Computers are used in all sorts of applications these days. While we are familiar with their presence in offices and our homes, computers are behind all sorts of processes particularly many heavy industrial applications.
Unfortunately the industrial environment is not best suited to the needs of an average PC. Dust, dirt, water, grease, oil and the occasional knocks and bangs, not to mention the excessive temperatures, are all potential computer killers.
Fortunately many computer manufacturers produce rugged, solid state, industrial computers designed to cope with the environmental extremes of industry. These, often bespoke machines are very expensive. And while they are built to withstand most of what industry can throw at them they are not very flexible when it comes to repair or upgrade.
If an industrial computer or monitor goes down then an engineer has to be called and whatever was being controlled by the machine has to stop. When it comes to upgrade these machines are equally inflexible. To ensure stability industrial computers often contain old hardware and outdated technology and by the time it has been running on the factory floor for a few months it can already be out of date.
However, a solution to this problem and a less expensive alternative to using an industrial computer is to use a standard PC and house it in an industrial computer cabinet.
An industrial computer cabinet can protect conventional hardware including monitors, printers, computer tower and keyboards, whilst still affording the same protection of an industrial solid state machine.
Many industrial computer cabinets can protect enclosed PC’s to Nema and IP rated levels as well as the European explosive atmosphere directive (ATEX). They can also be produced in stainless steel allowing their use in food processing.
An industrial computer cabinet even with an enclosed standard PC will cost a fraction of the price of an industrial computer and will out last it by years and even decades.