What is a PLC or an HMI?

PLC stands for programmable logic controller, and is a digital computer that has been ruggedized for industrial applications.

A rugged computer has been specifically designed to perform reliably in harsh conditions. For example: in a barn or factory where it may encounter vibrations, dust, moisture, etc.

PLCs are primarily used to control large scale manufacturing operations where a high level of control is necessary. For example: the production line at a winery as wine is being bottled.

PLC Automation for a Winery

There are conveyor belts, robotic arms, not to mention the bottles and wine. What if a bottle is out of line and valuable wine spills all over the floor? Or what if one of the conveyor belts is running at a different speed than the next in the series? Can you say domino effect of disaster?

For an operation like this, you need detailed control over factors like speed, the order in which things come together, spacing, etc. And for this, you need a PLC. A PLC can track a wide range of automated features and make them work in concert, adhering to preset specifications.

HMI stands for human-machine interface. You can communicate with your PLC through your HMI, i.e. a big, colorful, interactive touchscreen display that supplies real-time feedback on your operation.

PLC HMI Touch Screen


The application opportunities for using a PLC+HMI are practically endless. Any large-scale production with a lot of moving parts, or operation that is tracking multiple data points is the ideal place to implement a PLC. And combining it with a state-of-the-art touchscreen HMI makes directing your facility that much easier.

To date, our largest PLC+HMI projects have been designing the automation of a barn and a Grain Handling System. Click on the links to see more details on those projects!

Lenze quality

Electram works with Lenze to bring you high quality PLC & HMIs. Lenze PLCs have an impressive performance and response time (1m sec) that is globally-recognized! German engineered, Lenze produces top-of-the-line products that you can count on. Not only will they perform reliably, but Lenze provides the bells and whistles to make your operation the envy of your competitors.

What Electram offers:

Lenze provides the top quality hardware, and Electram provides personalized programming. When our expert programmers do PLC/HMI design, we are not just putting buttons on a touch panel; we are creating a way to streamline and optimize your process. We'll take the time to get to know you and your current operation. Then we'll work with you on ways to increase production and efficiency, and we'll design your PLC with those goals in mind.

Call us today to discuss how PLCs can improve your production, or email us at