Allen-Bradley ControlLogix PLC / PAC

ControlLogix is now termed a PAC (Programmable Automation Controller) rather than a PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) to indicate more firmly its capability in the areas of information, process control and motion, the Allen-Bradley ControlLogix has been the pride of the fleet since replacing the PLC5 in around 1998.

Allen-Bradley ControlLogix

The product has been under constant development since launch, improving performance, features, memory capability, and customisation.
Key features include:

  • Structured Data
  • Add-on-instructions – custom made code blocks that look and operate just like inbuilt functions. Great for repeated devices like motors and valves.
  • Supports  4 of the 5 IEC 61131-3 compliant languages; relay ladder logic, structured text, function block, and SFC languages – Instruction List is not supported.
  • Hot swappable IO modules (RIUP)
  • Hugely Scalable – up to 128,000 digital; 4,000 analog across multiple chassis, networks and IO types.
  • Can be used with all field IO types – Flex IO, Point IO, CompactBlock etc.
  • Capability for multiple processors and network cards in-rack.
  • Support for full controller redundancy.

The ControlLogix (1756) family is considered a systems processor – capable of distributed / multi-processor control for multi-machine / plant-wide control.

Current ControlLogix Models

The L7 and L8 families are the current models. The L7 boasts double the processing speed of earlier L6 models, however the L7 requires the new Studio 5000 Logix Designer for program development, not the RSLogix 5000 software used to date. (Studio 5000 can program all the Logix families of processors).

ControlLogix 5580 Controllers

ControlLogix L8 controllers provide increased performance, capacity, productivity, and security to meet the most demanding applications. Using the Studio 5000 program development environment allows the integration of Motion over EtherNet/IP for high-speed motion applications for up to 256 axes as well as SIL2/PLd and SIL3/PLe safety solutions in the safety controller range.
Some other key differentiators between the various models include:

Allen-Bradley ControlLogix L8
FeatureL6L7L8
Built-in PortSerialUSBEthernet
Energy Storage Module (ESM) IncludedNoYesYes
Battery RequiredYesNoNo
On-board Display IncludedNoYesYes
Non-volatile MemoryCompactFlash CardSecure Digital CardSecure Digital Card (optional)
Comparison table of SLC 5/01, 5/02, 5/03, 5/04, 5/05 series controllers.

L7 is now the entry level processor in the ControlLogix world. It’s a performance machine, for where the complexities of design or magnitude of operations can benefit from the added memory and functions.