Registered Fieldbus Foundation host systems are available

Large scale process control systems pass testing to ensure multi-vendor interoperability in fieldbus environments.

05/15/2009


ABB System 800xA system is among registered Fieldbus Foundation Hosts

ABB System 800xA system passed the Fieldbus Foundation’s rigorous new Host Profile Registration Process.

The ABB Extended Automation System 800xA was recently registered as an initial FOUNDATION fieldbus host system after it passed the Fieldbus Foundation’s rigorous new Host Profile Registration Process.

Mark Taft, ABB’s group vice president, global sales & marketing, control systems business, process automation division, says the new testing process was "established by the End User Advisory Council (EUAC), not by the product manufacturers. Finally, the end users can reasonably evaluate solutions in a consistent way rather than trying to make sense of supported features and functions from the previous HIST (Host Interoperability Support Test) methods.”

Under the new Host Profile Registration Process, ABB says, the foundation conducts functional testing with a test device and specialized test Device Descriptions (DDs) and Capabilities Files (CFs). The host device or system under test must support a clear set of required features. The foundation's Host Registration Program benefits both automation suppliers and end users by providing a new level of consistency in a multi-vendor FOUNDATION fieldbus environment, ABB says, allowing end users to select the best device for a specific measurement or control task, regardless of manufacturer.
www.abb.com
ABB

Four FOUNDATION fieldbus host systems have passed its new Host Profile Registration Process, according to the Fieldbus Foundation, as of May 13. Host registration provides new level of consistency in multi-vendor fieldbus environment, the organization says. The vendors and systems are:

  • ABB Automation Products GmbH, Industrial IT System 800xA;

  • Emerson Process Management, DeltaV & AMS Suite: Intelligent Device Manager;

  • Yokogawa Electric Corp., Centum VP; and

  • Yokogawa Electric Corp., Stardom.

A list of all registered FOUNDATION fieldbus products is available at www.fieldbus.org/registered .
The Fieldbus Foundation registration program requires mandatory testing of critical elements of its technology. This effort now encompasses FOUNDATION fieldbus host systems and field devices, as well as physical layer components, such as power supplies and device couplers.
The Fieldbus Foundation established its Host Registration Program as a key initiative benefiting the global automation industry, the group says. Under the registration process, fieldbus hosts successfully completing the test requirements are authorized to bear the official FOUNDATION product registration symbol. Hosts may include configuration tools, recording devices, alarm display panels, HMIs (human machine interfaces), or systems with a combination of functionality.
The foundation says its Host Registration Program benefits automation suppliers and end users by providing a new level of consistency in a multi-vendor FOUNDATION fieldbus environment. Host registration advances the same robust interoperability and integration among manufacturers' host systems, and multiple devices, as the foundation's device-to-device interoperability testing, begun in 1998.
In addition, automation suppliers are implementing host applications that employ enhanced Electronic Device Description Language (EDDL) features. EDDL is a universal interface to diagnostic, real-time and asset management information contained in millions of field instruments from leading automation manufacturers, the foundation says.
Enhanced EDDL allows users to interact with their devices in new ways, including improved data visualization and display capabilities like waveforms and valve signatures, a standardized method to access historic measurement or device performance information and enhanced tools for high-level information (such as algorithmic relationships for complex device parameters) display and use in control systems.
HIST was the previous method
The Fieldbus Foundation's previous Host Interoperability Support Test (HIST) provided a host test protocol, and the host vendor chose the implementation. This program has evolved to a comprehensive Host Profile Registration Process, in which the foundation conducts functional testing with a test device and specialized device descriptions (DDs) and capabilities files (CFs). The host profile under test must support a clear set of required features.
The host registration program gives host suppliers access to standardized test requirements and test cases for all hosts within a profile tested to the same requirements; standardized DD and CF files assuring hosts can parse files; and standardized test devices for all basic I/O function blocks and specialized test transducer blocks.
Robust, open, interoperable
Rich Timoney, Fieldbus Foundation president and CEO, called the initial host registrations an "important milestone" in the growth and implementation of FOUNDATION fieldbus. He said, "Host registration provides an extra measure of confidence that fieldbus systems incorporate the robust functionality of FOUNDATION technology and are able to function as part of an open, interoperable control system. The Host Profile Registration Process is another example of the Fieldbus Foundation's commitment to full interoperability, and seamless integration, within a fieldbus environment."

Did you hear the Fieldbus Foundation podcast?

: End users tell how they have changed their operational playing field by using FOUNDATION Fieldbus technology; Control Engineering podcast archive, September 2007.

Within the Fieldbus Foundation's automation infrastructure, interoperability is made possible by the fact that devices and software must conform to the same standard. Products bearing the FOUNDATION Product Registration symbol have undergone a series of common tests audited by the Fieldbus Foundation. End users can select the best device for a specific measurement or control task, regardless of the manufacturer.
Yokogawa supports compliance
Amit Ajmeri, consultant - FF & Asset Management Solutions, Yokogawa Corporation of America, commented, "Yokogawa is very pleased to be one of the first companies to complete the host profile registration process for the Centum VP Integrated Control System and Stardom Network-based Control System. Yokogawa continues its commitment to support FOUNDATION fieldbus technology and promote the solution by demonstrating interoperability and compliance to the updated FOUNDATION requirements."
Emerson Process: Complete registration
“We congratulate the Fieldbus Foundation for advancing its host testing into a complete registration program, and we are pleased that our DeltaV system with AMS Device Manager is one of the first registered hosts,” said John Berra, chairman of Emerson Process Management. “Open, interoperability continues to be a clear win for our customers, and always part of our practice. The requirement of host registration, and the facilities and resources to carry it out will support further growth of FOUNDATION technology. As an example, the new registration includes host applications like our DeltaV system with AMS Suite that use enhanced EDDL to provide exceptional and consistent presentation of real-time, diagnostic, and asset management information as supported by all registered FOUNDATION fieldbus products.”


The FOUNDATION fieldbus Host Test Kit DD Application Test Module, developed in cooperation with the Fieldbus Foundation's End User Advisory Council (EUAC) and System Integration and Maintenance team, was driven by end users to bring about consistent interoperability between hosts and devices regardless of the host supplier. Specifications now include profiles for functionally different hosts and the appropriate features that apply to each profile.
To learn more about host registration, please visit the Fieldbus Foundation's website. www.fieldbus.org
Fieldbus Foundation
www.EmersonProcess.com
Emerson Process Management

www.yokogawa.com

Yokogawa Corporation of America

- Edited by Mark T. Hoske , editor in chief, Control Engineering News Desk, www.controleng.com

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