AirSprite Technologies makes its debut at ISA Expo

Sept. 27, 2007

          MARLBOROUGH, MA,- AirSprite Technologies, a developer of wireless sensor infrastructure systems for industrial automation, will roll out its plans at ISA Expo for a family of products that will deliver  improvements in operational efficiency, plant utilization, and employee productivity.

          AirSprite will build its wireless sensor infrastructure products on two emerging standards – WirelessHART™ and ISA100.  The company’s first products will connect directly to HART devices and require no changes, will enable the installation of industrial wireless networks that work with existing systems, and will be upgradeable to comply with future standards.  AirSprite will initially target several major industries, including oil and gas, chemical, power, and water and wastewater treatment.  

          “Globally, wireless technology has had a significant impact on the way business works, but it is still fighting to make inroads into the industrial world,” said Paul Sereiko, AirSprite CEO.  “The WirelessHART and ISA100 standards will open up the industrial automation market to wireless sensing solutions and improve the efficiency of plant operations in the world’s most critical industries.  We see 2008 as the year of industrial wireless.”     

          AirSprite is aiming its products at a potentially huge market.  According to the ARC Advisory Group, there are more than 55 million instruments installed worldwide, 23.5 million of which are HART-based.  Approximately 85 percent of these HART devices are unable to continuously share with existing monitoring or management systems the intelligent maintenance and performance data they capture.  ON World forecasts that by the end of this decade, more than 40 million wireless nodes will be installed in the industrial automation segment. 

Unleashing the Power of Trapped Data

          AirSprite’s initial products will unleash the power of the trapped data by freeing it from existing HART devices and integrating it in real time with systems such as plant asset management, condition-based maintenance, and plant control.  The result – plant operators will have a new weapon to improve uptime and efficiency.

          Demonstrating the compelling need for these capabilities, in July, The New York Times reported that, “Mechanical breakdowns… have created a bottleneck in domestic energy supplies, helping push up gasoline prices 50 cents (during 2007)… A third of the country’s 150 refineries have reported disruptions to operations this year, a record according to analysts.”  AirSprite’s mission is to deliver products that enable plant managers to significantly reduce unplanned interruptions in production.

“Users are not getting the valuable advantages of maximizing asset availability and utilization if they are ignoring device related diagnostics,” Hesh Kagan, Director, Wireless Programs at Invensys said. “What AirSprite is developing allows wired HART devices, without hardwired diagnostic connections, to participate in integrated Asset Performance Management and add real value to bottom line performance.”

          “The recent release of a ratified HART specification that includes WirelessHART provides a new and potentially low-cost way for manufacturers to capture online diagnostic information from millions of existing field devices.  Process manufacturers will be looking for products and solutions that can deliver this information to them economically and reliably,” said Harry Forbes, Senior Analyst with ARC Advisory Group.

Optimizing Return on Assets

A key aspect of AirSprite’s products is that they will work with installed intelligent devices.  It is important that plant operators are able to take advantage of this new technology without the cost and risk of having to upgrade their automation infrastructure, replace their field devices, or comply with proprietary systems.

“Our goal is to enable plant managers to find and fix a problem before they have a costly problem,” Sereiko said.  “We will provide a wireless sensor infrastructure that accomplishes this economically and with minimal disruption to day-to-day operations.”

          AirSprite will be exhibiting at Booth 1971 at ISA Expo, October 2-4 in Houston and is participating in the ISA100 Wireless demonstration in Booth 1970.  In addition, CEO Paul Sereiko will present two papers: 

·         “Wireless Retrofits in Process Industries for Enhanced Plant Asset Management,” Tuesday, October 2nd at 2:00pm in the WINA Wireless & Networking Exchange.

·         “What Process Control Professionals Think about Wireless: Analysis of an ISA SP100 & Control Magazine Survey,” Wednesday, October 3rd at 3:30pm in the ISA100 Wireless Theater.

          AirSprite plans to distribute its products through several channels, including original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), value-added resellers (VARs), systems integrators and direct.