PSA Peugeot Citroen standardizes the use of PLC Checker

September 9, 2008

Itris Automation, an independent software vendor offering highly innovative solutions for the development of PLC programs, announced today that PSA Peugeot Citroën has decided to use the PLC Checker coding rules verification tool systematically. Usage of PLC Checker is also mandatory for PSA Peugeot Citroën suppliers.

Thousands of PLCs control the assembly lines of PSA Peugeot Citroën. To ensure the quality of programs that operate those PLCs, PSA Peugeot Citroën has decided to put in place coding rules. Such rules allow a better readability and consistency and a more efficient maintenance. Assembly line interruptions are less frequent and shorter, while code modifications are easier, thus generating huge savings.

Respecting those rules is also mandatory for PSA Peugeot Citroën suppliers: it is a criterion during acceptance testing. Such a quality approach is allowed by the deployment of PLC Checker, a tool that checks automatically and consistently the compliance with the rules defined by PSA Peugeot Citroën. The acceptance tests are both less costly and more thorough. Formalizing the rules is easier so the suppliers have a clear vision of the goal they have to reach.

At last, having developers use PLC Checker during the coding process allows an immediate self correction and a quick learning of the rules. “We have recently updated our automation design rules: this is the ACTIF project (Guide to the technical design of manufacturing facilities – in French: Aide à la Conception Technique des Installations de Fabrication). The goals of ACTIF are: quicker projects, a better quality of the diagnostic and the troubleshooting, faster fixing and easier modification of the facilities.

The PLC program is the brain that controls everything, it must be well structured and our rules must be followed by our suppliers, especially the rules that enable a thorough and reliable diagnostic on the Human Machine Interfaces. Up to now, quality wasn’t always there and our control methods were cumbersome. PLC Checker smoothens our control methods and also gives suppliers a sense of responsibility” explains Laurent Mauguy, Automation Standards Manager at PSA Peugeot Citroën.

“Indeed, adds Patrick Sudan, Automation Manager at PSA Peugeot Citroën, everything that allows better quality and productivity, for us and our suppliers, is key to our offering of reliable and efficient automation technologies. These technologies enable competitive costs and shorter delivery terms.” “Developing programs for the car industry is more and more complex because of the constantly increasing performance and quality requirements. To control this complexity, PSA Peugeot Citroën has put in place coding rules. It is a very interesting initiative and it guarantees better control of the maintenance costs. However this initiative leads to a need for tools that can ensure a thorough and systematic verification of the compliance with the rules.

Such tools are essential as the financial consequences of a lack of quality may be extremely heavy due to a long and costly maintenance of the programs,” explains Daniel Pilaud, CEO of Itris Automation. “The recent choice of PSA Peugeot Citroën to systematically use PLC Checker proves that automatic verification tools are indispensable. We are very pleased to support PSA Peugeot Citroën in its quality improvement process.” Beyond coding rules specific to a given industrial such as PSA Peugeot Citroën, PLC Checker can also check generic coding rules, valid for all industries. It can analyze programs written for multiple PLCs, including the one offered by Schneider Electric and Siemens. It is sold through a Software as a Service (SaaS) model.