Master station with advanced features

Jon Lawson

Shelley Pike reports on a new master station that introduces ultra-fast network control for valve actuators

Building on its vast experience as a leading digital network control system for the valve actuation environment, Rotork has recently introduced a master station with a host of advanced new features.

The Pakscan P4 master station features a large touchscreen display that provides an easy to use, multilingual, user interface for quick device setup, interrogation and issue resolution.

NAMUR standard diagnostic icons and colours are used for easy recognition of status and alarms. Ease of navigation around the screens is enhanced by having identical screens for both the in-built web pages and the integral touchscreen, each using the same menu structure. A dedicated service Ethernet port maintains local area network (LAN) separation between configuration or monitoring systems and the systems for controlling the process.

The P4 master station has advanced field network option capabilities including a new ultra-fast Plus Network and a Modbus network – enabling connection to third-party Modbus field devices. The modular design enables one P4 master station to supervise up to four field networks – including existing Pakscan wired or wireless networks. Operating at communication speeds of up to 15 Mbit/second using the highly noise immune SHDSL telecoms protocol, each Plus Network can connect up to 300 field devices with a distance between each device of up to 5km, resulting in network lengths that can extend over hundreds of kilometres. The ultra-fast, full-duplex network enables full modulating positional control of process valves.

High availability seamless redundancy built in

Priority is given to process data whilst built-in high availability seamless redundancy (HSR) ensures instant isolation of any loop fault, without loss of data, allowing continued operation of the plant if a fault occurs. Along with single and dual configurations, the P4 master station can be supplied in a hot standby configuration where all interfaces are duplicated, providing the highest level of availability.

Multiple host connectivity is provided as standard, with a fully pre-configured database providing easy integration with proven communications to all major DCS and PLC suppliers via the Modbus TC/RTU protocol. The touchscreen display also allows stand- alone operation in the event of unavailability of the host.

Swift access to plentiful device data optimises the scope for predictive maintenance and asset management, at the DCS/PLC, the asset management system or at the master station. Available data includes operating history, status, diagnostics and alarm logs.

Pakscan P4 is designed for economical installation and minimum cost of ownership. The single twisted- pair cable or wireless network reduces installation engineering effort and associated costs. The system is fully supported with documentation, on-site or in-house training and Rotork’s global network of trained service engineers.

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Shelley Pike is with Rotork Controls.