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What do over 14 million existing HART protocol enabled field instruments including over 500 different models from over 120 different companies have in common? They all offer diagnostic, measurement and performance information as a standard feature. The user need only to ask to have all of this information provided. It may be that the HART devices that already exist in almost every process plant offer all of the benefits of fieldbus instruments that you need. There are a variety of methods of tapping into this wealth of information. Most are aware that they can communicate with these devices using the HHC (Hand-Held Configurator). However, most users do not realize that communication can be established using multiplexers that can sequentially communicate with virtually every HART-enabled device in a plant and present the data on an HMI (Human Machine Interface) using packaged software. Continuous communication is the benefit of single loop monitoring solutions. The information from these monitors is available as both analog signals and as relay / status. HART monitoring offers the benefits of extended maintenance intervals and pinpointing specific problems without even going to the field. These time saving concepts are rapidly gaining favor in many plants as maintenance staffs continue to be reduced. For safety critical applications, the continuous diagnostics and status monitoring provided by using HART information could vastly improve both safety availability and loop reliability. This paper will focus on practical solutions for a variety of transmitters including multi-variable flow, radar level and analytical. Techniques for improving control valve performance and partial stroke testing of emergency shutdown valves will also be presented.
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