ISA NEWS RELEASE
Contact: Jennifer Infantino
ISA100 Wireless Technologies Demonstrated at Conference in Chongqing, China
Research Triangle Park, NC (31 March 2008) -- Today, the ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute, with the support of General Electric, Honeywell, and Nivis, demonstrated prototype ISA100.11a wireless standard-based products in the ISA100 booth at the 2008 International Industrial Wireless Conference. The conference is being held in Chongqing, China, and represents a worldwide collaboration of leading organizations with the Chongqing University of Posts and Telecommunications serving as host.
The demonstration used prototype ISA100.11a technologies based on the current ISA100.11a draft standard. "This demonstration is the basis of our alpha test bed for the ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute," said Andre Ristaino, Managing Director of the Automation Standards Compliance Institute in which the ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute operates.
"Since the design of the standard is nearly done, it was time to test in a live setting. Our discoveries from this effort will be used to further solidify the technology and ensure that users get a very robust standard." The demonstration, or alpha test bed, will be expanded to include more vendors' devices and will be shown at multiple conferences throughout the year.
The wireless demonstration contained several field devices from each of the supporting vendors. The ISA100 technologies ran on multiple radio platforms communicating through backhaul routers to a single host system. The field devices deployed both mesh routing and non-routing technologies proving each can operate successfully in a single wireless network. "We are excited to be a part of this historic demonstration which is the first of its kind in demonstrating multiple vendors'
products using a wireless standard designed for industrial usage," said Dan Sexton of GE. "It shows that this technology is truly interoperable among multiple vendor offerings."
The application demonstrated was a simple tank gauging solution, which is a use case that many users have stated as an initial deployment for wireless solutions in their plants. Two tanks were alternatively filled and emptied which provided both monitoring and control usage of the wireless technology. "This technology works and was designed by wireless experts to fit many process applications in an industrial plant, including control," said Marius Chilom of Nivis. "It not only accommodates straightforward tank gauging applications like in our demonstration at the conference, but also handles full scale, plant wide deployments using multiple wireless backhaul routers."
The demonstration, using wireless technology, viewed many variables located in each of the field devices. This data included the process variable like traditional 4-20ma wiring and also device diagnostics and configuration data like existing digital fieldbuses. This information was communicated to a host system over an Ethernet link from a gateway using the Modbus protocol. "The beauty of the ISA100 standard is that the host could have been any legacy system in a plant using any communication protocol like HART, Fieldbus Foundation, Profibus, Devicenet, etc. and the field devices could have done the same thing,"
said David Kaufman of Honeywell. "This capability is the reason the ISA100.11a standard will be the next "4-20ma standard" for the 21st century. It combines the advantages of the 'single variable 4-20ma world' with the advantages of the 'multi-variable digital bus world'
into a single, efficient, wireless network."
For more information about the ISA100 standard, visit www.isa.org/ISA100.
About ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute
The ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute facilitates the implementation and understanding of the planned ISA100 universal family of industrial wireless standards through compliance testing programs, associated market awareness, and technical support to users and developers. The ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute is constituted as an industry group within the Automation Standards Compliance Institute (ASCI), an ISA organization created to facilitate the proper use and application of automation standards through development and implementation of conformance assessment programs and related activities. It is open to participation from end users, technology suppliers, research and development, academia, and other industry consortia and standards bodies. For more information visit www.isa.org/ASCI.