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New SoftPAC Controller From Opto 22 Expands SNAP PAC Choices to Include PC-Based Control

TEMECULA, CA--(Marketwire - Sep 25, 2012) - Industrial automation manufacturer Opto 22 has announced SoftPAC™, a software-based programmable automation controller (PAC) ideal for use with computationally intensive applications as well as applications that must log, manipulate, and exchange large amounts of data. SoftPAC joins Opto 22's existing SNAP PAC family of standalone and rack-mounted PAC controllers so automation professionals can choose the best PAC -- either hardware- or PC-based -- for their applications.

SoftPAC takes advantage of a PC's computational speed to quickly execute the complex logic and calculations that automation professionals encounter. For example, industrial engineers and others working with mathematically demanding applications such as gas density calculations, solar tracking, and encryption can use SoftPAC to improve calculation time and increase overall performance.

As a PC-based controller, SoftPAC also takes advantage of a PC's file handling and networking capabilities to enhance data acquisition and monitoring applications that log, manipulate, and exchange large amounts of data. An engineer in a large refrigerated warehouse, for example, may need to log gigabytes of temperature, power, compressor, and door status data from multiple refrigerators and freezers. While this volume of data can be difficult to handle with a hardware-based controller, PC-based SoftPAC can log the data using the PC's extensive storage and networking capabilities. File operations are limited only by the size of the PC's hard drives and the available network volumes.

As a PC-based controller, SoftPAC can also reduce costs for machine builders and OEMs who integrate a PC into their products. Running SoftPAC on the PC already built into the machine not only avoids the cost of a separate, hardware-based controller but also saves valuable space inside compact machines.

SoftPAC is programmed with the PAC Project™ software suite just like Opto 22's standalone (S-series) and rack-mounted (R-series) PACs, and a control program developed for one PAC can be run on another one with almost no modification. Like hardware-based PACs, SoftPAC can be used with any Opto 22 SNAP I/O unit that uses an Ethernet-based I/O processor, or "brain." Hardware-based PACs have a fixed amount of RAM for program memory and logic -- 16 MB or 32 MB, depending on the model -- while SoftPAC, drawing on PC RAM, can provide up to 64 MB RAM.

SoftPAC runs under Microsoft Windows 7 (32-bit or 64-bit) or Windows XP (32-bit) operating systems and supports operation on multiple cores and processors.

A SoftPAC license for operation on one PC is included in the PAC Project Professional software suite ($999 USD) and can also be purchased separately for $399 USD. SoftPAC is scheduled to be available in late October 2012. For more information, visit softpac.opto22.com or contact Opto 22 Pre-Sales at 951-695-3000 or toll free at 1-800-321-6786. For a short video describing SoftPAC features, visit op22.co/SoftPACvideo.

About Opto 22
Opto 22 develops and manufactures hardware and software for applications involving industrial automation and control, energy management, remote monitoring, and data acquisition. Designed and made in the U.S.A., Opto 22 products have an established reputation worldwide for ease-of-use, innovation, quality, and reliability. Opto 22 products, which use standard, commercially available networking and computer technologies, are used by automation end-users, OEMs, and information technology and operations personnel in over 10,000 installations worldwide. The company was founded in 1974 and is privately held in Temecula, California, U.S.A. Opto 22 products are available through a global network of distributors and system integrators. For more information, contact Opto 22 headquarters at +1-951-695-3000 or visit www.opto22.com.

Electronic copies of this release and related photographs are available at http://www.opto22.com/site/pressroom.aspx