What are the Requirements for the Selection of an HMI Control System?

HMI denotes Human Machine Interface. It is an interface between the control panel and the human operator. An HMI control system is a complete setup where an operative can put data through a keypad and an LCD screen that shows text.

Most of such systems these days have an HMI control panel with built-in PLC (programmable logic controller) functionality. It’s an all-in-one device for HMI control that takes less space and costs less money. It also has direct control over motors, lamps, switches, sensors, relays, etc.

A sophisticated HMI control system ensures reliability in every application including medical diagnostic, CNC machining centers, high-speed trains, laboratory tools, etc. It has all the components that an operator needs to execute control tasks and get feedback on those actions.
The Requirements for the Selection of an HMI Control System

You can consider the following criteria while choosing an HMI controller for your system:

General Functionality

You can determine it by figuring out how many functions you want the HMI interface to control. Besides, you have to find out what kind of feedback will be useful for the operator to perform those tasks.

Remember that rotary switches or pushbuttons can do one function, but you’ll need multiple displays for more than one tasks.

Degree of Input Complexity

You have to determine what type of input will suit your particular requirement well. You can choose between an on/off switch and a touchscreen display. The latter type is becoming popular for their ability to make complex operations less complicated.

Operator Feedback

It is an essential part of an HMI control system. It gives confirmation of an action in some interfaces while it adds to the functionality of other systems. Feedback can be many types – tactile, auditory, visual, or a combination of two or more of these methods.

Connectivity Options to Other Systems

An HMI interface must feature options to connect to another related system. For example, industrial HMI panels either use a serial bus or hard-wire to connect to I/O (input/output) points. It can also be a part of a network to be connected to other systems, which is commonly seen in supply logistics and manufacturing applications.

Environmental Conditions

An HMI control system should be chosen based on the type of environment it is going to be used. It is compatible with harsh industrial conditions and can be exposed to a variety of environmental elements such as extreme temperature, moisture, regular wear and tear, etc. So, it should be durable enough to withstand both physical abuse and environmental phenomena.

Type of the Users

The functions and command options of your HMI interface should be chosen according to the experience level of the operators who are going to use it. A beginner use requires a simple interface while experienced users can handle a sophisticated control with multiple layers of interfaces.

Many other factors are there such as wireless connections, hard-wired connections, serial bus systems, panel layout, switches, safety considerations, etc. that you can consider while choosing an HMI interface. However, the most important thing is it should be compatible with systems or networks it is going to be used with.