PLCs, DCSs & Controllers

Controller for robotic systems

June 2021 PLCs, DCSs & Controllers

Omron has announced the launch of its first ‘Robotic Integrated Controller’, the new NJ501-R, based on its leading NJ series of machine controllers for industrial automation. With the integrated controller, it is possible to automate advanced and complex manual work and simulate the design and modification of production facilities in a virtual environment and conduct maintenance remotely. The new machine controller offers real-time synchronisation between all automation equipment, including robots, vision components, drives and safety equipment.

Improving the speed and accuracy of production, users can simulate entire production lines without having to deploy physical equipment. This simplifies maintenance and reduces time-to-market during the design, planning, commissioning and changeover processes.

Many industries are facing labour shortage issues and the world is experiencing a turning point in how society conducts business, due to health concerns. As a result, the demand for more advanced automation with robots has increased, along with a growing demand for digitalisation.

Traditionally, automation equipment for production facilities has been controlled by a number of different controllers creating a challenge to set up and coordinate the speed and timing between various devices. It was very difficult to verify a process design in advance prior to construction of a machine or production line. Result: after equipment is commissioned, adjustments need to be made onsite along with specification changes, resulting in a significant amount of extra work.

As a manufacturer of motion sensors, robotics and safety equipment for fully automated production lines, Omron has now addressed these issues by seamlessly integrating the control equipment.

Integration of control and the construction processes

The new controller automates processes that require precision timing design. The robots and equipment are now controlled and fully synchronised in real-time by a single controller, improving device performance and achieving higher throughput levels.

The programming language has been unified for robot and machine control, making it easy to simulate a production line with a single software program. The system visualises the process, reducing man-hours for process design and operational verification by up to 50%. Furthermore, all of this can be conducted remotely. Through Sysmac Studio’s user interface, users can design, program, troubleshoot, operate and maintain future automation systems from anywhere in the world.


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