It is now possible for almost every technological device to be connected to a shared network, either by cable or wireless means. This network is invariably TCP/IP based and the standards and protocols used have made their way into every day use within control systems.
Ten or more years ago a typical Operator Interface PC/SCADA system would have been connected by Ethernet. Now it is possible for an entire Control System including Distributed I/O, drives and instrumentation to be linked together forming one large network.
Networks have become so commonplace that they seem simple. However, many considerations must be made to ensure that such a system fits together well. Having been involved with these systems since they started APD Ltd has developed a broad and deep knowledge allowing us to:
- Understand how to combine devices from many different manufacturers
- Incorporate legacy communications links and protocols
- Ensure security and redundancy are of utmost importantance
- Calculate the capacity and speed of the installed system to ensure integrity
- Carry out site surveys to show the potential coverage of wireless devices
- Identify areas where electrical noise, distance or bandwidth limitations may favour the use of fibre optic cable
- Design and install a system capable of segregating the factory or process' network from office or corporate systems
- Provide the best way of allowing remote access to the plant for data collection or diagnostics
Moving from the design to the installation we have a team of certified installers capable of routing copper or fibre cables, terminating, splicing and testing the completed installation.