Emerson S-Series – New Paradigm?

July 12, 2010
I imagine that by now most of you have at least received the June 2010 issue of Control magazine with its “Special Advertising Supplement” from Emerson Process Management promoting the new Human Centered Design S-Series control products.  Of course the biggest part of the announcement is CHARM. Some folks have indicated that the concept is not that radical since Europe has been using Remote I/O for many years – especially in Factory Automation and Batch Operations.

I imagine that by now most of you have at least received the June 2010 issue of Control magazine with its “Special Advertising Supplement” from Emerson Process Management promoting the new Human Centered Design S-Series control products.  Of course the biggest part of the announcement is CHARM. Some folks have indicated that the concept is not that radical since Europe has been using Remote I/O for many years – especially in Factory Automation and Batch Operations.

CHARM is consistent with the present design practices of distributing I/O throughout the plant and of having the option to change the type of I/O basically on the fly is also useful since as the articles state you can now fast track engineering even further and only have to determine your I/O needs as you go to the field. Getting rid of the Marshalling Cabinet with all its connections is also a time saver – but if you use any of the fieldbuses you don’t need a Marshalling Cabinet with them either.

If Emerson REALLY wanted to make an impact with CHARM, they should offer it with standard open protocols such as Profinet, Foundation Fieldbus HSE, and ISA-100 Backhaul when it is ready, so that the product can be integrated with anyone’s control system. Doing so would not only push the acceptance of CHARM but also the addition of similar ports to other more complex devices such as Motor Control Centers, analyzers, and other Remote I/O and PLC products. The result, easier integration for End Users.

As it presently stands, CHARM means “Connect Here And Remain Hooked” - to Emerson.  This edition of S-Series rather than being a New Paradigm is more of the protect my turf mentality on which all the bus wars are based.

Great concept Emerson though like you did with DD for HART and FF, if you “opened it up” your prize will be even bigger.

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