Power plant control system platform designed for the very long term

Siemens says that building in migration strategies from the start will allow the system to run for the life of the plant with provision to be kept current.


Given the constantly evolving face of control technology, is it possible to "future proof" a single control platform? Siemens Energy, Instrumentation, Controls, and Electrical division believes it has done just that. Its new SPPA-T3000 power plant controls technology platform provides today's power plants with a control system that has an expandable life cycle span that the company says has the potential to operate as long as the plant itself. With a revamped approach to hardware, architecture, Java/XML software, and migration strategies, the SPPA-T3000 is designed to require the least future capital investment for plant owners.

Siemens contends that unlike more typical automation systems, which often rely on several different software tools, the SPPA-T3000 control system uses single-point-system software, featuring its Embedded Components Services to offer single point access to all functional areas within the entire plant. This includes critical areas such as operation, engineering, diagnostics, archives, alarms, and field instruments. This architecture significantly improves system data integrity and simplifies system data integration. When needed, this design also provides rapid software updates from one single source. The SPPA-T3000 control system also incorporates XML and Java technologies, which are intended to allow for applications to be executed and delivered virtually without any operating system restrictions or hardware platform compatibility issues.

"Siemens Energy recognizes that preserving capital investment is a priority in every market, including power generation," says Joerg Holzapfel, general manager of Siemens Energy, Instrumentation, Controls, and Electrical. "Life cycle management for automation systems is especially critical because these controls are a vital component in the overall efficiency of the whole enterprise. Siemens Energy, through its SPPA-T3000 control system, offers a cost-effective solution for power plants to modernize their operations with technology that not only delivers outstanding performance, but also offers the greatest versatility to respond to future requirements.''

-Edited by Peter Welander, process industries editor, PWelander@cfemedia.com
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