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By Jeff Gould, AlarmManagement Insider Contributor
NUMEROUS COMPANIES are realizing the value of collecting and storing OPC A&E data. Most likely every plant, at one point or another, has reviewed operations to understand what happened in a given situation. There are numerous reasons for seeking a thorough understanding of an event that already occurred – safety, environmental upsets, regulatory compliance, lost production, quality deviation or equipment damage, to name a few. The economic loss and the safety implications are enough justification to be proactive in preventing these issues from occurring again in the future. Many facilities rely on alarm printers, event logs or other forms of data recorders for information to do these reviews. The problem is that understanding and searching these logs is difficult, if they are even available when they are needed.
OPC A&E archivers are transforming simple alarm and event logs into valuable data stores. An OPC A&E Archive is different than an OPC DA historian in that it provides a chronological record of information, allowing quick diagnosis of what led up to a specific event, what the cause was, and how was it handled by operational staff. Most process historians store data by tag, whereas alarms and events are stored based on time. Historically many controls people would crowd around trends and printed event logs trying to piece together what just happened. OPC A&E is instrumental in better handling all of these problems.
OPC A&E eliminates the connectivity barriers, enabling universal collection of alarms and events from different devices, and providing a sequential log of what happens in a plant. By storing this data in a relational database, a sequence of events may be reviewed to help answer some of these key questions:
|About the Author|
ControlGlobal.com is exclusively dedicated to the global process automation market. We report on developing industry trends, illustrate successful industry applications, and update the basic skills and knowledge base that provide the profession's foundation.