On machines that are not capable of sharing data through software adapters (FANUC FOCAS, MTConnect, MODBUS, etc.), the MachineMetrics I/O module will be used to collect data from the machine. The module we use on Hardwired I/O integrations is the Labjack T4. The T4 has screw terminal inputs (AIN0-3) which can receive data from sensors or electrical signals directly from your machine's circuitry. These signals are then transmitted via ethernet to the Machinemetrics Edge Device, where they are interpreted by software and displayed on the Machinemetrics app.
Topics covered in this article
- Labjack T4 Configuration
- I/O Installation
- Connect Signals
- Add Machine to Dashboard
Labjack T4 Configuration
In order for the T4 to communicate with the machine network, it must be configured with an appropriate static IP address, subnet, and gateway. You can configure your T4 using the Labjack Kipling 3 software, which is a free download on the Labjack website. Follow the instructions in the article SETTING STATIC IP ADDRESS, SUBNET, AND GATEWAY to configure network settings on your Labjack T4. Keep in mind that the static IP address set on the T4 must be within the same range as the edge device to which it is connected.
*Check with your Customer Success Manager to confirm if your T4 has been pre-configured before arrival!
Visit this article for a list of our Hardware Kit and Connection Schematics.
1. I/O Installation
The Labjack T4 can be mounted onto DIN rail within your machine's electrical cabinet. Do not mount the T4 beside high voltage lines as they may interfere with the ethernet signal!
The Labjack T4 is powered by USB. If there is a USB port inside your machine's electrical cabinet this may be used, however, we recommend installing a USB Power Supply. This piece of hardware converts 24VDC from your machine to 5VDC at a USB connection. Connect the positive (+) pole of the power supply to a +24VDC terminal in your machine, and the negative (-) terminal of the power supply to a 0VDC terminal in your machine. Follow this link for detailed instructions on how to install the USB Power Supply.
*it is good practice to power your Labjack from the same power source as the signals coming to the AIN terminals. Although it is uncommon, your machine control may read errors if there is an imbalance caused by the mixing of power supplies. Note that it is possible to isolate a signal using a relay.
Once the T4 is mounted inside the machine's electrical cabinet, plug the network drop into the T4's ethernet port. If the T4 has been configured and is powered up, you should be able to ping the device's IP address from the network switch to which it is connected. The T4 sends data via ethernet to the Edge Device. Please make sure the ethernet port (port 2) of the edge device is configured with a static IP address that is within range of the IP address set on the T4. See the Edge Management article for details on how to configure your Edge Device.
2. Connect Signals
The Labjack T4 can receive signals up to 40VDC on the AIN terminals. These signals are interpreted by a YAML based configuration script so that each signal can be programmed to indicate a particular machine state. The two most important signals to retrieve from your machine are those that indicate the machine is in-cycle (active), and that a part has been made. For the sake of consistency, connect the signal for in-cycle to AIN0, and the signal for part-count to AIN2.
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 understand the methods of collecting and interpreting signals from your machine, please read this article: I/O Integration Methods.
3. Add Machine to Dashboard
After you have installed the I/O hardware and connected signals to the Labjack T4, you can now add your machine to the Machinemetrics Dashboard.
On the Machine Settings page, click "Add Machine"
The Add Machine form will lead you step by step through the process of adding your machine to the Machinemetrics Dashboard. For detailed instructions on this process, visit this article on Machine Settings.
When adding the "Data Collection Method", select "Digital IO (T4 Module)" from the list.
After selecting "Digital IO (T4-Module)", you will be prompted to enter a IP address and configuration script. The IP address should be the same as what has been programmed on the T4. The YAML based script is used to interpret the signals coming into the T4.
In this configuration script, pin 0 (AIN0) is programmed to recognize the signal as execution (in-cycle). If the signal on that pin crosses the voltage threshold of .5 volts, the machine is considered active. Pin 2 is programmed to recognize the signal as part count. If the signal on that pin crosses the voltage threshold of 3 volts, a part is counted.
There are many advanced variations to configurations, so don't feel limited to the simple example below! Please reach out to a Machinemetrics support team member to discuss what you can do with the signals from your machine.
Feel free to copy and paste this example:
Reach out to us at email@example.com.