Get ready to upgrade process controls: 3 ways to save

End of March, Honeywell says users will find more process control system advantages in its R530 Experion PKS update, as announced at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum, which builds on decoupling control from I/O connections. Savings include up to half the controllers and system cabinets needed and up to 90% of the fiber-optic budget.

By Mark T. Hoske February 19, 2024
Courtesy: Mark T. Hoske, Control Engineering

 

Learning Objectives

  • Understand industrial autonomy, modernization and sustainability improvements with the Honeywell Experion PKS R530 process control system update expected by the end of March 2024.
  • Process control system updates were discussed at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum and in a Control Engineering video, article and images.

Process control system update insights

  • Honeywell previewed industrial autonomy, modernization and sustainability improvements with the Honeywell Experion PKS R530 process control system update expected by the end of March 2024. Updates were discussed at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum and in a Control Engineering video.
  • Looking at traditional process controls, before and after changes provides context for understaind process control system modernization benefits.
  • Benefits and features of Honeywell Experion PKS IO HIVE R530 upgrade are explained in a Control Engineering video, article and images.

In process control system modernization, decoupling controllers from I/O connections can decrease number of controllers by 50% and system cabinets up to 80% and save 90% of the fiber-optic budget, according to Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, in a Feb. 5 preview to media and analysts at the 2024 ARC Leadership Forum in Orlando. Bastone (Figure 1) provided more information in a video and discussions with Control Engineering about Honeywell Experion PKS and IO HIVE R530 upgrades due in March. HIVE stands for highly integrated virtual environment.

Figure 1: Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, explains how industrial autonomy, modernization and sustainability improve with the Honeywell Experion PKS R530 process control system update expected by the end of March 2024. Bastone spoke with Mark Hoske, Control Engineering content manager/editor, at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum in February. See video.

Figure 1: Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, explains how industrial autonomy, modernization and sustainability improve with the Honeywell Experion PKS R530 process control system update expected by the end of March 2024. Bastone spoke with Mark Hoske, Control Engineering content manager/editor, at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum in February. See video. Courtesy: Mark T. Hoske, Control Engineering

Process controls: Before and after

Bastone, who has been with Honeywell for 23 years, noted that great care is required when taking a process controller out of service because of so many interconnections. Automation systems are complex and controllers and their responsibilities can cross into different areas. Even planned outages may have unintended consequences.

Bastone talked through before and after diagrams showing a new system (Figure 2, left) and how it became more complex over time, creating concerns (Figure 2, right). In the new installation, a controller served each process area with clear separation of control responsibility and minimized peer-to-peer communications. Many projects later, because controllers were added and connected to the closest junction box, there’s no longer clear assignment between controller and area. As the automation system evolves and interconnections increase, peer-to-peer communications and maintenance considerations also increase without a clear view of the original zones, Bastone explained. Fixed relationships between controllers and I/O modules add complexities and create subtle interdependencies.

Figure 2: Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, explained before (left) and after (right) diagrams showing a new system and how it became more complex over time, creating concerns. Many projects later, because controllers were added and connected to the closest junction box, there’s no longer clear assignment between controller and area, adding complexities and creating subtle interdependencies, said Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum in February.

Figure 2: Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, explained before (left) and after (right) diagrams showing a new system and how it became more complex over time, creating concerns. Many projects later, because controllers were added and connected to the closest junction box, there’s no longer clear assignment between controller and area, adding complexities and creating subtle interdependencies, said Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum in February. Courtesy: Mark T. Hoske, Control Engineering

Honeywell introduced the Experion PKS IO Hive at the 2019 Honeywell User Group (HUG) conference. The system decoupled I/O and control and reduced peer-to-peer communications and configuration complexity. The Honeywell CN100 module converts old controllers to IO Hive level controls, Bastone said.

New Honeywell IO HIVE features in the R530 release include increased Ethernet protocol connectivity for Modbus TCP and EtherNet/IP (ODVA) and Profinet (PI North America).

Under the many projects later scenario, using IO HIVE, I/O modules connect to controllers via networks (Honeywell Series-C IO module communications or Ethernet protocols), each controller maintains a core responsibility, and controller peer-to-peer communications are greatly reduced. Using IO Hive decouples control from I/O modules, simplified systems lifecycles, makes system additions and incremental upgrades easier.

Benefits, features in Honeywell Experion PKS IO HIVE R530 upgrade: Control Engineering video

Bastone talked to Control Engineering about added benefits of Honeywell Experion PKS IO HIVE R530 upgrade. Cybersecurity is designed into products with ISA Secure Level 2 at the device level, “more than anyone” to date, Bastone said, with a smaller attack surface, using Center for Internet Security (CIS) specifications that apply to the operational technology (OT) environment.

Figure 3: Honeywell Experion PKS IO HIVE decouples, input/output devices and controllers, is built with proven technologies, and embraces standardization and modularization. The R530 update is due at the end of March, said Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum in February.

Figure 3: Honeywell Experion PKS IO HIVE decouples, input/output devices and controllers, is built with proven technologies, and embraces standardization and modularization. The R530 update is due at the end of March, said Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum in February. Courtesy: Mark T. Hoske, Control Engineering

R530 upgrades improve the user experience, Bastone said with input from HUG (celebrating its 30th anniversary) since the last update, R520 in August 2021.

The R530 updates include:

  • New integrated features to strengthen existing control room installations through firmware and software upgrades.

  • Support to align the Honeywell portfolio with three compelling megatrends: automation, the future of aviation and energy transition.

  • The new Honeywell Experion Remote Gateway further enables remote operations by providing a browser-independent method to simplify monitoring and operations.

  • An updated Honeywell Ethernet Interface Module allows for Experion PKS HIVE integration of smart protocols while optimizing the C300 controller processing load.

  • Honeywell Experion PKS offers industry-leading flexibility in automation system design, engineering, deployment and ongoing maintenance.

  • Experion PKS Control HIVE also minimizes manual interventions to ensure smoother and safer operations, reducing the risk of unplanned downtime which can impact users’ bottom line.

  • Dynamic operator watch list, where operators can click on one or more values to be a persistent feature in a window.

The upgrade integrates standards such as HART IP networking, ISA 100 human-machine interface, ISA-99 security for industrial automation and control systems, IEC 61499 for portability and interoperability and Namur MTP (module type package). While Honeywell is not now part of the OPAF standards efforts, Bastone said Honeywell and OPAF are addressing similar goals.

Figure 4: When users take advantage of Honeywell IO HIVE, many projects later looks better because I/O is served to controllers via networks, each controller maintains core responsibility and controller peer-to-peer communications are greatly reduced, said Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum in February.

Figure 4: When users take advantage of Honeywell IO HIVE, many projects later looks better because I/O is served to controllers via networks, each controller maintains core responsibility and controller peer-to-peer communications are greatly reduced, said Joe Bastone, Honeywell director product management Experion PKS, at the 2024 ARC Industry Forum in February. Courtesy: Mark T. Hoske, Control Engineering

Use of feature packs ensures customers can accept features they want or only cybersecurity-related updates without new functionality.

See the video where Bastone summarizes the Honeywell Experion PKS R530 process control system updates in three categories of improvements: industrial autonomy, modernization and sustainability. 

Mark T. Hoske is content manager, Control Engineering, CFE Media and Technology, mhoske@cfemedia.com, with materials from Honeywell.

KEYWORDS: DCS upgrade, process control system update

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Author Bio: Mark Hoske has been Control Engineering editor/content manager since 1994 and in a leadership role since 1999, covering all major areas: control systems, networking and information systems, control equipment and energy, and system integration, everything that comprises or facilitates the control loop. He has been writing about technology since 1987, writing professionally since 1982, and has a Bachelor of Science in Journalism degree from UW-Madison.