I've been working through my “Home Sprinkler System” project, and now have an S7-1200 PLC that contains a small but functioning program that will run a sequence of sprinklers around my lawn.

The next step in this project is to get my Siemens Basic Panel HMI connected and integrated as part of the system so I can begin using the sprinkler system right away.

To be perfectly honest, I did very little research beforehand about setting up and configuring the HMI. I decided to just “wing it” and see how it would end up.

I took a look in the settings of the HMI after application of 24vdc power, and browsed through its settings.

I knew from experience with other systems that I should give the unit an IP Address which is done in the “Network Interface” area.

Adding the Basic HMI to my TIA Portal Project

In similar fashion to adding the S7 1200 CPU, in TIA Portal I select “Add new device” and select “HMI” on the left pane before picking the model of Basic HMI I have.

I was not sure which “version” to pick at first, so I just picked the latest, version 16.0, but that came back to be of issue. I will get back to that, but first we will get this added to the project.

I have to say Siemens has a really nice wizard that takes you through all of the options when creating the HMI.

In the first step of the wizard, I select the PLC in which this HMI will connect with.

Through the next steps, I mostly accepted the defaults or checked all the options.

For the sake of time and space, I skipped a couple of screenshots of the wizard, but it was very simple to go through and for having the most options available right now, I selected everything.

To prove my communication and basic project setup, I figured from working with the PLC that I needed to compile and load my project.

The compile worked, but the load did not. The load failed with the error that it was missing the panel image as shown below.

This began a research project and looking through the HMI settings I could not find the version until I finally ran across it in the lower left of the pane under system information.

From there, I was able to go back to the properties of my HMI and select the correct version (15.01) and compile and load the project.

Conclusion

It is a lot of steps to capture and display here, but it is really a fast setup (unless you have errors that you must correct).

Being experienced, but new to this line of products means that I know what I want to accomplish, but I must figure out how to do it and all of the nuances that come with a system.

An engineer that is experienced with Siemens would have known the ins and outs of the version compatibility to start with, but that is something I will know for next time.

Written by Brandon Cooper
Senior Controls Engineer and Freelance Writer

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