Together with Profibus International - South Africa, and the South African Society for Automation, Instrumentation, Measurement & Control (SAIMC), the Fieldbus Foundation Southern Africa Marketing Committee (FFSAMC) participated in the International Field Networking Conference held on November 8-9, 2011, at the Birchwood Hotel and Conference Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa.
Jim Pinto, the internationally known speaker and author of 'Automation Unplugged' opened the conference with a keynote speech which gave an insight into his expectation of future technological developments and his advice to end users to select the most appropriate fieldbus system for the application as the various fieldbus systems available are all generally good for the applications for which they were designed.
A comprehensive program of presentations from representatives from each of the partner organisations took place throughout the two day conference with opportunities for Q&A sessions after each topic, closing with a panel discussion hosted by key end users and industry experts from the region.
As Vivian A MacFadyen, General Secretary SAIMC, concluded in a press release, "This event was well worth the expenditure, however it reiterated the age old requirement that practitioners in the process control industry need training; and this is even more important now that systems are more sophisticated. It is not sufficient to just obtain an academic education, specific technical and practical skills need to be gained. This opinion coincides with that that the SAIMC has had for many years".