Payback in one day?

Right now, plant floor people and systems "may be doing all the right things, but they don't look like it," said Peter Martin, vice president and general manager of Performance Management for Invensys. Martin was explaining the motivation behind the launch of InFusion, the Invensys "enterprise control system" that unites automation and information systems.

07/01/2006


Right now, plant floor people and systems "may be doing all the right things, but they don't look like it," said Peter Martin, vice president and general manager of Performance Management for Invensys. Martin was explaining the motivation behind the launch of InFusion, the Invensys "enterprise control system" that unites automation and information systems. "Plant/maintenance people aren't measured on economic value," he said. But "people perform to their measures, so you have to get the measures down to the people." In InFusion, the drivers from the Wonderware manufacturing execution system (MES) are used to stitch together the applied systems provided by Foxboro, Avantis, Triconex, and Simsi-Essor.

Twenty years ago, even two years ago, the cost of pulling together the data in order to implement such a solution was exorbitant. Today, costs have dropped dramatically, and vendors are doing the enterprise integration work that was too costly or burdensome for most users to do themselves.

Two months later and half a continent away, Jack Bolick, president of Process Solutions for Honeywell Automation and Control Solutions, talked at the Honeywell Users Group in Phoenix about getting good measures wirelessly up and out of applied systems and into its Experion PKS.

"Having sensors talk directly to an Experion system on a chip is becoming a reality," Bolick said. "As the cost goes down, the more data you have and the more you can do. Enterprises today use models. If we have [the infrastructure in place], you replace assumed data with actual data." One customer, he said, used wireless sensors to bring actual temperature data, rather than an estimate, into the MES. "His payback was one day," said Bolick. "And advanced applications could do so much more for him."

If you're doing all the right things now, isn't it time to look like it? And if you're not doing the right things, don't you want to know that? That's the "why" of integrating IT and automation systems. The good news is, the "how" really is cheaper and easier than ever before. Attend your vendors' user group meetings, and find out the reality for yourself.

renee.robbins@reedbusiness.com





No comments
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Intelligent, efficient PLC programming: Cost-saving programming languages are available now; Automation system upgrades; Help from the cloud; Improving flow control; System integration tips
Smarter machines require smarter systems; Fixing PID, part 3; Process safety; Hardware and software integration; Legalities: Integrated lean project delivery
Choosing controllers: PLCs, PACs, IPCs, DCS? What's best for your application?; Wireless trends; Design, integration; Manufacturing Day; Product Exclusive
PLCs, robots, and the quest for a single controller; how OEE is key to automation solutions.
This article collection contains several articles on improving the use of PID.
Learn how Industry 4.0 adds supply chain efficiency, optimizes pricing, improves quality, and more.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Special report: U.S. natural gas; LNG transport technologies evolve to meet market demand; Understanding new methane regulations; Predictive maintenance for gas pipeline compressors
Cyber security cost-efficient for industrial control systems; Extracting full value from operational data; Managing cyber security risks
Drilling for Big Data: Managing the flow of information; Big data drilldown series: Challenge and opportunity; OT to IT: Creating a circle of improvement; Industry loses best workers, again