10 Benefits of a Computer Enclosure over an Industrial Computer.

By: Richard N Williams

Demands are high for computing in industry.Industrial machines have to cope with many hostile elements whilst alsoproviding reliable computing. Traditionally industrial computers have beenspecific, bespoke machines. These industrial computers tend to run old hardwareand versions of software. Whilst this has the advantage of making the machinesstable and reliable, the out-dated technology may mean the processes controlledby the machine are not done as efficiently.

These machines are also very expensive, notjust to buy but also the maintenance. Industrial computers have to bemaintained by service engineer, often forcing shutdown of production lines theyalso have to be replaced periodically as the hardware and software willeventually become obsolete. All computers eventually fail but an industrialcomputer enclosure means that over three generations of computers can use thesame enclosure.

Industrial PC enclosures are a more efficient,affordable and reliable alternative to these expensive machines. The mainbenefits of an industrial computer enclosure are:

1.???????? Withstandthe same environments as an industrial computer, whether that is dust (includingexplosive atmospheres), dirt, grime, oil, grease and water (even completelydoused). Enclosures are rated using European IP ratings that give a clearindication to the types of environments the enclosure can operate in, forexample IP 65 totally protects dust whilst protecting against strong jets ofwater, (the first digit, 6, represents the dust protection the second digit, 5,the water) while IP 66 offers the same dust protection but the enclosure can becompletely immersed in water.

2.???????? Enclosurescan also withstand the same shocks, vibrations and tampering as the enclosurecan be built from robust materials and the enclosed PC can be fitted snugly andsecured with shock absorbing bolts. Enclosures can also be securely locked andbolted to floors or walls to protect against theft.

3.???????? Forcomputing in extreme temperatures, computer enclosures can in fact work to abetter standard than industrial machines as the extra cooling and heating unitscan be replaced if they are not working as efficiently as they should (a sealedindustrial computer that is running too hot or cold would need to be replacedor returned for an upgrade).

4.???????? Computerenclosures can enable a PC to run equally as reliable as an industrial computeras the desktop PC housed in the enclosure can be any conventional machine, froma trusted office workhorse to the latest all singing, all dancing off-the shelfPC.

5.???????? Acomputer housed in an enclosure is also far cheaper than an industrialcomputer. Apart from the initial outlay for the expensive bespoke industrialcomputer, enclosures ?can out live anindustrial machine by over a decade as an industrial computer will eventuallyhave an internal failure (as all computers do) or become completely obsoleteand will need replacing. However, an enclosure can be reused to house anothermachine and will in general house three generations of machines.

6.???????? Acomputer enclosure can house monitors, printers, touch-screens and all mannerof computing equipment (including the peripherals such as mouse and keyboard )or they can be combined with water/dust proof sealed keyboards and mouse.

7.???????? Asan enclosure houses a conventional PC, any repairs or upgrades can be carriedout in-house in minutes rather than have to wait for an engineer and have to shutdownthe production.

8.???????? Enclosures can be manufactured from arange of material including food grade stainless steel.

9.???????? Enclosures can be lockable and securedto walls or floors to prevent theft or tampering.

10.?????? Enclosuresallow you to choose which software or hardware to run inside the enclosurerather than suffer out-dated technology.

With the demands of industrial computing sovariable and extremeBusiness Management Articles, industrial PC enclosures offer a flexibility that evenconventional industrial computers fail to match whilst also offering the sameprotection and reliability for a fraction of the cost. PC enclosures are idealfor even the most hostile industrial environment and while specialist PCs willalways be required for certain tasks the majority of uses for an industrialcomputer can be achieved using a conventional PC housed in an industrial PC enclosure.

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