Managing Safety Effectively

Wednesday, September 12, 2012 @ 06:09 PM gHale

By Nicholas Sheble
“The challenges to executing process safety projects include stiffening regulations, outdated safety solutions, and large, complex projects,” Erik de Groot, global safety marketing manager for Honeywell said Wednesday.

De Groot presented the web seminar “Effectively dealing with Process Safety project challenges” Wednesday. His approach and tools target a wide range of industries, including hydrocarbon processing, chemicals, oil and gas, and energy production.

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Today’s solutions must be IEC 61511 and IEC 61508 SIL 3 TÜV certified and provide the optimal level of safety and process integration while maintaining functional safety separation as those standards mandate.

As to operational integration, all systems should play on one operationally integrated architecture for the sake of and resulting in max safety, process availability, and efficiency. Connectivity extends through all levels of process and business operations to optimize work processes, improve routine maintenance efficiencies, and enhance safety management.

Meeting cyber standards is another key benefit that users should demand now. The new systems need not only securely integrate into customer systems but they should also have passed the very rigorous security testing as defined by ISA Security Compliance Institute (ISCI).

De Groot specifically cited the Embedded Device Security Assurance (EDSA) certification as important. ISCI developed this certification within the framework of the ISA Industrial Automation and Control Systems security standards (ISA 99). The built-in protection mechanisms that result from this model assure protection from cyber attacks and disruption of service.

For the far-and-wide-type venues to which de Groot targets his safety technology, he said customers should demand maximum architectural flexibility and the lowest cost of ownership. Safety I/O at distributed locations must have the capability for individual configuration to a different I/O type.

He said every I/O module should have a capacity of 32 freely configurable channels that enables savings on both installation and operational costs. By using “soft marshalling,” the I/O module can mount right next to the process unit. That eliminates the need for marshalling panels, home-run cables, and reduces and or eliminates field auxiliary rooms.

This approach reduces cost and increases availability and efficiency. This, in turn, lowers overall capital expenditure, as well as operating costs.

De Groot’s introduced his webinar with this synopsis: “Customers are faced with several challenges when executing process safety projects for their facilities. In this webinar, we will highlight certain technologies that can effectively help the end user with those challenges. We will discuss new safety I/O technology for distributed applications. We will look in detail at how our latest safety management systems will reduce total cost of ownership and solve many challenges in executing a Safety Integrated System (SIS) project.”

As to the concept of soft marshalling, ISA Instrumentation and Control says several DCS vendors have introduced innovative proprietary solutions that address the need to reduce engineering effort around instrument signal wiring, marshalling, and loop design in control-and-safety systems.

These newer solutions use terminology like intelligent marshalling, soft marshalling, and electronic marshalling. Honeywell released its SIL-3 certified solution in May 2012 and it uses a single universal 32-channel I/O module (optionally redundant) that can accept DIN, DOU, AIN, AOU, or smoke/heat/gas detector signals for fire and gas (F&G) applications.

Soft marshalling facilitates the association of any I/O channel with any control system tag.
Nicholas Sheble (nsheble@isssource.com) is an engineering writer and technical editor in Raleigh, NC.



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