Second-generation, self-repairing control system launched

If you want something done right…get your autonomous, self-repairing control system to do it. American Controls Corp. (ACC) recently shipped the second generation, Series 200, of its control system to a gas pipeline pumping station in La Chenaie, Quebec, near Montreal.

10/01/1998


If you want something done right…get your autonomous, self-repairing control system to do it. American Controls Corp. (ACC) recently shipped the second generation, Series 200, of its control system to a gas pipeline pumping station in La Chenaie, Quebec, near Montreal. The new system includes fault tolerance, hot swap of power supplies and system controllers, and dual network connections that allow immediate unattended conversion to the standby net—even when shorts or opens occur on the primary line.

The first generation system, Series 100, has been operating a multiple "Mopico" compressor station in Fulston, Md. since 1994 without human intervention. Users report there have been no significant service outages or system failures of the original system in more than 35,000 hours of continuous operation.

ACC's new system self repairs with hot-swappable standby controllers maintained in the systems' hierarchical structure. Without interrupting system operations, a failed controller is automatically replaced when a fault is detected. Optional built-in flash memory, with up to 150 MB capacity at each node, safeguards operating programs and data files, and maintains system integrity in case of a communications failure. ACC adds that any control protocol can be used with its controller, which can simplify integration of legacy and new installations.

Each ACC controller also has an Ethernet port. The system's structure includes two types of autonomous control modules, a Unit Controller for executive control and separate Sub-Controllers for each subnet, each of which can contain 32,000 nodes. The control modules provide distributed intelligence throughout the system, and use onboard module memory and Neuron microcontrollers designed for control applications.

For more information, visit www.controleng.com/info .





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