EC: Freelance AC 900F controller

Process Control Systems: The AC 900F controller expands ABB's Freelance control system capabilities. Enhanced PROFIBUS and digital fieldbus support for remote I/O, actuators, drives, and instrumentation helps reduce project wiring and engineering costs. This is a Control Engineering 2015 Engineers’ Choice honorable mention.

By Control Engineering October 20, 2014

Freelance combines the small footprint of a PLC with the full functionality of a DCS. Its intuitive operations environment simplifies engineering, commissioning, and fieldbus management while the visualization tool and ability to run on any PC promote cost savings at every level of plant operations. The new AC 900F controller extends the Freelance hardware portfolio with many new features including the support of SD cards and an optional built in display which allows loading of applications or firmware into the controller without the need of a PC and provides local display of status and diagnostic information.

An easy to use engineering tool, together with the powerful AC 900F controller, enable both end users and integrators alike to design, engineer and deliver projects faster than ever before. In a recent project, an ABB partner was able to significantly reduce installation time and engineering cost over an older SCADA system by approximately 75% due to the increased functionality of the Freelance system. With the addition of the AC 900F controller, Freelance DCS projects can start as small as a few I/O and can expand to thousands of I/O controlling the whole plant for most batch and continuous processes in the process industries.

The Freelance process control system has long been known for its DCS functionality for the size and price of a PLC. With this new controller, even more advanced functionality has been packed into the same small package. New Ethernet based protocols (Modbus TCP and IEC 60870-5-104), redundant PROFIBUS and additional ethernet ports ensure maximum compatibility with today’s digital fieldbus devices and remote I/O.