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Trine University and SAIT Polytechnic Complete Rigorous FCTP Educational Certification Process

Institutions recognized for delivering thorough, comprehensive and accredited fieldbus training for the end user community

AUSTIN, Texas, June 17, 2010 — The Fieldbus Foundation today announced that Trine University, Angola, Indiana; and SAIT Polytechnic, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, have successfully completed the rigorous certification process under the Foundation Certified Training Program (FCTP). This program, which establishes uniform standards for fieldbus educational curriculum around the world and defines acceptable levels of learning for students of Foundation technology, ensures the availability of thorough, comprehensive and accredited training to the process automation marketplace.

According to Fieldbus Foundation Marketing Manager Bill Tatum, the FCTP was established to ensure instructors delivering Foundation fieldbus educational courses are skilled, knowledgeable and technically competent.  Through certification, the program demonstrates to prospective end user students that fieldbus training centers, and their instructors, have been thoroughly evaluated based on strict criteria, and have the necessary qualifications to provide the very best training available.

Tatum said, "Effective and standardized training of plant personnel is the key to successful implementation of an advanced technology such as Foundation fieldbus. As evidenced by feedback received in our global fieldbus seminar program, process end users want to maximize the benefits of their fieldbus instrumentation and control system investments-and experience has shown that training of operators, engineers and technicians is essential to getting the most out of the technology."

He added, "When end users see the official FCTP logo displayed by a certified training site, they know the foundation has identified this institution as having the competence and resources to offer superior Foundation technology training programs."

The procedures that educational institutions must follow in order to gain certified Foundation training site status, together with certified course instructors and certified curriculum, are rigorous.  For example, certified training centers are required to maintain multiple Foundation fieldbus hosts and devices onsite in order to demonstrate competence with fieldbus technology.  They must also demonstrate to auditors that their course material adheres to set instructional standards covering fieldbus segment limits; device replacements; commands, icons, menus and screen designs of different software packages; and communication, scheduling and function block assignments enabling configuration.

In addition, certified instructors are audited to see if they have achieved specified Fieldbus Foundation training goals.  Instructors must demonstrate expertise in areas such as Human-Machine Interface (HMI) tools, fieldbus troubleshooting, simple device configuration, and device deployment and functionality across a fieldbus network.

The Foundation Certified Training Program currently offers three levels of certification, and others may be added in the future.  The current certifications include Foundation Certified Professional, Foundation Certified Support Specialist, and Foundation Certified Technical Specialist.

Educational facilities that complete the multi-stage FCTP certification process can issue certificates showing the Fieldbus Foundation accredits their courses.  They also gain recognition from the foundation on its website at

Around the world, institutions currently certified under the FCTP program include: Fieldbus Center at Lee College, United States; Trine University, United States; SAIT Polytechnic, Canada; and STC Brielle, The Netherlands.  Other training centers participating in the program include: University of Miskolc, Hungary; Waseda Unversity, Japan; and King Mongkut's Institute of Technology, Thailand.

Trine University, founded in 1884, is an internationally recognized, private, co-educational institution that grants associate, bachelor and master's degrees in more than 30 different programs.

In March 2005, the Trine University Technology Center and the Fieldbus Foundation announced the establishment of the Great Lakes Regional Foundation fieldbus training center.  The Trine facility offers fieldbus training that is standardized, but also focused on the needs of industry throughout the Midwest/Great Lakes region of the U.S.  Courses are offered at the Angola location, as well as at customer facilities when requested.

"The Trine Technology Center is honored to be named as a new Foundation fieldbus certified training site.  Our institution strives for excellence in its fieldbus educational curriculum, and achieving Fieldbus Foundation certification provides a clear indication to prospective students that our courses meet the comprehensive standards established by the foundation for all accredited training centers worldwide," said Wayne Mortorff, director of program development at the Trine University Technology Center.  "We would like to thank all of the generous donors who have contributed equipment and software for our Foundation fieldbus training lab.  This educational program would not have been possible without their assistance."

"Training is the key to a successful design and overall project implementation," said Trine's certified Foundation fieldbus instructor, David S. Lancaster.  "This certification program gives a very comprehensive, vendor-neutral approach to instruction.  The user then has the knowledge needed to make an informed decision in selection of devices and components, designing the systems, and implementing that design to ensure certainty of outcome."

Lancaster is a control systems engineer (registered P.E.-Texas) with 43 years of experience in the engineering and contractor businesses.  He retired as the chief engineer for control systems for Bechtel Oil, Gas & Chemical Inc. in Houston, Texas, with 30 years of service.  Lancaster has been heavily involved in Foundation fieldbus technology since 1999, taught fieldbus technology internally at Bechtel, and participates in Fieldbus Foundation educational seminars in North America.  He also recently served as the technical editor for the Fieldbus Foundation's AG-181 (Revision 3.1) "System Engineering Guidelines."

The Fieldbus Foundation and SAIT Polytechnic signed a partnership agreement to establish a Foundation fieldbus training facility on the SAIT campus in Calgary.  SAIT offers Foundation fieldbus Certified Professional-a comprehensive five-day training program comprised of the following courses: Foundation fieldbus Essentials, Foundation fieldbus Discovery, and Foundation fieldbus Practices.  Upon successful completion of this course, participants receive Foundation Certified Professional certification.

Reflecting the most up-to-date standards in the industry, SAIT recently upgraded its Foundation fieldbus lab to incorporate Foundation High Speed Ethernet (HSE) technology.  The new system interoperates fieldbus instruments from over a dozen different manufacturers.  This system, used for the laboratories, along with Honeywell Experion, Yokogawa CENTUM, Smar System302 and Emerson DeltaV, gives trainees exposure to a diverse and comprehensive fieldbus experience.  SAIT's fieldbus lab facilities provide each trainee with their own training station and include four Foundation fieldbus devices from four differing manufacturers.  Over 20 different manufacturers of fieldbus equipment are represented in the lab.

SAIT's dean for the MacPhail School of Energy, Mary MacDonald, commented, "SAIT is excited to continue its relationship with the Fieldbus Foundation.  We recognize the importance of fieldbus technology in the Canadian oil and gas industry and the ability to provide that industry with training for its workforce."

SAIT's certified Foundation fieldbus instructor, Ian Verhappen, said, "Industry is continuing to adopt Foundation fieldbus technology as its preferred means of connecting to field devices.  SAIT is ideally situated to provide the training necessary for the professionals preparing to use fieldbus either for the first time or as a refresher at the start of any phase of their project.  Experience has shown that training not only gets the entire team working with a common understanding of the technology; working together on the equipment and exercises also provides an excellent opportunity to develop the camaraderie and a sense of being part of the project."

Verhappen has been involved with Foundation fieldbus since 1995, leading the first multi-host Interoperability testing in 1996 and writing numerous reference documents on the technology including the original AG-181 Engineering Guides, and the popular Foundation fieldbus book from ISA.  He is an ISA Fellow and Certified Automation Professional, past chair of the Fieldbus Foundation End User Advisory Council (EUAC), and presenter for the original Foundation fieldbus North America End User Seminars.

For more information about certified training and Foundation fieldbus training sites, please visit the Fieldbus Foundation's website at

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 provides process integrity, business intelligence and open scalable integration in a managed environment.  For more information, visit their web site at

About Trine University

Trine University is a private, non-denominational institution that grants associate, bachelor and master degrees in more than 30 programs on campus, online, and at four regional education centers.  With 1,930 students, Trine's small class sizes ensure one-on-one attention with faculty who bring their own workplace experience into the classroom.  The university focuses on active participation through more than 60 student organizations, competitive intercollegiate athletics, and extensive co-op and internship opportunities.  For more information, visit their website at

About SAIT Polytechnic

SAIT Polytechnic is one of Canada's most exciting destinations for post-secondary education, offering more than 100 career programs that position people for success in technology, trades and business.  A leader in innovation, SAIT also collaborates with industry on applied research and delivers corporate training worldwide.  SAIT is a member of Polytechnics Canada and one of Alberta's Top 50 Employers for 2010.  For more information, visit their website at


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