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What to Do When the DeltaV Calc Block Is Not Enough

by | Jul 24, 2014 | Control & Safety Systems, Industry, Life Sciences & Medical

Jim Cahill

Jim Cahill

Chief Blogger, Social Marketing Leader

Jonathan LustriLife Science Industry Consultant

Jonathan Lustri
Life Science Industry Consultant

Author: Jonathan Lustri

The process control domain continues to get more and more sophisticated as Emerson’s customers use process models and increasingly sophisticated calculations to optimize process control. Once case in point is an example I saw at last year’s Emerson Exchange conference where one of Emerson’s customers presented how they using advanced mathematics to detect the peak UV absorbance during chromatography elution. While this seems like a simple enough, this required solving partial differential equations, Linear algebra, and vector based mathematics.

Solving Partial Differential Equations

Solving Partial Differential Equations

The mathematical function used to represent the chromatography peak was the Extreme Value Function which was referenced for this purpose by the Journal of Chromatography. This function is easy to solve using applications such as Matlab. But very difficult to solve using DeltaV controller modules and Calc Blocks!

Extreme Value Function

Extreme Value Function

The purpose of this blog post is to offer all you process control math wonks a new way to leverage external modeling and calculation engines and integrated them into your process control environment. Emerson has released a new product called Event Monitor that allows events to be configured into the DeltaV distributed control system (DCS) and that event can trigger a programmatic action and pass data to and from the DeltaV system to the programmatic action. So when you are trying to do sophisticated math, use the right tool for the job. Event monitor can be configured to watch for an OPC or batch executive event and when that event occurs, data can be passed to a Matlab model, the model can execute, and return data to the DeltaV system.

Event Monitor Architecture

Event Monitor Architecture

This architecture was brought to market by Emerson to allow Syncade workflow objects to be triggered by DeltaV events. The purpose of this post is to suggest the idea that this may be a great way to trigger any programmatic activity from an event within the DeltaV system. The Event Monitor is a service that is installed on a DeltaV system and the third party application environment. It detects the occurrence of configured events and is configured to execute transactions through the Message Broker. The Message Broker application then orchestrates the series of programmatic actions that are configured to be triggered by the event. The programmatic actions can include reading data, executing external programs, and writing data to various destination such as the original DeltaV system via OPC-based communications. The Event Monitor and Message Broker are Syncade modules that can be purchased separately as a stand-alone solution and installed / used to support this type of solution architecture.

One recent example of where this has been used is where a process manufacturer wanted to implement oil field well turn-up / turn-down functionality. They used Event Monitor to detect turn-up / turn-down events which then trigger a number of well status reads and calculations to determine what setpoints should change. The system then writes those values back to DeltaV setpoints, saving significant time and improving well field efficiency.

So if you have hard math to solve or the need to integrate the DeltaV system with external applications, consider Event Monitor and Message Broker as tools to make this easy.

Added by Jim: You can connect and interact with other DeltaV users in the DeltaV track of the Emerson Exchange 365 community.

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The opinions expressed here are the personal opinions of the authors. Content published here is not read or approved by Emerson before it is posted and does not necessarily represent the views and opinions of Emerson.