19 November 2008

Web exclusive: November Industry Newz, 2nd edition

ABB signed an agreement to acquire the business of Ber-Mac Electrical and Instrumentation Ltd. of Calgary, Canada, to expand its presence and capabilities in the oil and gas sector. Ber-Mac specializes in industrial automation, electrical, instrumentation design, process optimization, panel fabrication, and field services, with particular strength in the oil and gas industry. ABB won a follow-up to its 2007 gearless-mill-drive (GMD) systems order for the Salobo copper mine project, developed by Salobo Metais S.A., a totally owned subsidiary of Vale (former CVRD). ABB co-sponsored the North Carolina Community College System's BioNetwork Validation Academy's seminar focusing on practical use of process analytical technology (PAT) for life science manufacturers. As an emerging quality control concept in the biopharma industries, PAT is increasingly gaining worldwide acceptance as a proven method of ensuring product safety and quality by industry experts. An ABB emissions monitoring solution uses precise Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) analyzer technology integrated with extended automation system 800xA to help Chilean cement manufacturer Polpaico reduce greenhouse gas emissions at its Cerro Blanco cement plant near Santiago.

In an Australian-based joint venture from AMEC, an international engineering and project management company, Chevron Australia Pty Ltd awarded CloughAMEC a contract to provide engineering services for their oil production facilities at Barrow Island and Thevenard Island.

Emerson Process Management's Smart Wireless instruments have improved control of processes and product quality as well as increased substantially since their installation at Coogee Chemical Company, a producer of industrial, agricultural, and mineral processing chemicals in Kwinana, Australia, in late 2007. Emerson Process Management significantly expanded manufacturing capabilities at its control valve manufacturing plant in Cernay, in the Alsace region of France. The investment will enable Emerson to meet increasing demand for its Fisher control valve ranges, especially for larger sizes and special valves used on turbine bypass or anti surge applications. Emerson Process Management has successfully applied its Smart Wireless self-organizing field network to monitor wellhead annular pressure at BP's Wytch Farm onshore oilfield. Wytch Farm is Western Europe's largest onshore oilfield, comprising three separate oil reservoirs that lie under Poole Harbour and Poole Bay in Dorset, U.K. Emerson Process Management and Beamex signed a strategic alliance to deliver integrated asset management and calibration in regulated industries. Emerson predictive maintenance applications combined with Beamex calibration software will help manufactures comply with industry regulations, such as ISO 9001:2000, 21 CFR Part 11, and IEC 61511. Emerson Process Management announced the Solberg & Andersen and Emerson diagnostics center in Norway are remotely monitoring of over 1,000 control valves on North Sea installations. The capability to remotely diagnose and identify problems has saved costly and time consuming offshore travel, and eliminated potential plant shut downs and the resultant consequential losses.

Frost & Sullivan presented Honeywell Process Solutions with the 2008 North American Frost & Sullivan Green Excellence of the Year Award. Through its automation solutions, Honeywell helped process manufacturers use energy more efficiently, improve environmental compliance, decrease emissions, and enhance overall business performance.

Green Hills Software, Inc, a secure operating systems provider, formed INTEGRITY Global Security, LLC, to market secure separation solutions, based on INTEGRITY. The system is the first to achieve EAL6+ High Robustness from the National Information Assurance Partnership (a joint U.S. government initiative governed by the National Security Agency). The EAL6+ status means protection of high value resources at risk of attack from hostile and well-funded attackers. Green Hills Software, Inc., a device software optimization and real-time operating systems provider, and TeamF1, Inc., a supplier of OEM-ready secure connectivity for embedded systems, now offer fully integrated authentication protocol products for use with Green Hills Software's real-time operating system to provide developers with secure authentication options that reduce development and production cost while improving time-to-market.

Honeywell launched its Europe, Middle East, and Africa Automation College, aimed at boosting the technical skills of process industry professionals in the region. With dedicated training centers in Abu Dhabi, Amsterdam, Brussels, Kuopio, Manchester, and Prague, the college provides plant operators, maintenance technicians, implementation engineers, system administrators, and management with tailored courses on maintaining a safe, reliable, and efficient plant. Honeywell won an $11 million contract to provide process control hardware and software to Nuon's Magnum plant, a 1300 megawatt combined-cycle (3 units) power station under construction in Eemshaven, the Netherlands.

ICS Triplex, a Rockwell Automation company, received an order to implement its AADvance safety and critical control system for Aker Solutions as part of a subsea compression pilot project at the Ormen Lange gas field located off the coast of Norway.

Invensys Process Systems signed a $6 million contract with Saipem, a subsidiary of Italian energy company Eni and turnkey contractor in the oil and gas industry. Deal terms say IPS will provide and install automation and safety equipment on a floating production, storage, and offloading structure destined for use in the Gimboa field, located nearly 85 kilometers off the coast of Angola.

Kepware Technologies partnered to manage the next generation of OPC technology, OPC-UA to help foster rapid adoption through the licensing of proven technology, quality control of an industry-wide solution, and guaranteed interoperability at the communications level.

Mouser Electronics, Inc. signed a global distribution agreement with Hendon Semiconductors, a supplier of microelectronic products for data interface, to stock products such as demo boards, buffer ICs, and temperature control ICs.

Opto 22 is certified for its new SNAP-PAC-EB1 and SNAP-PAC -EB2 SNAP I/O processors, which feature support for Ethernet-based control systems that communicate via the EtherNet/IP protocol.

Quatech Inc., a wireless machine-to-machine networking and device connectivity company, partnered with Springboard Retail Networks Inc. to develop a Wi-Fi module for the CONCIERGE shopping system.

Rockwell Automation expanded the platform capabilities of its FactoryTalk Integrated Production and Performance Suite to support a new generation of industry-specific applications for the automotive, CPG, and pharmaceutical industries. The platform now includes configuration tools and capabilities designed to help manufacturers reduce deployment costs and time. Rockwell Automation launched a virtual design and production utility that merges virtual simulation and automation for production. It provides seamless integration with software from Dassault Systèmes, allowing users to create a virtual design and production environment for concurrent development of mechanical, electrical, and control systems.

Schneider Electric North America will integrate Citect, a provider of industrial automation software, into its complete automation and control solutions offering.

Siemens Energy received an order worth nearly $250 million (€200 million) from the state-owned Israeli utility Israel Electric Corp. to supply components for three gas turbine power plants, as well as components for another power plant. The plants are scheduled to come on line by the summer of 2010. For the power generating stations Ramat Hovav, Hagit, and Eskhol, each with an installed gas turbine capacity of 287 MW, Siemens will supply three SGT5-4000F gas turbines, three air-cooled generators, the exhaust stack, and the air intake system.

Terminals Pty Ltd chose Emerson Process Management's smart wireless products to monitor temperatures in a 900-meter long 8-inch (200mm) heat-traced pipeline used for unloading bitumen from ships at its Geelong Terminal in Australia.

The U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) selected Invensys Process Systems to provide a dynamic process simulator for an integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) plant with carbon capture. The IGCC plant simulator is part of the DOE's initiative to develop new clean-coal power plants that burn more efficiently to produce environmentally friendly electric power. It will be located at NETL's research and training center in Morgantown, W.Va.