April 2006
Fieldbus Facts Online is brought to you by the Fieldbus Foundation, an international, not-for-profit corporation consisting of more than 350 automation industry leaders dedicated to providing the "Freedom to Choose" and the "Power to Integrate."

Featured This Month...

In This Issue...

Updated interoperability test kit available

Wireless technology links distributed I/O systems

Carbon black manufacturer chooses Emerson's PlantWeb

Westlock Controls selects Fieldbus Center for sales training

Invensys device manager supports FDT, enhanced EDDL

MooreHawke power supply provides 350 mA to fieldbus segments

MTL calculation tool simplifies segment design

Softing toolkit speeds field access to DCS, more

Turck FISCO device extends Fieldbus' reach

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Updated interoperability test kit available

An enhanced version of the Fieldbus Foundation H1 Interoperability Test Kit (ITK) 5.0 is now available. The test kit, which streamlines the steps needed for fieldbus device registration, adds functionality that allows FOUNDATION field bus devices to be tested using current Device Description (DD) 5.0 files.

H1 Interoperability Test Kit (H1 ITK) tests the functionality of a device and its conformity with FOUNDATION fieldbus function block and transducer block specifications. Test kit for troubleshooting and debugging devices includes the hardware and software required to ensure a manufacturer's complete device interoperability as specified by the foundation's official registration testing procedure.

Using the kit, device developers can run tests identical to those used by the Fieldbus Foundation before submitting a device for official registration.

ITK 5.0 enhanced common software download features allow instrument suppliers to update device firmware "over the wire." Devices can be updated without a technician having to go to each one and update a firmware chip or attach a custom upgrade cable. Upgrades let suppliers add diagnostic capabilities that "future-proof" existing devices.

Updated ITK test kit expands the scope of interoperability testing. Several test cases and two new features have been added or modified. These include: multi-bit alarm testing for single and multi-bit alarms that provide more thorough testing; block instantiation as specified in the capabilities file, ensuring interoperability on a FOUNDATION fieldbus network when a block is instantiated; and testing for valid/invalid behavior during common software download, ensuring interoperability when downloading software/firmware to a device over a FOUNDATION fieldbus network.

For more information, contact the Fieldbus Foundation at 512-794-8890, Ext. 21, or e-mail member.services@fieldbus.org.

Wireless technology links distributed I/O systems

New wireless link module from Moore Industries uses advanced wireless technology to link distributed I/O systems over long distances or through obstructive environments.

WLM bi-directional radio modems operate in the license-free 902-928 MHz and 2.4-2.4835 GHz ISM bands, using intelligent spectrum frequency hopping technology to maintain data integrity in high-interference environments. Frequency hopping spread spectrum, along with encryption keys and 32-bit CRC error correction, ensure secure exchange of process management data. Module covers distances of up to 35 miles, is rated for -40 to 75° C, and can withstand harsh plant environments.

WLM models support Ethernet or serial multiplexer networks and allow user-configurable operating parameters. They support Modbus TCP- and Modbus RTU-based process control systems. Ethernet models have an RF data rate of 188 kbps. Modbus RTU versions run at 144 kbps. Operation in the license-free ISM bank means no FCC site licenses are required.

Distance, terrain, buildings, or hazardous environments pose no limits to the modules when used to unify process control systems. Applicable to simple plant floor monitoring and complex nets connecting remote substations, the device lets process signals be sent over one low-cost, unified wireless communication link without leasing lines or laying down cabling. WLM RF links are not subject to environmental factors that hinder cable performance and they eliminate costs associated with cable replacement, rerouting, or repair.

Visit the Moore Industries Web site for more information.

Carbon black manufacturer chooses Emerson's PlantWeb

Emerson Process Management's PlantWeb® digital plant architecture with FOUNDATION fieldbus technology has been installed on a fourth production line at the Alexandria Carbon Black Company (ACBC).

Egypt's only manufacturer of carbon black put in the new line to meet increased demand for its products, which are used in the manufacture of tires, rubber products, plastics, inks, dyes, and paints. ACBC is a fast-growing carbon black producer that exports more than 90% of its production to such companies as Goodyear, Michelin, Bridgestone, Pirelli, Dunlop, and Continental Tire.

The installation follows successful automation of its third production line. PlantWeb has helped reduce engineering and installation costs, improve product consistency, and lower maintenance costs. Using FOUNDATION fieldbus simplified installation and commissioning further, allowing Emerson to complete the project quickly. For example, the systems and marshalling cabinets were designed ordered, wired, and tested in seven weeks.

Because of the success of the PlantWeb and DeltaV-based installations on production lines 3 and 4, ACBC is working on a fifth production line to meet its ever-increasing product demand.

Click here for more information about PlantWeb.

Westlock Controls selects Fieldbus Center for sales training

Fieldbus Center's new "Fieldbus for Sales Professionals" course is the first phase of a program training Westlock sales representatives on sales strategies and implementation of fieldbus-based process valve networking, monitoring, and control solutions.

Designed for inside and outside sales representatives and service personnel of plant automation equipment suppliers, the course requires no previous experience with digital control systems and is part of the Fieldbus Center's digital control technology training curriculum. Fieldbus Foundation certifies the Center's FOUNDATION fieldbus courses.

According to Leo Minervini, Westlock's vice president of engineering, Fieldbus Center's experience with FOUNDATION fieldbus and its location close to the oil and gas industry on the U.S. Gulf Coast were key to its selection as a training partner.

Attendees study basic fieldbus-related facts and terminology and learn how to resolve common technology issues. Instructors describe the differences between digital control systems and traditional instrumentation, and explain how fieldbus can be cost-effectively integrated into project bid packages.

The course offers a vendor-neutral perspective on key aspects of fieldbus technology, but can be customized to highlight specific supplier solutions or product features.

For more information, click here to visit the Fieldbus Center's Web site, or call 832-556-4446.

Invensys device manager supports FDT, enhanced EDDL

Foxboro's new Field Device Manager configures, commissions, maintains, and diagnoses FOUNDATION fieldbus devices throughout their life cycle. Open toolset is an add-on to the I/A Series Configuration component. Together, the two applications provide a comprehensive, integrated engineering and maintenance environment.

The first to support FDT and enhanced EDDL technologies, the product is among the most open solutions for managing a device made by any vendor. For devices with only traditional Device Descriptors (DDs), Field Device Manager provides tools to create templates and organize device data viewing screens. For devices with enhanced DDs, it enables layout of configuration pages; offers more intuitive commissioning method dialog boxes; and improves on-line viewing of device parameters with data trends, histograms, and images device vendors have added to the DD files. Beyond EDDL, a graphically rich, plug-in GUI created by a device vendor can be called up inside Field Device Manager. Plug-ins can be used to analyze health and performance of a specific field device model, or to run comprehensive diagnostic tests and archive test results.

These capabilities make Field Device Manager an important tool for optimizing asset utilization and availability while lowering the maintenance costs of field devices. Reusable engineering significantly boosts engineering and maintenance productivity.

Click here to learn more.

MooreHawke power supply provides 350 mA to fieldbus segments

MooreHawke modular and isolated Trunkguard high-availability Fieldbus power supply provides up to 350 mA to FOUNDATION fieldbus and Profibus PA segments. It is designed for use with MooreHawke Trunkguard Fieldbus device couplers and other manufacturers' non-intrinsically-safe device couplers.

Available models provide power for two, four, or eight fieldbus segments. Each Trunkguard power supply carrier provides mounting positions for multiple segment power conditioners. Each has built-in connectors for one or two dc supplies (18-32 V). Segment wiring can be through conventional screw-clamp terminals or DCS-specific connectors (also provided as redundant pairs) to simplify, and minimize the amount of time required for installation. On-board surge protection is optional.

Each Fieldbus segment power conditioner can be easily added (or subtracted) from the power supply's carrier to accommodate segment changes or additions.

Click here for more information.

MTL calculation tool simplifies segment design

A new calculation tool from MTL simplifies the design of intrinsically safe FOUNDATION fieldbus segments that use MTL's Fieldbus Barriers. Available free on the MTL Web site, the tool automatically checks the operation of each part of the circuit and displays warning messages if any input parameters or calculated values are out of range.

User-defined parameters include trunk and spur cable lengths, cable type, field device current consumption, number of Fieldbus Barriers per segment, and power supply output specifications. A separate command ensures the segment design is still viable when any one spur is in a short-circuit condition.

The calculation tool is an html application that runs under a Web browser such as Microsoft Windows® Explorer without requiring any application software to be loaded onto the user's PC. Alternatively, the tool can be downloaded as a zip file for off-line use.

MTL Fieldbus Barriers provide a straightforward and flexible connection to intrinsically safe fieldbus instruments in Zone 1 hazardous areas. Their high-efficiency design and use of MTL's "High Energy Trunk" architecture enable their support of long trunk cable lengths. Spur connections are compatible with FISCO and Entity-certified devices.

Click here for your free copy of the Fieldbus Barrier calculation tool.

Softing toolkit speeds field access to DCS, more

Softing's new toolkit speeds FOUNDATION fieldbus access to DCS, diagnostic systems, or engineering tools. Functionality can be added quickly to products with the newly developed FOUNDATION fieldbus Configuration and Integration Toolset (FF-CIT).

Softing supplies Foundation fieldbus communication functionality in the form of a software library. Some functions that can be added include device and network configuration capabilities, bus scanning with live list displays, code generation, and code downloading.

An Ethernet interface is all that is needed to connect an application to FOUNDATION fieldbus H1 segments. A linking device acts as the gateway between the H1 segments and the Ethernet connection. The Softing linking device, FG-100 FF/HSE (according to Class 42c of the Fieldbus Foundation specification), allows the connection of up to four FOUNDATION fieldbus segments. Softing has optimally matched its linking device and the FF-CIT library. The library also supports the parallel operation of multiple linking devices for larger systems.

Click here for additional information.

Or email Softing at info.automation@softing.com or info.usa@softing.com.

Turck FISCO device extends Fieldbus' reach

Turck's new FISCO (Fieldbus Intrinsically Safe Concept) device is a power conditioner as well as a repeater. The repeater function lets up to four units be applied to a single segment, extending the number of devices and distance allowed while incorporating only one H1 control card.

Two versions are offered to adapt to a particular area classification and gas group. RPC49-10120Ex allows up to 120 mA of field current in gas group (IIC) (A&B). RPC49-10265Ex allows up to 265 mA for the less stringent gas group (IIB) (C&D). The devices are also certified for physical installation in Zone 2/Div. 2 environments in an appropriate enclosure.

Device features LED indications of supply voltage and short-circuit, and communications to field circuits and the H1 host. Termination is switch-enabled for the host (non-IS) side of the unit and integrated for the field (Ex) side. DIP switches allow termination configuration for combinations of multiple units when used as repeaters.

Click here to find out more.

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