Zeroing In

Cut to the chase? Long story short? Bottom line? OK, fine. ISA Expo 2004 will be more sharply focused than ever before on the direct benefits it can give users during its three-day run, Oct. 5-7, at the Reliant Center in Houston, TX. This fall's event will revolve around an estimated 500 exhibitors and more than 100 conference sessions in 10 tracks, which are is expected to attract more than th...

09/01/2004


Cut to the chase? Long story short? Bottom line? OK, fine. ISA Expo 2004 will be more sharply focused than ever before on the direct benefits it can give users during its three-day run, Oct. 5-7, at the Reliant Center in Houston, TX.

This fall's event will revolve around an estimated 500 exhibitors and more than 100 conference sessions in 10 tracks, which are is expected to attract more than the 14,500 visitors who attended last year, according to organizers at the Instrument, System and, Automation Society (ISA, Research Triangle Park, NC).

"The big themes this year will continue to be security, the overall business of manufacturing, outsourcing of U.S. manufacturing, and managing the recovery," says Tracey Berrett-Noble, ISA's convention services manager, manager. "This year's exhibits are also 5-10% larger than in the last couple of years. "Plus, we're seeing record renewals by returning exhibitors, and companies coming back to exhibit that haven't been at ISA Expo for a while. There generally seems to be a lot more optimism in the marketplace this year."

Symposia, conference

To help attendees prioritize for maximum benefit, the conference program will include three symposia with more concentrated, in-depth coverage of topics in which users are most interested. The three symposia are:

  • Industrial Networks & System Security will focus on securing industrial networks against cyber-attacks; protecting systems from hackers; discerning differences between an industrial environment and an office system; securing protocols with open-source technologies; and protecting industrial networks with network segmentation. Presenters will explore control systems security principles and standards, including ISA SP99, to develop and disseminate best practices and guidelines for retrofitting of industrial networks. Physical security and plant safeguards will also be discussed.

  • Industrial Networks & Communications will address Ethernet and TCP/IP issues from the industrial perspective, detailing technical challenges and solutions; provide updates on FOUNDATION fieldbus and Profibus; and present useful technologies applicable to all fieldbuses. This symposium also will explore alternative equipment technologies, interface issues, and wireless communications technologies for industrial applications.

  • Productivity & Asset Management will concentrates on enhancing utilization of plant capital assets and boosting productivity. The automation hierarchy — from maintenance and factory floor operations, to corporate officers — is included in the asset management equation. Discover why organizations that employ asset management strategies have reported 20% reductions in plant downtime and 30% reductions in maintenance budgets. Understand why fully optimized assets translate into peak performance.

The conference's other seven tracks will include Automation IT, Control, Instrumentation, Measurement, Safety, Standards, and Compliance.

The tracks and symposia are further rounded out by the Emerging Technologies Conference (ETCON), which highlights recent advances in automation and control, and focuses on applied and basic research from laboratories and development centers worldwide. ETCON will showcase original technical papers and innovative ideas in emerging technologies that can be implemented in today's manufacturing environment.

"We're continuing this year with breaking out some of the tracks into symposia, which we started last year by identifying key topical threads most useful to ISA Expo's visitors. This strategy has really coalesced and been refined this year."

Daily forums, keynotes

In another useful move to focus its content, ISA Expo 2004 will offer three daily forum sessions. Open to all attendees, these lunchtime sessions will include:

  • Eric Byres, PE, research manager of the Internet Engineering Lab at the British Columbia Institute of Technology, will present "Automation Systems—An Achilles' Heel to our Critical Infrastructure?" at 11:45 a.m. on Oct. 5;

  • Jim Pinto, managing partner of JimPinto.com , will present "Debunking the Myths: The Good, the Bad, and the Future of Outsourcing" at 11:45 a.m. on Oct. 6.

  • Dr. Peter Fuhr, chief scientist at RAE Systems Inc., will moderate a panel discussion on "Sensors & Wireless in Homeland Security" at 11:45 a.m. on Oct. 7. The panelists include: Dr. Kang Lee, NIST; Dr. David Bolka, DHS-HSARPA; David Shepherd, executive security director, The Venetian Hotel and Casino; Dr. Jose Guiterrez, Eaton Corp.; Ian McPherson, Wireless Data Research Group; and Stephen Lambright, marketing VP, Savi Corp.

  • Meanwhile, the show's three daily keynote sessions will be delivered by:

  • John S. Sieg, managing director of DuPont's corporate operations, who will present "Using Process Control to Improve Business Results" at 8:30 a.m. on Oct. 5

  • Jim Pinto, managing partner of JimPinto.com, will present "Automation Unplugged—Global Shifts in a New Age," at 8:30 a.m. on Oct. 6. This keynote is sponsored by the ISA's Rimbach Lecture Series.

  • Greg Jensen, CTO of Saflink Corp, will present "Biometric Technology: Prime Time!" at 8:30 a.m. on Oct. 7.

Pavilions, plant show, WBF seminar

To help attendees prioritize and make the most of their time on the show-floor, ISA has gathered some exhibitors into three pavilions.

  • Automation IT will showcase automation hardware, software, and services, all aimed at connecting manufacturing data and corporate information to enhance product lifecycles, optimize assets, and increase in-plant equipment use.

  • Industrial Communications pavilion will highlight data communications technologies from wireless data links to fiber-optic Ethernet switches, and connectivity between device and process control and management systems.

  • Sensors pavilion will highlight the latest sensor software, hardware, and peripherals.

And, as if ISA Expo 2004 wasn't enough, the Reliant Center will also host the Houston Plant Engineering & Facilities Management Show and Conference from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Oct. 5-6. This co-located event will highlight a wide range of tools, technologies, solutions, and services for keeping plants and other industrial facilities running efficiently, and will provide education, networking and product sourcing opportunities for plant and facility engineering professionals. The show and free conference will teach attendees how to reduce downtime, increase equipment life, maximize productivity, lower overall costs and simplify the maintenance process.

Among the many special meeting at ISA Expo 2004, the World Batch Forum (WBF) will offer a special seminar at 10-11:30 a.m. and 2-3:30 p.m. on Oct. 5. This event will cover: the role and value of WBF; what batch standards are and why they are important; how WBF can help you understand and apply these standards; and real-world examples and applications of these standards

Connections, R&D updates, education

To deliver even more in-person input, ISA Export 2004 will also offer its Automation Connections program, which allows visitors to listen to and talk with leading authorities on automation and control.

The program's 30-minute sessions will be open to all attendees at no charge, and the Q&A session at the end of each presentation will give them the chance to get free expert advice on implementing the latest industry solutions. ISA Press publications by many of the presenters will be available for purchase after each presentation.

Meanwhile, the show will also include R&D Updates , which also will be open to all attendees. R. Russell Rhinehart, head of Oklahoma State University's Chemical Engineering School, will moderate and present tutorial and information sessions on innovations and developing techniques sponsored by the Measurement and Control Engineering Center (MCEC), a collaborative effort between industry, university, and government to help measurement and control techniques evolve.

In addition, ISA Training Institute will offer a 25-course Continuing Education and Training Program before and during the show, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Oct. 4-7, also at the Reliant Center.

Finally, in response to requests from international attendees, who are expected to come from 70 nations this year, the U.S. Department of Commerce's exhibit is arranging tours of Houston-area plants , including Anheuser-Busch's facilities, on Monday, Oct. 4, and on Friday, Aug. 8. More information is available by sending an e-mail request to info@isa.org .

Enlightening innovations

The hundreds of exhibitors at ISA Expo 2004 will be showing their solutions from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on the show floor during each of the show's three days. Some of the most significant are covered here. For more information, check out their booths, or visit the web sites listed after each item.

  • To maximize functions of its previous systems and third-party systems m (TPS), Honeywell's latest Experion Process Knowledge System (PKS) version, Release 210 (R210), allows TPS users to view graphics in their global user station via Experion's station. R210 also includes a custom algorithm block (CAB) that enables custom function blocks to be written using Honeywell's Control Builder tool, and then deployed in Experion's Control Execution Environment. The CAB enables development of programs using Windows XP and Experion's Application Control Environment (ACE). To ensure consistent operational execution with fewer errors, Sequential Control Modules (SCM) and SCM Step Function Blocks provide Procedural Operations support. www.acs.honeywell.com
    Booths 2226, 2950

  • Ohmic 's Model AMM-15 dew point meter has a large digital display and dew point range from -40 to +80 °F. Accuracy is up to www.ohmicinstruments.com .
    Booth 3003

  • FieldConnex fieldbus surge protector from Pepperl+Fuchs is a lightning current and over-voltage arrester that protects Profibus PA or FOUNDATION fieldbus networks against high-energy interference impulses. It can be used for implementing a Lightning Protection Zones Concept according to IEC 61312-1. These surge protectors feature a modular design that allows functional control of the protection modules without interruptions to the signal line. FieldConnex are available for explosion-proof and intrinsically safe fieldbus segments, and can be used in signal loops with 4-20 mA and HART interfaces. www.fieldconnex.info
    Booths 2226, 1924

  • Sitrans Probe LU (ultrasonic) and Sitrans Probe LR (radar) from Siemens Energy & Automation are continuous level transmitters for storage and process vessels, and for open channels in water, wastewater, food, and chemical applications. Sitrans Probe offers a longer measurement range and an improved signal-to-noise ratio that enhances echo-processing features, such as Sonic Intelligence and Auto False-Echo Suppression, for greater accuracy and reliability. Sitrans Probe LU and Sitrans Probe LR combine transducer and antenna designs with remote communication using Simatic PDM configuration software and HART protocol. Set-up is simple without opening the lid, even in hazardous areas, using the patented, intrinsically safe, infrared, handheld programmer. www.siemens-milltronics.com
    Booth 2130

  • Universal Flow Monitors Inc. reports that its inexpensive CoolPoint vortex shedding flowmeter for water assures consistency in measuring, balancing and transmitting water flows in processing and manufacturing plants. Repeatability is +/-1% of actual flow, and this high degree of repeatability results in efficient transmission and control of flows in centrifuge water applications, chillers and heat exchangers. CoolPoint has no moving parts to stick or coat, and is available in pipe sizes ranging from www.flowmeters.com
    Booth 2801





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