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Web Servers Create Remote Scale Command Centers

May 21, 2020
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Web servers provide the ability to monitor process status and interact with the weight indicator from any networked device with a web browser.
Web servers provide the ability to monitor process status and interact with the weight indicator from any networked device with a web browser.
Many modern weight indicators include onboard web servers, providing remote access and control, as well as enhanced data views.
Many modern weight indicators include onboard web servers, providing remote access and control, as well as enhanced data views.
Enhanced safety, efficiency, and convenience are benefits of using a weight indicator’s web server.
Enhanced safety, efficiency, and convenience are benefits of using a weight indicator’s web server.

Weighing equipment with built-in web servers enables operators to monitor and control processes from remote locations. Ideal for systems integration, web servers transfer process data to and from equipment that is on the same network, creating a framework for equipment functions with additional programs.

Process Control
Digital weight indicators and controllers with onboard web servers empower operators to work remotely from any device connected to the same network as the web server. PCs, tablets, and even smartphones can be used to control and monitor the digital weight indicator from remote worksites. By utilizing a virtual private network (VPN), scale technicians can interact with a customer’s digital weight indicator without leaving their office.

For applications where local and remote digital weight indicators are necessary, where one device is mirroring the other, a web server eliminates the need for the secondary equipment. A web browser is all that is required to have the same benefits of traditional local/remote functionality. This reduces application cost and provides added convenience.

Remote Command Centers
Operators can zero the scale, print tickets, and select scale configurations from a networked device without being physically present at or near the scale. In a batching application, an operator or scale technician can modify setpoints to fine-tune weight thresholds that trigger sequential actions. They can also perform virtual button-presses that function the same as if they were physically interacting with the hardware to start/stop a process, acquire a tare or change units of measure. One operator can control multiple work stations from their remote location by managing data from networked devices, printers, PCs, or PLCs.

Simplified Management
Supervisors can monitor the work of multiple operators by utilizing multiple web browsers. All networked indicators can be viewed from a single PC at a remote work station. One supervisor can use multiple browser windows to monitor operations taking place at different sites throughout the facility.

Faster Technical Support
Manufacturer and distributor technicians are able to train new users using the shared web server IP address to remotely view operations at the facility. This reduces downtime by allowing manufacturer technicians to guide operators through process troubleshooting in real-time for faster problem diagnostics and solutions.

Test Equipment Through Screen Sharing
Operators can “test-drive” equipment by screen sharing with a technician from the equipment manufacturer. The test can be tailored to the operator’s process by modeling capabilities tailored to that specific application. A hands-on demonstration allows users to see how the equipment will interface with their existing equipment.

Where to Use a Remote Web Server

Bulk Material Handlers
Bulk material handling industries such as mining, quarries, and material blending facilities using belt scales require accurate, reliable instrumentation. Belt scale integrators with a built-in web server allow operators to use remote computers or mobile devices to manage product dosing and metering from a safe distance, creating a touch-free environment for interaction with weight data. Managers can remotely clear totalizers when a day or shift begins to monitor efficiency and track material throughput.

Masonry Plants
Entire masonry plants can be automated with custom programming on weight controllers. Plants handling bulk loads of sedimentary rock and other mix ingredients can use programmable controllers to monitor weight during heating, mixing and bagging processes. Built-in web servers allow operators to work from a remote command center, increasing both safety and efficiency during batching.

Rice Lake Weighing Systems is a family-owned, ISO 9001-certified corporation, and a global leader in weight-related products and process control equipment. The company provides several digital weight indicators and controllers with integrated web servers to create remote command centers for a variety of industries. For more information, visit www.ricelake.com.

 

Rice Lake Weighing Systems