February 2008

Wireless team approves schedule for standard release

Getting a wireless standard on the street is of utmost importance to ISA standards writers and the industries they serve. In fact, the ISA100.11a working group of the ISA100 standards development committee has already adopted a schedule to develop the first in a family of standards for wireless systems in automation. 

The ISA100.11a standard will define specifications, including security and management, for wireless devices serving application classes 1 through 5 for fixed, portable, and moving devices. Application focus will address performance needs for periodic monitoring and process control where latencies on the order of 100 ms can be tolerated with optional behavior for shorter latency. 

After circulating the draft, editing based on comments from the committee, and recirculation of any further drafts, the committee will release the standard for official committee ballot, ISA review, and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) review in early September. The ANSI review process, depending on comments they receive, could be complete by late October, with a final draft sent to the ISA Standards and Practices Board in early November. 

Once the Board approves the final draft, ISA can officially publish the standard. While working group co-chair Dan Sexton of GE Research is confident the committee will deliver the standard on time, the most important thing is delivering "a high-quality document that will improve wireless systems throughout the industry," he said.

The standard should be available in draft form for committee review at the end of March. For more information, visit www.isa.org/isa100.