Suppliers' News

Automation: quality at the push of a button

The new process and control system developed by ASE-Bühler AG sets new standards.
October 15, 2003

The new process and control system developed by ASE-Bühler AG sets new standards. ASE-Bühler AG is a Buhler affiliate housed in a historical villa in Uzwil – a sharp contrast to the state-of-the-art automation solutions the company develops for customers.

The building in which the founder dynasty of the Buhler company used to concern itself with the first grain milling machines today houses twenty software engineers and PLC specialists. They develop the automation systems, which enable Buhler customers to start and run their production lines at the push of a button. Buhler employs 250 persons worldwide in automation engineering. Alone at Buhler in Uzwil, 150 employees are active in the area of automation. The design, assembly, and production of the associated control systems are done by the Buhler factory in Amriswil,
Switzerland. Twenty experts at another Buhler affiliate, Bühler & Scherler AG, ensure professional electrical engineering and installation.

Close cooperation
“We implement our projects in close cooperation with our partners and with Buhler customers,” explains Philipp Egger, general manager of ASE-Bühler AG. State-of-the-art, integrated automation solutions are designed and built across all control levels – field level, machine control level, and process control level. UFA Biblis in Herzogenbuchsee is a prime example illustrating this capability. The company is one of Switzerland’s biggest animal feed production plants and doubtlessly the most modern of its kind in Europe. UFA chose an automation system from Buhler because it knew that
this partner offered vast experience in the automation of formulated feed manufacturing plants. Large-scale projects are nothing new for ASE-Buhler staff, who are also thoroughly familiar with Buhler equipment.

State-of-the-art engineering at UFA
The state-of-the-art machine and process control system called ACOS (ASE Control System) controls 64 different process lines at UFA. The power and control cabinets fabricated by Buhler Amriswil have a total length of 150 meters. They form the interface between the mechanical system and the advanced programmable logic controllers (PLCs). The Buhler process control system processes the production data, evaluates process data, and ensures the retraceability of the production process. The dual server system installed, which has 20 clients as operator terminals, guarantees high
availability and ensures the required performance of the production plant.

Quality assurance, retracing of products
The Buhler automation affiliate ASE is a leader in quality assurance and product retracing. Product reliability starts with the quality checking of all raw materials upon reception. Throughout the production process, the various material movements are registered and continuously evaluated. A sophisticated multilayer model and a powerful long-term archiving system ensure material retracing across all process stages – from raw material reception to shipping of the finished products. Graphic evaluations, which can be specifically configured, provide information to the plant operator
on the productivity of the plant.

All services from a single source
From the preliminary study and the design stage to implementation, simulation, start-up, and customer support, ASE-Buhler makes sure customers’ automation systems will work smoothly during the entire life
cycle of their production plants – at the push of a button.

Buhler is a global Technology Group and System Partner for plant and equipment and for process expertise in the fields of Food Processing, Chemical Engineering, and Die Casting, with a worldwide payroll of about 6,000.