• Industriële koppeling

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for production automation

Fast data logging

Application for logging large amounts of data in a very short time

Our client is an international pharmaceutical group specialising in the development and production of drugs for the treatment of the eyes. They employ 15.000 persons and are active in more than 180 countries.

When filling vials, the customer wants to track the filling level of each vial, the quality status, the date and time of filling, the machine that has filled the vial, and the serial number of the vial within the batch. These vials are manufactured 10 vials at a time, at a speed of 350 vials per minute. Data loss is not acceptable.


The filling data for all the bottles are grouped in the PLC. After data relating to a sufficient number of vials is collected, it is forwarded in one package directly to the PC via the network, which extracts the data from the package and stores it in a database. 

The data is buffered in the PLC in case there are communication problems. The buffering time depends on the PLC memory available for this purpose. In the present case, half an hour was selected. After the return of online communication, all the buffered data was forwarded within seconds.

Since data loss is unacceptable to the client, the client would stop the filling process in case there were interruptions in the communication and the PLC buffer was full.


Network load:
By combining the data for a large number of vials in one single data package, it was possible to send large amounts of data over a network with minimal network load. Transmission was possible subject to a maximum of 240 bytes per PLC cycle.

Data integrity:
A handshaking mechanism was used to ensure that all the data was sent correctly, and was properly received on the PC.
In case of communication problems, the logging started automatically after the physical link between the PLC and the server was restored.


  • Development environment: VB.NET, Siemens S7-300 PLC
  • Database: Microsoft SQL Server