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Choosing Remote Controls for Automated Control Systems

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Automation is used in most industries to some extent. However, even in fields that are highly automated, those automated control systems still have basic non-automated requirements that workers need to take care of. For example, workers may need to manually turn certain systems on and off, set thermostats, unplug equipment and so on. Remote controls make these tasks easier as workers don't have to run across a factory to change automated control system settings. However, you'll need to ensure the remote control you want to use can function given its location. If it doesn't, your response time to a problem with the automated controls could be inadequate, and you may end up with a broken system or damaged products.

Match Signal Type to Distance and Clearance

The signal type of the remote control system has certain distance and clearance requirements between the remote location and the equipment location. For example, infrared remote controls need a clear line of sight to work — nothing can block the receiver if you want the infrared remote to work — and can't be more than a certain distance away. With something like infrared, however, that distance is usually rather short. If you can't make the remote work, you might not be able to change a setting on the automated controls in time to avert a mistake or even a disaster.

For longer-distance needs or areas where there are obstacles between the remote and the receiver for the automated controls, wired industrial remotes may be better; they're still remote controls because they let you control something from a different location, but they're wired to equipment that relays the signal to the automated controls some distance away.

Yes, You Want Battery Backups

If you have a wired industrial remote control, you should get a battery backup for it. As summer temperatures get hotter and power plants switch to different forms of electrical generation, the possibility of a power outage is higher than in previous years. Rather than lose the ability to send signals, battery backups for the remote (and hopefully a generator backup for the automated controls) let you continue working as usual.

If you want to install a remote control for an automated control system at your facility, you'll need an electrician to install the devices. This is vital if the remote will be wired as you do not want a short to damage the automated controls. To learn more, contact a company that services automation control systems.