Siemens Automation S5 Control System Upgrades Can Be Complex And Time Consuming But Manageable

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The Simatic S5 PLC is a controls automation platform based on Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC’s) manufactured and sold by Siemens. Siemens no longer supports the S5 product line and is considered obsolete. Siemens has since replaced the Simatic S5 platform with their newer Simatic S7 platform.

For over two decades, the Simatic S5 hardware and software platform was successfully used in the process industry and in manufacturing automation as a complete controller family for a wide range of controller tasks. Many Simatic S5 control systems are still in reliable service today, but rapid technological changes and increased market demands have placed stringent requirements on these older systems. A migration from the Siemens Simatic S5 controllers to Simatic S7 is therefore always a wise decision as this newer platform has the capabilities to handle the advancements in today’s automation systems.

With discontinuation of the S5 product series, maintenance of these control systems is becoming more difficult and expensive. This situation can be avoided by migrating to Simatic S7. At the same time, you gain access to the latest process control system functions, thereby increasing the productivity of your plant processes. A combination of Simatic S7 and the Simatic S5 automation system can also be implemented as part of a Siemens migration that can be performed over time, thus minimizing manufacturing downtime.

The problems with conventional S5 upgrades

- The S5 code isn’t always directly portable to the S7 platform.
- Limited production downtime available for changeover.
- Obsolete local and remote I/O modules need to be converted at the same time as the processor is upgraded.
- The cost implications of having to upgrade the software and hardware associated with large PLC control systems.

Advantages of upgrading the S5 platform

- Existing S5 modules, installed in local and remote I/O racks, can be retained and then replaced in stages or a complete system upgrade can be performed.
- Capital costs can be spread over time by integrating a planned migration in phases.
- Converted software can be tested and debugged during planned shutdowns.
- Future PLC and I/O viability assured due to the use of a modern and flexible process control system.
- The new platform reduces the risk of plant downtime due to parts shortages or lack of support.
- Increased productivity due to better efficiencies with a new process control system.
- Reduced costs for stocking spare parts and maintenance.

To remain competitive it’s necessary to have a migration strategy or upgrade path that helps you manage and minimize the risk of maintaining your legacy Siemens equipment. Quantum Design has a team of certified Siemens professionals that can provide a solution for your SIMATIC S5 to SIMATIC S7 requirements. By choosing to work with the experts at Quantum Design, with over 26 years of experience, you’ll be working with a team of professionals that will partner with you on an upgrade strategy to help you maximize your investment, while minimizing your exposure to unplanned shutdowns.

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Glenn Farrier has 71 articles online

Michael J. Garza Quantum Design, Inc. has been providing high quality automation control solutions, Siemens upgrades and migrations and custom control panels for over 25 years. For more information, please contact Michael Garza at 815.885.1300. Quantum Design, Inc. 8400 E. Riverside Blvd. Rockford, IL 61111. and

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Siemens Automation S5 Control System Upgrades Can Be Complex And Time Consuming But Manageable

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Siemens Automation S5 Control System Upgrades Can Be Complex And Time Consuming But Manageable

This article was published on 2012/06/23