Category Archives: oil and gas

Emerson Announces DeltaV version 14 and DeltaV Mobile

Press release from @arcforum:

Emerson is expanding its Plantweb™ digital ecosystem with today’s launch of DeltaV version 14, a cybersecurity-certified control system designed to deliver new value in capital projects and make plant operations more connected and productive. The latest release provides significant innovations to the entire DeltaV architecture and was built with customers’ digital transformation initiatives in mind.

This major update to the DeltaV automation system includes several meaningful enhancements to eliminate costs and reduce complexity in capital projects, plus improve productivity during operations through enhanced access to production and equipment data, improved usability and greater security.

“More than ever, an integrated plant data environment is essential to achieve digital transformation. With DeltaV, we’re reducing the engineering effort required to securely connect plant, operational and information systems,” said Jamie Froedge, president of Process Systems and Solutions, Emerson Automation Solutions. “Our customers will have more capabilities in their distributed control and safety systems to help them successfully execute capital projects and optimize operations.”

Capital Project Flexibility

Continuing to advance the impact of DeltaV Electronic Marshalling with CHARMs on capital project engineering, CHARM I/O Block takes CHARMs—which achieved more than one million deployments at more than 1100 sites in only five years—closer to the field. Small enclosures with up to 12 CHARMs can now be installed closer to field devices, significantly reducing wiring and overall installation costs by as much as 60 percent and providing more engineering flexibility.

Smart Commissioning, launched in 2016, took one of most engineering intensive operations off a project’s critical path. Traditionally, commissioning has been a manual task that requires more than two hours per device for thousands of devices. Smart Commissioning reduced commissioning time to 25 minutes. Emerson is now expanding these capabilities and reducing device commissioning time to as little as 10 minutes, a nearly 93 percent reduction in costly commissioning time that could save several hundred-thousand dollars in engineering costs.

Mobility and User Experience

DeltaV Live Operator Interface is a modern, built-for-purpose operations experience that is easy to understand and modify. The HMI comes pre-engineered with the industry’s best practices for user experience including ISA 101.01 and is based on research with the Center for Operator Performance, a consortium of vendors and academia focused on human factors engineering. The HTML5 interface enables scalable graphics and gives operators the flexibility to adjust their displays to focus on process data that is most important for each situation. The new operator interface helps improve overall situational awareness and decision-making speed. Emerson is helping companies prepare for the shift to mobility with DeltaV Live by building a foundation for graphics to be transferrable across desktops, laptops, and mobile devices—all without additional engineering or custom scripting.

A Secure, Connected Plant

DeltaV will offer its users a new level of confidence and protection from cybersecurity threats by being one of the only systems to have a top-to-bottom cybersecurity certification. DeltaV v14 will be certified ISASecure SSA Level 1 by the International Society of Automation (ISA), signifying that Emerson developers are trained to write secure code and the system as a whole is hardened against cyber threats.

Emerson is making connecting a plant’s OT systems with IT systems seamless by expanding OPC UA access in its DeltaV hardware and software offerings. DeltaV is the pathway for most plant data and now using the IIoT’s most prevalent protocol, OPC UA, DeltaV applications and servers can securely share data to cloud analytics applications, remote monitoring solutions, and third-party technologies.

Emerson announced the first two additions of its new DeltaV system last year with the DeltaV PK Controller and DeltaV Mobile. The DeltaV PK Controller enables plants to control skids and applications typically managed by PLCs with a standalone DeltaV controller or connect into an integrated full-scale DCS automation architecture or the cloud via embedded OPC UA. The DeltaV Mobile platform that natively connects into DeltaV—securely and without additional engineering—to enable managers, engineers, operators and subject matter experts to monitor operations and have critical data and alarms at their fingertips, whenever and wherever they need it.

Emerson allies with AspenTech

Press release from ARC Forum:

AUSTIN, TX and BEDFORD, MASS., Feb. 12, 2018 – Emerson (NYSE: EMR) and AspenTech (NASDAQ: AZPN) announced today they have teamed up to deliver asset optimization software solutions along with global automation technologies and operational consulting services. Together, the two industry leaders will help customers optimize production and drive operational excellence.

AspenTech’s broad suite of asset optimization software creates value across all phases of the asset lifecycle – design, operate and maintain – in capital intensive and complex projects and operations, supporting Emerson’s Project Certainty and Operational Certainty initiatives. Emerson’s global footprint, automation engineering services and software, extensive large-scale project execution and consulting capabilities complement AspenTech’s technology footprint. Collectively, these capabilities can be deployed as solutions in both conventional and cloud-based architectures.

“Emerson and AspenTech are both highly focused on digital technologies and services that deliver measurable improvements and value to our customers’ bottom line,” says David N. Farr, chairman and CEO of Emerson. “Together, we are well positioned to help our customers navigate the best path in this era of digital transformation and achieve Top Quartile performance.” Top Quartile is defined as achieving operations and capital performance in the top 25 percent of peer companies.

The alliance will initially focus on three key areas: engineering software, including high-fidelity simulation to help validate project design and train operators before start-up; manufacturing and supply chain software, including advanced process control software designed for highly complex operations; and asset performance management software to improve plant reliability.

“Working with Emerson, we will help more organizations drive higher total shareholder returns with a relentless focus on operational excellence,” says Antonio Pietri, president and CEO of AspenTech. “We look forward to helping make the best companies even better by optimizing the design, operation and maintenance lifecycle with software and insight to run assets faster, safer, longer and greener.”

Together, the two companies will provide holistic optimization strategies that rely on real-time data, advanced analytics enabled by machine learning, and rich process knowledge to bring measurable business improvements in production, as well as in the areas of reliability, safety and energy management.

Major Cyber Attack on SIS Systems–and we told you so!

Insiderlogo3The late Bob Adamski didn’t live to see his prediction from the early 2000s come true, but it has. Here are some of the reports:

From FireEye, on 12/14/17:

Attackers Deploy New ICS Attack Framework “TRITON” and Cause Operational Disruption to Critical Infrastructure

And on 12/15,

New TRITON ICS Malware is Bold and Important

Bob and I, and Joe Weiss, have been continuously predicting this development since at least 2004. Yet it is now 2017, and the systems are still vulnerable. This is stupid.

Although the attack apparently only accidentally shut down the plant, during a search for operational data, the attack could have easily been used to destroy the plant utterly by spoofing the SIS system and using it to cause extremely unsafe conditions leading to catastrophic accidents.

At some point, somebody has to be willing to recognize how fragile OT systems are, really, and how easily they can be disrupted. It is said that our civilization is three days from anarchy. The late Dr. Jerry Pournelle, inventor of the Star Wars Defense for Ronald Reagan, said we were three weeks from cannibalism if the lights went out and stayed out.

This is seriously dangerous, folks, and I am tired, and Joe Weiss is tired, and Bob Adamski was tired before he died, of being told we are fear-mongering. We aren’t. And now we can prove it.

 

 

 

GE-Baker Hughes and Yokogawa-KBC are partners

Baker Hughes, a GE company (NYSE: BHGE) and KBC a wholly-owned subsidiary of Yokogawa Electric Corporation (TOKYO: 6841), announced a preferred partnership that will provide a combination of process simulation, asset performance management and operational software solutions to the oil and gas industry.

 

Leveraging GE’s Predix, the platform for the industrial internet, to deliver one unified view, this partnership extends KBC’s Petro-SIM process simulation modeling further into the fullstream oil and gas value chain, and provides connectivity between operations, assets, people and business processes for end-to-end optimization.

 

Integrating KBC technology with BHGE’s suite of digital solutions will allow customers to reduce bottlenecks in facilities, processes and equipment to achieve optimal production and lower risk.  By integrating data analytics connected by seamless workflows between facilities and operations, the time spent to analyze operations will be significantly reduced and the insight gained will increase production, reduce energy usage and improve product quality consistency.

 

“This partnership showcases our commitment to break down data “silos”, and is an ideal example of the convergence of process and operational thinking,” said Matthias Heilmann, Chief Digital Officer of BHGE. “For the first time, oil and gas customers can build a digital twin of a plant, refinery or rig, that incorporates end-to-end process and operational analytics and machine learning. With Petro-SIM providing simulation technology to our fullstream portfolio, this best-in-class solution will bring us into a new era of operational improvement.”

 

KBC’s Petro-SIM simulation technology already connects to cloud-based Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) data-as-a-service solutions to remotely monitor and help improve customers’ process operations. With full integration to commercial data historian and database systems, the KBC technology offers a central repository for process topology, and stream and equipment data, with access to live and historical plant operating data for performance monitoring. Asset Performance Management (APM) from GE enables intelligent asset strategies to help optimize performance to make operations safer by helping to predict and prevent failures. It can answer critical questions on the history and current operation of an asset, as well as provide an answer to what actions should be taken to improve performance, mitigate risk and ensure overall operational safety and efficiency.

 

The integration of KBC process simulation and models with BHGE analytics, digital twins, fullstream software and Predix provides real-time congruence between the digital and physical worlds. A plant digital twin, enabled by this partnership, would provide a complete view of all equipment, operations and processes, comparing actual performance to expected outcomes, and enabling predictive actions. This plant twin will also enable efficient workforce management, allowing personnel to focus on critical plant operations.

“This game-changing combination of KBC and BHGE will result in solutions for customers to quickly analyze problems and opportunities, and create insights that can then be turned into actions that will assure operational excellence, and sustainability, based on the Yokogawa approach of engaging in co-innovation with customers.” said Andy Howell, CEO of KBC. “Together we will deliver molecularly-enabled digital twins of assets across the fullstream from wellbore through pipeline networks, topsides, gas plants, refineries and petro-chemical plants.”

 

The announcement was made in Paris during UNIFY, BHGE’s first-ever Digital User Conference dedicated to productivity-driving software applications for the oil and gas industry.

 

Third time may be the charm! Schneider does the Aveva deal– Again!

After failing twice to consummate the deal, Schneider Electric announced on September 5 that they had done the deal– again.

Britain’s Aveva Group said on Tuesday it had agreed to combine with Schneider Electric‘s software business to create a London-listed leader in industrial software worth more than 3 billion pounds ($3.88 billion).

France’s Schneider will take a 60 percent stake in the enlarged group under the terms of the deal, which is structured as a reverse takeover, the companies said.

The tie-up comes after two abandoned attempts to agree a deal in 2015 and last year.

The agreement will close, hopefully, in December.

It still isn’t clear what the market impact on automation will be. And one wonders what the future for independent or software only companies will be.

New Honeywell SCADA in the Cloud

HONEYWELL INTRODUCES REAL-TIME SCADA
AS A SECURE AND SCALABLE SERVICE

Experion Elevate provides a cloud-based solution that minimizes hardware, software and
maintenance requirements

In a recognition of the inescapable march of software and supervisory control strategies to the Cloud, Honeywell (NYSE: HON) Process Solutions (HPS) today announced the launch of Experion Elevate, a real-time process supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) solution delivered as a secure and scalable service.

Experion Elevate allows for predictable costs, easy upgrades, and continual support. It is a member of Honeywell’s suite of cloud-enabled solutions for operations technology and information technology (OT/IT). HPS made the announcement at its annual Honeywell Users Group symposium.

The clear advantage to customers is easy upgrades and the ability to show the expense of Experion Elevate as OPEX.
The advantage to Honeywell is easy migration, upgrade, and a steady monthly paycheck instead of project work. With the SCADA software running in Honeywell’s cloud, Honeywell helps to bind customers to them.
“By choosing Experion Elevate, process industry companies can take their performance to a new level with visibility of field assets from a central monitoring site and/or mobile locations,” said John Rudolph, vice president and general manager, HPS Projects and Automation Solutions. “They can be sure their SCADA implementation will be robust, reliable and secure because their system is running on ours. Users can depend on Honeywell’s experience and vision for any size solution.”
Experion SCADA is at the heart of Honeywell’s Experion systems and provides a highly scalable, integrated multi-service system with a superior human-machine interface (HMI). The use of Honeywell’s Distributed System Architecture (DSA) allows multiple SCADA servers to operate as one within a single asset or across the enterprise and enables seamless global access to points, alarms, interactive operator control messages and history.

With Experion Elevate, Honeywell is uniquely positioned to provide any combination of SCADA solutions, offering end users more options than when choosing a service-only vendor. This approach brings business agility and increased efficiency from implementation through ongoing lifecycle operations. Customers can take advantage of the latest software with less on-site support and maintenance skills required. They also benefit from a lower cost of entry with the potential for reduced CAPEX, rapid project deployment, and lower lifecycle costs.
Having Honeywell host the SCADA application, and its associated data, in the Honeywell Cloud is also good for the customers from a cybersecurity vantage. Honeywell is now responsible to keep the application and data safe from cyber attack or intrusion. This means that the end user’s cybersecurity expense is much less.
To learn more about Honeywell’s Experion Elevate, visit http://www.honeywellprocess.com/elevate.

Honeywell pitches a change-up at HUG

Vimal Kapur and Jason Urso (now returned to his duties as Chief Technology Officer) laid down a challenge for other vendors today by stating that the control system was going to the cloud– it is inevitable, Urso said, and is already happening with some SCADA functionality. This will lead to what they boldly called, “The Last Migration.” All the large automation companies have been operating on a business model that uses upgrades and migrations to keep money flowing from their customers. This, it is obvious, is something Honeywell wants to change. What this will lead to is a software-based control schema in which hardware is subordinated to the software, both in the field controller and in what used to be the DCS– which will be moving to the cloud…

More on this soon.

Who Should We Believe?

There are a huge number of contradictory predictions out there right now concerning the stock market, the price of oil, the world economy, the internet of things, and just about everything else you can imagine. If you look hard enough, you could probably find conflicting predictions on whether Little Johnny will jump over the fence to chase the cow.

Since the control automation industry is so closely linked with oil production, let’s take a look at oil price predictions. Chris DeHaemer, the founder of Crisis & Opportunity and Managing Director of Wealth Daily posted on April 7 that he expects oil to hit $87 by Christmas.  He bases this prediction on past history, which shows that when the market for a specific industry’s stock crashes at the beginning of the year, it typically rebounds and prospers for the remainder of the year.  He cites the dot.com crash of 2003 and the banking industry crash of 2009 as examples.

Is he correct? Maybe in the short term. Brent Crude has shown a fairly steady increase from its January low of $28.55 to today’s price of $44.73, and the outlook for additional increase is favorable based on Saudi Arabia and Russia agreeing to freeze production, but it is still down over $70 a barrel from its 2014 high.  Will the increase continue in the long term? There are other factors to be considered.

Some analysts are touting that petroleum/crude oil is being replaced by lithium (aka metal oil) and that the demand for oil will begin to decrease in the near future as more and more companies move toward electric power using lithium ion batteries, which Tesla has supposedly now figured out a way to enhance and produce cheaply.  For example, on April 12, Laurence Knight, a business reporter for BBC News Magazine wrote that, “Lithium, a key ingredient in lightweight batteries, is already powering the modern world, and could be key to getting the world to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels.”

We are already seeing improvement in both the price and range of electric cars.  For example, the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV is priced at around $30k and has a range of over 200 miles.  Tesla announced on April 9 that it has already accepted 350,000 orders for its Model 3, a sleek vehicle priced at $35k, which also has a range of over 200 miles, and which won’t even be released for another two years. Because burning fossil fuels is detrimental to the ecosystem, and there is a push on several fronts to reduce their use, the production of a vehicle with extended range and an affordable price could well be attractive to a growing number of consumers, which would drive oil demand down considerably.

Who’s right?  I think I’d rather bet on whether or not little Johnny will jump the fence.