Automating Manufacturing Systems with PLCs; Version 6.0 (August 11, 2009)

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Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs) are the predominant tool for controlling industrial and specialty systems. These computer based controllers provide a variety of programming options and easily configurable inputs and outputs. This book was written to support an engineering course that focuses on the design of these systems. For the purposes of depth the book focuses on a very popular PLC brand, Allen-Bradley, but the concepts are portable to other programming platforms.

The author currently uses the book to teach an undergraduate controls course EGR 450 - Manufacturing Controls.


Dr. Hugh Jack, P.Eng. is a Professor and Chair of Product Design and Manufacturing at Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA.

Book Features

  • Detailed chapters addressing a variety of Allen Bradley hardware
  • Numerous problems including online solutions to support learning
  • Summaries of chapter contents
  • Asides and notes for noteworthy information
  • The book is licenced under the GFDL and is free to distribute
  • A focus on design methods leads the reader to design robust systems
  • Hundreds of figures and examples

(Optional) Purchase

Although the book is available for download free, I have had requests for printed versions of the book. You may purchase copies of the book for $85 at
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Allen Bradley Manuals
Control Logix [1] [2]
I/O Cards
Panelview [1]

PLC Focused Web Resources

PLC Tutor - discussion groups, a simulator, and a tutorial guide
MRPLC - plc related downloads - plc discussion forums
Industrial Text - some online materials
The Learning Pit - Materials for basic electricity and controls
Business Industrial Network - basic PLC information
Bud Trinkel - ebooks on fluid power

Control Software (Free or close)

OATs - An IEC 61131 based programming package
TaskScript - An IEC 61131 based programming package
RSLogix demo version
Autocad Electrical Wiring software

Commercial Control Hardware/Software

Tek Supply - Discount sellers of AB and other equipment

Chapters, Powerpoint Slides, and Problem Solutions

Slides Answers
Cover Page and Table of Content (HTML)  
Introduction (HTML)  
Programmable Logic Controllers (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
PLC Hardware (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Logical Sensors (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Logical Actuators (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Boolean Logic Design (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Karnaugh Maps (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
PLC Operation (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Timers, Counters and More (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Structured Logic Design (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Flowchart Based Design (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
State Based Design (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Numbers and Data (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
PLC Memory (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Ladder Logic Functions (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Advanced Ladder Logic Functions (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Open Controllers (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Instruction List Programming (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Structured Text Programming (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Sequential Function Charts (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Function Block Programming (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Analog Inputs and Outputs (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Continuous Sensors (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Continuous Actuators (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Continuous Control (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Fuzzy Logic (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Serial Communication (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Networking Communication (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Human Machine Interfaces (HMI) (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Electrical Design (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Software Design (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Selecting a PLC (HTML) (PPT) (HTML)
Appendix - Glossary (HTML)  
Appendix - References (HTML)  

Older Versions

Version 5.1 PDF (6MB) April 21, 2008
Version 5.0 PDF (6MB) May 5, 2007
Version 4.9 PDF (6MB) January 12, 2007
Version 4.7 PDF (5.4MB) April 14, 2005
Version 4.6 PDF (5.3MB) December 15, 2004
Version 4.5 PDF (5MB) May 5, 2004
Version 4.2 PDF (5MB) April 3, 2003
Version 4.1 PDF (5.0MB) July 22, 2002
Version 4.0 PDF (4.9MB) March 31, 2002 (HTML)
Version 3.1 PDF (4.7MB) November 27, 2001
Version 3 PDF (4.7MB) July 12, 2001
Version 2 PDF (4.5MB)

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