The ISA recently issued a press release around demonstrations of Electronic Device Description Language, EDDL (international standard IEC61804 and ANSI/ISA-61804-3) and FDT (ISA103) technologies at the ISA Expo 2008 in October in Houston, Texas.
For those not familiar with EDDL, I described it in an earlier post as a text-based language that is used to describe the characteristics of field devices. Following the EDDL standard, device suppliers create Electronic Device Description (EDD) files for their smart field devices. These files provide a standardized form and structure for automation systems and handheld communicators to access and display device diagnostic and setup information, independent of communication protocol or operating system.
Emerson’s Terry Blevins has been working closely with other automation suppliers on the EDDL demonstration. He also is the ISA104 committee chairman. This committee has adopted the EDDL standard, IEC61804, as an ANSI/ISA standard. The release describes what will be shown in the ISA104 booth at ISA EXPO 2008:
The ISA104 EDDL booth at ISA EXPO 2008 is a demonstration by major DCS manufacturers such as Invensys, ABB, Siemens and Emerson that illustrates the technical strengths of the EDDL standard, IEC61804, to support advanced user interfaces for diagnostics and device setup independent of the communication technology support by the device. Devices such as valve position[er]s based on HART, Foundation Fieldbus, and Profibus from Metso, Samson, Invensys, Fisher Controls, and Siemens are used to illustrate how manufacturers are using EDDL to document their device capabilities in a single, open and consistent format. A live demonstration of diagnostic information being accessed using a WirelessHART adapter connected to a wired HART device and through wireless access to a self-powered WirelessHART device illustrates how EDDL supports the latest wireless devices.
The demonstration provides the exhibit attendees the opportunity to see the advanced interfaces for device diagnostics and device setup that are available from the major DCS manufacturers that use device EDD’s. This demonstration will also show how the EDDL technology is by DCS supplier to provide interfaces to support wireless devices based on the WirelessHART standard.
In the release, Terry and the ISA104 committee also describe recent activities to continue to advance the IEC61804 standard:
International Electrotechnical Commission’s Technical Committee 65 (IEC TC65) met in Tokyo, Japan, the week of 18 May. The working group responsible for the EDDL international standard, IEC SC65E WG7, met on 20 May and discussed future EDDL enhancements that will be incorporated into the existing standard, IEC61804. A number of guests from Japan and China that attended the WG7 meeting expressed an interest in learning more about EDDL. Thus, following the WG7 meeting, Christian Diedrich and Terry Blevins put on a workshop that provided more detail on EDDL and showed examples of how EDDL is used to write device descriptions.
If your plans include Houston the 14-16th of October, make sure to stop by and visit with Terry and the other automation suppliers to see how this standard provides a common, interoperable way to present smart device information to you.