Monday, 4 April 2016


Today we will talk about remote connectivity via GPRS/GSM modems to Omron PLCs. There are many PLC applications that require a remote connection, from monitoring data, SCADA control to PLC programming and process data adjustment. All of these applications require a reliable connection in a variety of industrial conditions. Combining the remote connectivity features of an Omron PLC with the flexibility of a wireless modem can save an engineer a costly trip to site or provide a communications link to a hazardous area. With the expansion of GSM & GPRS data services virtually any machine or process controlled by an Omron PLC can benefit from comprehensive two-way communication allowing interrogation, control and adjustment of the process from almost any remote location.

There are three main communication methods:
Two-way SMS communication enables error and warning messages to be sent by text from the machine to a mobile phone. The machine could, for instance, be run or stopped using text messages, and the values within the PLC can be monitored or changed as required.
Emails from the machine to the engineer's inbox give diagnostic information and status reports.
Remote web-browsing allows access to the machine over the internet. This gives an engineer full control over the machine, using a standard web-browser.
Perhaps the simplest way to establish a remote connection to an Omron PLC is through the addition of a Westermo GDW-11 compact, DIN-rail mounting GPS/GPRS modem (RS part number: 539-6031). This unit can be plugged directly into the RS-232C port of any Omron PLC and with the addition of a data-enabled SIM card (to suit the location of the machine); you can be on-line in minutes!

Omron's 'CX-One' programming software suite fully supports modem or internet-based (IP address) connections, configured in seconds. The following application guide produced by Westermo in conjunction with Omron provides detailed information on how to setup, and configure the PLC and GSM modem to achieve remote communication. This includes interface cable wiring details. If you want any assistance - you can reach me in the Contacts page!

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