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Visualization and control of the process of gasoline and diesel engine piston production at KS Kolbenschmidt

October 6, 2014 | Bretislav Valek

KS Kolbenschmidt Czech Republic is an important producer of gasoline and diesel engine pistons and compressors. The history of the company dates back to the beginnings of the automobile age in 1916.


The complete production is carried out here from piston casting through heat treatment to surface machining and treatment. The entire production process is completed by the assembly and checking of finished products.


KS Kolbenschmidt Czech Republic is part of Kolbenschmidt Pierburg AG, whose six business divisions are engaged in the development and production of a wide range of engine components, modules, and systems.



Control system

To visualize the production process, the Reliance 4 SCADA/HMI system is used. It was originally designed to monitor and set temperatures for crucible furnaces that provide melt to semi-automatic and robotic casting sites.


Based on the customer's requirements, the visualization project has been expanded to allow the operators to change foundry production process parameters and to improve production quality. The visualization system monitors melt parameters and foundry environment effects. Upon evaluation, it transfers the data to the casting sites, which releases production or automatically adjusts the production process parameters.


Production release is a complex system for which two control rooms have been established for the purpose of foundry visualization – spectral analysis and casting measurement.


Another feature of the system is the visualization of the crucible furnaces' states directly at the casting sites. What is important is that data from the casting sites can be recorded, which has contributed significantly to the identification of defective castings when introducing new types of castings into production.


KS Kolbenschmidt's production line in the town of Trmice

KS Kolbenschmidt's production line in the town of Trmice

Authorized users can access all data through the intranet using a Web server, which allows them to optimize production processes and increase productivity.


The Reliance system is installed on a server located in the metal foundry shop's control room. The server communicates with the following peripherals:


  • Casting sites with a SIMATIC S7-300 Ethernet link and NetLink converters
  • Shimaden SR54/84/94 and Eurotherm 2216e controllers (crucible furnace temperature control)
  • Quido ETH 2/32 I/O modules (remote outputs for controlling visual signaling)
  • TDS devices (display of values of the crucible furnaces' states)
  • Comet measuring device (temperature, humidity, pressure)

The existing workstations at the customer site connected to the intranet were used to integrate spectral analysis and casting measurement into the system. Data from these stations is processed by the visualization server (Reliance Control Server), which, upon evaluation, controls the respective casting site.



Examples of visualization windows



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Try the Reliance SCADA/HMI system on several example projects or download the installer of the trial version for free.

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