Home > News > PLC vs Raspberry Pi vs eManager, the best device for industrial IoT projects
17 Jun 2021

 

Industrial monitoring and control world has always been associated with PLC concept. Until recently, programmable logic controllers were always the first option to digitalize a factory, but this paradigm has just changed. Devices like eManager or Raspberry Pi provide a solid alternative, or even a complement, to make the leap into Industry 4.0.

 

What is a PLC?

A PLC (Programmable Logic Controller), or industrial controller, is an industrial computer with capacity to collect and process data from sensors, meters, devices, machines, buttons, and other type of digital and analog inputs. This data is processed and used to manage outputs, including valves, relays, engines, ….

A PLC is an element designed to automate industrial processes using ladder or block diagrams.

 

What is a Raspberry Pi?

Raspberry Pi is a single-board low-cost computers range initially designed to promote computer science learning on school, but nowadays is widely used on IT prototypes, robotics and other applications related with multimedia.

Nowadays we can find industrial versions of Raspberry Pi which include though enclosure, extended temperature and humidity range, and conformity with the main standards CE, UL and RoHs.

 

What is an eManager?

eManager is and industrial IoT-ready controller ideal to easily developing industrial and edge computing applications. It is equipped with a Multilanguage API which include the most popular programming language for IoT applications (C, C++, Python, Go, Java...) and Node-RED software fully integrated.

Node-RED includes protocols such as Modbus, BACNET, MQTT, OPC-UA, together with easy communication with platforms like Amazon WBS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud and more.

 

Comparison PLC vs Raspberry Pi vs eManager

The following table compares different features and shows the strengths and debilities of each industrial device:

 

Features PLC Raspberry Pi eManager

 Device type

Programmable Logic Controller or industrial digital computer Single-board computer Industrial IoT-ready controller

 Modular system

Yes

No

Yes

 Expandable on field

Yes No No

 Real-time CPU capabilities

Yes No, a central Linux CPU is not enough to control real-time processes Yes, with a microcontroller in each I/O module with its own application

 Product category

Industrial Domestic Industrial

 Power supply

24 VDC or 230 VAC 12/24 VDC 9-36 VDC or 100-264 VAC

 RS-232/RS-485

Yes Only RS-485 Yes

 Ethernet

Yes Yes Yes

 Wi-Fi

Depends on the model Yes Yes

 GPRS / 4G

GPRS & 4G as Expansion module No GPRS & 4G as Expansion module

 Input / Output

Digital & Analog I/O and PT100/1000 Inputs Self-developing combined with Arduino or other I/O hardware Digital & Analog Input / Output and PT-100 Expansion modules

 Battery

No No Yes, Supercap expansion module

 Energy metering

Via external meter through RS-485 Via external meter through RS-485 Single-phase and three-phase as Expansion module

 Operating System

Depends on the manufacturer Linux Debian adapted; Raspberry Pi OS Linux Yocto

 Development environment

Depends on PLC programming software Self-installing environment Node-RED and the Multilanguage API for self-developments

 Programming method

Ladder logic (each action depends upon conditions) Code language programming (Python, C, C++, Java, ...) Code language programming (Python, C, C++, Java, ...) or Node-RED

 Cloud connectivity

Depends on the PLC, but it's not a core feature Self-installing Integrated MQTT, REST API & more with Node-RED

 

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PLC vs Raspberry Pi vs eManager, the best device for industrial IoT projects

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Industrial monitoring and control world has always been associated with PLC concept. Until recently, programmable logic controllers were always the first option to digitalize a factory, but this paradigm has just changed. Devices like eManager or Raspberry Pi provide a solid alternative, or even a complement, to make the leap into Industry 4.0.

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