a simple rugged industrial computer. This free plc training series is designed for everyone to learn about these controllers. PLCs are constantly evolving and continue to be the best option for a variety of industrial automation applications.
PLC Training Series - Tutorial for Everyone
Even though the PLC is changing, core items remain the same. We will be discussing this in more depth for each of the components mentioned in the picture above. Let’s get started learning about PLCs. Keep on Reading!

Raspberry Pi Serial Port Programming


Node-RED will be used on the Raspberry Pi 4 to communicate serial Modbus RTU to a Solo process temperature controller and Click PLC using twisted pair RS485. This will be done on the same serial network so the devices will be daisy-chained together on the two wires.
Raspberry Pi Serial Port Programming
We will be reading the PV (present value) and SV (set value) of the Solo temperature controller and then writing these values into the Click PLC. An SV value will then be read from the Click PLC and if it has changed, the value will be written to the SV of the Solo controller. Let’s get started. Continue Reading!

Node-RED Modbus TCP Handling Errors


Node-RED Modbus TCP can recover from communication errors automatically. Options are available to you the programmer to continue the Node-RED flow upon detection of these errors.

Broken Ethernet cable, Modbus Server power, and Node-RED Client offline are just a few of the errors that can occur on the industrial plant floor. Our Node-RED program must account for and be tested for each of these conditions.
We will be communicating Modbus TCP (Ethernet) to our Click Plus PLC. Using the catch node we will detect and display errors that may occur. Let’s get started. Continue Reading!

Simple Click Data Logging – Node-RED


We will now be looking at simple data logging using a Click PLC with an Ethernet port. Node-RED will be used to communicate to the controller via Modbus TCP protocol. Information collected will be then stored in an SQLite SQL database. A Raspberry Pi 4 single-board computer will be used for the Node-RED collecting and storing. The update time will be two times a second (500 mSec). This method is ideal for quickly determining how things are operating.

Analysis or display of the information will be done with a spreadsheet. The spreadsheet will be run on a windows computer. Let’s get started. Continue Reading!

Waveshare USB to Serial PC Installation


We will be installing an industrial USB to RS485 converter on our computer. The Waveshare USB to serial port is a 2-wire USB to RS-485 serial communication adapter for RS485 use. It does not require an external power supply or complicated configuration.

It has a Type A (plug) USB connector for the computer side and screw terminals for the RS485 connections. This is an industrial USB to RS485 converter that has an FT232RL chip inside. It features embedded protection circuits such as lightning-proof, resettable fuse, ESD (Electrostatic Discharge) protection, and TVS (Transient Voltage Suppression) diode, etc. All of these features are packed within a small form size.

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We will be installing the driver for this USB to serial converter and connecting it to our computer. Node-RED will be used to communicate Modbus RS485 protocol to a Solo process temperature controller. Let’s get started. Continue Reading!