This view is useful for detecting any potential weak points in the self-organizing network.
To design a wireless network using the AMS Wireless SNAP -ON, the user first imports an image of the process area where the network will operate (top image). Then he or she sets the image’s scale by drawing a line across any two points and typing in the distance. The user then designates whether the process area represents an environment of high, medium or low density of process equipment.
The user then drags and drops desired WirelessHART devices and gateway(s) onto the plant layout. Then the user automatically validates the design against best practices planning parameters (middle image). In this image, the red circle indicates a violation of best practices that might be addressed by adding another measurement point or wireless repeater to complement current communication paths.
For wireless networks already in operation, the user is able to see the device icons from the HART Device Descriptor (DD) and the self-organizing network communication pathways (bottom image).
LAPEM Streamlines Efficiency Testing
On behalf of Mexico’s Federal Electrical Commission (CFE), wireless technology is helping to streamline the measurement of thermal efficiencies at power generating units throughout the country.
LAPEM, the Testing Laboratory of Equipment and Materials, has five analysis teams that set up temporary measurement facilities at each of 140 power plants, but wanted to increase the frequency at which each plant was tested. In contrast to traditional wired measurements, one team’s easy establishment of a temporary wireless network made it possible to increase its productivity and plant coverage by 10 percent. This led to an annual revenue increase of US $512,000 for the unit. It has also improved the revenue of the Federal Electrical Commission by pushing higher output for each plant while reducing costs.
The ease of use and the reliable performance of Emerson’s Smart Wireless system resulted in a decision by the Laboratory Analysis group to equip all five of its analytical teams with wireless instrumentation. Their productivity is expected to increase by another 40 percent with faster turnaround time between services. As a result, all five teams should perform 25 more assessment services per year, producing an extra US $1,375,000 annually without adding personnel. Each of the 140 power units can now be visited and analyzed every other year.
“In the past, we could only cover about 50 plants per year,” said Oscar Martinez Mejia of LAP EM. “We needed to reduce turnaround time at each plant in order to reach every plant on a two-year cycle. Emerson’s Smart Wireless made it possible for the team equipped with wireless devices to cut their on-site time by one-third, enabling them to complete more services in a year’s time and proving the value of wireless.”
“It takes 15 days to install and commission wired instruments, take the readings, and tear down the setup,” Martinez Mejia said. “Then, another week is needed for reporting and other activities before a team can move on to the next plant. In the future, they will be able to cover 75 plants per year, because the on-site work can be done in just 10 days using wireless devices.”