iX meets CODESYS in new technology investment

The right timing, powerful software and a strong demand. These are three driving forces that have motivated Beijer Electronics' development department to create a whole new groundbreaking HMI based technology - iX HMI SoftControl.

On the outside, iX HMI SoftControl appears to be an unusually slim operator panel, loaded with the HMI software iX. But what’s new with this technology isn’t visible to the naked eye. On the inside of the panel is hidden a complete control system in the form of advanced CODESYS soft control.

Tommy Håkansson is Chief Technology Officer at Beijer Electronics and he describes how customers looked for products that can be programmed with CODESYS , the leading hardware- independent IEC 61131-3 based development tool on the market today.
“We have chosen the most natural thing for us - to put CODESYS in our iX HMI and get the best of both worlds.”

System development outside and in
Soft control is nothing new in the world of automation. The strength of iX HMI SoftControl lies in the combination with the premium iX HMI solution. It provides better opportunities to develop an effective operator interface with the user in focus and then integrate control via software.
“Being able to create an intuitive operator interface that meets operators' expectations for high quality graphics and intuitive navigation will help to create valuable competitive advantages for our customers” says Tommy Håkansson.

A smooth development process
Before deciding on CODESYS, Beijer Electronics tested all competitors in a process that commenced in 1996. The final choice of CODESYS was based on the fact that this technology has become the de facto standard in the industry in recent years. The open standard softwares iX and CODESYS work well side by side, thanks to the similarities between them.

“Customers understand modern operator interfaces such as iX HMI and they know CODESYS They have embraced the technology directly and that fact that it's been quiet on the support side indicates the highest marks for us” explains Tommy Håkansson.

Effectivization at several levels
Lars Celano is Manager Control Systems at Beijer Electronics. He explains that iX HMI SoftControl makes it possible to build more efficient automation solutions much faster. He describes the advantages:
“Two softwares that can exchange data easily between each other create streamlined systems that are faster to develop and easier to debug. The costs of components and wiring are reduced. The need for support is rationalized while operational reliability is enhanced through the centralization of data and administration. Combining iX HMI SoftControl with remote I/Os delivers fantastic performance too.”

Design sells
Lars Celano believes strongly in combining the self-developed iX HMI solution with a well-established program like CODESYS soft control:
“The look of industrial products and how intuitive they are to use play an important role in the selection of products today. In addition to high performance, panels are expected to have a stylish and consistent design with scalable applications. iX HMI can offer this.”

A global development strategy
As they look ahead, both Tommy Håkansson and Lars Celano see the development potential of this technology choice, which is part of Beijer Electronics' global strategy. The combination of iX HMI and CODESYS opens the door to future opportunities outside of traditional automation.
“We have made a strategic choice of technology that can give our customers the ability to solve their challenges in more efficient ways through integratable solutions” summarizes Tommy Håkansson and concludes:
“CODESYS and iX are technologies that go hand in hand, both in terms of openness and communication.”