A programmable logic controller (PLC) is a specialized type of computer designed for applications requiring high reliability, ease of programming and sophisticated fault diagnosis. PLCs are commonly used in manufacturing processes, especially robotic devices on assembly lines.
A PLC’s design must be validated before it can be used. This process consists of three phases, which include defining the functions that the PLC must perform, building a PLC that performs those functions and proving the PLC behaves as intended. PLC validation often relies on OPC Unified Architecture (UA), which is the latest OPC technology. OPC UA overcomes the limitations of OPC Classic to increase productivity, improve quality and lower costs. Visual Components provides an interface for OPC UA that allows users to perform PLC validation by connecting a simulation to external controllers.