Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition (SCADA)
What is a SCADA system?
This abbreviation stands for Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition, i.e. dispatch control and data collection. Such systems allow you to:
- manage automated technological processes;
- collect and process data in real time;
- monitor the condition of equipment and progress of work;
- set up alarms and quickly respond to problems.
In general, the main tasks of SCADA systems are continuous monitoring of the operation of automated objects and the creation of the ability to promptly respond to problems directly from the control chair. In this case, objects can be located kilometers from each other, and the managerial rights of the dispatcher can automatically change depending on the state of technical processes.
What does a SCADA system consist of?
Structurally, all SCADA systems are similar. They must contain three elements:
- Remote Terminal Unite (abbreviated RTU) – a device located on the side of the object. This can be a simple sensor, or a full-fledged multi-threaded microcontroller, which not only collects a variety of information, but also makes it possible to control the progress of work.
- Communication systems that transmit information in real time from RTU to MTU, and from MTU to RTU – signals for action. A variety of protocols and data transmission methods can be used – dedicated optical fiber, radio waves, mobile networks, telephone lines, TCP/IP, LAN, etc.
- The dispatcher terminal (Master Terminal Unite, abbreviated MTU) is a server that accumulates information from remote terminals (RTU). This is the “heart” of the entire SCADA system; it is this service that displays all data on dispatch monitors, creating a human-machine interface (HMI). It also analyzes the operating status of remote objects, turns on the alarm mode in time and saves all logs. Depending on the scale of the system and the tasks assigned, the role of MTU can be played by either an ordinary home computer or a complex complex of several servers.
Features of SCADA systems
- SCADA is a human-machine system. That is, the presence of a person is mandatory for the operation of this system.
- The dispatcher is responsible for all settings made, for the smooth and balanced functioning of objects.
- Most of the time, the dispatcher does nothing but just monitor the indicators.
- You can configure both the expansion of the operator’s powers at certain alarm levels, and, conversely, restrictions on his intervention.
- Most SCADA systems operate natively and rely on dedicated and local connections. This avoids any security issues. However, there are also Web-SCADA interfaces that can be opened via an Internet browser via a connection to the cloud. The choice of a specific work scheme depends solely on your priorities.
Modern SCADA class systems are an indispensable tool for managing complex automated enterprises. Thanks to SCADE, dispatchers and officials can receive the most detailed information in real time about the status of thousands of objects located in various parts of the world. Access to this information allows them to timely make the right strategic decisions to improve and modernize technical processes. Without a SCADA program, collecting and analyzing such a volume of data would simply be impossible.
Most of the projects in the field of implementation of SCADA systems were implemented by the Far Rainbow team in the Oil and Gas sector.
If you are interested in implementing a SCADA system at your enterprise and want to learn more about our experience in this area, please send us a request via the contact form.