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SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009: A Comprehensive Guide to the Failsafe Software PLC for PC-Based Automation



What is SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009?




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 is an F-capable software PLC, that runs on a standard computer (PC) with real-time expansions. It provides the same functionality as WinAC RTX 2009 and as an F-CPU (F-capable CPU). It is approved for use in S7 Distributed Safety F systems. This means that it can perform safety-related functions up to SIL3 level, according to IEC 61508 standards.




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009


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SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 is part of the SIMATIC WinAC product family, which is a high-performance, real-time SIMATIC software PLC for PC-based automation solutions. It offers high flexibility and effective integration into the overall function of the PC platform. It also supports the leading PROFIBUS and PROFINET fieldbus standards for connecting to I/O devices.


In this article, we will explain why you should use SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009, how it works, what are its applications, and how to get started with it.


Why use SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009?




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 has many benefits for users who need a failsafe software PLC for safety-related functions. Some of these benefits are:


  • It reduces the hardware costs and maintenance efforts, as it does not require a separate hardware PLC for safety functions.



  • It increases the availability and reliability of the system, as it can handle faults and errors without compromising safety.



  • It simplifies the engineering and testing process, as it uses the same tools and languages as standard S7 PLCs.



  • It enhances the functionality and performance of the system, as it can execute complex control algorithms and communicate with other PC applications.



How does SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 work?




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 consists of three main components: the real-time operating system, the communication interfaces, and the engineering tools. Let's take a closer look at each of them.


The real-time operating system




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 runs on a real-time operating system called IntervalZero RTX, which is a software component that extends the Windows XP operating system with real-time capabilities. IntervalZero RTX allows SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 to run on a dedicated processor core, while Windows XP runs on another core. This ensures that the software PLC can execute its tasks with strict real-time performance and without interference from Windows XP. IntervalZero RTX also provides a seamless interface between the software PLC and the Windows XP applications, allowing data exchange and communication between them.


The communication interfaces




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 supports two communication interfaces: PROFIBUS and PROFINET. PROFIBUS is a fieldbus standard that enables fast and reliable data transmission between automation devices. PROFINET is an industrial Ethernet standard that enables flexible and scalable networking of automation devices. Both interfaces allow SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 to connect to a wide range of I/O devices, such as sensors, actuators, drives, valves, etc. SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 can also communicate with other SIMATIC PLCs or PC systems via these interfaces.


SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 uses a PCI card or an onboard interface to connect to the PROFIBUS or PROFINET network. The PCI card or the onboard interface acts as a gateway between the software PLC and the fieldbus devices. The PCI card or the onboard interface also provides diagnostic and monitoring functions for the communication network.


The engineering tools




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 uses the same engineering tools as standard S7 PLCs: STEP 7 and Distributed Safety. STEP 7 is a software package that allows users to program, configure, test, and debug SIMATIC PLCs. Distributed Safety is an add-on to STEP 7 that allows users to create safety-related programs for SIMATIC PLCs. Both tools use the same programming languages and editors as standard S7 PLCs, such as Ladder Logic (LAD), Function Block Diagram (FBD), Statement List (STL), etc.


SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 also uses the same project structure and data formats as standard S7 PLCs. This means that users can easily transfer projects and programs between SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 and other SIMATIC PLCs, without any conversion or adaptation. Users can also use the same online functions and diagnostic tools as standard S7 PLCs, such as monitoring, forcing, tracing, etc.


What are the applications of SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009?




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 can be used for various PC-based automation solutions that require safety-related functions. Some of the typical applications are:


Data processing and logistics systems




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 can integrate with data processing or logistic systems for data exchange and analysis. For example, it can connect to databases, web servers, ERP systems, etc., via Windows XP applications. It can also perform safety-related functions for the data processing or logistic systems, such as controlling conveyor belts, sorting machines, barcode scanners, etc., via PROFIBUS or PROFINET devices.


Technological tasks




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 can connect to technological tasks, such as motion or vision systems, for complex control functions. For example, it can control servo drives, stepper motors, encoders, etc., via PROFIBUS or PROFINET devices. It can also perform safety-related functions for the technological tasks, such as monitoring speed, position, torque, etc., via PROFIBUS or PROFINET devices.


Embedded PC platforms




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 can run on embedded PC platforms, such as SIMATIC IPC427C or SIMATIC HMI IPC477C, for higher robustness and retentivity. These platforms are specially designed for industrial applications and have features such as fanless cooling, solid-state drives, battery-backed memory cards, etc. They also have integrated PROFIBUS or PROFINET interfaces for connecting to I/O devices.


How to get started with SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009?




To get started with SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009, you need to have a PC platform that meets the hardware requirements, a license key for the software installation, and a communication interface for connecting to I/O devices. Here are the steps to install and set up SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 on your PC platform:


Hardware requirements




The minimum and recommended hardware specifications for the PC platform are as follows:


Component


Minimum


Recommended


Processor


Pentium 4, 2.4 GHz, single core


Core 2 Duo, 2.66 GHz, dual core


Memory


1 GB RAM


2 GB RAM or more


Hard disk


40 GB free space


80 GB free space or more


Graphics card


VGA, 1024 x 768 pixels, 16-bit color depth


SXGA, 1280 x 1024 pixels, 32-bit color depth or higher


CD-ROM drive


Required for software installation


Required for software installation


Ethernet card


Required for license activation and communication with other PC systems


Required for license activation and communication with other PC systems


PCI card or onboard interface


Required for communication with PROFIBUS or PROFINET devices


Required for communication with PROFIBUS or PROFINET devices


Software installation




The procedure to install SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 on your PC platform is as follows:



  • Insert the SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 CD-ROM into the CD-ROM drive of your PC platform.



  • Run the setup.exe file from the CD-ROM and follow the instructions on the screen.



  • Select the language and the destination folder for the software installation.



  • Enter the license key that you received with the product package.



  • Select the components that you want to install, such as IntervalZero RTX, SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009, PROFIBUS or PROFINET drivers, etc.



  • Wait for the installation to complete and restart your PC platform.



  • Verify that the software is installed correctly by checking the Windows Start menu and the Windows Control Panel.



  • If you have a PCI card or an onboard interface for PROFIBUS or PROFINET communication, install the corresponding drivers from the CD-ROM or from the manufacturer's website.



  • If you have a SIMATIC IPC427C or a SIMATIC HMI IPC477C as your PC platform, install the SIMATIC IPC Image & Partition Creator from the CD-ROM or from the manufacturer's website. This tool allows you to create a backup image of your PC platform and restore it in case of a failure.



  • If you have a SIMATIC IPC427C as your PC platform, install the SIMATIC IPC DiagBase from the CD-ROM or from the manufacturer's website. This tool allows you to monitor and diagnose your PC platform and its components.



  • If you have a SIMATIC HMI IPC477C as your PC platform, install the SIMATIC HMI IPC477C Runtime Software from the CD-ROM or from the manufacturer's website. This software allows you to use your PC platform as an operator panel with touch screen functionality.



Software configuration




The procedure to configure SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 on your PC platform is as follows:



  • Open the Windows Control Panel and select IntervalZero RTX.



  • Select the processor core that you want to assign to SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009. It is recommended to use a separate core from Windows XP for better real-time performance.



  • Select the memory size that you want to allocate to SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009. It is recommended to use at least 256 MB of memory for optimal performance.



  • Select the network adapter that you want to use for communication with other PC systems. It is recommended to use a separate adapter from Windows XP for better network performance.



  • Select Apply and OK to save your settings and restart your PC platform.



  • Open the Windows Start menu and select SIMATIC WinAC RTX F Configuration.



  • Select the communication interface that you want to use for connecting to I/O devices: PROFIBUS or PROFINET.



  • Select the PCI card or the onboard interface that corresponds to your communication interface.



  • Select Apply and OK to save your settings and restart your PC platform.



  • Open the Windows Start menu and select SIMATIC WinAC RTX F Engineering.



  • Create a new project or open an existing project for SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009.



  • Use STEP 7 to program and configure your software PLC according to your application requirements.



  • Use Distributed Safety to create and verify your safety-related program for your software PLC.



  • Use the online functions and diagnostic tools to test and debug your software PLC and its communication with I/O devices.



  • Download your program and configuration to your software PLC and start it.



Conclusion




SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 is a failsafe software PLC that runs on a standard PC platform with real-time expansions. It provides the same functionality as WinAC RTX 2009 and as an F-CPU. It can perform safety-related functions up to SIL3 level, according to IEC 61508 standards. It also supports PROFIBUS and PROFINET communication interfaces for connecting to I/O devices.


SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 has many benefits for users who need a failsafe software PLC for safety-related functions. It reduces the hardware costs and maintenance efforts, increases the availability and reliability of the system, simplifies the engineering and testing process, and enhances the functionality and performance of the system.


SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 can be used for various PC-based automation solutions that require safety-related functions. Some of the typical applications are data processing and logistics systems, technological tasks, and embedded PC platforms.


To get started with SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009, you need to have a PC platform that meets the hardware requirements, a license key for the software installation, and a communication interface for connecting to I/O devices. You also need to install and configure the software components, such as IntervalZero RTX, SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009, PROFIBUS or PROFINET drivers, etc. You also need to use the engineering tools, such as STEP 7 and Distributed Safety, to create and download your program and configuration to your software PLC.


If you are interested in learning more about SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009, you can visit the official website of Siemens or contact their customer support. You can also download a free trial version of the software from their website and test it on your PC platform.


We hope that this article has given you a clear overview of SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 and its features, benefits, applications, and installation steps. If you have any questions or feedback, please feel free to leave a comment below. Thank you for reading!


FAQs




Here are some of the frequently asked questions about SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009:



  • What is the difference between SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 and SIMATIC WinAC RTX 2009?



SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 is an F-capable version of SIMATIC WinAC RTX 2009. This means that it can perform safety-related functions up to SIL3 level, according to IEC 61508 standards. SIMATIC WinAC RTX 2009 is a standard version of SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009. It can perform standard control functions, but not safety-related functions.


  • What is the difference between SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 and an F-CPU?



An F-CPU is a hardware PLC that can perform safety-related functions up to SIL3 level, according to IEC 61508 standards. SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 is a software PLC that can perform the same safety-related functions as an F-CPU, but on a standard PC platform with real-time expansions. Both products use the same engineering tools and programming languages.


  • What are the advantages of using a software PLC over a hardware PLC?



A software PLC has several advantages over a hardware PLC, such as:


  • It reduces the hardware costs and maintenance efforts, as it does not require a separate hardware PLC for control functions.



  • It increases the flexibility and integration of the system, as it can run on any PC platform and communicate with other PC applications.



  • It enhances the functionality and performance of the system, as it can execute complex control algorithms and handle large amounts of data.



  • What are the disadvantages of using a software PLC over a hardware PLC?



A software PLC also has some disadvantages compared to a hardware PLC, such as:


  • It requires a real-time operating system and a communication interface to ensure strict real-time performance and reliable connection to I/O devices.



  • It depends on the quality and stability of the PC platform and the Windows operating system, which may be affected by external factors, such as viruses, power failures, etc.



  • It may not be suitable for harsh or hazardous environments, where a hardware PLC may have better protection and durability.



  • What are the system requirements for SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009?



The system requirements for SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 are as follows:


  • A PC platform that meets the minimum or recommended hardware specifications, such as processor, memory, hard disk, graphics card, CD-ROM drive, Ethernet card, PCI card or onboard interface, etc.



  • A Windows XP operating system with Service Pack 3 or higher.



  • A license key for SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2009 software installation.



  • A communication interface for connecting to PROFIBUS or PROFINET devices, such as a PCI card or an onboard interface.



  • An engineering tool for creating and downloading your program and configuration to your software PLC, such as STEP 7 and Distributed Safety.



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