Practical Distributed Control Systems (DCS) for Engineers & Technicians

THE WORKSHOP

This workshop will cover the practical applications of the modern Distributed Control System (DCS).  Whilst all control systems are distributed to a certain extent today and there is a definite merging of the concepts of a DCS, Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) and SCADA and despite the rapid growth in the use of PLC’s and SCADA systems, some of the advantages of a DCS can still be said to be Integrity and Engineering time.

Abnormal Situation Management and Intelligent Alarm Management is a very important DCS issue that provides significant advantages over PLC and SCADA systems.

Few DCSs do justice to the process in terms of controlling for superior performance – most of them merely do the basics and leave the rest to the operators. Operators tend to operate within their comfort zone; they don’t drive the process “like Vettel drives his Renault”. If more than one adverse condition developed at the same time and the system is too basic to act protectively, the operator would probably not be able to react adequately and risk a major deviation.

Not only is the process control functionality normally underdeveloped but on-line process and control system performance evaluation is rarely seen and alarm management is often badly done. Operators consequently have little feedback on their own performance and exceptional adverse conditions are often not handled as well as they should be. This workshop gives suggestions on dealing with these issues.

The losses in process performance due to the inadequately developed control functionality and the operator’s utilisation of the system are invisible in the conventional plant and process performance evaluation and reporting system; that is why it is so hard to make the case for eliminating these losses. Accounting for the invisible losses due to inferior control is not a simple matter, technically and managerially; so it is rarely attempted.  A few suggestions are given in dealing with this.

Why are DCS generally so underutilised? Often because the vendor minimises the applications software development costs to be sure of winning the job, or because he does not know enough about the process or if it is a green-field situation, enough could not be known at commissioning time but no allowance was made to add the missing functionality during the ramp-up phase. Often the client does not have the technical skills in-house to realise the desired functionality is missing or to adequately specify the desired functionality.

This workshop examines all these issues and gives suggestions in dealing with them and whilst not being by any means exhaustive provides an excellent starting point for you in working with a DCS.

WHAT IS INCLUDED?

  • Receive a certificate of attendance in support of your continuing professional commitment
  • All workshops include the associated hardcopy technical manual
  • Printed workshop handouts
  • Lunch and refreshments
  • Interact and network with workshop attendees and experienced instructors
  • Practical, industry driven content to assist you in your continuing professional development (CPD)
  • Attendees automatically become IDC subscribers and receive exclusive deals and technical content every month

WHO SHOULD ATTEND?

  • Automation engineers
  • Control technicians
  • Design engineers
  • Electrical and instrumentation technicians
  • Electrical engineers
  • Instrumentation and control system engineers
  • Instrumentation technologists and engineers
  • IT managers working with networks
  • Maintenance engineers and supervisors
  • Metallurgists
  • Operations managers
  • Operators and control room personnel
  • Plant engineers
  • Process control engineers, designers and technicians
  • Process engineers
  • Production engineers
  • Project engineers
  • Systems engineers

Those involved in the design, implementation and upgrading of industrial control systems who wish to gain a solid introduction to Distributed Control Systems (DCS) should attend this workshop.

CONTENT SUMMARY

INTRODUCTION TO COMPUTER BASED CONTROL SYSTEMS

  • Introduction to computer based measurement and control systems
  • Role of computers in measurement and (process) control
  • Basic components of computer based measurement and control systems
  • Architecture – computer based process control system
  • Human Machine Interface (HMI)
  • Hardware for computer based process control system
  • Interfacing computer system with process
  • Economics of computer based system for industrial application

OVERVIEW OF DISTRIBUTED CONTROL SYSTEMS

  • Introduction
  • Basic concepts of a Distributed Computing System (DCS)
  • Evolution of a DCS
  • Present market trends in DCSs
  • Basic DCS specifications
  • General description of a commercial DCS
  • Advantage of DCSs
  • DCS selection criteria
  • DCS architecture

AN OVERVIEW OF SCADA SYSTEMS

  • Introduction
  • Basics of SCADA system
  • SCADA key features
  • Remote terminal units (RTUs)
  • Typical requirements for an RTU system
  • PLCs used as RTUs
  • Consideration and benefits of SCADA system
  • DCS versus SCADA terminology
  • SCADA software package

THE BASIC CONTROLLER

  • Introduction
  • Identification of the controller boards
  • Discrete and logic control
  • Sequential and batch control

BASIC DCS CONTROLLER CONFIGURATION

  • Historical
  • Control modes
  • Tracking and initialisation in control slots used for cascade control
  • Control functions
  • Control algorithms
  • Sequential programs for batch processing
  • Defining equipment procedures
  • Phase logic programming
  • Phase logic interface
  • Logic block functions in advanced controller
  • DCS controller configuration

INTRODUCTION TO COMMUNICATIONS FOR DCS AND SCADA SYSTEMS

  • Purpose
  • Basic communications principles
  • Balanced and unbalanced transmission lines
  • EIA-232 interface standard (CCITT V.24 interface standard)
  • The EIA-485 interface standard
  • Open systems
  • Interoperability
  • ModBus protocol
  • HART protocol
  • The promise of FieldBus and DeviceNet
  • Benefits

PROGRAMMING OF DCSs

  • Block configuration
  • IEC 61131-3 “open” programming languages (structured text, function block, ladder, sequential)
  • Tips and tricks in programming

ALARM SYSTEM MANAGEMENT

  • Philosophies of alarm management
  • Design overview:
    • Human and ergonomic factors
    • Structure of good alarm system
    • Safety Integrity Level (SIL)
  • Analyse the alarms
  • Design of alarm system
  • Measurement of performance

DISTRIBUTED CONTROL SYSTEM REPORTING

  • The operation of advanced DCS by use of multi-screen displays, cross screen invocation and linking
  • Alarm reporting, types of alarms generated and acceptance of alarms
  • The different types of logs and reports which can be configured on a DCS
  • Data history use in logs, reports and trend displays

DISTRIBUTED CONTROL SYSTEM CONFIGURATION

  • The organisation of system data files
  • Data configuration procedures necessary for setting up the DCS area database
  • The need for multiple personalities attached to operator stations
  • The need for different security levels attached to various operating parameters
  • Configuration control procedures adopted to ensure data integrity

MAINTENANCE CONSIDERATIONS

  • Maintenance requirements of system and system elements
  • The requirements for in-built diagnostics and for maintenance diagnostic routines
  • The requirements for installation of UPS system
  • Recovery of a DCS following a power outage

TYPICAL DISTRIBUTED CONTROL SYSTEMS AND SCADA SYSTEMS

  • Introduction
  • Honeywell PlantScape system
  • Foxboro I/A series distributed control systems
  • Delta V system
  • Citect
  • Wonderware

DISTRIBUTED CONTROL SYSTEM APPLICATIONS

  • The use of a DCS in a paper-manufacturing environment
  • The use of a DCS in a petroleum-refining environment
  • The benefits of a DCS when used in an offshore oil and gas processing environment

DISTRIBUTED CONTROL SYSTEMS IMPLEMENTATION

  • Introduction
  • System strategy
  • Automation plan
  • Project implementation
  • Installation and commissioning
  • Change management

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