Streaming precise positioning data from valve positioners

The ability to use existing industrial Ethernet and wireless networks in process manufacturing plants and automation facilities has made data exchange within a facility and even throughout global corporate networks easier than ever.

By Control Engineering Europe July 19, 2021

Process and diagnostics data from smart HART digital field instruments can be being shared with mid and higher-level control, asset management and data information systems without having to upgrade expensive process control systems.

For example, Moore Industries has seen customers using its HES HART to Ethernet Gateway System to collect and transmit smart HART device data to higher-level systems over Ethernet via MODBUS/TCP for predictive analysis and control decision-making.

In a recent application, a customer needed to control two valves that had smart HART positioners installed and had a further requirement to communicate actual valve position over Ethernet using MODBUS/TCP to their higher-level systems.

Originally the customer wanted to use PID Controllers to control the two valves in order to balance and/or limit each valve’s travel to maintain final pressure through the system, but it was quickly realized the controller’s communication capability did not support Modbus/TCP and this was required by the  installed DCS and Historian.

Moreover, the higher-level monitoring systems wanted to monitor and record where actual stem positions currently were, not where the valve controller was driving them to via the 4-20mA signal.  This could only be obtained by reading the HART data from the smart positioners.

The HES 4-channel model was utilized to pick up the actual stem position HART data from the smart positioners and send it to the higher-level systems – no longer requiring the valve controller to communicate the controlled variable (CV), or desired stem position, output. The HES was an effective and economical solution that enabled the customer to take advantage of existing HART data from the positioners and share that critical data with their higher-level systems on their existing Ethernet infrastructure.

This article originally appeared on Control Engineering Europe’s website. Edited by Chris Vavra, web content manager, Control Engineering, CFE Media,