A control system is used to manage manufacturing or production and can also extend to certain sub-areas. This can also refer to related processes and procedures in power generation, traffic engineering, etc. Here, the control system should clearly display a complex temporal and material-content planning and actual process and support or even enable the controlling human intervention.
The support of human intervention distinguishes a control system from an automated control system, which automatically initiates reactions into the system based on a target / actual comparison and sensor signals.
A control system can contain a large number of sensors to create a process overview, use automatic systems and also allow actuators to be controlled. However, it is not completely automatic, but still relies on human intervention to function.
In the case of control systems, the human-machine interface is therefore of great importance: a control system is only as good as it is adjusted to the possibilities and abilities of the person (trained for his task). People must not be under-challenged (e.g. by stubbornly observing cameras), nor should they be overwhelmed (by the confusion of too many, widely distributed, too fast-moving signals or the necessary reactions to the signals).
For this reason, semi-automatic systems are often integrated into control systems or condensed preliminary results are calculated and usually presented to the control room operator (or "control room driver") in graphic and visual form, whereupon the operator of the control system makes meaningful decisions and then implements them using the control room intervention options.
For all these tasks, a highly detailed analysis of the task is necessary, a system analysis. The input and output parameters of the planning process are described in detail for the control task. On the basis of this input and output data, the resources on which they are based (capacities, storage areas, flow rates, etc.), the control room operator is often presented with suggestions and alternatives, from which he then chooses or which he modifies.
In industry, control systems are complex systems made up of hardware and software that are used to monitor and control the respective process ( production , distribution). Control systems, for example, in the automotive industry, power generation and distribution, water and cleansing , telecommunications, and in the security technique employed.
In general, a distinction can be made between process control systems , network control technology and building control technology. The software used is increasingly being used on PCs; the processes are controlled and monitored using programmable logic controllers (PLC) or remote control systems (FWA).
Control systems are often offered by manufacturers of automation systems and telecontrol systems, but there are also independent providers.
Large control systems have their own control center. Examples of control rooms:
- Air traffic controller workplace
- Production control of a mechanical or machining production with an overview of the area of the machines, their occupancy, their shift availability, maintenance intervals, CNC program availability, tool and device availability, throughput, energy consumption, equipment data (use of cooling lubricant, temperatures and vibrations of critical components)
- Loading of gases and liquids at a petroleum port terminal
- Power distribution of an energy supplier ( network control center )
- Process control of the kiln plant in a cement plant
- Baggage distribution at an airport
- Computerized operations control system
- Traffic control system : LISB
- Control room of a power plant
- Production control
- Control technology
- Production Planning and Control
- Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA)