Overview of SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition)
SCADA is a centralized monitoring and control system which is used to a specific plant site or equipment that is stationed at a long distance. Because of its unique software application, which is managing any type of equipment by automation, companies with complex operations processes, like water and waste control, energy, oil and gas refining, transportation, telecommunications industries, employ the SCADA system to automate their operations, detect and correct problems, at the same time, and measure trends over time. In order for the SCADA system meet its objective of monitoring and controlling a company's operating process, the system first collects data and analyze them.
Data acquisition, network data communication, data presentation, and control are the four main functions which the SCADA system is designed to perform. For the SCADA system to operate its functions, it is outfitted with the following components: sensors and control relays, Remote Telemetry Units (RTUs), master units, and a communication network, which consists of input/output signal hardware, networks, Human-machine Interface (HMI), controllers, communication, database, and software.
Two types of devices, of which either one is employed, that are usually connected to the SCADA system to perform its control functions and these are: RTUs or Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs). Between these two devices, it is the RTUs which has a more advanced functionality feature allowing for a more efficient and secure monitoring system. Get more readings here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/allen-burt/your-ultimate-payment-gat_b_9329154.html.
The HMI is programmed, as a master station, to process all collected data and information and communicates these to the human operator. The HMI functions allow for an easy viewing by the operators on the system alarms and information, thereby making it also easy for the operators to make quick decisions. Since the company's operation processes, which the SCADA system is managing, are confidential, for security reasons, SCADA information are kept on closed LAN (Local Area Network) or WAN (Wide Area Network) networks to prevent sensitive data from being exposed to outsiders over the Internet. Learn about how to use this IED simulator.
Because of the expensive cost of utilizing LAN, another network support system through NetGuardian 832A may be employed which can support existing communications methods at remote sites, instead of LAN. However, when the company expands their LAN network into their other sites, the cost is still worth the investment as the company will be saving on RTU replacements to support the new network.
These are the overall functions and features of the SCADA system, although its functions/features will be employed on specifications by a company, - performs the work of an OPC Server or Protocol Translator, translate between any number of available protocols, includes a protocol analyzer, built in equation editor supports the creation of new data points based on raw data points and /or other equation points, OPC Certified, Conformance tested per DNP3 Intelligent Electronic Device (IED) Certification Procedure Subset Level2, report by Exception (RBE) is supported (transmitting only data changes, saving communication channel bandwidth), supports DNP3 Secure Authentication, supports selective logging of event data into a time-stamped Sequence of Events (SOE) log file, the Communication Protocol Analyzer Window displays and decodes transmitted and received messages, allows translation between data types and control methods from different protocols, supports mapping of points between Master and Slave, two Master, and/or two Slave protocol components. Here’s more about DNP3 test.