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Do you require monitoring, controlling or testing, using real-time manufacturing or process plant data from an Excel spreadsheet?
This data could be helpful to you as an automation professional, or your management, research and other department personnel requiring real-time data for decision making or accounting purposes.
With this video, we will show you how to achieve this and more using Microsoft Excel and communication called Dynamic Data Exchange or DDE, a method of Microsoft windows interprocess communication so that one program can communicate with or control another program.
In this lesson, we will be using Microsoft Excel, Rockwell Automation Studio 5000, RSLinx Classic, and Studio 5000 Logix Emulate software.
We will be using Studio 5000 Logix Designer programming software to create a sample program with floating-point and integers arrays, timers, and other simulated process values to display in Excel spreadsheets.
The RSLogix PLC or emulator will communicate with RSLinx Classic and in turn, RSLinx will communicate with Studio 5000 Logix Designer and Excel.
DDE is a Windows mechanism that enables applications to communicate with each other and automates the manual copying and pasting of data via the clipboard.
A DDE communication is known as a conversation and the application, which initiates the conversation, is the client.
The other (responding) application is known as the server.
Normally, the client initiates the conversation in order to get some data from the server. The client can send data to the server too, known as poking.
To initiate a DDE conversation, a client specifies the three items:
The Application: the name of the application it wants to talk to. Usually, this is the application’s executable filename, for example, RSLinx.
The Topic: which is the subject of the conversation created by the user and should be something which makes sense, for example, RealParsExcel.
The Item: Any number of different Items may be referred to identify data to be passed between the applications, for example, Excel recognizes cell references as items, Word recognizes bookmarks as items and RSLinx recognizes program tag names as items.
We will begin with the sample PLC program. We’ve created a Studio 5000 Logix Designer program called Realpars_Excel.
You can download this PLC program here: https://bit.ly/DDE_Logix
We will set up the DDE configuration for Excel. You can download the Excel file here: https://bit.ly/DDE_Excel
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