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Forays into Fieldbus Technology Pay Off

Another stellar article by John Rezabek, Ashland Chemical, was published in Control’s magazine last month, and I’d like to highlight it. John, as many of you may know, is the End User Advisory Council Chairman for the Fieldbus Foundation, and a big reason for this is his experience, depth of knowledge, and motivation to understand and keep up with the latest trends in fieldbus.

His article covers the message of what some users have heard about “bitter” experiences with fieldbus in its original days. John goes on to explain the key game-changing factors in successful projects as well as advancements that have and will make things even easier for users. There is no reason fieldbus can’t be a highly-successful wonderful experience for users (John is one of many examples of a user reaping massive benefits from smart digital technology).

As usual, there is no reason to spoil the message and writing John has so eloquently put together so follow the link below to read his post.

http://www.controlglobal.com/articles/2014/forays-into-fieldbus-technology-pay-off/

Central & Eastern Europeans Please Join Us!

The Fieldbus Foundation Central & Eastern European Marketing Committee will be hosting a FOUNDATION fieldbus event coming up on May 27th in Poland! If you’re in the area, be sure to attend. It’s FREE! Oh and don’t forget to spread the word!

The event will be hosted by members of the FFCEEMC and guest speaker Dr. Bindert Douma (certified FOUNDATION trainer – STC Group, Brielle, the Netherlands).

The comprehensive agenda of presentations in Polish or English language will include topics including an introduction to the FFCEEMC and the University of Miskolc certified training centre; an overview of FOUNDATION fieldbus – an automation infrastructure for operational excellence; lifecycle economics; planning and implementing fieldbus projects; explosion protection; FOUNDATION for Remote Operations Management; diagnostics and trouble-shooting; open discussions/question & answer session.

Go here for more information: http://www.fieldbus.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1256&Itemid=439

 

Measurement & Control Show 2013 (JEMIMA)

Back on November 6-8th 2013 the Fieldbus Foundation’s Japanese committee participated in the Measurement & Control Show in Tokyo. It was a great success. This event, previously called JEMIMA, is the biggest Process Automation trade show in Japan and thanks to the hard work of the Japanese marketing committee, the Fieldbus Foundation booth at the show was very well received. We do not have any hard numbers on the total yet, but the 2011 show in Tokyo hosted over 25,000 visitors and over 300 booths!

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On display at the booth was the new FOUNDATION for Remote Operations Management (ROM) technology. This new enabling technology helps to better expand Fieldbus capabilities to remote assets without the traditionally complex custom solutions available in the past. ROM allows for the integration of multiple wireless technologies as well as traditional wired standards into the FOUNDATION infrastructure. The booth on display showed ISA100.11a, WirelessHART and traditional wired HART and H1 all working together in a single system. Since these technologies are all being adopted into the open architecture of fieldbus, it also gives the user the added assurance of scalability for integrating future wired & wireless standards.

Be sure to check out the photos we posted from the event on our Flickr page:

Flickr: FOUNDATION Booth at the Measurement & Control Show 2013

The Fieldbus Foundation also hosted a press conference on November 6 2013 to the local media about updates that have happened with ROM since our official announcement at the show in 2012. Speakers at this conference included the President & CEO of the Fieldbus Foundation, Mr. Richard Timoney, as well as VP of Asia Pacific Operations, Mr. Hisashi Sasajima.

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Recognizing People in Fieldbus – Terry Blevins

In the Spring Edition of our 2013 Fieldbus Report, the Fieldbus Foundation introduced a new series we are calling “People in Fieldbus”. The purposes of this new series is to recognize all of those folks that have worked diligently behind the scenes for years to make FOUNDATION Fieldbus what it is today. Without the hard work and dedication of these people from companies all across the world, FOUNDATION Fieldbus wouldn’t be accepted so widely as it is today. It wouldn’t be as robust or as feature capable.

It is easy to forget and let the contributions of those behind the scenes fade away into the ether of our busy schedules, yet it is profoundly important to not let it nor to make light of such accomplishments. The member companies of Fieldbus Foundation have offered great support and resources to our organization throughout the years, and without many of the hard working engineers these companies provide, much of what FOUNDATION users enjoy today would not be possible.

Terry Blevins is one of those engineers. Mr. Blevins played an important role in the groundbreaking research of the Interoperable Systems Project (ISP) in the early 1990s and later helped develop the FOUNDATION Fieldbus user layer specification. He has also been extremely instrumental in the continued development and improvement of EDDL through his lead role in working groups.

I encourage everyone to take a minute and read this short write-up on Terry from our Spring 2013 Fieldbus Report. The story starts on page 28

Latest Registered FF Products!

Did you realize we release the latest list of registered FOUNDATION devices in our eNewsletters? It’s a little known fact about our Fieldbus Flash Newsletter that can be quite beneficial to FOUNDATION  users all across the world. It is just yet another way we listen to user feedback here at the Fieldbus Foundation.

I was attending one of our great seminar roadshows a couple of years ago and was asked by a user how they can know when new versions of their favorite products have been registered. The simple answer was to encourage them to talk to their supplier directly, but upon further digging, I realized this was something not being well addressed by the process community at large. How are the users supposed to know when a new device is available? If they don’t know they’re a newer versions available how can they upgrade an old device that may not have the full capabilities they require in their demanding application?

The answer is to track and update our members and newsletter subscribers about the latest registered products and to direct them to their appropriate registration page for more information.

If you’ve ever wanted to keep up with learning when new products are available after official registration, be sure to sign up for our electronic newsletter “Fieldbus Flash”. You can do so here: http://www.fieldbus.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=217&Itemid=387

For those of you who want to see the latest registered products as of our September newsletter you can view it through our Media Partners web hosted version of the table here: http://www.controlglobal.com/industrynews/2013/foundation-fieldbus-products/

October Fieldbus Flash Newsletter Screen Capture

NEW Brochure Released on the Basics of FOUNDATION Fieldbus

What is FOUNDATION fieldbus? How does it differ from 4-20mA? What are the advantages of our all-digital FOUNDATION fieldbus network? These are just a few great questions users find themselves looking to understand before retrofitting their existing plants. The Fieldbus Foundation has put together a new brochure addressing just these types of questions. The new literature is a ‘back-to-basics’ style brochure focusing on the core of what FOUNDATION fieldbus is at its roots. This guide provides a simple explanation to new users, potential users, marketing professionals etc looking to understand what value FOUNDATION delivers.

What is FOUNDATION fieldbus?
Get back to the basics with the new FOUNDATION fieldbus brochure

Click on the link above to download the brochure and understand how this real-time digital communication network designed specifically for process control can help you gain the competitive edge through reduced hardware footprint, reduced device count, faster commissioning, tighter control, better signal quality and advanced diagnostics.

The Fieldbus Foundation also has many alternative resources available to help understand the value of FOUNDATION technology on an ongoing daily basis. Below are a few;

Social Media/Forums

Official FOUNDATION Fieldbus News Outlets

Fieldbus Foundation Releases Updated H1 Interoperability Test Kit

The Fieldbus Foundation today announced the release of its H1 Interoperability Test Kit (ITK) 6.1.0. This powerful tool tests the functionality of an H1 (31.25 kbit/s) fieldbus device and its conformity with the FOUNDATION function block and transducer block specifications. Version 6.1.0 includes new features to enhance device intelligence, improve consistency in instrument configuration, and simplify replacement of field devices from different automation suppliers.

The H1 ITK consists of a test engine, communication stack and function block interface card. An excellent tool for troubleshooting and debugging FOUNDATION fieldbus instruments, it includes all hardware and software required to ensure complete device interoperability. By using the H1 ITK, suppliers can run tests identical to those used by the Fieldbus Foundation before submitting their product for registration.

H1 ITK 6.1.0 builds on the extensive library of FOUNDATION fieldbus block test cases, offering a series of standardized function blocks and transducer blocks that enable increased test coverage for device developers. This includes test cases for new blocks that were previously unavailable, such as flow totalizer, analog alarm, control selector and output splitter, which support expanded device applications for control-in-the-field (CIF).

A new flow transducer block is intended to simplify device integration within Foundation fieldbus networks. In addition, the release provides updated test cases for existing blocks, including flow, pressure, temperature, analog positioner, and discrete positioner.

New H1 ITK test cases are focused on backwards compatibility among FOUNDATION fieldbus devices. This enhancement supports device replacement automation and enables the test kit to verify consistent behavior between device and host implementations in fieldbus-based control systems. 

Automation of device replacement allows the configuration in an existing field device to be restored in a newer version of that instrument without manual intervention. This “plug and play” solution ensures features are consistent between different generations of devices without reengineering the host configuration or changing any other element of the H1 network other than the new instrument.

Link to Press Release: Fieldbus Foundation Releases Updates H1 Interoperability Test Kit

Updates to FOUNDATION Spec Allow for Easier Device Replacement

The Fieldbus Foundation today announced the latest updates to its open, non-proprietary FOUNDATION fieldbus specifications. These updates help automate device replacement and enable backwards compatibility among different revisions of FOUNDATION devices used in plant automation systems. End users will benefit from greater predictability in fieldbus implementation, while reducing integration risks and eliminating manual intervention for device configuration.

The most significant updates to the Foundation technical specifications are a revised series of function block and transducer block profiles, as well as requirements for H1 (31.25 kbit/s) device replacement that are now part of the Fieldbus Foundation’s device registration process. This enhancement enables the H1 interoperability test kit to verify consistent behavior between device and host implementations in fieldbus-based control systems.

End users are seeking increasingly automated replacement of intelligent devices. Device replacement automation makes it easier to reproduce an existing FOUNDATION device configuration (including function blocks and parameters) in a newer instrument by enabling a minimum set of functionality to exist so end users can get their process back up and running quickly and simply. This enhancement allows for final configuration to be completed after other critical tasks associated with the process outage have been addressed. This saves time and money and simplifies stocking of replacement devices.
Fieldbus Foundation Director-Fieldbus Products Stephen Mitschke commented, “The Foundation recognizes that ease of device replacement is an important concern for engineers and technicians in process plants. We see these updated specifications as a valuable opportunity and a first step in a series of things we can do to provide more value to the end users. It’s another example of our commitment to continuous improvement and being an end user driven standard.”

Automation of device replacement allows the configuration in an existing field device to be restored in a newer version of that instrument without manual intervention. This ‘plug and play’ solution ensures features are consistent between different generations of devices without reengineering the host configuration or changing any other element of the H1 network other than the new instrument.

In addition to device replacement, the specification update provides improved positioner profile in fieldbus devices. This technology supports organization and integration of advanced device diagnostics within fieldbus systems. It provides standard definitions for positioner transducer blocks and includes parameter structure definitions for better data organization with fieldbus devices, including partial/full stroke test (PST/FST) of valves.

The new specification release also includes definitions for discrete process variables clarifying how variable values are interpreted in conjunction with state tables, as well as several new or updated application and technical notes.

For more information, please visit the Technical Specifications page of the Fieldbus Foundation’s website at http://www.fieldbus.org. You may also view the Spec Index for a full list of specifications included in the Foundation Technical Specifications package.

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