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Invensys launches next generation process automation system

Invensys has launched its next generation process automation system.

The company is a supplier of industrial software, systems, and control equipment.

The Foxboro Evo Process Automation System, which integrates the company’s Triconex safety system, features advanced tools and applications delivered across a high speed, fault-tolerant and cyber-secure hardware platform.

This system includes a new high-speed controller, field device management tools, a maintenance response centre, an Enterprise Historian, n+1 redundancy, plus cyber security.

The Foxboro Evo Process Automation System has evolved directly from the Foxboro I/A Series and Triconex technology. The new system extends the innovative layered architecture approach through a component object-based platform which Invensys says can undergo major upgrades without halting operations.

According to the managing director of Invensys Operations Management, Keith Marriner, current Foxboro I/A Series users can migrate to the Foxboro Evo system with little or no downtime, depending on which version they are running.

“In addition, users of competing process automation systems, whose wiring terminations are still functional, can migrate to the Foxboro Evo system without replacing infrastructure, significantly reducing costs,” he added.

“The Foxboro Evo system provides superior visibility into historical, real-time and predictive operating information, and it opens up new opportunities in helping to drive production efficiency by broadening stakeholder areas within an enterprise, including safety and security personnel, engineers, operators and maintenance technicians.

“Safety and security personnel can benefit from an innovative coupling of control and safety through sharing of operational information and the provision of state-of-the-art cyber security, while engineers can reduce their workloads, protect schedule integrity and reduce risks via troubleshooting features.

“For operators, gains can flow from a real-time view of plant activity via an updated high-performance mobile accessible HMI, and for maintenance technicians the benefits include real-time alerts, analytics and performance monitoring.”

Integration of the Triconex Tricon Safety Instrumented System with the Foxboro Evo system is designed to meet safety and critical control needs, particularly for applications in the oil and gas, power, refining, chemicals, pharmaceutical and biotech industries.

The new Foxboro Evo architecture: Gains can flow from a real-time view of plant activity via an updated high-performance mobile accessible HMI.

The Triconex Tricon System is based on Triple Modular Redundant (TMR) technology with a view to maximising the safety and performance of assets by having the right information at the right time to help mitigate risks, avoid costly process downtime, comply with regulations, and achieve production targets.

Fault tolerance is provided through TMR technology, which employs three isolated, parallel control systems and extensive diagnostics integrated into one system.

Future-proofing systems

Marriner believes that a major challenge in introducing process automation is the speed at which technology is moving and the need to future-proof systems.

He points out that the future-proof architecture and innovation upgrades of the Foxboro Evo system accommodates new technologies and provides easy cost-effective system scaleup.

“There are new perspectives to process automation systems that need to be addressed in the change process. This includes regulatory pressures, as well as workforce transitions that involve a new generation of tech-savvy people coming through, which requires communication in the right context to the right personnel in order to effectively manage plant systems and overall operations,” he said.

“New and more complex solutions are required to meet the need to produce quality goods faster, at lower cost, and at reduced risk. Template driven models have been developed to truly integrate operator actions and change the way operators relate with machines.

“Integrated dashboards have come to the fore, providing a suite of products to deliver lower downtime. Such developments offer reduced cost of system ownership and greater operator productivity.

“Improved engineering efficiencies of 5-15 percent can be achieved through new process automation technology, and reduced costs delivered operationally will allow a platform of continuous improvement to assist global competitiveness.”

Marriner says a new innovative era is developing that is largely about the human/machine interface.

“This relates to the human/machine interface in its broadest sense where human interaction drives reliability and timely availability of product. Central to this is ensuring operational integrity and operator insight through effective implementation of a process automation system such as Foxboro Evo.

“Broadly, I see the future with a strong focus on operational engagement, which means delivering a system that engages operators and the various touch points. There is a huge amount of data around, but we need to take the rich data and deliver it in a way that provides effective outcomes.”

Invensys target markets in Australia include process industries such as upstream oil and gas, power generation and minerals processing.

“Australian industry has been through challenging times but confidence appears to be returning to the market,” Marriner says.

“Mining is going through a transition phase whereby there is a change from capital building to operational development. Within the processing industries a number of operational efficiencies have already taken place and the market atmosphere is increasingly positive.”

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