I am trying to replace some electric timers with some sort of a micro-controller based solution http://www.directindustry.com/industrial-manufacturer/panel-mount-timer-154503.html. I would like to run at least 10 timers from one micro-controller, a 20x4 LCD and 4 push buttons. All these requires 38 pins (I think I counted it right). The LCD will display the timers set value. Since there are 10 timers I though a 20x4 will be ideal. The push buttons will be used to set the time. The timers will be independent from each other.
I was planning to use a PIC16F887A micro-controller but I released that the number of pins are not sufficient. An Arduino Mega would be ideal but forums suggested that it is not reliable for an industrial application. What other micro-controllers are out there for this sort of application.
The current timers has 24V inputs and 24V outputs. How can address this issue?
I am new to this micro-controller business and PCB designing. I've been trying to learn on the internet so some links would be really helpful, specially for programming.
Also, do you guys think replacing those timers with a micro-controller is a good idea?
Thanks a bunch.