Delta Tau Data Systems announces the pre-production release of the Power PMAC controller, which utilizes the capabilities of a new generation of embedded Power PC microprocessors. According to the company, the microprocessors provide high computational capabilities and a high level of peripheral integration while maintaining low power consumption.
The controller employs a full Linux operating system with a hard, real-time kernel that creates a complete general-purpose computing environment. It also comes embedded with a complete motion and machine control software environment that builds on the company’s existing PMAC and Turbo PMAC controllers.
This dual personality eliminates the need to choose between a dedicated controller and a general-purpose computing engine. The control gives designers the best of both worlds. In virtually all aspects of the machine control, users have the choice between using the built-in algorithm and providing their own software, written in C or C++ and compiled with the public-domain GNU complier. C programs can be written “manually” or generated from environments such as IEC-1131 or Matlab/Simulink, as well as EPICS or other task-oriented programs.
The controller’s built-in script language for both motion sequences and general machine and I/O logic, automatically takes care of many issues that a standard language, such as C, does not—proper timing and pipelining of move sequences and simple or complex, automatic type matching of different variables (short-word and long-word, fixed-point and floating-point). It is also said to provide the advanced tools of a good integrated development environment (IDE)—editors, debuggers, project mangers—that standard programming languages have. It also retains the ability to issue simple online commands directly, permitting the user to “converse” easily with the controller.