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.”
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.
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|Back to Basics with VirtualMarshalling|
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
|Luay H. Al-awami – Saudi Aramco|
|Mehul Vaidya – Chairman FFMEMC|
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.”
“…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.”