Wireless HART data transmitters now shipping

Smart Wireless Thum adapter easily upgrades existing HART instruments to access diagnostics and process variables that were not previously available.
By Peter Welander October 19, 2009
Emerson Thum HART data transmitter

The Thum attaches to standard wired HART devices.

If your control system does not have HART enabled I/O , but you wish you could obtain the diagnostic data from key field devices, Emerson Process Management is now shipping its new Smart Wireless Thum Adapter. This device can be installed on existing HART field instruments to transmit diagnostics to a wireless gateway.

Most HART instruments have diagnostic functions and even additional process variables, yet this valuable information goes unused because older legacy systems are not equipped to receive HART communications. While it is often too expensive and complicated to access this data through traditional wired means, Emerson says that upgrading devices with the Thum Adapter is an easy and cost-effective way to access the data and use it as part of a larger asset management program. ( Read an earlier article on accessing and using HART data .) Some devices can be configured to send the primary process variable via the HART data in addition to the analog connection. Such devices can effectively send all their data wirelessly via the device.

The Thum Adapter is a WirelessHART device that can retrofit on almost any two or four wire HART device, without special power requirements, to enable wireless transmission of measurement and diagnostic information. Devices with the Thum Adapter operate as components of Emerson’s Smart Wireless self-organizing field networks, or any network using the WirelessHART protocol.

At the Chevron Phillips chemical plant in Sweeny, TX, the device is enabling extra capabilities for Micro Motion Coriolis flowmeters that are used in fiscal accounting of product transfer between Chevron Phillips and an adjacent petroleum refinery. "The required proving for fiscal transfer flowmeters is time consuming and a big expense for the plant," says Stephen Fair, instrument measurement planner at Chevron Phillips. "To ease this issue, we plan to confirm our ability to extend the time intervals between meter provings by trending data from the Micro Motion meter verification tool against data from proving reports. Adding to the extended interval savings, use of the Smart Wireless Thum Adapter on the remote flowmeters is making it possible for us to launch meter verification from the plant control room rather than making trips to the field. The adapters will also act as repeaters for other devices being added to the wireless network."

-Edited by Peter Welander, process industries editor, PWelander@cfemedia.com,
Control Engineering Process Instrumentation & Sensors Monthly
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