Nidec Automation

Software Development for Industrial Automation 

The Background

Nidec Corporation is a global manufacturer of electric motors, originating in Japan. Their products are found in electric appliances, vehicles, manufacturing equipment & computer hard drives. They have the largest market share in the motors that power hard drives across the planet. 

The Challenge

Nidec’s UK division, who specialise in production line motor drive control units, have been successful in setting up and supporting manufacturers across global markets. Due to the fast-paced environment that software and computing sits in, Nidec have found their software, designed at the end of the 90s, becoming too outdated to continue support. Their initial issue is to fix some bugs that have appeared due to other systems being upgraded, as well as provide variants of their control software to different customers. The requirements mainly being driven by language updates & different numbers of motor control units being integrated into a system. The main language conversion involved implementing Traditional Chinese which caused some complications when developing and running using legacy platforms such as Windows XP & now unsupported office programs. 

The Solution

Wolf Logic took the time to understand the systems in place, how they interacted with each other and how the code had been designed. Using Wolf Logics experience and the correct amount of time, this meant the translations could be implemented using the correct encoding and any bugs that were discovered could be ironed out to provide a more reliable Human Machine Interface. Now that the platform is in a usable state the next phase of work is to upgrade areas such as operating systems and code bases to modern standards and technologies, thus making sure the platform is fully future proof. 

The Opportunities

One opportunity would be to integrate into a cloud-based platform such as Geo Points, as well as bringing in live IoT feeds. Another opportunity that Wolf Logic is consulting on, is the ability to remotely manage firmware on devices across the planet, so there is less need to fly technicians out to carry out upgrades on-site, therefore saving valuable time, money and reducing CO2 emissions.