ABB combines power and automation events

Noting increased customer interest in the integration of electricity- and automation-focused technologies to achieve efficiency and optimization goals, ABB combines its two annual events and announces a number of new, cross-industry products.


Orlando, FL – Kicking off ABB’s annual user meeting in North America, Mark Taft, ABB’s group vice president for process automation and global control systems, reminded everyone in attendance that, despite the predominating economic conditions, “tomorrow has not been cancelled” andthat now is the time to start actively preparing for the future that will surely come. Also read:

ABB conference highlights economics, services, and R&D

This year’s meeting marked the first time ABB has combined its previously separate Automation World and Power World events—an occurrence underscored by the company’s increasing focus on bringing together its power and automation technologies for its customers’ benefit.
Peter Terwiesch, ABB’s chief technology officer, said that more companies are looking to integrate automation and electrical systems to increase productivity, decrease downtime, and take advantage of improved utility costs. He noted that ABB has helped Petrobras (a major Brazilian oil producer) do this and is working with other oil & gas and power generation customers to do the same.
Product-related announcements made at the event include:

  • A preview of ABB’s Wireless HART adapter. This device can be used to connect to existing HART transmitters wired to existing DCSs or PLCs that can only read the

    <table ID = 'id5165536-10-table' CELLSPACING = '1' CELLPADDING = '1' CLASS = 'right' WIDTH = '200' BORDER = '1'><tbody ID = 'id5165548-10-tbody'><tr ID = 'id5165550-10-tr'><td ID = 'id5165553-10-td'>
    </td></tr><tr ID = 'id5165573-13-tr'><td ID = 'id5165575-13-td'> ABB’s Wireless HART adapter: Read an ABB PDF to learn more .

    4-20 mA signal. The benefit to end users is that, by adding the WirelessHART adapter to an existing wired device, they can use the HART functionality to configure and continuously monitor existing devices from a remote PC. In addition, the adapter is powered from the existing device’s 4-20 mA signal.

  • IndustrialIT cpmPlus Loop Performance Manager, part of ABB’s Collaborative Production Management suite. The Loop Performance Manager (LPM) software package is said to monitor the performance of control loops and determine the best operating parameters for them. The new software combines three tools in one package: Loop Auditing, which detects underperforming control loops; Loop Tuning, to improve the tuning of the loops; and Plantwide Disturbance Analysis, which looks for oscillation patterns in the plant and then finds the root cause (such as a loop that has an improper tuning or a loop with actuator problems). ABB says LPM works with virtually any PID type, either from ABB or other vendors, works with on-line or off-line data, and can use either open- or closed-loop data. LPM can be configured to provide continuous 24/7 auditing of systems, to ensure that loops continue to provide a high level of performance over time.

  • To work around arc flash hazards while extracting localized data from operating circuit breakers, ABB has released two new Bluetooth wireless communication modules. These modules are said to allow for circuit breaker data extraction without having to install a test cord or interface with the trip unit directly. The company claims that, even when the trip unit cover is sealed, authorized technicians can use these wireless modules to remotely gather the information they need and make any adjustments required.

For information on new ABB products specific to the process industries,

click here

For insight into ABB’s future focus from new CEO Joseph Hogan and to learn more about the company’s stimulus package core team and full service maintenance arrangements,

click here


David Greenfield , editorial director

Control Engineering News Desk

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