Red Lion Controls, the global experts in communication, monitoring and control for industrial automation and networking, today announced the release of its newest generation of Human Machine Interfaces (HMI) – the Graphite® series of advanced operator interface panels. With all cast-aluminum construction, the Graphite series provides the industry’s first rugged HMI solution to combine a wide range of versatile plug-in modules with protocol conversion, data logging and web-based monitoring and control.
Red Lion’s Graphite series allows customers to easily connect, monitor and control their process in industries that include manufacturing, oil and gas, and water/wastewater. The series’ range of plug-in modules enables customers to easily create a solution for today, with an option to expand to meet changing business requirements. Further, organizations will realize a reduction in development and commissioning times over traditional systems that use an HMI paired with separate I/O, PLCs and other controllers.
“We have used just about everyone’s HMIs, and Graphite is by far the best in terms of appearance and functionality,” said Pierre de Giorgio, president at BlueBay Automation. “It is the most feature-rich HMI that we have ever used, the graphics and resolution are amazing, and with Red Lion’s Crimson 3.0 software, the move to Graphite is seamless.”
Graphite HMIs are available in eight different models, in sizes ranging from 7” to 15”, with sleek bezels that provide a relatively large display given their overall dimension. Both the 7” and 10” HMIs are available as sunlight visible models. Combined with Graphite’s rugged packaging, these models are ideal for harsh outdoor environments.
Offering a built-in web server, Graphite HMIs enable users to monitor and control their application via PCs, tablets or smartphones. SMS text-messaging and email alerts provide early warning of process issues, which helps to avoid costly downtime. In addition, its built-in protocol converter allows programmers to select 13 or more simultaneous protocols from a list of over 250 to seamlessly integrate disparate devices such as PLCs, drives, barcode readers and panel meters.
“The HMI has become the nexus of the machine, and Red Lion’s new Graphite series offers the highest level of protocol support to simplify even the most complex multi-vendor environments,” said Jeff Thornton, director of product management at Red Lion Controls. “By logging performance data and critical events, customers can implement process improvements or perform fault-finding activities.”
The new HMIs are supported by Red Lion’s award-winning Crimson® 3.0 software, which is included at no extra cost. Crimson 3.0 makes it fast and easy to configure protocols, define data tags, set up sophisticated applications and create an attractive user interface. Designed for ease of use, Crimson allows customers to cost-effectively standardize on one HMI for all of their machines, regardless of the PLC or drive manufacturer used.