The Father of PLC's:How Richard Morley Revolutionised the Automation Industry

It’s been 51 years since the birth of the Programmable Logic Controller. We look back at the history of the PLC and how replacing hard wired relay systems changed the world of manufacturing.

Dick Morley, 1968

It was the year 1964 when a young cunning engineer, Dick Morley, was unemployed, had a new baby, a mortgage to pay and only $1,000 in the bank. Morley had previously worked a desk job designing atomic bombs, aeroplanes and communication systems performing the duties he was instructed to do. Morley did not enjoy his job, and, at that time, he had no plans in the pipeline to create such an influential piece of automated equipment. After finding his passion for skiing, Morely quit his job and focused on his hobby which eventually lead him to engineering ideas.

Morley eventually opened up his own professional consulting firm with friend Geogre Schwenk under the name ‘Bedford Associates’’ located in Bedford, Massachusetts, USA. Morley and Schwenk worked with local machine tool firms to help them evolve into the new, solid-state manufacturing sphere. Unfortunately, as his firm progressed, he began to notice that each project he worked on was practically the same; the manufacturing industry was using similar minicomputers and Morley found himself bored.

With his creativity and his engineering motive to ‘make things work’, Morley started to wonder if he could invent a controller which could automate industrial process with multiple input/output arrangements in real time. This would alternately replace the likes of hard wired relay control systems.

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PinPoint Machine Testing

Part of the work that Radwell International performs every day is the diagnosing and repair of electronic equipment used in many different applications worldwide.

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Collaborative Marketing: Having Fun and Getting the Message Across

When marketing is at its best, creative people get together and create interesting, attention-grabbing content. Sometimes it's two people chatting. Sometimes it's a formal meeting of creative people. Regardless of who it is, inevitably it becomes interesting. As the thoughts flow from creative person to creative person, things tend to emerge that give flight to ideas and allow for expression in an unusual and sometimes powerful way. Other times it’s just fun and makes us laugh as we develop concepts and throw around puns. And usually it’s a little bit of everything mixed together. When it works, you definitely can feel it.

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No Repair Is Too Small At Radwell

At Radwell International, we are known for the quality of products and outstanding level of service we provide to our clients. One of our services is our repair capabilities. Although we are known for being able to provide all kinds of repairs for all kinds of industrial automation equipment, it’s easy to overlook some of the more basic items that we are also capable of fixing for our customers. Items like temperature gauges, process controls, timers and counters are items we are just as capable of repairing as much larger items.

It’s so easy to overlook a small display or a dial. Many of our clients wouldn’t even think about having these items repaired. Yet in our NJ Headquarters, we have an entire repair team dedicated to exactly these types of repairs. Repairs in this category are fully testable, and the parts are easy for us to replace if we can’t fix the item. Sounds like a win-win!

Steve Ramirez, a long time Repair Technician with Radwell International, is an expert when it comes to these types of repairs. Steve started with Radwell in July of 1999, working in the calibration lab. Basically, he has been repairing these types of parts for the past 16 years!

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7 Ways to Maintain A Safe Warehouse Environment

One of the most important things to have knowledge of when working in an industrial automation or warehouse environment is maintaining a safe workplace for all levels of employees. Jim Malia, Warehouse Manager, and Gary Wenrich, Logistics Operations Manager, both at Radwell International's headquarters in Lumberton, NJ,  offered some basic operating principles that can help anyone in a warehouse environment operate in a safe manner.

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Using X-Ray Technology in the Repair Process: Turning Impossible into Possible

From the first day it arrived at Radwell International, our x-ray unit has been an incredibly useful and valuable tool to help our technicians help our customers. By utilizing the x-ray machine, our customers benefit from an additional level of testing, evaluation and inspection that wasn’t possible prior to the machine’s arrival.

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Will A Robot Take Your Job?

As automation capability continues to grow and strengthen in the workplace, many are wondering if humans will be left out in the cold when it comes to employment. It seems that people and experts sit on  both sides of the fence in this argument. Some believe, with absolute certainty, that robots will take over up to 30% of jobs currently performed by humans within the next ten years. Others feel it is unlikely that robots will be able to evolve quickly enough to emulate humans in the most important way: our ability to respond to other humans. Still others believe that robots and humans will work together to make the process of manufacturing a team-oriented and more efficient exercise. Each of the view points is fairly compelling and it will be interesting to see which viewpoint holds the most merit as the decade progresses.

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What is CNC and Where to Repair Yours

 

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The Story Behind Radwell International

Brian Radwell (left), Jerry Radwell (right).
 
What do we do at Radwell International and how did the company evolve?
 
Brian Radwell, President and CEO   explains it like this: "Radwell International, Inc. sells and repairs industrial electrical and electronic control devices. We sell and repair timers, counters, photoelectric sensors, circuit breakers, pushbuttons, PLC's, motors, speed control and any other devices used to make machinery run." Specifically, Mr. Radwell says that Radwell services automakers, chemical plants, food processing facilities, municipalities, government agencies, bakeries, power plants, amusement parks, exporters, plastic molding and extruders, steel plants and a long list of other business sectors.

Radwell's division, PLCCenter.com is the industrial electrical and electronic control equipment largest provider of new and used surplus,in the world. "We buy back new and used controls from plant closings, auctions and inventory overstock. We certify the parts, and then we ship them in custom PLCCenter packaging and sell them for half of their original price. We sell 30% of our products outside the US," said Radwell.

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