Industrial Automation Projects

Please check out some of the industrial automation projects we worked on in the past couple years. Industrial Automation Solution has been involved in a number of divers projects. The list below shows some of the more interesting projects and in most cases there are videos that show the development of the project as it takes place in our shop. 

Robot Testing Cell for Fuel Isolation Rods

A Local Aerospace company that manufactures fuel isolation rods was looking to automate their quality control testing procedure. Industrial Automation Solution was contracted to build a robotic testing cell to weight the parts and measure resistance using a Hypot. 

Robot Testing Cell

Geothermal Heat Engine

Industrial Automation Solution was approached by NovelTherm to build the controls for their geothermal heat engine. NovelTherm is an innovator in the geothermal green energy arena. They were interested in both controlling the Stirling heat engine and being able to log extensive amounts of data. 

Geothermal Engine

Automatic Parts Dipping Machine

Another interesting industial automation project was for CaPlugs. They are a plastic parts manufacturer. They asked Industrial Automation Solution to update the existing controls on their plastic parts automated parts dipping machine. We provided a PLC, HMI and Servo control over an Ethernet network.

Automated Parts dipping Machine

Automated Fence Post Cutting Machine

Fences for Less purchased a machine from China that will be used to cut or scribe an aluminum fence post. The machine did not come with the controls from China and there was another integrator that specified the controls. After purchasing the controls, the integrator disappeared. 

Mega Watt Solar Plant: 29 Palms, California

Solar World was looking to install a solar plant in the desert with single axis controls for over 200 solar panels. These panels would generate 20 Megawatts of energy and the power generated by the panels was sold back to SCE. 

Pick and Place: Compton, California

Harvard Card was needing to build a packaging line to pick credit cards from a stacker and place them on to a conveyor. These cards were placed on top of each other with offsets to make a multi card package to be sold during the holidays.   

Pick and Place Machine

Flying Camera: Universal Studios - Hollywood California

The studio needed to control a camera mounted to a rail running down the middle of an aircraft that looked similar to the space shuttle. They were requesting the position of the camera be manually controlled through a thumb wheel and also have the ability to set predefined camera positions.


Robotic Tool Tending/Parts Picking: Chatsworth, California

Ganesh Machinery is a builder of CNC Machines. They reserved a booth at the IMTS show and they wanted to show an articulated arm robot picking parts and tool tending one of their CNC machines. We programmed the robot to handle the tools and remove the parts

Robot Tool and Part Tending

Filling Machine: Irvine, California

Maruchan is a noodle manufacturing company that produces a cup of noodle product and needed to retrofit an existing filler line with 22 axis of servo control. This filler line put a measured amount of powered spices into the cup of noodles. 

Vision Guided Robot Control: Terra Bella, California

Setton Farms is a grower of Pistachios in California. They package their own product and they needed to automate the picking of premium pistachios from a conveyor using a vision guided robot with a vacuum end of arm tool.

1 (657) 263-6852 – Please call us or fill out form below for more information 

Mega Watt Solar Plant

Mitsubishi Hardware Used:
  • FX3U PLC
  • FR-E700 VFD
  • GT-1031 4.3 Inch Touch Screen Display

Project Description: SolarWorld was building a mega watt solar plant near 29 palms California and was looking to have someone design, program and install controls for single axis photovoltaic tracker system. This system comprised of 200 solar panels where 10 panels share a common VFD drive. The VFD was controlled by a PLC that was calculating peak solar panel position based off time of day and latitude / longitude of the solar plant. There was also a HMI panel to monitor values such as current panel position, current wattage and alarms along with a SCADA system for monitoring and recording values in the PLC via Modbus communications.     

Involvement: The solar plant controls was programmed with function block programming using an IEC61131-3 programming software. Originally, the solar program was created by a system integration company that was breaking the daytime hours into even increments and moving the panels based on the time of day. Later it was changed to follow an algorithm that tracked the position of the sun and allowed for backtracking (taking in consideration of the shadowing of the solar panels). This new program also gave the flexibility to implement the program anywhere in the world by knowing the latitude and longitude of the solar plant. The program was tested in the field and verified to work as described.    

Flying Camera

Mitsubishi Hardware Used:
  • QD-100 Single Axis Motion Controller
  • MR-J4-B Servo Amplifier
  • 22 kW (30 HP) Servo Motor
  • GT-1512 12 Inch TFT Touch Screen Display

Project Description: The customer, who works for the engineering team for the movie Gravity, was looking to build a portable control unit to control a camera on a movie set. The camera was mounted on a stand that was pulled and pushed through the middle of a space shuttle like plain using a cable and reel which was attached to a servo motor. The servo motor was controlled using a single axis motion controller and had a user interface that was used to set specific camera stop positions or they could drive the camera in a manual control mode to any location. Also, the had a manual pulse generator connected to a 8 inch wheel that they could turn that varied the position and speed of the camera. 

Involvement: At the beginning of the project, the customer supplied mechanical drawings and other technical specifications for us to size the servo motor and amplifier. We also supplied them with basic training and examples of how to program the user interface and motion controller. During the programming process, we supported  the engineer technically to help them complete the project on time. During the commissioning of the system, we went to the studio several times and helped with startup and programming.