The term automation has come from the word automatic, it is basically the use of many control system for equipment’s such as boilers, process in factories, machinery, switching on telephone networks, steering and stabilization of ships, aircraft and other applications with minimal or reduced human intervention.
Automation technology is a crossover discipline that uses knowledge and scientific methods from numerous other technical sciences. An automatic machine is an artificial system that makes decisions based on the conditions of inputs with respect to the state of the system. These decisions produce very specific outputs.
Automation has been achieved by various means including mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, electrical, electronic devices and computers, usually in combination. Complicated systems, such as modern factories, airplanes and ships typically use all these combined techniques.
Automatic processes are comprised of three components .They are:
Sensors to detect the status of the system
Actuators to perform the actual ―work of the system Controllers to store the program and to make decisions.
The designing, analysis and manufacturing of products is done by using computer aided technologies. In industries different type of automation tools are used they are following
- ANN – Artificial neural network
- DCS – Distributed Control System
- HMI – Human Machine Interface
- SCADA – Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition
- PLC – Programmable Logic Controller
- Motion Control
Advantages of Automation Technology
One of the main reasons for the introduction of automated systems was the desire to produce goods for less cost than the competition. Automation technology helps in several ways: Fewer workers are needed for automated production. Production can run 24/7 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week) except for a few maintenance periods. Machines generally make fewer mistakes. This means the quality of product is consistently high. Production times are shortened. This means that more products can be shipped faster. Automation relieves people of boring, physically heavy or hazardous work. Production automation occasionally demands that employees make decisions.
Latest application of Automation Engineering
Food and Drink industry: The food retail industries are using automation for the ordering process and billing process.
Stores: Many Supermarkets and even smaller stores are having introduced self-checkout systems reducing the need for employing checkout workers.
Automated mining: in many of the countries mining works are done using automation process so that human labor can escape for hazardous disease.
Automated Video Surveillance: it is mostly used by the military or police of the state for the visual monitoring and surveillance.