PLCs - Programmable Logic Controllers

A PLC (programmable logic controller) is an industrial digital computer designed for the control of manufacturing processes or robotic devices where reliability control, simple programming and fault diagnosis is necessary. They were originally built to replace electromechanical relay systems in industrial automation.

A CPU (central processing unit) forms part of the PLC system. PLC CPUs are microprocessor-based and act as the electronic circuitry within an industrial computer. They carry out instructions from the computer program, performing basic mathematical, logical, control, input and output operations. You can find out more in our complete PLCs guide.

What are PLCs used for?

PLC controllers are important for the correct functioning of machinery in manufacturing and industry. They are used in the automation of electromechanical processes, including control of machinery on assembly lines, amusement rides, or lighting fixtures. PLCs are ideal for applications that require constant monitoring of input devices whilst allowing decisions to be made via a custom program. This ultimately enables it to control an output.

Types of PLCs

Programmable logic controllers are divided into small, medium and large modular categories. Small control systems are robust, compact and mountable on top of or beside the equipment to be controlled. Medium controllers mainly use rack mounting or backplane systems, allowing for simple upgrading via additional function cards. Large systems are necessary for applications where complex control functions are executed, usually in large plants, in machinery requiring constant monitoring, or control of other PLC hardware.

What setups are suitable for programmable logic controllers?

PLCs feature a modular design, making them suitable for use in a wide range of applications. Due to the modular aspect, PLCs can be plugged into numerous setups making them highly versatile.


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Description Price For Use With Manufacturer Series Number of Inputs Number of Digital Inputs Output Type Input Type Number of Analogue Inputs Voltage Category Number of Digital Outputs Number of Analogue Outputs Interface Kit Included Number of Outputs Network Type
RS Stock No. 893-7761
Mfr. Part No.2080-LC20-20QWB
£282.00
Each
Units
Bulletin 2080 Micro820 12 - Relay Analogue, DC - 24 V dc - - Ethernet - 8 Ethernet
RS Stock No. 615-2337
Mfr. Part No.SR3XT43BD
£118.00
Each
Units
Zelio Logic Modules Zelio Logic 3 - Analogue Analogue, PT100 - - - - - - 2 -
RS Stock No. 617-0313
Mfr. Part No.FX3U-128MR/ES
BrandMitsubishi
£1,477.50
Each
Units
- FX3U 64 - Relay Sink, Source - - - - - - 64 -
RS Stock No. 272-319
Mfr. Part No.AL2-10MR-D
£112.57
Each
Units
- Alpha 2 6 - Relay Digital - - - - - - 4 -
RS Stock No. 539-0724
Mfr. Part No.FX3U-80MR/ES
BrandMitsubishi
£1,082.50
Each
Units
- FX3U 40 - Relay Sink, Source - - - - - - 40 -
RS Stock No. 825-1691
Mfr. Part No.6ED1055-1MM00-0BA2
BrandSiemens
£105.00
Each
Units
LOGO! 8, LOGO! 8.2 LOGO! - - Analogue - - - - - - - 2 -
RS Stock No. 825-1679
Mfr. Part No.6ED1055-1FB10-0BA2
BrandSiemens
£98.00
Each
Units
LOGO! 8, LOGO! 8.2 LOGO! 8 - Relay Digital - - - - - - 8 -
RS Stock No. 698-7388
Mfr. Part No.1747-L532
£2,240.00
Each
Units
SLC 500 Series SLC 500 - - Digital Digital - 5 → 24 V - - - - - -
RS Stock No. 795-7978
Mfr. Part No.FX3S-20MR-ES
BrandMitsubishi
£252.00
Each
Units
FX3 Series FX3S 12 - Relay, Transistor DC - 100 → 240 V ac - - - - 8 Ethernet, ModBus
RS Stock No. 885-0894
Mfr. Part No.0660-0650
BrandBARTH
£149.80
Each
Units
STG-650 lococube mini-PLC 10 - Digital Analogue, Digital - - - - - - 9 CAN
RS Stock No. 539-0702
Mfr. Part No.FX3U-48MR/ES
BrandMitsubishi
£867.00
Each
Units
- FX3U 24 - Relay Sink, Source - - - - - - 24 -
RS Stock No. 885-0897
Mfr. Part No.0850-0650
BrandBARTH
£104.86
Each
Units
STG-650 lococube mini-PLC 10 - Digital Analogue, Digital - - - - - - 9 CAN
RS Stock No. 750-8609
Mfr. Part No.2080-LC10-12QBB
£85.20
Each
Units
- Micro810 8 - Analogue, Digital Analogue, Digital - 24 V dc - - - Yes 4 USB
RS Stock No. 443-3864
Mfr. Part No.ALVLS V2.32
BrandMitsubishi
£118.50
Each
Units
- Alpha 2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
RS Stock No. 795-7962
Mfr. Part No.FX3GE-40MR-ES
BrandMitsubishi
£751.50
Each
Units
FX3 Series FX3GE 24 - Relay DC - 100 → 240 V ac - - - - 16 ModBus
RS Stock No. 893-7767
Mfr. Part No.2080-LC20-20QBB
£282.00
Each
Units
Bulletin 2080 Micro820 12 - Relay Analogue, DC - 24 V dc - - Ethernet - 8 Ethernet
RS Stock No. 875-5685
Mfr. Part No.FX5U-80MR-ES
BrandMitsubishi
£1,028.50
Each
Units
MELSEC IQ-F Series IQ Platform-Compatible PLC FX5U 40 - Relay, Transistor Sink, Source - 100 → 240 V ac - - - - 40 Inverter Communication, MELSEC Communication protocol (3C/4C Frames), MELSOFT Connection, Modbus RTUI, N:N Network, Predefined Protocol Support, SLMP (3E Frame), Socket Communication
RS Stock No. 705-5795
Mfr. Part No.CP1E-E20DR-A
BrandOmron
£227.00
Each
Units
CP1E Series CP1E 12 - Relay Pulse - 85 → 264 V ac - - - - 8 (Relay) USB
RS Stock No. 123-2105
Mfr. Part No.0850-0580
BrandBARTH
£67.41
Each
Units
STG-580 lococube mini-PLC 5 - Digital, PWM, Solid-State Analogue, DC Digital - - - - - - 6 -
RS Stock No. 825-1697
Mfr. Part No.6ED1055-1MD00-0BA2
BrandSiemens
£89.00
Each
Units
LOGO! 8, LOGO! 8.2 LOGO! 2 - - Analogue Pt100/1000 - - - - - - - -