System Integration & Control Systems Design

Siemens, Dow and MxD develop automation test bed

September 2021 System Integration & Control Systems Design

Siemens is collaborating with Dow to showcase the future of automation with a process industry test bed at MxD, a state-of-the-art advanced manufacturing institute and innovation centre in Chicago. This new test bed offers a hands-on demonstration of how innovative software and IoT come together with hardware to accelerate digitalisation for the process industries. Companies can now see first-hand how to design, monitor and maintain their products more effectively, efficiently and even remotely, using data and digital tools.

This new test bed offers a glimpse of how Siemens is helping customers prepare for the future of process automation. From web-based process control on the plant floor with a tablet, to global collaboration in real-time with integrated modular automation, digitalisation of the process industries will continue to blur the lines between the digital and real worlds. For the connected mobile worker, augmented reality glasses and tablets can offer digitalised documentation for quicker and easier access to safety manuals and maintenance forms that can boost productivity, R&D; and compliance.

Employing a comprehensive selection of automation technology, Siemens is helping bring the test bed to life. Simatic PCS neo process control technology, Siemens’ DCS, provides operators simple and secure access, making remote operation easier than ever before. Maintenance teams benefit from device-independent access, with actionable diagnostic and maintenance information accessible from their tablets, laptops, or multi-monitor stations. For engineering, efficient web-based collaboration opens new possibilities for working in parallel. Whether it is hardware planning, control logic, or operator displays, all tasks can be engineered in any workflow with flexibility that not only adapts to the availability of staff, but to the location as well. Integrated into Simatic PCS, Siemens’ smart field instrumentation oversees the operation of the process and provides advanced health, operational and diagnostic data to ensure reliable and safe operation.

The Siemens Xcelerator portfolio of software and services provides the digital fabric that enables the test bed design, simulation, commissioning and process operations, as well as analysis of IoT data. Its Mendix low-code application development platform drives business transformation by leveraging real-time sensor and asset data to provide actionable information. Xcelerator enables workers to gain digital skills as they further innovate the test bed.

Dow, Siemens, MxD and Siemens’ integrator partner, DMC, collectively bring transformative workforce benefits to the process industries at a time when companies are accelerating their digitalisation plans and remote accessibility is becoming more of a staple with the on-going Covid-19 pandemic. Digitalising the process industries today can help create a safer work environment for plant workers and better products for their customers.

MxD’s factory floor already features some of the most advanced manufacturing equipment in the world.

For more information contact Larry O’Brien, ARC Advisory Group, +1 339 793 3317,,

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