I/O Systems / IIoT

LEAP philosophy leading to Industrial Cyber Evolution

R500 of Experion PKS includes Honeywell’s latest tools for tapping the potential of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).

By Paul Studebaker

CT1606 HUG Header


The IIoT is the evolution of philosophies already apparent in Honeywell’s Lean Execution of Automation Projects (LEAP) approach to engineering, building, testing and commissioning automation systems.

“LEAP’s enabling technologies are Universal I/O, virtualization and the cloud. Combined, they increase capabilities exponentially – engineer anywhere in the world, take 25% out of the schedule with lower risk, and reduce main automation contractor capital expenditure by 30%,” said Jack Gregg, director of Experion product marketing, Honeywell Process Solutions, to attendees of his session, “Experion PKS Orion: The Journey Continues” at the Honeywell 2016 Users Group Americas conference this week in San Antonio.

For 40 years, we did things the same way, over and over. Over the course of a project, many changes would affect the automation system. “Now, by separating physical from functional design, hardware from software, we can do late binding – we can do engineering virtually, bringing the project to the engineers in the cloud,” Gregg said. “We can start the project early, test the configuration in the cloud, and order the hardware late in the cycle. We can get the latest hardware, and not have to make late changes because what we ordered is obsolete.”

Honeywell Universal I/O, for both process and safety systems, removes the requirement for marshalling and allows use of the same cabinets, the same I/O, everywhere. “You can order a modular remote cabinet by number of points. The customization is in the software.” Gregg said. “That reduces cost by 30%.”

“To that, we now add automated device commissioning,” Gregg said. The system is configured and tested in the cloud, then moved to the hardware. “You can commission a cabinet with a push of a button,” he added. “The system detects the I/O, then the tag names on the instruments. It interrogates, discovers, and binds instruments to the software, then documents it. The instrument installers never had to care what channel it was on.”

Technicians can see a visual representation of a cabinet with all its tags. The software generates a loop drawing and if needed, wire tags. Commissioning time is reduced: on a typical mix of loop types – flow, analyzer, pressure, etc. – the rate was increased “from 10 loops per shift to 60 loops per shift,” Gregg said.

IIoT is just a tool

The LEAP philosophy of increasing flexibility, eliminating duplicated and repetitive tasks, and using standard hardware with common software in the cloud also underlies the company’s approach to the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). “The industrial cyber evolution is not a revolution,” Gregg said. “It’s a way to get at stranded data, do more with your process, and get more out of it.”

In Honeywell’s IIoT vision, virtualization and the cloud become one; Universal I/O allows universally connected assets; and the “edge” becomes the base element of a flattened network architecture. Edge technologies allow integration of previously stranded or new data sources.

The vision is embodied in Release 500 of Experion Process Knowledge System (PKS). The release adds a new Series C communications module that takes in IEC 61850 and EtherNet/IP, with more coming. Universal Channel technology is now offered for the company’s distributed control, safety and programmable logic controller systems; new One Wireless is multilingual, handling both ISA 100 and WirelessHART protocols; and the Universal Remote Modular Cabinets are offered for safety and control applications.

The new ControlEdge PLC performs PLC functions and seamlessly integrates skids; Electrical PKS (EPKS) adds electrical control management system (ECMS) capabilities; and you get that ability to perform automated device commissioning.

During runtime, IIoT technology allows secure access for subject matter experts – asset management and optimization are accelerated using analysis and expertise in the cloud.

Finally, Gregg said, a move to Windows 10 means, “We’re done having new versions, just updates, for at least 10 years.”