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Apr 4, 2016 - Building

Production Hall of Fame

Illuminating a Production Hall Efficiently and Flexibly with DALI and WAGO Lighting Management

High demands are placed on lighting at the workstation: it has to be reliable, efficient, and must create the optimal atmosphere as needed. Using powerful automation technology, additional usages can be created: it reduces programming on the part of technicians during commissioning and supports them during conversion and maintenance. WAGO recently introduced a solution of this type at their new stamping plant in Minden-Päpinghausen, Germany.

25,000 square meters, close in size to three soccer fields: almost 20 million euros of investment stand behind WAGO’s new stamping plant. The building was used to manufacture furniture until the end of 2014, and has received a complete overhaul in recent months. “We updated the entire technology – we only left the sprinkler systems,” states Marcus Kübler. Over the course of the renovations, the WAGO facility manager and his colleagues designed the lighting for the production hall.

Automation as the Basis for Lighting Control

The new generation of PFC200 Controllers, expanded with I/O modules from the WAGO-I/O-SYSTEM 750, forms the starting point for WAGO’s Lighting Management. The most important element in this interaction is the DALI bus module, which integrates up to 64 DALI lights and up to 16 DALI sensors into the system. In addition to the ten DALI bus modules, which can be driven by the controller, there are additional I/O modules connected for every task or signal, for example, for energy measurement in the 3-phase electrical network, for battery-free EnOcean wireless controls, or digital input/output signals.

Due to the extent of the floor space in WAGO’s Päpinghausen production hall, a total of four automation systems were installed for the lighting. “Mostly, this mean that we had to take the DALI maximum conductor lengths into consideration, that is, 300 meters at conductor cross sections of 1.5 mm2,” explains Kübler. For this reason, the four PFC200 Controllers are installed in separate control cabinets in the maintenance platform located in the center of the building. They communicate with each other and with the control center via Modbus TCP.

Modern Web Visualization Based on HTML5

The hardware may satisfy the technical prerequisites; however, it is not solely responsible for the fact that the WAGO Lighting Management solution is as powerful as it is user friendly: WAGO implemented a specialized application on every controller which reduces the programming complexity for the user. During commissioning and operation, all settings can be carried out with the click of a mouse. Because the graphic user interface can be accessed using a standard Web browser, there is no need for local software installation on a PC. The Web visualization, based on HTML5, configures the task in an especially convenient way.

In the first configuration step, all DALI participants – the lights, sensors, switches, and transmitters – are assigned initial DALI addresses. They are then linked to EnOcean radio switches or digital input and output values. The lights can also be grouped into so-called virtual rooms; in the production hall in Päpinghausen, these include, for example, traffic paths or areas with production machinery. There are no limits placed on the user: thus, for example, lights which are identified as belonging to a specific virtual room can be located on any computer within the network.

Multiple Functions

The control software in WAGO Lighting Management offers multiple means for contributing to energy efficiency, comfort, and work safety during operation. In addition to standard functions, like dimming or switching on and off, sophisticated features can be realized in connection with corresponding sensors: for example, daylight control dims the lights depending on the current ambient brightness, while presence sensors ensure that the lights are only on when someone is actually in the area affected by the lighting. Using the scheduler, detailed lighting scenarios can be defined for every day of the week or for any time of day, for example, a central “light’s out” at the end of the work day.

WAGO Lighting Management, in connection with DALI, offers advantages across the entire lighting control, for example, in maintenance. Operating hour counters for each light, for example, enable proactive planning of maintenance in previously defined intervals. In addition, the lights report a corresponding message if an illuminant is defective. Furthermore, additional information can be stored in the software for the technicians, for example, detailing the type of illuminant or the tools necessary to exchange it.

Development into a Standard Product The experiences that WAGO has collected during the design of the lighting control for their new stamping facility in Päpinghausen, and from client projects, also benefits other customers. The PFC200 will soon be available as a standard product, including the software. Customers will then be able to order the controller with the necessary I/O modules for DALI, EnOcean, energy measurement, and inputs and outputs. “WAGO Lighting Management is ideally suited for lighting control in production halls and warehouses, because it places the relevant topics in the foreground: efficiency, reliability, operability,” concludes facility manager Kübler. “Programming expenses are definitely not among those.”


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