PAC is called "PLC's future", because its ability is a combination of PLC and PC capabilities. PCs have also started widely used to control industrial processes, but not too successful because it is not deterministic to complete a process.
PLC itself, although powerful enough to do various tasks, but has a weakness when working on complex applications (e.g., to implement PID controllers applications which involving arithmetic in integer type "floating"), which usually have to add a special module on the PLC with separate programming.
So the experts think of a way to combine PC and PLC, and was born PAC. So in essence, is to make PLCs more like a PC (with network connectivity, device interoperability, and enterprise data integration), and create a PC is like PLC (by using specially designed operating system for high performance and deterministic industrial applications, enabling additional modules I / O and other special modules).
This term comes from the PAC industry analyst at ARC Advisory Group, and has defined the following characteristics of PAC:
1. Operates with a single platform on a variety of domain (including logic, motion, drives and process control).
2. Using a single development platform, where platform using common tagging and a single database to develop tasks in a range of disciplines.
3. Hardware and software of the controller is integrated.
4. It can be programmed with tools that support the process on several machines or units.
5. Operate an open and modular architecture that duplicates industrial applications, from machine layouts in factories to unit operations in process plant.
6. Using the de-facto standard for network interfaces, languages, and protocols to allow exchange of data as part of a system with multi-vendor.
7. Provide processing and efficient scanning.