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Control system prototyping? But I’m a process engineer. Whats in it for me?

We know that process engineers are  busy and possibly dont have time to learn yet another simulation modelling package.With Spike, you dont have to . Python is there if you need it, but videos and the use of the macro recorder to record  behaviour will get you quite far very quickly. See our  video website for the samples.  And Spike was made for training.

The fact is, that a process engineer with modern DCS or MES knowledge is immensely more valuable than one without. But try getting access to a DCS or MES training rig and you will find it impossible. Try ringing your vendor to get on a training course and you will see that you cannot, unless you are part of an active project team! The next best thing to actual training on a real Batch DCS or MES system, is training on a similar system based on the same ISA standards.

Here is an excerpt from an actual process engineer job ad on Linkedin (November 2015)

Experience with DeltaV and Manufacturing Execution System environment is a plus

Spike can help you get that job. There are other benefits to learning the ISA standards on a simulation platform such as Spike:

Convey requirements to the automation team

It can be difficult and time consuming to capture  your process control requirements, and plenty can get lost in translation when a different team must implement your specification.A model helps clarify and communicate requirements.

Document your existing control system in order to expedite change, upgrade or train

A large part of incremental factory improvements is understanding what you have  already. The ability to quickly wireframe out or reverse engineer an existing batch control philosophy or even animate P&ID

What if we tried it this way?

What if we tried it this way?

routes on a drawing can all lead to a better understanding of control systems.Spike allows you to record a video of your model with just 2 clicks.

ISA-88 batch design standard

The ISA-S88 Batch control system design pattern is now of systemic importance to the factory floor control ecosystem. All engineers involved with a batch  process , need to understand it. Not just automation engineers.

Career development.

A large number of process engineers go on to become project managers and engineering design managers. Its advantageous to be able to speak the same language as the automation engineers and better understand what they do. After all, they will be reporting to you.

Functional safety

According to IEC61511, functional safety becomes more important, as more IT and Automation control systems are implemented.  How to assess risks objectively? A model can help.

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Modular automation

The demand for ever shorter product launch times is leading to modularisation concepts for process plants. The namur standard NE148 highlights the fact that modern control systems are not well suited to integration of modules. A prototype is a good way to communicate the supervisory control system functionality to a vendor package equipment vendor. NE148 proposes the modelling of abstract state models (such as the ISA-88 state machine) . Spike provides this. Invariably, it is the process engineer that is the ‘system owner’ for these vendor packages skids, so its important to understand the automation integration repercussions.

Link to Namur NE148 Article



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