engineering blog, System Integrator

How System Integrator Delivers Value in Today’s Technology

The one great function of system integrators is they are in the industry to help companies solve automation problems. This happens by integrators giving the time, talent, and technology that is crucial to converting a plan into a completed company project. Once a manufacturing plant is prepared to make its operations bigger, the production systems should also upgrade its processes. However, the main question that should be answered is wherein the part of the expansion a system integrator can help?

To help companies answer this question, the Control System Integrators Association (CSIA) a body formed for independent, professional service providers that utilize hardware, software, and communications products are ready to give the clients within a specific industry the best options for systems integration. This includes control and information systems. With this in mind, this body dictates that the system integrators create the design and implements complicated systems for the end-users of the process in different industries. Such as manufacturing, process plants, and other industrial facilities.

Siemens Digital Factory

The Siemens Digital Factory is popular with their engineering capabilities and information technologies that help businesses automate their manufacturing processes. This covers all types of businesses from the plant floor to the corporation and enterprise level. The automation processes enable the company owners and manufacturers to have cost-efficient ways and practical energy use. In return, this helps in the increase in production while decreasing the harmful effects on the environment.

There are articles that discuss different system integrators. There is one case study that involves water and wastewater treatment plants. In this study, there is a PLC involved. The project involves the replacement of the PLCs or programmable logic controllers. There is also converting protocols, upgrading supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system both hardware and software. The second case involves PLC consolidation and the upgrade of SCADA software. With this in mind, both projects are really successful.

Another case study shows how the users of the systems such as insurance companies, system manufacturers, different government offices. These companies and offices can identify their need for a process safety system. This system should be designed, operated, and well maintained over its life cycle. In the article, they list the set of key codes and different standards that are very well applicable to the different process of other industries and they give different perspectives about the fulfillment of legacy systems.

control system, control system with style, engineering blog

How to Have Control System with Style?

When a design engineer would like to implement and design a control system with an integration project, he/she should start with a set of goals or specifications. These goals should determine the preferences of the end-user and this should be communicated efficiently to ensure that final output satisfies the expectations of all stakeholders in a company. This gives a good start for any design engineer when specifications are carefully developed and implemented. It ensures the highest success probability of the project and it makes sure that in the long haul, the control system can be maintained and operates efficiently.

When designing a new control system, the easiest one to develop are the hard-side specifications. Why? Because there are many resources available for this one. Pre-built sections for controllers and software packages in a control system are in the resources of Construction Specifications Institute (CSI). Once an engineer cannot find the detail that he/she desires, other control system hardware and software sellers can also provide detailed sections about hard-side specifications. Once the users are looking for bids from several seller or vendors of this system, the specifications the company would like to have must be carefully developed and consider so that these can be met by several bidders. Sometimes you can find an electrical enclosure manufacturer that offers built-in or customized server rack cabinets that can install the control system you design. Some control system needs to be in the low temperature or cold environment, so you might need some rack server with air conditioner systems to cool down your controller.

The real challenge comes when a company or a user would like to set the specifications on the soft-side of controls. To guide them in the decision-making process, they should start with a few basic questions:

What design should be considered for the screen?

How is the controller is going to be used by the maintenance or engineering personnel?

The structure of tags and operating pump colors are hardly addressed in the specifications. These are the elements which determine the UI (user interface) of the control system.

Once these guidelines are answered, the next step of action is to start the layout with a style guide. Style guides have been existing for a very long time in other fields. There is The Associated Press Stylebook, MLA Handbook for research papers, and in marketing field where fonts, colors, and logos for branding are also guided & monitored across all social media platforms. In this scenario, the style guide is also appropriate and applicable.

With this in mind, there is no limit what elements and considerations should be added in a control system style guide. However, the following are six areas where there should be standardization of style and these elements has proven to have the most return on investment:

1. Color

Like the usual traffic lights, red signifies stop and green means go. With this in mind, mechanical systems and electrical systems also apply the same principles. The main goal of color coding is to keep the operators and personnel safe in company operations. The color does not only signify coding but it should be well implemented in the company processes.

To start the process of deciding which colors to use for guidelines, determine the list of colors used in a facility where the control system will be used. Look for painted process pipes, pilot lights, control panels, stack lights, etc. The colors used should be familiar with the personnel for more efficient use of the control guide and better operations.

The Best Guide to Understand IP Ratings

IP Ratings Applicable for Liquid Ingress in Household Items: 

Now, we have discussed the importance of the first digit in the IP ratings standard, we will now discuss the importance of the second digit. The second digit discusses the enclosures’ capability to protect equipment from water ingress. However, it is important to note that this rating only deals with clean water and not any type of liquid or harmful chemicals in general. This rating has a nine-point scale. Where “0” means no protection from liquid ingress and “8” is completely waterproof. The IP rating of “8” means that the enclosure can be submerged in water.

Taking our previous example, the television casing has provisions for hole openings found on sides and bottom. And a user can find the limited number of slots on the top of television case that are engineered to create a small overlap. With the IP rating for liquid ingress, television cases can withstand any minor water ingress and water will not enter the television case. 

However, it is important to note that television cases are designed for indoor use. It cannot be used for environments where there is high presence of moist in the air. In case of household places, these are bathrooms, kitchens, or outdoor spaces. When water is sprayed on the enclosures with low protection form water ingress, liquid is possible to get in. For television case, it has an IP rating of “2” for liquid ingress. In summary it has an IP rating of IP22. 

In case of television remote controls, it doesn’t have any slots or vents compared to television cases. It is well sealed and sides are well-fitted. Even though there are hole provisions for the buttons, water will not get in in case of accidental water splashes. However, certainly it cannot be submerged in water. Also, even if the battery compartment is well fitted, it is not gasketed or even sealed. 

With this in mind, in case the remote control is continuously sprayed with water for 1-2 minutes, the water will start entering and seep inside the casing. With our previous example, the remote control will have an IP rating of IP53. It has high protection from solid ingress but it only provides partial protection from water ingress. 

For the smartphones example, users can clean their smartphones under the running water. If in case the user forgets to take out his phone when he goes for a dip in the pool, the water will still not get inside the mobile phone. Even if it is submerged for half an hour, there will be no issue of water ingress as long as it is submerged up to five feet deep.  

How Important is the Use of IP Ratings? 

These IP ratings are powerful because it gives the users the knowledge of protection an electrical enclosure can provide to any electronics. These are essential in giving the users a universal and good description of any enclosures’ capabilities.  

How System Integrator Delivers Value in Today’s Technology

The one great function of system integrators is they are in the industry to help companies solve automation problems. This happens by integrators giving the time, talent, and technology that is crucial to convert a plan into a completed company project. Once a manufacturing plant is prepared to make its operations bigger, the production systems should also upgrade its processes. However, the main question that should be answered is where in the part of the expansion a system integrator can help? 

To help companies answer this question, the Control System Integrators Association (CSIA) a body formed for independent, professional service providers that utilize hardware, software, and communications products are ready to give the clients within a specific industry the best options for systems integration. This includes control and information systems. With this in mind, this body dictates that the system integrators create design and implements complicated systems for the end users of the process in different industries. Such as manufacturing, process plants, and other industrial facilities. 

The Siemens Digital Factory is popular with their engineering capabilities and information technologies that helps businesses automate their manufacturing processes. This covers all types of businesses from the plant floor to the corporation and enterprise level. The automation processes enable the company owners and manufacturers have cost-efficient ways and practical energy use. In return, this helps in the increase in production while decreasing the harmful effects on the environment. 

There are articles that discusses about different system integrators. There is one case study that involves water and wastewater treatment plants. In this study, there is PLC involved. The project involves the replacement of the PLCs or programmable logic controllers. There is also converting protocols, upgrading supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system both hardware and software. The second case involves PLC consolidation and the upgrade of SCADA software. With this in mind, both projects are really successful. 

The another case study shows how the users of the systems such as: insurance companies, system manufacturers, different government offices. These companies and offices can identify their need for a process safety system. This system should be designed, operated, and well maintained over its life cycle. In the article, they list the set of key codes and different standards that are very well applicable to the different process of other industries and they give different perspectives about the fulfillment of legacy systems.