Foundation technology accounts for over two-thirds of process fieldbus revenues
HOUSTON, Texas, February 22, 2007 — The Fieldbus Foundation, conducting
its 2007 General Assembly in Houston, Texas, today announced new
research confirms its dominance of fieldbus protocols in the process
industries. According to a study prepared by the ARC Advisory Group, Foundation technology accounts for over two-thirds of process fieldbus revenues.
In a study titled, "Fieldbus Solutions in the Process Industries
Worldwide Outlook," the ARC Advisory Group, a manufacturing research
and advisory firm based in Dedham, MA, reported that the global market
for fieldbus solutions (those protocols included in IEC 61158) in the
process industries reached USD $831.7 million in 2006. ARC projects
current growth trends will expand the fieldbus market to over USD
$2,279 million in 2011, with Foundation
technology increasing its leadership with a strong double-digit growth rate.
Fieldbus Foundation President and CEO Rich Timoney said the new study is a key barometer of rising Foundation
technology demand. "As found in the ARC report, fieldbus protocols
have gone ‘mainstream.' Our technology is no longer confined to ‘early
adopter' industries such as petrochemicals and refining; increasingly,
we are the solution of choice in industries like power, pulp &
paper and pharmaceuticals. Our members report sales of fieldbus-based
products are increasing at a rapid pace, and are now a significant
portion of their overall business activity," Timoney said. "Users are
starting to understand that Foundation
technology is more than a communication network. It truly is an
automation infrastructure that brings very positive returns to the
bottom-line by enabling extensive business intelligence, process
integrity, and open and scalable integration."
ARC Sr. Process Automation Analyst Paula Hollywood, principal author
of the study, observed, "Initially, the primary advantage of fieldbus
was portrayed as reduced wiring, installation, and commissioning
costs...end users are actually realizing greater benefits on the
Operational Expenditure (OpEx) side in the form of quality improvements
because of bi-directional digital communications and improved process
efficiency due to linked intelligent devices that are capable of remote
diagnostics. ARC's 2006 Fieldbus End User Survey respondents also
indicated that improved productivity of maintenance technicians and
field operators as the greatest benefit of fieldbus experienced to
Hollywood added, "There is a clear indication that fieldbus has made
its way into the culture of process automation...users are moving
beyond the early nuts-and-bolts concerns of deploying the technology
and making it work to realize the lifecycle benefits of fieldbus."
According to ARC, much of the worldwide growth for fieldbus can be
attributed to robust functionality enabling integration of field data
with asset management applications, and providing connectivity to
safety systems through TÜV-approved fieldbus networks and other
applications via technologies such as OPC.
Hollywood's report noted, "ARC expects fieldbus solutions will
expand in functionality to fit a broader range of applications from the
largest enterprises to more focused solutions that can grow in
functionality as manufacturers increase investments."
ARC indicated developing markets such as Brazil, Russia, India and
China will experience the greatest fieldbus growth. Its study
described Asia/Pacific as a "fieldbus growth engine," much the same as
it has been for the process automation industry at large, with CAGR
approaching 32 percent; and predicted Latin America would see a
fieldbus growth rate of nearly 34 percent for combined IEC fieldbus
Aside from oil & gas, refining, petrochemical and other "early
adopters," ARC found a powerful value proposition for fieldbus in the
hybrid industries-namely, food & beverage and pharmaceutical,
particularly when it comes to easing the process of validation and
regulatory compliance and the integration of batch procedural
operations with continuous processes. The function block structure of Foundation technology lends itself to these processes very well.
As the study concluded, the most important fieldbus advantages exist in
maintenance and operations. The technology itself is not a cost saver,
but according to ARC, serves as "an enabler to a new level of asset
management effectiveness that can significantly reduce operating costs
and contribute to operational excellence."
About the ARC Advisory Group
Founded in 1986, ARC Advisory Group has grown to become the Thought
Leader in Manufacturing and Supply Chain solutions. No matter how
complex your business issues, our analysts have the expert industry
knowledge and first-hand experience to help you find the best answer.
We focus on simple yet critical goals: improving your return on assets,
operational performance, total cost of ownership, project
time-to-benefit, and shareholder value. Further information can be
obtained from ARC, Three Allied Drive, Dedham, MA 02026, 781-471-1000,
Fax 781-471-1100, E-mail
, Web www.arcweb.com.
About the Fieldbus Foundation
The Fieldbus Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation consisting of
over 350 leading process and manufacturing automation companies
worldwide whose major purpose is to provide an open and neutral
environment for the development of a single, international,
interoperable fieldbus. In this environment, end users, manufacturers,
universities and research organizations are working together to develop
the technology, provide development tools, support and training,
coordinate field trials and demonstrations, and enable product
interoperability. Visit their web site at www.fieldbus.org.