In today's world, automation is used prominently in every major industry. While different industries often use different specialized devices, control systems and applications, they all share a common rapidly growing challenge - how to share data amongst all these components and the rest of the enterprise. OPC is the solution - it solves the problem of communication between devices, controllers and applications. It is a standardized approach to data connectivity that does not get caught up in the usual custom-drive based connectivity problems. Read this guide to learn the ABCs of OPC and how it can solve your data connectivity issues!09/09/2009
Ethernet for industrial communications is growing rapidly in factory automation, process control and SCADA systems. The ODVA EtherNet/IP network standard is gaining popularity as a preferred industrial protocol. Plant engineers are recognizing the significant advantages that Ethernet-enabled devices provide such as ease of connectivity, high performance and cost savings. While EtherNet/IP has many advantages, cable installation is often expensive, and communications to remote sites or moving platforms may not be reliable or cost-effective.
Wireless Ethernet technologies have emerged that can now reliably reduce network costs while improving plant production. However, applying these technologies is not a simple matter as industrial Ethernet systems vary greatly in terms of bandwidth requirements, response times and data transmission characteristics. This paper will explore applying wireless technologies to EtherNet/IP based networks for industrial automation systems.09/03/2009
Waste and rework in batch manufacturing cost serious money and impact time to market. Standards-based recipe management can improve quality, reduce cost and improve profit and time to market. Read this white paper and improve your bottom line.09/03/2009
Process Analytics and Intelligencesometimes called Manufacturing Intelligencehas transformed the way companies produce goods, understand their manufacturing processes, and ensure a quality product in ways we could not have foreseen ten years ago.
Real-time Analytics have replaced the legacy concept of running reports. Reports that represent a static picture of a process at a fixed point in time are great tools for compliance audits and long term warranty analysis. However, they may not accurately represent the "as-is" state of a process. Reports showing large amounts of data can be difficult to interpret. There are often limitations in how the report data can be drilleddown and viewed.
With today's large volumes of data, there's a wealth of information that can be gained about the process. But how can this data be captured, managed and retrieved in a way that presents the information in an up-to-theminute easy to understand format? Real-time Analytics provides the techniques and solutions that address this problem. Instead of users having to interpret the data, it's presented in a graphical form enabling them to easily drill down to explore the data in real-time.
This white paper discusses how Process Analytics is implemented and utilized. Ways of managing and distributing Process Analytics to the organization are presented.08/20/2009
Many manufacturing plants are driven to lower product costs and increase quality and flexibility while maintaining focus on compliance and safety. While automation plays an essential role in meeting business needs, some solutions can add complexity and costs, thereby reducing the return on investment. The ideal solution provides the agility required without sacrificing reliability and lifecycle costs. Download this resource to learn how Experion LS can be the ideal solution for your plant.08/20/2009
Diverse Redundancy is being used in SIS technology to achieve higher safety integrity. Diverse redundancy refers to the use of two or more different systems, which are built using different components, algorithms, electronics, design methodology etc. to perform the same task. One benefit of diverse redundancy is the increased capabilities to reduce common mode and systematic failures such as those caused by design flaws.08/12/2009
Today's manufacturing companies face many pressures, including rising costs for raw materials, labor and distribution, not to mention customer demands for higher quality at lower prices. This paper explores the use of today's recipe software solutions as a part of a control strategy to transform a company's recipe area from a place of contentious schedule adherence and "rollofthedice quality" to one that can reduce waste while increasing quality to provide a consistent schedule adherence in an environment for continuous improvement. Download and learn how recipe solutions can improve a company's bottom line.08/12/2009
There are potential challenges and pitfalls of supporting advanced solutions across the areas of process optimization, blending, alarm management, asset management, manufacturing execution systems, and more. This paper discussed best practices and lifecycle support methodologies that address many of the support and maintenance challenges required to sustain advanced solutions benefits.
Download to learn more.08/12/2009
Thirty years ago, specifying an enclosure involved three steps: ordering the appropriately sized gray box, installing sensitive electronic equipment and hoping the enclosure would withstand its surroundings.08/07/2009
Electromagnetic flowmeters, also known as mag meters, are popular and proven devices for flow measurement of electrically conductive process fluids and for volumetric filling machine applications. Of prime importance to a mag meters accuracy and long term performance is the condition of the metering section of the flow sensor.
Unlike in most processes, mag meters in filling machine applications are frequently subject to widely varying conditions during normal operation. As a result, they are viable candidates for evaluating their long term performance in an accelerated use environment. Therefore PTB, a German research and approvals agency, in association with KROHNE, undertook an extensive project to study the long term measurement stability of mag meters in filling machine applications.
Faraday's law is the basis of a mag meters measuring principle. The design generally features an electrical isolating liner on the inner wall of the mag meter measuring tube. Linings such as PTFE, PFA or polypropylene or for hygienic reasons, PFA (perfluoroalkoxy) are used. Pressure bearing ceramic pipes are also used. PFA is known to absorb moisture, it can flow under pressure and temperature which means that it changes structure and shape which, in turn, affects the interior diameter of the measuring tube. Changes in the inner diameter of the measuring tube lead to measurement errors. This can lead to problems, especially when extreme precision or repeatability are at stake. This only takes effect after the devices have been in use for longer periods of time and through the corresponding frequent cleaning processes using liquid or steam as are common in the food industry.
The effect is particularly significant when it comes to mag meters used on filling machines for filling PET bottles ("Filling mag meter"). In this case, an extremely high degree of repeatability is required and the quality of the filling process is directly visible in each individual bottle.
That is why, in a joint research cooperative with the Physikalisch-Technischen Bundesanstalt (National Metrology Institute) (PTB), KROHNE Messtechnik tested the measurement stability of filling mag meters. Filling mag meters with PFA liners and filling mag meters with ceramic measuring tubes were both tested. The PTB was interested in this test because for more than 20 years Magmeters with ceramic measuring tubes have been the norm in the normal PTB measuring systems as well as in many other calibration test stations. Thanks to this test, the PTB was able to gain additional knowledge about the behavior of these devices under difficult conditions.07/29/2009
This white paper discusses important differences between the commercialgrade components used in enterprise Ethernet systems and the industrial-grade cabling, connectivity and active devices that are essential to the optimal, longterm performance of robust industrial Ethernet networks.07/29/2009
In the whitepaper, Ethernet Direct describes how PoE technology enables the end devices like Wireless Access Point, IP Phone, IP Camera, IP Access Control terminal, RFID reader and other IP-based appliances to get power supply from a Cat-3, Cat-5/5e or Cat-6 LAN cable without extra power connection needed.07/27/2009
Statement for the Record, July 21, 2009 Hearing before the Subcommittee on Emerging Threats, Cybersecurity, Science and Technology.
I appreciate the opportunity to provide the following statement for the record. I have spent more than thirty-five years working in the commercial power industry designing, developing, implementing, and analyzing industrial instrumentation and control systems. I hold two patents on industrial control systems, and am a Fellow of the International Society of Automation. I have performed cyber security vulnerability assessments of power plants, substations, electric utility control centers, and water systems. I am a member of many groups working to improve the reliability and availability of critical infrastructures and their control systems.
On October 17, 2007, I testified to this Subcommittee on "Control Systems Cyber SecurityThe Need for Appropriate Regulations to Assure the Cyber Security of the Electric Grid."
On March 19, 2009, I testified to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation on "Control Systems Cyber SecurityThe Current Status of Cyber Security of Critical Infrastructures."
I will provide an update on cyber security of the electric system including adequacy of the NERC CIPs and my views on Smart Grid cyber security. I will also provide my recommendations for DOE, DHS, and Congressional action to help secure the electric grid from cyber incidents.07/22/2009
Despite increased dependence on ever more powerful processcontrol and safety systems, the human aspect remains an integral part of any plant's operation. ABB believes that the safety system of the future is no longer an "addon," that is designed and supplied separately from the rest of the plant or process, but an integral part of it.07/22/2009
This whitepaper provides the history of the Six Sigma Symbol and explanations on the Six Sigma concept, the Six Sigma implementation, the Six Sigma calculation and more. Download this paper now.
Product variation and defects undercut customer loyalty as well as company profits. Six Sigma is a rigorous, disciplined, data-driven methodology that was developed to enhance product quality and company profitability by improving manufacturing and business processes.
Six Sigma uses statistical analysis to quantitatively measure how a process is performing. That process can involve manufacturing, business practices, products, or service. To be defined as Six Sigma means that the process does not produce more than 3.4 defects per million opportunities (DPMO) which translates to 99.9997% efficiency.
A Six Sigma defect is considered anything that can cause customer dissatisfaction, such as being outside of customer specifications. A Six Sigma opportunity is the total number of chances for a defect to occur.
Six Sigma Concept
The Six Sigma concept was developed by Motorola in 1986 with the stated goal of improving manufacturing processes and reducing product defects and variation. The underlying goal was to achieve near quality perfection with 99.9997% of variable values within specifications.07/17/2009
Since the introduction and use of the PLC as a relay replacement device, the uses of small, self contained automation controllers have mushroomed and have changed the complexion and even the architecture of the control system itself. This white paper discusses the benefits of using PACs to solve your company solutions.07/15/2009
What is Conformal Coating and why is it important in Industrial Ethernet switches? In mission critical and harsh environments like where most Industrial hardened Ethernet switches are deployed, conformal coating acts as protection against moisture, dust, chemicals, and temperature extremes that if non-protected could result in a complete failure of the electronic system. These applications include mining, metal industries, oil & gas, military applications, chemical processing and food and beverage industries. For additional protection to address the demands of the environmental conditions, Ethernet Direct offers state-of-the art conformal coating on Industrial Ethernet switches that meets MIL-I-46058C standardEthernet networks will expand in time.
Conformal coatings encapsulate circuit boards and their electronic components in order to prevent the ingress of moisture, fungus, dust and other environmental contaminants. After the coating is made on the switches, it provides environmental and mechanical protection to significantly extend the life of the components and circuitry to meet the challenges in severe industrial environments.
Based on the increasing demands in various industries, customers' are deploying conformal coatings with expectations to increase the performance of the switch, ease of application, sustainability, quality, functionality, and environmental properties. All of the above expectations require special attention and procedure carried out by Ethernet Direct when manufacturing even single Industrial Ethernet switch in order to ensure that all conformal coated designed switches meet the expected standards. Ethernet Direct continuously to improve the environmental performance and offers conformal coatings Industrial Ethernet switches to enhance more specific demands in industrial applications.
A product may suffer from degraded life and accuracy if the PCB surface comes in contact with ionic substances, making it contaminated. The ionic substances can be in the form of fingerprint or humidity. Having applied conformal coating effectively reduces the effects of mechanical stress, vibrations or temperature changes when an Industrial Ethernet switch could be installed.07/14/2009
Surface Acoustic Wave Technology based Temperature Monitoring of High Voltage and High Current Switchgear Boxes
Safety is a big concern when it comes to managing power distribution systems. High voltage and high current switchgear boxes serve an important role in establishing points of control within the power distribution system.07/08/2009
The plant operator has an extremely valuable and important responsibility: being the force and energy managing a capital enterprise easily worth hundreds of millions of dollars to produce or impact a daily revenue stream of millions, give or take. We ask him to be ever mindful of what the plant might be doing. We ask him to be capable of finding every little problem before it grows into a big one. We ask him to shoulder the burden of everything that goes wrong during his watch, all without any recognition when nothing does, and precious little (if not actual blame) when it goes wrong and he manages to manage. Within his area of responsibility and authority he must be able to view every control loop, most sensors, most pieces of equipment, and much of the supporting utilities, and then adjust as appropriate.
The failure to maintain situational awareness has been present in almost every disaster event that was not the result of spontaneous complete surprise. Start with the assumption that no one wants an accident. That no one would chose disaster over success. But accidents and disasters happen. We now know to a high degree of certainty that they happen because those in charge of ensuring that they do not happen, aren't aware that they are happening. They fail to know the situation. They are unaware of what is really going on, what is likely to happen, or what isn't happening that they think is. As explained in my book Alarm Management for Process Control, the solution is facilitated by effective operator interface design. Let's follow the path of interface design that can lead to better situation awareness.07/08/2009
This white paper examines the benefits of variable-frequency drives (VFDs) and special considerations that must be given to their design, installation and operation. The paper also reviews and evaluates the various cable types typically used in VFD systems and conditions affecting their performance such as radiated and common-mode noise.07/08/2009