The post Webinar Recording: How to Choose a Modern, Integrated DCS Solution first appeared on the ISA Interchange blog site.
Today’s industrial organizations face a host of operational challenges. Ensuring the safety of personnel, equipment, and the environment are priorities for every facility. At the same time, plants must find ways to increase process efficiency, availability, and throughput—helping to improve their overall business performance.
Over the past couple of decades, the industrial automation sector has witnessed converging process control technologies contributing towards an integrated control system that can unify people with process, business needs and asset management. While the distributed control system (DCS) is no more just an instrument for controlling batch and continuous process, modern PLCs have also challenged the traditional boundaries by incorporating new capabilities. Integration enhancements by use of open technologies now allow the DCS to collect intelligence from various plant assets that were until now operating in isolation or were not considered relevant to integrate until recently.
The evolution and commoditization of DCS technology has produced a modern, graphical, highly interactive integration platform, which provides process control functionality as well as real-time data connectivity between the plant floor and the enterprise. Development has also led from a proprietary, system-centric architecture, to one that is more focused on supporting collaborative business processes.
Modern DCS systems bring “integration with simplicity.” Here are some examples:
The journey from DCS to integrated control system (ICS) has greatly benefited by industry associations such as ISA that help define the integration framework and operating principles. Some examples of how industry insight and research has collaborated for industry-wide adoption:
Interestingly, some adjacent IT technologies such as the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and virtualization are unlocking a new array of potential in the control systems. A new OEM business model is a reality now using IIoT-ready controllers which can provide data securely over OEM analytics cloud to achieve improved equipment serviceability time and performance monitoring and lower total cost of ownership. Likewise, virtualization technology helps customers with greater new system and lifecycle benefits including design independence, virtual FAT and staging, improved system agility, flexibility and scalability, facility and utility savings, simplified system management and many more.
The potent mix of newer technologies is helping the new age DCS to be more “open yet secure,” “compact yet scalable,” “integrated yet separate,” “OT using IT” type solution with a great future promise.
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Source: ISA News