Even if you are unfamiliar with the term “human machine interface,” chances are you’ve used one at some point in time. They are found practically everywhere, including homes, restaurants, factories, restaurants, airplanes and automobiles. But what exactly is a human machine interface (HMI)? And how do they work? These are just a few of the questions that we’ll be answering today.
In the most basic sense, a HMI is merely a machine through which a human operator controls a machine or device. The term is somewhat generalized, allowing HMIs to cover a broad range of devices and equipment. Your washing machine, for instance, may feature an HMI panel, consisting of LED displays and controls. When you prepare the washing machine to start a load of clothes, you may specify the time, temperature and other settings via the HMI.
While HMIs are used in a wide variety of applications, they are most commonly used in commercial factories and workplaces. Rather than forcing workers to manually perform tasks, business owners can implement machines that are equipped with HMIs. Workers may then control these machines to automate certain tasks, improving productivity while reducing the risk of injury to human workers. It’s a simple yet meaningful step towards enhancing production in manufacturing facilities and similar commercial businesses.
Now that you know a little bit about the basic definition of an HMI, you might be wondering how exactly they work. Well, there’s really no easy answer to this question since each and every HMI is different. With that said, the interface of an HMI typically contains an input and output mechanisms. The human operator inputs commands into the HMI, often consisting of a touchscreen interface or manual buttons, at which point the HMI outputs the command by sending it to the corresponding machine.
A computer may even be classified as an HMI, as it contains both an input and output method. But there are other types of HMIs available, including those used in conjunction with robotic machines. Such HMIs may feature an interface through which a human operator controls the robotic machine. By inputting commands into the interface, the operator can tell the machine what to do.