Modernization of DCS and PLC with Electronic Marshalling

by | Feb 4, 2020 | Control & Safety Systems, Services, Consulting & Training

Jim Cahill

Chief Blogger, Editor

Now, with many control systems being 30+ years old, most of these legacy systems have been placed in to end of life or retired lifecycle status. This means no further factory support is available. I caught up with Emerson’s Scott Ross about some of the choices that must be considered moving forward.

Manufacturers and producers face options whether to modernize to a newer family of distributed control systems (DCSs) and programmable logic controllers (PLCs) or move the PLC I/O and logic to a DCS, such as the DeltaV DCS. For many users with legacy PLCs and DCSs, the ongoing challenge has been to decide what I/O solution to use in the migration project.

Many users have been very creative with the use of DeltaV Electronic Marshalling – CHARMs solutions. This approach locates the I/O out in the process, provides mounting options horizontally, vertically or both, communicates with the DeltaV communication backbone via fiber or copper, and enables the removal of 30-year-old intrinsically safe (I.S.) barriers by using the I.S. Electronic Marshalling – CHARMs. These provides both signal characterization and galvanic isolation for intrinsically safe applications.

Flexible 19-inch DeltaV Electronic Marshalling - CHARMs solutions

Flexible 19-inch DeltaV Electronic Marshalling – CHARMs solutions

Flexible 19-inch DeltaV Electronic Marshalling – CHARMs solutions for Basic Process Control System (BPCS) Migration and SIS Migration projects simplifies the legacy hardware conversion and enables flexible design & installation cost-savings.

These solutions offer the following advantages:

Flexible Footprint

  • 12 to 96 I/O per CHARMs I/O Card (CIOC) vs. 8, 16 or 32-channels for traditional I/O cards
  • Distributed CHARMs in grouping of 12 CHARMs in a star or ring topology
  • Mount upside-down or sideways in an existing rack, if necessary
  • Use in place of existing junction box or marshalling terminations
  • Copper Ethernet or fiber optic connections to the DeltaV Area Control Network

Environmental Flexibility

  • Class 1, Division 2; ATEX Zone 2; -40 to +70 degC
  • Mount indoors or out in the process

DeltaV CHARMs mounted in motor control center bucket

Flexible I/O Options (on a channel by channel basis)

  • 3 times the I/O coverage of other suppliers: 39 CHARMs–16 BPCS, 17 SIS, 6 I.S. and 14 terminal blocks cover most of the field wiring signals
    • Relay term blocks to handle high current applications
    • I.S. CHARMs (the only configurable I/O solution to offer I.S. in the same form-factor/space)
  • Single channel integrity and Field Termination Assembly functionality

Some additional “hidden” benefits of Electronic Marshalling include:

  • Cleaned up existing cabinets allowing for easier expansion/maintenance
  • Moved the CHARMs to the cabinets where the field wiring enters the plant, eliminating all the undocumented old troublesome home runs and termination cabinets
  • Removed external 3rd party “Retired” I.S. barriers; adding I.S. CHARMs with integrated barriers saved valuable cabinet space and time in re-wiring the barriers.
  • Risk avoidance and enabled better maintenance practices
    • Removing the common AC neutral, now each CHARM has a dedicated AC neutral.
    • CHARMs Diagnostics, Electronic Wiring Diagrams (DEWD) troubleshooting app available on iPhone and Android.
  • Removed larger height termination/marshalling panels and replaced them with 19-inch 3 EIA height horizontal CHARMs solutions, freeing up additional space in the existing cabinets.
    • The 19-inch horizontal Electronic Marshalling migration mounting solutions are available for the CIOC’s (Qty 2) and CHARM baseplates (Qty 2 – 12 CHARM baseplates = 24 CHARMs per panel)

Contact your local sales office or Emerson Impact Partner for more on the capabilities and delivery times on these modernization solutions or visit the Modernization & Migration section on Emerson.com. You can also connect and interact with other modernization and DeltaV experts in the Services group and DeltaV forum in 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.