Archive | October 2011

MULTAQA 2011, the Biennial Fieldbus Conference and Exhibition, Abu Dhabi

The sixth biennial conference of FOUNDATION Fieldbus End Users’ Council – Middle East, MULTAQA 2011 will be held on December 12th and 13th, 2011, at Le Royal Méridien, Abu Dhabi, UAE. End Users from all industries from GCC countries, as well as Control System Vendors, Global Consultants and Automation Contractors are expected to participate in the conference.
The conference will consist mainly of technical presentations by the End Users and FOUNDATION Fieldbus experts on current and future FOUNDATION technology, forthcoming technology and specification updates, End Users’ Project Experiences, End User Case Studies, CapEx and OpEx Savings from FOUNDATION Fieldbus, Maintenance and Interoperability issues, Innovations and Plant products. This conference will also be an excellent opportunity to meet a wide variety of Instrumentation and Control System professionals from various operating companies in the GCC.

Much like our seminars in North America, the Multaqa event will include hands on demonstrations and practical advice for making your fieldbus installation a success. These seminars are designed to help you get the most out of your investment in fieldbus. 

Confirmation Deadline

Please click on http://tinyurl.com/6ga4e4p to register by November 30th, 2011. On this site you can register and pay with your credit card using PayPal.

Pre-registered Delegates will receive a 10% discount voucher, for any of STC Brielle CTC programs, in NL or Oman.

Delegate Fee: 135 USD Payment Deadline: November 30th, 2011

Volunteer Now For The Physical Layer Team – Jitter Allocation

Among the many exciting benefits of Fieldbus Foundation membership is volunteer participation in the various steering committees, technical teams, and working groups that help support aspects of FOUNDATION technology important to all members and that help meet the needs of the global process automation industry. Other benefits include early access to the latest FOUNDATION technical specifications and development tools for faster time to market, and discounts on fieldbus training.

Consider joining the Physical Layer Team – Jitter Allocation, which has openings for foundation member volunteers.

To avoid communication errors when devices are connected to high impedance spurs (such as those of Isolated Couplers), jitter is the most important parameter used to assess and regulate the distortion level of the signal. The team will deliver concrete recommendations on the jitter allocation for field devices, cable, power supply and couplers based on the high impedance requirements. Project steps to be followed include:

Survey of the current specifications and the ability of current components
Allocate jitter value to each component
Draft white paper with recommendations of necessary changes to FOUNDATION Specifications and any other international standards.

The Physical Layer Team – Jitter Allocation team averages one teleconference (each two hours in duration) per month during development. One face-to-face meeting will be necessary when drafting the final recommendations paper. Additional work will be coordinated through email. Time commitment for team members is expected to be a maximum of 10 hours per month. A member company may have multiple representatives on a technical maintenance team, however only one member may be designated as a primary member contact. The primary member contact is responsible for casting votes for their represented company.

Additional information about the Physical Layer Team – Jitter Allocation, and application form, can be found in the Team Applications area of Fieldbus Forums. Please note that you will need an account with member access privileges to access the Team Applications area. You can sign up for an account by clicking “Register” at http://forums.fieldbus.org. If you are unable to access the applications, you will need to contact Member Services to activate the member privileges.

Fieldbus Foundation Releases Updated H1 Interoperability Test Kit

The Fieldbus Foundation today announced the release of H1 Interoperability Test Kit (ITK) 6.0.1. This powerful test tool, which tests the functionality of an H1 (31.25 kbit/s) fieldbus device and its conformity with the Foundation function block and transducer block specifications, is available to members holding an active maintenance agreement.

H1 ITK 6.0.1 demonstrates the Fieldbus Foundation’s commitment to quality and its continuous improvement of solutions supporting developers of Foundation fieldbus products. The updated test kit addresses bug fixes to the NI-FBUS Communication Manager (4.0.1) software, which have resolved issues related to alarms and obsolete descriptor errors. It also includes miscellaneous bug fixes to H1 device test cases.

Developed by the Fraunhofer Institute, an internationally-recognized expert in communication and network testing software based in Karlsruhe, Germany, the H1 ITK consists of a test engine, communication stack and function block interface card. An excellent tool for troubleshooting and debugging devices, the H1 ITK includes all hardware and software required to ensure a manufacturer’s complete device interoperability as specified by the Fieldbus Foundation’s official registration testing procedure. By using the H1 ITK, device developers can run tests identical to those used by the foundation before submitting their device for official registration.

The H1 interoperability test suite can be paired with an ITK Automation Tool designed to eliminate several manual intervention steps required when performing pre-registration testing of fieldbus devices. The tool improves ITK schedule efficiency and provides a direct reduction in the person-hours needed to complete the testing phase.For more information, please call the Fieldbus Foundation at 512-794-8890 or e-mail member.services@fieldbus.org This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it . To obtain pricing information or download an FAQ, please visit the “Tools” page on the foundation website or go to http://www.fieldbus.org.

Fieldbus Foundation Issues Transducer Block Specification For Wired HART and WirelessHART Devices

The Fieldbus Foundation has issued a Foundation Wireless and Remote I/O (WIO) preliminary specification addressing fieldbus transducer blocks for wired HART® and WirelessHART® devices, together with updates to the WIO System Architecture and WIO Data Structures related to the transducer block specification.

Part of the FOUNDATION for Remote Operations Management solution implementing wireless and remote I/O, the new technical specification defines a fieldbus transducer block used to represent HART devices within Foundation for Remote Operations Management devices. Both wired HART and WirelessHART devices may be represented in this block. In addition, the specification describes the expected method for HART configuration tools and asset-managing hosts to access HART devices using the native HART command protocol transported through our High Speed Ethernet (HSE) network. The specification also defines structures to identify and maintain HART device status in wired multi-drop networks as well as in WirelessHART mesh networks connected to Foundation for Remote Operations Management devices.

The Fieldbus Foundation’s director of technology development, Dave Glanzer, commented, “The new transducer block specification will benefit end users who need to be able to interface HART and WirelessHART devices to FOUNDATION fieldbus to improve their integration with a control system, or with FOUNDATION devices. They may also require a networked method for an asset-managing host to access a large set of HART and WirelessHART devices for HART configuration and maintenance purposes.”

Link to Press Release on Fieldbus Foundation Web Site

Going South: Seminars in Corpus Christi, Baton Rouge, Beaumont

Our series of end user seminars is set to conclude with a run in Texas and Louisiana starting November 7th, when we host an end user seminar in Corpus Christi at the Embassy Suites Hotel.  November 9th we will host another end user seminar at the Baton Rouge Marriott Hotel in Baton Rouge, LA.  November 10th we will host our third end user seminar at the Holiday Inn and Suites Hotel in Beaumont, Texas.  The following day, November 11th, we will host a sales force training seminar in the same location.  If you are a process automation end user or sales person in these areas, you should make an effort to attend these seminars.  There is no cost, and we have been receiving some pretty high marks this year from our attendees. 

Link to Electronic Invitation to End User Seminar in Corpus Christi, Texas

Link to Electronic Invitation to End User Seminar in Baton Rouge, LA

Link to Electronic Invitation to End User Seminar in Beaumont, Texas

Link to Electronic Invitation to Sales Force Training Seminar in Beaumont, Texas

Australian Seminars Coming Soon!

Our dedicated supporters in Australia are organizing two seminars in November, with help from our regional sponsors of course.  Seminars will be held in Brisbane on November 2, 2011 at the Stamford Plaza, and Perth on November 4, 2011 at the Mercure Hotel. Longtime fieldbus veteran and arguably one of the most knowledgeable fieldbus people on the planet — Jonas Berge — will be delivering the keynote speech at both events.  We will also have an end user presentation from CSBP at our Brisbane seminar. 

The seminars will run from 8.00am – 5.00pm, are free of charge, and include complimentary refreshments and lunch. Attendees will receive a CD with the presentation materials, technical guides etc., and can enjoy the opportunity to visit the event sponsors’ exhibition table top displays during the breaks.

Presentation Agenda:

  • Keynote Speech by Jonas Berge, Emerson Process Management: The Future is Digital / Why Foundation Fieldbus?
  • Foundation Fieldbus Basics: Close Loop Digital Control
  • Life-Cycle Benefits: FEED Phase
  • Life-Cycle Benefits: Design Phase
  • Life-Cycle Benefits: Commissioning Phase
  • End-User Presentation
  • Life-Cycle Benefits: Operations Phase
  • Life-Cycle Benefits: Maintenance Phase
  • Future Roadmap
  • Q&A

The agenda of the Perth seminar will also include a live technology demonstration of operations & diagnostics.

Link for Brisbane Seminar E-Registration

Link for Perth Seminar E-Registration

Upcoming Webcast: Fieldbus for Modernization Projects

Control system migration and modernization projects continue to drive the industry.  In fact, greenfield projects only account for about a third of the overall DCS market.  ARC Advisory Group estimated that the installed base of process automation systems reaching the end of their useful life and in need of replacement to be $65 billion worldwide. 

We are seeing more and more FOUNDATION fieldbus technology working its way into the growing number of modernization projects.  FOUNDATION fieldbus is more applicable to migration projects than you might think.  Yes, you will have to make the additional investment in fieldbus devices, which in many cases are not part of the scope of an overall migration project.  In many applications, however, the operational cost benefits can easily justify the investment. 

Our upcoming webcast with Control Engineering will feature Mike Miller of Sargent and Lundy, who implemented FOUNDATION technology to modernize several units, all of them in nuclear power applications.  Mike’s experience is a great example of how you can modernize with FOUNDATION fieldbus,to achieve greater process integrity and improved performance.   Register here to attend the webcast on Tuesday, October 18th at 2 PM Eastern time

DART Technology and FOUNDATION fieldbus

Dynamic Arc Recognition and Termination technology (DART) will have a big impact on the world of intrinsic safety, particularly IS implementations of fieldbus.

DART technology enables intrinsic safety of an electric circuit with dramatically increased available power during normal operation. In the case of an unwanted, potentially threatening condition such as opening or closing of the electric circuit, DART technology puts the circuit into a safe state before critical levels are reached. A spark caused by opening or closing an electric circuit has a very characteristic and easily detectable change of current and voltage. This change is detected by DART technology and the circuit switched off in only a few microseconds (µs). Thus, even at higher power levels, sparks never become incendive.

Pepperl+Fuchs in conjunction with PTB, the Physikalisch Technische Bundesanstalt in Germany and twelve other manufacturers is involved in introducing changes to international standard IEC 60079 (Electrical Installations in Hazardous Areas). In order to facilitate easier practical application and interoperability between manufacturers, the working group targets introducing regulations for test and approval of dynamically acting power supplies and equipment into IEC 60079.
There is an interesting white paper done by ARC Advisory Group on DART technology available for download here at the Control Global web site

Pepperl+Fuchs Page on DART Technology

Fieldbus Foundation Issues Transducer Block Specification For Wired HART and WirelessHART Devices

The Fieldbus Foundation has issued a Foundation Wireless and Remote I/O (WIO) preliminary specification addressing fieldbus transducer blocks for wired HART® and WirelessHART® devices, together with updates to the WIO System Architecture and WIO Data Structures related to the transducer block specification.

Part of the Foundation for Remote Operations Management solution implementing wireless and remote I/O, the new technical specification defines a fieldbus transducer block used to represent HART devices within Foundation for Remote Operations Management devices. Both wired HART and WirelessHART devices may be represented in this block. In addition, the specification describes the expected method for HART configuration tools and asset-managing hosts to access HART devices using the native HART command protocol transported through the Foundation High Speed Ethernet (HSE) network. The specification also defines structures to identify and maintain HART device status in wired multi-drop networks as well as in WirelessHART mesh networks connected to Foundation for Remote Operations Management devices.

The Fieldbus Foundation’s director of technology development, Dave Glanzer, commented, “The new transducer block specification will benefit end users who need to be able to interface HART and WirelessHART devices to Foundation fieldbus to improve their integration with a control system, or with Foundation devices. They may also require a networked method for an asset-managing host to access a large set of HART and WirelessHART devices for HART configuration and maintenance purposes.”

Within the Foundation architecture, H1 and HSE provide a distributed function block capability with HSE serving as a larger pipeline offering increased speed and throughput. The WIO development expands these capabilities by establishing open, non-proprietary specifications for a wired or wireless HSE backhaul network integrating various wireless Foundation for Remote Operations Management devices with interfaces to wireless field device networks.

HSE provides an efficient way to bring large concentrations of discrete and analog field I/O from modular devices back to the control room using a high-speed HSE connection. Employing HSE devices functioning like a smart remote terminal unit (RTU), the technology brings all forms of conventional I/O into the native fieldbus environment easily. This solution makes discrete-in, discrete-out, analog-in, analog-out and H1 fieldbus available over a common Ethernet network. The addition of remote I/O further tightens the integration of process instrumentation within a Foundation control system infrastructure.

FDI Cooperation LLC is Formed

You may have read last week about the formation of the FDI Cooperation LLC.  The five major technology foundations, including the Fieldbus Foundation, Profibus International, HART Communication Foundation, FDT Group, and OPC Foundation have all agreed to cooperate on the following objectives:

• To complete the standardization of FDI under the IEC (International Electrical Commission)
• Managing the FDI Specification
• Finalizing the FDI tool kits for system and device manufacturers
In its simplest terms, FDI is a converged solution of EDDL and FDT technology.  The full realization of FDI requires a focused effort, and that’s why this LLC was created.  Part of the effort is EDDL harmonization.  FOUNDATION Fieldbus, Profibus, and HART all use EDDL as a common core technology, but each has their own specific implementation of EDDL.  The simple logic is that if we get better harmonization of EDDL, it will make it easier to integrate with FDT. You can read about it in this PowerPoint presentation that was given by Achim Laubenstein of ABB at Hanover Fair back in April.  Achim is the new Executive Director of FDI and has been active in the fieldbus and FDT world for many years. 

FDI LLC Signing Ceremony with Representatives from the Five Major Foundations

FDI Cooperation, LLC originated from efforts at the EDDL Cooperation Team (ECT) to accelerate deployment of the FDI solution, which was kicked-off at 2007 Hanover Fair. Since then, the project has carefully shaped the technology direction for the converged FDI solution. FDI is a unified solution for simple, as well as the most advanced field devices, for the various tasks associated with all phases of their lifecycles, such as configuration, commissioning, diagnostics and calibration.
FDI Cooperation, LLC membership includes five major automation foundations: FDT Group, Fieldbus Foundation, HART Communications Foundation, PROFIBUS & PROFINET International, and the OPC Foundation. In October 2009, ECT broadened the scope of the FDI project to harmonize EDDL across communication protocols and provide FDI Design and Test Tools including a common EDD Interpreter. Implementation of the extended scope was supported by seven major supplier companies: ABB, Emerson Process Management, Endress+Hauser, Honeywell, Invensys, Siemens and Yokogawa.

We look forward to the progress made by the FDI team and will continue to update you. 

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