The recently expanded Fieldbus Foundation Benelux Marketing Committee (FFBeneluxMC) hosted its first end user seminar in Belgium on Thursday 19th May at the Acta vzw training centre in Kalmthout, near Antwerp.
Rob van der Zwan, chairman - FFBeneluxMC, opened the seminar's afternoon session with an introduction to the new Benelux Marketing Committee and unveiled its new logo. Hans Musters, Acta, also welcomed the delegates to the Acta training facility and gave a brief overview of the training centre, the facilities and its activities. They welcomed a large audience of 75 delegates that included around 40 end users.
Due to the large numbers, presentations were held as parallel sessions which helped ensure active discussions and interaction between the presenters and audience.
Bindert Douma, of the STC Group's Brielle training centre, held a ‘Training Teaser' session during which he gave an overview of the 5-day Foundation fieldbus training course available at the Brielle facility in the Netherlands.
Douma is a fully certified trainer from the STC Group's Brielle training centre, one of the first training establishments certified under the Foundation Certified Training Program (FCTP).
An informative end user insight into the lessons learnt through the implementation of Foundation technology into the BASF Antwerp facility was given by Louis Claessens. His concluding advice to potential implementers of a Foundation system was to strike up and maintain a close working relationship with the system supplier, understand the principals of the system and follow implementation recommendations closely.
The operational and economic benefits of Control in the Field (CIF), a key advantage of Foundation technology, were presented by Rob Sosef, FFBeneluxMC member.
Also, Marcel Vennemann gave a short introduction to the proposed Foundation Fieldbus Knowledge Centre, a FFBeneluxMC initiative which is due to be established soon.
Discussion forums after each presentation offered a unique opportunity for the sharing of end user experiences, and an open forum for questions and answer sessions. This multi-directional flow of information is vital for both established and prospective users of the technology in addition to the Fieldbus Foundation and its members supplying Foundation products and services.
A complimentary buffet dinner was enjoyed by all attendees during which tours of the Acta Training Center were organised. Acta's Pieter d'Espallier conducted live demonstrations in the facility's demonstration room that houses a complete, live, Foundation Fieldbus system.
Several people stayed beyond the official close of the program - a true testimony to the quality of the event!