If data is not available directly from the machine's controller through one of the several data sharing protocols MachineMetrics is able to read, then the digital I/O kit will be required. The MachineMetrics I/O module can accept 0-24VDC signals from the machine's circuitry. The two necessary outputs for MachineMetrics Production are in-cycle and part count. Many more input options are available, such as spindle (or any other motor) power, scrap/bad parts, or any other machine condition you would like to monitor with either a sensor or discrete output from the machine.
We gather these machine signals into our software using The MachineMetrics I/O module. This device is available in standalone Ethernet and USB models. The standalone Ethernet module (LabJack T4) can be used if you are connecting your machine to a hard-wired network. The USB version (LabJack U3) is meant to be used when a wifi enabled edge device is installed inside the machine.
Topics covered in this article
- Connecting the I/O device
- Configure the I/O device
Connecting the I/O device
1) Power the Device
If using USB (Labjack U3): Plug the USB cable into any USB port on the edge device that has been previously activated. If the edge device has not been activated, follow instructions on activating the MachineMetrics Edge.
The below video takes you through connecting a LabJack U3 to an Edge Device and its installations within a Machine's electrical cabinet:
If using Ethernet (Labjack T4): First configure the network on the T4. The USB cable can be plugged into any USB power source that provides over 2 watts of charging capacity. A 24V machine power to USB power supply is available from MachineMetrics. To install this power supply connect the negative terminal to a 0V terminal on the machine and the positive terminal to a +24V terminal. Be sure you are using 0V and 24V from the same power supply if your machine has multiple 24v rails. If you are unsure about what terminals to use, you may want to call your machine service resource. If your machine has no 24V power available you can purchase a 110V to 24V power supply from any industrial supplier or from MachineMetrics. For more information on the USB power supply, click here.
2) Network the Device
If using USB (Labjack U3): We communicate with the device over USB, no further networking needed.
If Ethernet (Labjack T4): From your computer, connect a USB and Ethernet cable into the T4. You will need to use the Kipling K3 software to configure your T4. Click here for detailed instructions on how to configure your LabJack T4
3) Connect your signals
Our I/O device can accept 0-40VDC signals, either from a sensor, PLC output, or relay within the machine's electrical cabinet. At a minimum, you will need a signal that represents that the machine is active. This is required for machine utilization. To track production, you will also need a signal that indicates that the machine has completed a cycle.
The "AIN" (analog inputs) pins on the Labjack receive these signals, and the configuration script interprets them accordingly. Note that the "VS" pin on the Labjack can be used as a common voltage (5VDC) if using dry contacts of a relay in your machine.
For the purposes of this tutorial, and to keep implementations consistent, please use the following Pin configuration:
- For In-Cycle use Pin AIN0
- For Part Count use Pin AIN2
For more information on collecting machine signals that indicate utilization, read this article.
For more information on collecting machine signals that indicate part count, read this article.
Depending on the make, model, and year of your machine, the signals you collect - either from a sensor or straight from the machine's circuitry - will vary. It is possible that we could provide you with specific instructions on how to connect what signals you need from your machine, however, in many cases, your machine may be unique from others of the same make/model/year. To better understand the methods of collecting and interpreting signals from your machine, please read this article: I/O Connectivity Methods.
Important Note On Connecting Signals
If your signals are coming from circuits on the machine that may have different power supplies or voltages, you want to make sure to protect the machine from voltages back-feeding across circuits or power rails. In these cases be sure to add a relay to protect the machine and I/O device.
Configure the I/O device
Once the device has been installed and the signals connected to the I/O device, the signals must be properly configured in MachineMetrics. This can be done right within the web app. You will need an active MachineMetrics account. If you do not already have one, please request one from your MachineMetrics Administrator.
Select Add Machine
The next form is required to add a new machine.
Name - The name you wish to call this device
Category - The type of machine
Make - The machine make
Model - The machine model
Model Year - The machine model year
Serial Number - The machine serial number
Edge Device - Choose the Edge device that you have activated for this machine
Add the Data Source
Integration Type - Select “Digital IO”
Edge Device - Select the edge device that you previously activated for this machine.
Address - Type the IP address on the T4 (or leave blank if using a U3)
Config - This is the YAML script that will configure each of the inputs. Instructions as follows:
Paste in the following configuration for the Labjack U3 or T4:
- source: AIN0
- resample: 0.1
- min-delta: 0.1
- source: AIN2
- resample: 0.1
- min-delta: 1
- source: AIN2
- min-delta: 1
- threshold: 3
- source: AIN0
- threshold: 2
- ACTIVE: this
- READY: true
This code tells our system that AIN0 is execution (InCycle) and AIN2 is part count (end of Cycle). In this case if the signal on AIN0 exceeds 2 DC volts, the machine is considered active. The threshold can be adjusted depending on how high or low the signal to AIN0 may be. If the signal on AIN2 rises above and then falls below 3 volts, a part is counted. If you have a noisy signal, filters can also be added to the signal. Speak to a MachineMetrics support agent for more advanced configurations.
Once this configuration is complete, save the form. It will take up to 5 minutes before the machine starts reporting.