distributed control system (DCS)

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A type of automated control system that is distributed throughout a machine to provide instructions to different parts of the machine. Instead of having a centrally located device controlling all machines, each section of a machine has its own computer that controls the operation. For instance, there may be one machine with a section that controls dry elements of cake frosting and another section controlling the liquid elements, but each section is individually managed by a DCS. A DCS is commonly used in manufacturing equipment and utilizes input and output protocols to control the machine.


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