Step-by-steps to procedural automation

Dec. 15, 2023
Control’s monthly resources guide

Balance automation and OPS balance

This online article, “Automated and manual procedures should be integrated” shows how to bridge the gap between automated and manual procedures and blend them, and demonstrates how to use standards like ISA106 and ISA88 to make it happen. It stresses that, “Better integration between automated and manual procedures are needed, rather than more automation.” For example, it details how Savannah River Nuclear Solutions achieved a correct balance of procedure automation and required operator action, and shows how ExxonMobil developed a module library for automated procedures.

ARC Advisory Group /

Three videos on ISA 106

These three 30-minute videos, “ISA 106 – Chem PID March 2017 – Talk,” Parts 1-3, by Yahya Nazer of Control Designer for the ISA Chemical and Petroleum Industries Division’s webinar series, chart how the ISA 106 standard on procedural automation was developed, and covers its models for plants, units, equipment and batches, as well as automation layers, loop-based control, unit procedures and control modules.


Procedures save lives

This 32-page presentation, “Following procedures can save lives!” by Maurice Wilkins of Yokogawa, provides some aviation history, and shows how preserving procedural know-how can prevent human-factor errors and injuries. It also details how to integrate procedural thinking with process operations, and how to decide which procedures to add. Finally, it also includes several success stories and best practices used.

REFining community /

Batch reveals procedures

This online article, “ISA-88 (S88) batch control explained” by “Peter” at the PLC Academy, has a useful subsection on the “Procedural control model” that’s also helpful in understanding procedural automation.


State of state-based control

This 20-minute video, “State-based control mini webinar” by Travis Giebler of Maverick, details the benefits and work processes used to achieve state-based control. It covers similarities to the the ISA 106 standard, modes of operation, transitions between states, and demonstrates a robust framework for automation. It also presents an example using a components distillation column in various operating modes.

Maverick Technologies /

Definitions, values, scoping

This six-page article, “Optimised procedural operations” by Richard Kucharyson of Honeywell, covers the essential concepts, and details all the required part of an effective procedural operations program. It also includes a value and benefits summary, value calculator, and show how to conduct a scoping workshop and assessment.

Honeywell /

Functions, models, modules

This two-page technical report, “ISA-106 procedure automation for continuous process operations,” covers value propositions, production functions and models, implementation modules and process states.

Yokogawa /

ISA 106 through a batch lens

This online, batch management article, "Procedural automation everywhere" by Control columnist Ian Verhappen, traces and development of the ISA-106 standard, "Procedure automation for continuous process operations," and its and technical report (TR) models. They "define how to capture information about physical assets from the enterprise level down to individual devices, and the requirements that define a procedure."

Control /

The best of before

This online article, “Procedural automation handles the curves” includes all previous resources gathered when this topic was covered several years ago.

Control /