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Ignition Brings Control, Flexibility to Energy Management Software

The energy management project encompasses many different facilities such as public buildings, swimming pools, industrial plants, and even street lighting. It involves over 22,000 tags, and nearly 600 devices and 50 clients, and those numbers continue to grow.

The size of the project presented many challenges. There were a large number of prospective users, all of whom needed access to the system without it being installed at each client. There was an enormous amount of data in many different formats, and vast geographical distances between installations. Also, the software had to be flexible enough to grow with the system as new installations were added. Cofely needed a SCADA solution that would give their customers the ability to analyze all their real-time and historical energy data, and would also be cost-effective and scalable.

  • Inductive Automation
    Inductive Automation produces software that reduces frustration and increases efficiency in the industrial automation market. Our software facilitates the instant accessibility of meaningful information throughout the enterprise. We begin by listening, then acting on what we hear to inject innovation and unprecedented value into the industry.
  • Energy
  • Product Development
  • Process Control & Optimization
    Process control and optimization (PCO) is the discipline of adjusting a process to maintain or optimize a specified set of parameters without violating process constraints. The PCO market is being driven by rising demand for energy-efficient production processes, safety and security concerns, and the development of IoT systems that can reliably predict process deviations. Fundamentally, there are three parameters that can be adjusted to affect optimal performance. - Equipment optimization: The first step is to verify that the existing equipment is being used to its fullest advantage by examining operating data to identify equipment bottlenecks. - Operating procedures: Operating procedures may vary widely from person-to-person or from shift-to-shift. Automation of the plant can help significantly. But automation will be of no help if the operators take control and run the plant in manual. - Control optimization: In a typical processing plant, such as a chemical plant or oil refinery, there are hundreds or even thousands of control loops. Each control loop is responsible for controlling one part of the process, such as maintaining a temperature, level, or flow. If the control loop is not properly designed and tuned, the process runs below its optimum. The process will be more expensive to operate, and equipment will wear out prematurely. For each control loop to run optimally, identification of sensor, valve, and tuning problems is important. It has been well documented that over 35% of control loops typically have problems. The process of continuously monitoring and optimizing the entire plant is sometimes called performance supervision.
  • Cofely is a division of GDF SUEZ, a French multinational electric utility company. Cofely is headquartered in Madrid, Spain, and it has established itself as a leader in energy and environmental efficiency services throughout the country
  • Granero’s team was able to use Ignition’s unique features to fulfill the new system’s requirements. Ignition provides the company with unlimited tags and clients at a reasonable price. The software doesn’t need to be installed or maintained at the client level because it is fully web-deployed. It connects to SQL databases, which lets the company leverage SQL data without expensive additional software. It supports OPC-UA, so it can connect to the many devices with embedded OPC-UA servers that are dispersed throughout the country. The modular architecture of Ignition makes the system scalable so it can match the scope of new contracts that will be added in the future.

    A unique part of this project was the task of developing a graphical user interface (GUI) to keep track of the various sites in the system. Ignition’s use of modules and its easily accessible software development kit (SDK) were factors that made it stand out as the clear choice for this project. “Given that the project scope required monitoring several hundred sites, and thousands in the long run, we needed a graphic interface to jump from one site to another by clicking on a map icon, as well as to display main status and alarm conditions for every location,” Granero explains. Since the project spans across all of Spain, setting up the ability to locate and easily switch between remote sites was a huge undertaking that the project team was determined to see to fruition.
  • Mature (technology has been on the market for > 5 years)
  • Impact #1
    [Product Improvement - Flexibility]
    The flexibility of the system allows Cofely to maintain its reliability, performance, and security.
    Impact #2
    [Efficiency Improvement - R&D]
    Ignition’s features allowed the team to focus more time on developing the project and less time dealing with technical hurdles.
    Impact #3
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