ISA NEWS RELEASE
Contact: Jennifer Infantino
ISA100 Makes Progress and Expands Activities
Research Triangle Park, NC (24 July 2008) – The ISA100 standards committee on wireless systems for industrial automation held a meeting in Nice, France, 23-26 June, to advance the development of a universal family of wireless standards.
The ISA100.11a working group continued work on the draft standard being developed primarily for process applications. A recent working group ballot yielded an excellent response, with over 2,000 comments, reflecting the high level of interest within the industrial community for this standard. The current plan is to issue the next ballot by early August.
The recently approved Wireless Convergence Subcommittee, ISA100.12, held formative meetings to define membership guidelines, review and revise subcommittee scope, assign tasks to subcommittee task groups, and discuss preliminary deliverables. The subcommittee will initially address convergence of the ISA100.11a standard and the WirelessHART specification. Initial deliverables will include organization of the recently released WirelessHART portion of the HART 7.1 specification into a format suitable for convergence discussions with ISA100.11a, as well as a providing a framework for evaluating convergence options. A letter ballot was drafted and circulated after the meeting to all the voting members of the ISA100 committee proposing an initial subcommittee member list, a revised subcommittee scope, and a name change to the ISA100.12 WirelessHART Convergence Subcommittee.
The ISA100.21 working group on people and asset tracking and identification reviewed their latest draft of the “A Review of Technologies for Industrial Asset Tracking.” The document, describes real time location service or system (RTLS) technologies that are being touted by vendors as “optimal for industrial asset tracking.” The document is expected to be balloted soon as a technical report by the ISA100 committee.
The User Guide working group discussed their draft document under development which is intended to provide stakeholders, including users, manufacturers, regulators, government agencies, other standards bodies, and facilitators (system integrators, contracting engineers, etc.), with:
a. A common vocabulary to describe the terminology associated with wireless technology and its implementation in industrial automation.
b. A framework for specifying wireless systems to maximize the probability of successful implementations.
c. A summary of recommended practice strategies that have been shown to be successful in industrial automation applications.
d. A method for comparing options or alternatives in applying wireless technology to industrial automation.
“As the committee approaches the release of its first standard under the banner of ISA100.11a, our sights are broadening to investigate how to accommodate existing protocols that may not be especially developed for industrial environments but may find use there,” said Wayne Manges, ISA100 co-chair. One such example is the creation of a new interest group that will begin preliminary evaluation of the applicability of Zigbee within the ISA100 family of standards.
The factory automation study group continued its development of the scope of work for wireless standards for discrete and hybrid applications. An important discussion with IEC officials at the Nice meeting addressed the opportunity for ISA and IEC to coordinate activities related to industrial wireless for factory automation.
The Committee discussed the creation of a working group to develop a standard to address one or more dedicated or shared wireless backhaul/backbone network to support one or more technologies, running multiple applications. Such a standard would define network common interfaces to enable interoperability between the backhaul/backbone transport wireless networks and different field wireless networks.
Building on prior work, the Committee also discussed formalizing a working group that would develop and maintain policies, guidelines, and recommendations suitable for ISA100 standards developers to address the issues of trustworthiness (including security, reliability, and resiliency) with respect to other standards, other wired and wireless devices anticipated in the industrial work space.
Upcoming ISA100 meetings include: 13-17 October at ISA EXPO 2008 in Houston, Texas, a first quarter 2009 meeting hosted by Apprion in the Bay Area, California 13-15 January 2009, 19-22 May 2009 hosted by Yokogawa in Kyoto, Japan, and 5-9 October 2009 at ISA EXPO 2009 in Houston, Texas.
Additional information about ISA100 is available at www.isa.org/isa100wireless.
Founded in 1945, ISA (www.isa.org) is a leading, global, nonprofit organization that is setting the standard for automation by helping over 30,000 worldwide members and other professionals solve difficult technical problems, while enhancing their leadership and personal career capabilities. Based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, ISA develops standards; certifies industry professionals; provides education and training; publishes books and technical articles; and hosts the largest conference and exhibition for automation professionals in the Western Hemisphere. ISA is the founding sponsor of The Automation Federation (www.automationfederation.org)