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Microcontroller-Based Experimental Setup and Experiments for SCADA Education

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3 Author(s)
Şahin, S. ; Dept. of Ind. Autom., Ege Univ., Izmir, Turkey ; Ölmez, M. ; Isler, Y.

In the field of automation technology, research and development for industrial applications has increased rapidly in recent years. Therefore, industrial automation and control education is a very important element of the industrialization process in developing countries, such as Turkey, which needs to keep abreast for the latest developments in the field. However, there are several challenges in industrial automation education in a developing country. First, a course that includes instrumentation and automation needs a significant budget. Moreover, the necessary instrumentation is generally confusing to use, which reduces the motivation of the students. Another challenge is that real industrial processes cannot be set up in the laboratory because these may be hazardous for students. To overcome these challenges, this paper gives a detailed description of some laboratory experiments in virtual-instrument-aided supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems. These experiments have been developed as part of implementing an inductive education strategy in the Automation Laboratory of Ege Vocational School, Ege University, İzmir, Turkey. The experiments described here are designed to show how an economically feasible SCADA system could be built. The advantages and the challenging points of these experiments are also discussed and evaluated. A quantitative evaluation was achieved using a one-way ANOVA test performed on the exam results of the students. The qualitative evaluation was performed using a survey given to the students. The results indicated that the performance of the students was improved compared to the previous years' students.

Published in:

Education, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:53 ,  Issue: 3 )

Date of Publication:

Aug. 2010

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