Project: Baton Rouge Wastewater Pump Station SCADA System, October 11, 2005
October 11, 2005
This past week focused on existing RTUs. It began with the cityof Baton Rouge calling us to assist with two of the RTU units they were not able to replace successfully at two stations. Several problems surfaced. Configuration management was lacking. Each RTU requires about 10 files to be restored to fully reconfigure it. The backup CD had many versions of each station's configuration files that needed to be picked through to determine the most recent. While later versions of the programming software support a batch upload/download of these files, this was not the case with the earlier versions the city had employed. Resulting backup files were given various similar, but different, names which needed to be changed manually to a common name to be compatible with the batch upload/download structure. The original comments were missing from the application programs. We discovered that the 2.1 programming software's editor was too small to handle the existing programs. We also discovered that RTUs had undergone a file structure change some years ago so that the city's 2.42 version would not work with their RTU's firmware. Thankfully, we had a copy of version 2.3 that did work.
In the next few weeks we will begin updating all firmware in these controllers for Modbus support. Given what we learned this week, the programs will have to be restructured somewhat for the manufacturer's firmware changes. We have decided to take the manufacturer up on their offer to convert the first one for us. This firmware update will allow us to use the latest version of the programming software.
No word yet from the primary consultant regarding our offer to create a revised set of drawings, nor a release date for a new request for proposals on Phase I.