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Controller is ‘first’ to bridge gap between DCS and PLC systems

14 September, 2017

Emerson has launched an industrial controller which, it claims, is the first to bridge small and large control applications, allowing manufacturers to scale its use up to DCS (distributed control system) applications, and down to PLC (programmable logic controller) applications. The DeltaV PK Controller offers scalable automation to process and discrete manufacturing users who have previously had to rely on complex, non-integrated PLCs with limited capabilities.

The controller makes the automation capabilities of Emerson’s DeltaV DCS available to industries that have traditionally not made much use of large-scale automation. At present, they often use PLCs for smaller applications, which can create disconnected “islands of automation” and can limit plant upgrades.

The new controller can be used for easy-to-implement, standalone automation applications similar to PLCs, but with features of a full-scale DCS, such as advanced batch production, recipe management and historical data analysis. It can either be used by itself, or merged with a DeltaV DCS. This capability is said to eliminate operational complexity and to improve the performance, safety, and efficiency of projects.

“The DeltaV PK controller delivers a business-effective solution for organisations of all sizes to improve automation control and integration,” says Emerson product manager, Jessica Jordan. “The controller is capable of powerful standalone control for advanced automation on skids today, while still being able to easily integrate into a full-scale DCS for total plant production control.”

The controller is the latest addition to Emerson’s Project Certainty initiative, which is aimed at transforming the way that capital projects are executed. It will simplify such projects by allowing OEMs to design and produce skids in the same way that they do today, while eliminating the costs, time, and risks associated with integrating PLCs into their control systems.

Emerson says its DeltaV PK controller will simplify projects, and prepare organisations for the benefits of the IIoT

The DeltaV PK controller was designed from the outset with connectivity in mind – in particular, links to the IIoT. It supports various communication protocols and is the first Emerson controller to offer six Ethernet ports and a built-in OPC UA server. It can use any type of DeltaV I/O, including electronic marshalling, traditional marshalled I/O, wireless I/O, and integrated safety instrumented systems. It also has built-in protocols for communicating with Ethernet-supporting devices such as drives and motors.

Emerson says that the controller will help plants to take advantage of cloud-based tools and analytics via the IIoT. It also offers built-in redundancy for controllers, communications and power supplies, allowing organisations to improve uptime, without adding to complexity or needing extra space.

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