Autopro Blog

Control Systems 101 Q&A

April 25, 2019


Our recent webinar, Control Systems 101 resulted in some excellent questions being asked by participants. Here are a few that we thought would be especially informative for many of you.

What is the future trajectory of control systems in five years time?

Control Systems have evolved so much over the years, and I expect this to continue.  The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) which in the most basic of terms is everything communicating with everything, may ultimately be our control systems of the future.
Wirelessly communicate to anything with an IP address and likely into the Cloud.

How do you make the decision between Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) and Distributed Control Systems (DCS)?

A few things to consider may be :

  • Cost Comparisons and Project Budgeting
  • Functionality
  • Vendor Selection

Likely the best way to truly answer this question is to take develop an analysis document of the project requirements. This will allow you to determine what the customer needs for their control system.

What is the difference between Modbus, Profibus and Fieldbus?

Modbus : The longest standing communications protocol that many control systems use. There are few variations within Modbus, but this has been the standard for many years.

Profibus / Fieldbus: This is a more proprietary communications protocol. You would need to purchase the networks to be able to use either one of these protocols.

All three of these options are a means of connecting devises through a network rather than a hardwired connection through each individual devise.


Do you have other questions about how to determine which control system is the best fit for your upcoming or current projects?  Feel free to bnou%60bur%21tr%21gns%21lnsd%21hognsl%60uhno