The INSIDER contents for October 2010

John Berra and the Rosemount 1151  bid farewell to Emerson Process Management,  after 35 years together

John Berra has been the major driving force at the centre of many of the major technology developments that have happened in the electronic era in the process automation industry, as a forward thinking engineer, business manager and motivator, for over 25 years. Berra joined Emerson as a marketing manager for the Rosemount business in 1976, and so began a long association with the Rosemount 1151 pressure transmitter. Dr James Truchard, president, CEO, and co-founder of National Instruments commented: “Throughout his career, Berra has demonstrated strong business, product and technology leadership. Berra [has] extensive experience growing large accounts, working with broad-based sales and marketing organizations and managing product development on both hardware and software applications….”. This is why National Instruments snapped John Berra up earlier this year and appointed him to their board of directors. See the rest of our review of John Berra’s career, and even some of the criticisms from his competitors, in the Insider for October. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER, see www.iainsider.co.uk

Major ABB mining project demonstrates IEC61850

Last month, ABB used the opening of the new Boliden Group facilities at the Aitik open pit copper mine in Northern Sweden, just inside the Arctic circle, to present their total mining capabilities to 35 mineral and processing industry journalists. For this project, ABB supplied the electricity substation, conveyors, drives and motors, plus concentrator plant automation, all controlled by System 800xA, at a total value of $84m. The plant is effectively the ideal installation for demonstrating the ABB product profile, and is also the first installation that uses IEC61850 substation automation communications, which links the electrical protection, switchgear, transmission and distribution equipment with the process control and automation data from Profibus and HART systems on the mineral flotation plant, all into one single control system. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER, see www.iainsider.co.uk.


But why did Boliden choose ABB for the Aitik project?

Jan Moström, president of the Boliden mines business area, explained that Boliden “Establish who will work with us, which suppliers have the technology to help develop our mining techniques”, and who will apply a high level of engineering skill alongside Boliden engineers. The main suppliers to Aitik were not chosen because of local links, but because they have these capabilities and have demonstrated the use of best available technology: Moström mentioned in this context Sandviks, Atlas Copco, Metso and Outotec, all having a good track record of working with Boliden: ABB in fact have worked with them since the 1930s. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER, see www.iainsider.co.uk

Wireless sensors monitor copper leaching process

One of the Emerson Global User Exchange presentations last described how Emerson WirelessHART transmitters had improved productivity and site safety at a copper leaching plant in Chile. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER, see www.iainsider.co.uk

New USA automation show to debut in 2012

Deutsche Messe, the organizers of Hannover Messe, the world’s largest industrial technology trade fair (which for the last few years has incorporated the Interkama Exhibition and attracted 150,000 visitors this year) are adding “Industrial Automation North America” to their international expansion plans. This new show will be held 12-15 September 2012, alongside the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) at McCormick Place in Chicago, Illinois. The September date is likely to introduce a significant conflict with the dates of the ISA Automation Week for 2012. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER., see www.iainsider.co.uk

Open wireless standards for interoperability

The Hart Communication Foundation has announced improvements to the published WirelessHART test systems, in the form of Wireless Test System v1.4 and Wi-Analys Software v1.3. “The WirelessHART Test System plays a key role in ensuring the compliance and interoperability of WirelessHART devices,” says Ed Ladd, director of technology programs at the HART Communication Foundation. Meanwhile, the ISA Wireless Compliance Institute has recently published the list of wireless devices now certified to ISA100.11a, which includes Yokogawa and Honeywell transmitters, as launched to the press in June (INSIDER, July 2010 page 1), plus the Nivis communication protocol stack. But as yet there is no news from ISA on the state of the revisions being made to the ISA100.11a-2009 standard that was withdrawn from the ANSI approval process because of errors. So it is not known which standard the approved sensors have been tested to. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER see www.iainsider.co.uk

The media latches on to a Stuxnet conspiracy theory

Reports on the Stuxnet malware have now attracted the world’s media, with industrial control viruses even reported on the front page of the Financial Times in the UK, supported by a full page technical report under the heading “Computer worm triggers worldwide alarm”. While perhaps a little late for such a headline, after two months of reports in the INSIDER, the BBC, Fox News and Bloomberg have the power to trigger such alarm.

The media speculation aired over the last two weeks is based on the belief that Stuxnet was a cyber weapon, developed by a nation state, suggested as the USA, or perhaps more likely, Israel. This weapon was specifically designed to target the Iranian nuclear industry, and possibly specifically the uranium enrichment centrifuge plant at Natanz, by preventing a high level alarm shutdown control of some form. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER, see www.iainsider.co.uk

Firewall introduced for OPC Classic by Byers

OPC Classic is widely used in control systems as an interoperability solution, interfacing control applications from multiple vendors, and this has made it very difficult to secure. The new Tofino OPC Enforcer Loadable Software Module (LSM) has been developed by Byres Security, and is now available from MTL Instruments. Invensys has also teamed with Byres Security, using a similar Byres content inspection firewall for the Modbus TCP protocol, to create a firewall specifically for Triconex systems. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER., see www.iainsider.co.uk

New techniques monitor for corrosion

At a workshop in the Emerson Exchange in San Antonio, Roxar of Norway, the offshore well flow monitoring systems specialists, acquired by Emerson in May 2009, presented a different aspect of their business: corrosion monitoring systems for oil pipeline monitoring. The Roxar Topside CorrOcean products monitor pipe wall thicknesses in highly-corrosive saltwater offshore oil and gas production conditions. Then QinetiQ, the defence and security technology company, presented their Corlan wireless based corrosion monitoring pipe-wall thickness sensors at a new exhibition called “Sensing Technology”, in the UK’s NEC in Birmingham. Corlan uses battery powered ultrasonic sensors, epoxy bonded to the outside of a pipeline at specific thickness measurement locations, or at areas of high risk or concern. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER, see www.iainsider.co.uk


UK Distributors now build custom products and systems

ABB Instrumentation Alliance partner AM Sensors from Bridgwater has become a local solutions supplier, with panels and instrumentation packages for nuclear power plants  across the UK. In particular AMS have manufactured high and low pressure trolley mountable particulate samplers, for extracting sample gas from vents, HVAC ducts and room spaces. Other distribution companies, such as Eriks and Brammer continue their growth into multi-national supply chain operations. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER, see www.iainsider.co.uk

Chinese nuclear contracts continue at Invensys

Invensys Operations Management has signed a second long-term agreement with China Nuclear Power Engineering Co (CNPE) to provide safety and distributed control systems and solutions for two 650MW pressurized water reactor units under construction on Hainan Island, on the southern tip of China. To read the full story take out a subscription to Industrial Automation INSIDER, see www.iainsider.co.uk