Archive | September 2013

BIG ANNOUNCEMENT: Leading Industrial Communication Foundations Discuss Potential Merger

The Fieldbus Foundation and the HART Communication Foundation announced today that they have entered into discussions on the potential for merging the two organizations into a single industry foundation dedicated to the needs of intelligent device communications in the world of process automation.

The chairmen of the two organizations—Dr. Gunther Kegel of the Fieldbus Foundation and Mr. Mark Schumacher of the HART Communication Foundation—issued the following statement on behalf of their Boards of Directors:

“We believe combining the resources and capabilities of each foundation into a single organization will provide significant benefits to both end users and suppliers. For end users, a single organization that combines the power of both Fieldbus Foundation and HART Communication Foundation would provide a full solution that addresses every conceivable aspect of field communications and intelligent device management for the process industries. For suppliers, a single organization would create efficiencies in resource utilization, consistency of processes and procedures, and would deliver significant improvements in member services and support.”

The Fieldbus Foundation and HART Communication Foundation have worked extensively together in the past and have a long history of cooperation. For example, the two organizations worked together on the development of common international standards such as Electronic Device Description Language (EDDL) and, most recently, the development of the Field Device Integration (FDI) specification. The merger offers significant potential to harmonize many aspects of the two protocols, making it easier for end users and suppliers to implement the technology and obtain the full benefits of each technology in plant operations and maintenance.

In preliminary discussions, the presidents of the two organizations, Richard J. Timoney of the Fieldbus Foundation and Ted Masters of the HART Communication Foundation, added that many synergies already exist and closed by commenting:

“We are both confident that today’s decision to investigate the merger of these two organizations provides momentum for a major step forward in the evolution of intelligent devices and the world of industrial communications.”

For more information, download our Frequently Asked Questions document, or contact the Fieldbus Foundation at 512.794.8890 or info@fieldbus.org.

About HART Communication Foundation
The HART Communication Foundation is the technology owner and standards organization for the HART Communication Protocol. Founded in 1993, the Foundation is an independent, not-for-profit, membership organization providing support for the HART Communication technology and standards worldwide. The Foundation is supported by a global membership of more than 285 companies. For more information, visit their web site at www.hartcomm.org.

About the Fieldbus Foundation

The Fieldbus Foundation is a global not-for-profit corporation consisting of leading process end users and automation companies. Within the Fieldbus Foundation, end users, manufacturers, universities and research organizations work together to develop an automation infrastructure that allows you to view your process in high definition; manage information effectively; and optimize people, processes and technology. For more information, visit their web site at www.fieldbus.org

Exciting News Coming Tomorrow!

There isn’t a lot of meat I can put into this blog post today, but I wanted to let our follows know to keep an ear out tomorrow for an exciting announcement. We’re talking BIG. Real BIG.

Follow us on our Twitter @FOUNDATIONfield to be the first to hear the news!! 

FOUNDATION™ Technology Study Day – Middlesbrough, 2 October, 2013

Middlesbrough, UK – 18 September, 2013 – The Fieldbus Foundation UK Marketing Committee (FFUKMC) is finalising its plans for the third of its 2013 schedule of end user events – a FOUNDATIONTechnology Study Day to be held in Middlesbrough on Wednesday 2 October, 2013.
With a morning session focused on an introduction to FOUNDATION technology, a lunch break with tabletop displays and additional presentations, and an afternoon session offering a more advanced programme, delegates will be able to tailor the day to suit their own requirements. Delegates may choose to attend either the morning or afternoon session or they are welcome to attend both. There is no charge to attend and the lunch and lunchtime sessions are open to all delegates.
Following registration and coffee, the morning session, from 10.00-12.30, will include an introduction to FOUNDATION technology and solutions, and an insight into the lifecycle economics of the system.
The afternoon session, from 13.30-16.00, will present a more in-depth programme of presentations and practical workshops with a focus on supporting a FOUNDATION installation through asset management; device replacement; calibration and recommended maintenance practices.
All registered attendees are invited to the complimentary lunch during which Fieldbus Foundation member companies will be available to discuss and demonstrate their Foundation products and services.
Also available during the lunch break are update presentations on Foundationfor Remote Operations Management (F-ROM) and Foundationfor Safety Instrumented Functions (FF-SIF).
Richard Barnes, chairman of the FFUKMC is looking forward to welcoming current or potential end users, system integrators, EPCs, and all personnel with an interest in FOUNDATION fieldbus systems or a need to gain an understanding of the technology. “The FFUKMC has tried and tested this new approach to its end user seminars – we understand the need for differing levels of information to suit individuals in differing roles within the process automation enterprise. The study day format which we adopted for our recent events in London and Aberdeen allows everyone to gain high quality information whether it’s at an introductory level or an advanced level.” He continued, “There will also be several opportunities throughout the day for networking with other users and potential users, as well as industry experts and suppliers of the systems, devices and components that make up a FOUNDATION system.”
The event will be held on Wednesday 2 October at the Emerson Process Management offices, 2, Eggleston Court, Startforth Road, Riverside Park, Middlesbrough, TS2 1RU. Delegates are invited to register their names, company, email address and session preferences with the UK Committee, email: uk_info@fieldbus.org.
The FOUNDATIONTechnology Study Days will continue to be held at locations around the UK. The next scheduled event will be announced in due course.
About the Fieldbus Foundation UK Marketing Committee
The FFUKMC was formally established in 1999 to promote an increased awareness and adoption of FOUNDATION™technology throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland through a range of end user focused activities including technology seminars and roadshows, technical demonstrations and support, and trade show and conference participation.
The FFUKMC membership now includes: ABB, Beamex, Beka Associates, Emerson Process Management, Endress+Hauser, Honeywell, MTL –Cooper Crouse-Hinds, Moore Industries, Pepperl+Fuchs, Rockwell Automation, Rotork, R.Stahl, Smar, Turck, Vega and Yokogawa.

For more information about the Fieldbus Foundation UK Marketing Committee and its activities in the UK and Ireland, visit the FFUKMC webpages of the Fieldbus Foundation’s website www.fieldbus.org, or email uk_info@fieldbus.org

VirtualMarshalling IS the future of Distributed I/O

While hosted our seminar in Chicago this week, I was reminded about distributed I/O alternatives out there in the industry and it warranted a bit of discussion. For those that don’t have copies of our latest Fieldbus Report (Spring 2013), you may have missed an article Larry O’Brien at the Fieldbus Foundation has recently put together a document on the future of distributed I/O. The interested thought-provoking premise behind it is that the future of distributed I/O has actually been around for quite some time with FOUNDATION fieldbus.

Why are there others who try to make physical distributed I/O smarter or better when it can be easily eliminated entirely? With FOUNDATION Fieldbus, individual physical I/O points have long been replaced by software based distributed I/O, meaning multiple signals are carried over one single H1 cable. There are no custom hardware configurations or additional hardware components to purchase. It all comes pre-canned with FOUNDATION fieldbus. Blocks can be linked together virtually in the software without the added work, cost and labor of running additional wiring. This is what we’ve dubbed “VirtualMarshalling”. It is the future that is already available today. It’s a bit like those Samsung Galaxy commercials of today that take pokes at the iPhone with their tagline “The Next Big Thing is Already Here”. In the realm of industrial process control, the next big thing is already here and it is called VirtualMarshalling. 
Check out our paper on VirtualMarshalling below and learn how returning to the basics actually provides you with the competitive edge, all built-in. Remember, FOUNDATION fieldbus was built by end users wanting a better technology built specifically for Process Control that can replace the outdated 4-20 from days yore. 
Back to Basics with VirtualMarshalling

Chicago Seminar Update

We were very happy to be able to present at the ISA Will DuPage Section meeting last night in Plainfield, IL at Nevins Brewing Company. It was a great turnout at what is obviously a very well run ISA section with lots of active members.  Today we are hosting our end user seminar at the Chicago O’Hare Airport Marriott.  In fact, here is a picture of our End User Advisory Council Chairman John Rezabek delivering his presentation on the value of FOUNDATION fieldbus for end users.  You can download the presentation here.

John Rezabek, Chairman of the FOUNDATION Fieldbus End User Advisory Council

As John is fond of saying, FOUNDATION fieldbus grew out of the ISASP50 committee, which was comprised largely of end users, who asked for things like our user layer, control in the field, and standard digital communications.

Fieldbus Foundation Middle East Marketing Committee Supports ISA Automation Conference 2013, Saudi Arabia – December 2013

Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 16 September, 2013 – The Fieldbus Foundation Middle East Marketing Committee (FFMEMC) is pleased to announce its support of the forthcoming ISA Automation Conference and Exhibition – Europe, Middle East and Africa 2013, to be held at the Sheraton Dammam Hotel & Towers, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia from 8-12 December, 2013. In addition to being an official supporter of the conference and exhibition, the FFMEMC and member companies will be active participants throughout the event.
Organised by the Saudi Arabia Section of ISA (International Society of Automation) and DMS Global, the global marketing specialist for the energy sector, the ISA Automation Conference and Exhibition will be dedicated to process automation with the theme ‘Experience the Future’. ISA Automation 2013 will include a comprehensive technical conference programme, product exhibition, technical training sessions and workshops, and technology panel discussions throughout the five day event.
Industry sponsors of the event include: Saudi Aramco (titanium host sponsor); ABB (diamond sponsor); Al Abdulkarim, Auma, Azbil, Emerson Process Management, Invensys, SKF and Yokogawa (gold sponsors). The event is also supported by the FDT Group.
As part of the technical conference programme, the FFMEMC will give a technical presentation entitled “The Benefits of High Speed Ethernet (HSE) and FOUNDATION for Remote Operations Management (F-ROM)”. FOUNDATION™ fieldbus has been adopted extensively across the Middle East region in almost all the greenfield and the majority of the brownfield sectors of the region’s refinery, petrochemicals, chemicals, upstream and gas plant applications. Remote Operations Management is one of the fastest growing segments of the process automation industry today. The F-ROM solution enables end users to diagnose the condition of their automation assets either locally or remotely and then optimise predictive and preventive maintenance strategies.
The FFMEMC will also be conducting a ½ day technical tutorial session which will include practical insights into the implementation of FOUNDATION fieldbus systems in a range of applications with hands-on training and hints for successful system design, physical layer considerations, device commissioning, diagnostics, trouble-shooting and asset management.
As Head of ISA Saudi Arabia Section and ISA Automation 2013 Conference Chairman, Luay H. Al-Awami, Instrumentation Consultant at Saudi Aramco, commented, “The technical conference programme promises to be outstanding – we have been overwhelmed by submissions from industry leaders and subject matter experts. The selected papers explore the latest products, innovations and technologies and offer a unique opportunity for all participants to learn and discover.”

Luay H. Al-awami – Saudi Aramco
Al-Awami continued, “The conference will include several training sessions and workshops as a key aspect to enable automation engineers to get better exposure and some real hands-on experience with the products and technologies that they have installed or are considering for their applications – practical tutorials with technology experts are one of the most valuable ways to learn.”
Representatives from several FFMEMC member companies will participate in themed panel discussions that will address and discuss topical issues and challenges within the process industry – the full programme will follow in due course.
In addition, representatives from the sponsoring member companies will showcase their fieldbus products and services at the trade show enabling delegates to discuss their applications and view the technologies and solutions available.
Mehul Vaidya, Chairman – FFMEMC, welcomes the opportunity to be so actively involved in the event. “The FFMEMC enjoys a close working relationship with several ISA groups across the Gulf region and is particularly pleased to support the ISA Saudi Arabia Technical Committee in the organisation of ISA Automation 2013. This conference brings many technologies and facets of automation to a common platform. FOUNDATION fieldbus is definitely one of the leading technologies in the market and the FFMEMC is keen to engage in such an event.”
Mehul Vaidya – Chairman FFMEMC
Mehul continued, “Similarly, the FFMEMC has developed a strong partnership with Saudi Aramco as a major contributor to the Fieldbus Foundation Middle East – End User Council, and we are extremely grateful for the personal efforts of Luay H. Al-Awami in his role as FFME-EUC Chairman for several years. ISA Automation 2013 promises to be a unique opportunity for all parties involved with process automation to share or gain the latest technical knowledge and applications experiences from industry experts, suppliers, and end users from around the globe.”
ISA Automation 2013 is the first event of its kind in the region but Mohammed Loch, President & CEO – DMS Global, is confident that it will become a cornerstone event in the Middle East Process Automation calendar. “There are many mega energy events in the Middle East.  However, the ISA Automation Europe, Middle East, Africa Conference & Exhibition 2013 is the first major event to be dedicated to the Automation Sector. We are thrilled to have the official support of the Fieldbus Foundation Middle East Marketing Committee as it shows that it is not just an ISA event but a platform for the whole industry.”
For more details about ISA Automation Europe, Middle East, Africa Conference and Exhibition 2013, visit www.isa-emea-expo.org or email isa@dmsglobal.net.
For more information about the Fieldbus Foundation Middle East Marketing Committee and its activities, visit the Middle East pages of the Fieldbus Foundation website www.fieldbus.org.
About the Fieldbus Foundation Middle East Marketing Committee
The Fieldbus Foundation Middle East Marketing Committee was formally established in 2004 and currently has 15 members including ABB, Azbil, Emerson Process Management, Endress+Hauser, Honeywell, Invensys, Metso Automation, MTL, Pepperl+Fuchs, Rockwell Automation, Samson, Siemens, R.Stahl, Turck and Yokogawa.
The FFMEMC is fully supported by the Fieldbus Foundation EMEA Steering Committee that implements the directives and strategies of the Fieldbus Foundation EMEA Executive Advisory Council (EAC). Since its establishment in February 2005, the FFEMEA EAC aims to ensure the funding and availability of human resources to support local fieldbus marketing across Europe, Middle East and Africa.
The FFMEMC aims to host three or four technical seminars per year throughout the region and supports the Fieldbus Foundation Middle East End User Council in its activities. To view the upcoming events with the FFMEMC, visit the Middle East Events Page. 
About the Fieldbus Foundation
The Fieldbus Foundation is a global not-for-profit corporation consisting of leading process end users and automation companies.  Within the Fieldbus Foundation, end users, manufacturers, universities and research organisations work together to develop an automation infrastructure that allows you to view your process in high definition; manage information effectively; and optimise people, processes and technology.  For more information, visit their web site at www.fieldbus.org.
About the International Society of Automation (ISA):
Founded in 1945, the International Society of Automation (www.isa.org) is a leading, global, nonprofit organisation that is setting the standard for automation by helping over 30,000 worldwide members and other professionals solve difficult technical problems, while enhancing their leadership and personal career capabilities. Based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, USA, ISA develops standards; certifies industry professionals; provides education and training; publishes books and technical articles; and hosts conferences and exhibitions for automation professionals. ISA is the founding sponsor of the Automation Federation (www.automationfederation.org). The Saudi Arabia Section of ISA (ISA-SAS) was officially formed on October 24, 1980 under Saudi Aramco support.
About Data Media Systems (DMS):

Data Media Systems (DMS) is a global marketing specialist for the energy sector. It has various divisions, namely the DMS Projects, DMS Publishing, DMS Events, DMS Cybernation and DMS Promostation. DMS operates globally through its operations in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt, India, China, Singapore, Russia, UK, Italy, Spain, Canada & USA.  For more information please look at www.dmsglobal.net

Interesting Post in Emerson Process Experts on Device Alarms & Alerts

Lots of diagnostic data is available from fieldbus devices, and we at the Fieldbus Foundation have put a lot of effort into making it easier for end users to prioritize diagnostic information and manage it effectively.  Everything from incorporating NAMUR NE 107 recommendations into our specification and other aspects of our FF 912 diagnostics specification is done with eye toward turning diagnostic data into useful information. You also have to consider the impact of standards such as the ISA18.2 standard for alarm management.  A true alarm, according to ISA18, is one that requires immediate operator intervention.  You don’t want to confuse your device alerts and diagnostic messages with true alarms.  There is a great post from Jonas Berge on the Emerson Process Experts web site that discusses this issue, along with some more information on how utilize fieldbus diagnostic data effectively.

Emerson Process Experts: Intelligent Field Device Diagnostic Alarm Management

STC Brielle: Our Certified Trainer for EMEA

I have written here before before about our FOUNDATION Certified Training Program (FCTP), and it’s time to highlight our certified partner for training in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa — STC Brielle.  I was recently in Amsterdam and had some time to take a trip to Rotterdam to see the STC campus, which is right in the port of Rotterdam.  In Rotterdam, the focus of STC is primarily on shipboard operations and training for crane and gantry operators and other technical training related to the maritime, shipping, and transportation industries.

STC Brielle Portable Training Kit

View from the Control Room of the Pilot Plant

We then took a drive over to the Brielle campus, which is where the process automation training is done.  Brielle also serves as the location of the pilot plant, which is comprised of many different units and incorporates a huge amount of FOUNDATION fieldbus devices, as well as devices compatible with other protocols. STC Brielle also has portable training kits for on site training. Fieldbus training courses are for end users, design engineers, electrical engineers and operators, and cater to specific skill and knowledge levels. The Foundation Fieldbus training courses can be combined with elements of the process control and automation courses.

Pilot Plant

The Port of Rotterdam area is very important to the Fieldbus Foundation.  Some of our most high profile installations are there, including the Shell Pernis refinery and Shin Etsu refining, which avoided at least two unplanned shutdowns because of their use of FOUNDATION fieldbus control in the field capabilities.

You can link to the STC Brielle Section of our FCTP web site here for more information.

New White Paper on Realizing Lifecycle Cost Benefits of Fieldbus

Fieldbus has some pretty powerful lifecycle cost benefits.  Significant cost reductions can be realized throughout the plant lifecycle, from engineering and design to operations and maintenance.  More importantly, fieldbus is a great way to manage risk.  At the Foundation we have numerous case studies of plant shutdowns and failures that have been avoided because of the diagnostic capabilities of FOUNDATION fieldbus and our ability to do control in the field device or actuator/positioner.

Our latest white paper explains some of the more advanced functions of FOUNDATION fieldbus and how they can translate to dollars for your business.  As a way to illustrate how these benefits can be achieved we examine some of the more advanced application and service offerings from Yokogawa, which is one of the largest FOUNDATION fieldbus suppliers and supporters.  Much of what we discuss, however, is available from a wide range of FOUNDATION fieldbus suppliers and all their registered hosts and products can be found on our web site.

Some of the topics we discuss include integrated plant asset management systems, device management applications, bulk downloading capabilities, how fieldbus engineering and design can actually save you money, and more.  

Reducing Lifecycle Costs with the Power of Fieldbus

Emerson wins Asia Manufacturing Awards for Fieldbus H1 Card

Emerson Process Management has won an Asia Manufacturing Award for its H1 FOUNDATION fieldbus interface card.  Organised by the Manufacturing Group of publications at Contineo Media, the Awards recognize companies that “enable regional manufacturers to reach and sustain the required levels of world-class performance.”

From the article:

“…This company’s Foundation fieldbus network card comes with integrated power conditioning, which eliminates the need not only for separate power modules but also for an intermediate marshalling cabinet, thus providing significant savings in system footprint as well as simplified installation and commissioning.”

Asian Manufacturing Awards 2013 

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