Schneider Electric Modicon M171/172: A Cost Effective, Feature-Rich Solution for HVAC/R and Pump Control

October 13, 2016 at 3:54 pm  •  Posted in Industrial  •  0 Comments

While the requirements of Building Management (HVAC), Refrigeration and Pumping applications are very different, they each share the common goals of maximizing control and integrating communications, all while minimizing operating costs. The Modicon M171/172 line of Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs) was developed with these applications – and that singular goal – in mind.

A cost effective solution, the Modicon M171/M172 line allow users to maximize profitability and energy efficiency through scalable automation control. These compact, yet powerful controllers can handle a full range of applications, from simple through complex BMS connected machines. This line includes two controller types:

  • M171O — Optimized: For simple and compact machines
  • M172P — Performance: For complex and BMS connected machines

With an optimal mix of digital and analog I/O, multiple BMS protocols, and all embedded features, the M171/M172 PLCs are perfect for a complete range of HVAC/R and pumping applications. The I/O can be expanded with multiple options in the same footprint or through expansion modules. Protocols supported include Modbus SL & TCP, BACnet MS/TP & IP, LonWorks, and HTTP with an embedded webserver. A SD card can be utilized for data logging, webpages, and expanding application memory. Many competitor solutions cost more out of the box, then require adding options to support BACnet and other platforms, thus increasing the overall cost even more!

Powered by SoMachine HVAC

The Modicon M171/172 PLCs are programmed using SoMachine HVAC, a powerful configuration software compliant with IEC 61131-3, supporting 5 programming languages. This common platform – available as a free download – allows for flexibility and scalability through the entire PLC range. This proven, intuitive, and robust software development environment includes ready-to-use applications and function blocks targeting HVAC/R and pumping applications to make commissioning faster, easier and ultimately, less expensive by saving on set up and development costs.

SoMachine HVAC features an optimized user interface that brings critical tools and functions right to the user’s fingertips with intuitive, simplified navigation. Through embedded tools, like web visualizations and webservers, this software also enables the user to stay connected everywhere via Ethernet to simplify machine integration and maintenance.

Part of the Modicon Family – The First Name in PLCs

The inventor of the PLC, Modicon introduced the first PLC in 1968— the Modicon 048. This invention changed process design moving from complicated hard-wired relay systems to automation system reducing the time, effort, and cost previously associated with modifying a process. The following year, Schneider Electric helped expand the reach of Modicon technology worldwide.

Today, the Modicon Family continues to push boundaries and define the technology that enables and connects modern machines and processes. The Modicon Family of PLCs and programmable automation controllers (PACs) still stands for innovation, offering a full range of solutions to meet the industry’s automation needs. For more information on the Modicon M171/172, or any other Modicon PLC, please visit


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