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Practical Automation: Making Automation Do More & Cost Less

7 November 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Session Type: Paper

Track: The Connected Enterprise

Paths(s): ManagementManagement   ExecutiveExecutive   EngineerEngineer   Academia/R&D/ScientistAcademia/R&D/Scientist   

In this paper session, industry experts will present a variety of new ideas for automation in the context of the connected enterprise. Particular emphasis will be given in this session to doing more with automation and making automation cost less. This session will provide practical recommendations for automation and how automation should be a key element in the connected enterprise.


Enterprise Wide Optimization built upon a Solid Foundation in Instrumentation and Automation

Jeffrey Arbogast Ph.D., Air Liquide Read Bio

Jeff Arbogast is a Staff Scientist in the Applied Mathematics R&D Group at Air Liquide’s Delaware Research and Technology Center.  Currently, Jeff leads a key project focused on the development of decision support tools for optimization of the bulk distribution supply chain.  Previously, he has managed a research group and projects related to regulatory control loop tuning, alarm management, and human-machine interface design.  Jeff received his BS in Chemical Engineering from Virginia Tech and his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering (with a focus on regulatory process control) from the University of Connecticut.  He received the ISA Excellence in Documentation Award in 2008.  He is currently president of the Wilmington ISA Section and has served on the ISA Automation Week technical program committee since 2011.


As focus shifts toward Enterprise Wide Optimization (EWO), a solid foundation in instrumentation and automation only becomes more crucial and valuable.  Examples will be provided based upon the implementation of EWO in the industrial gas business, including Model Predictive Control (MPC) and Real Time Optimization (RTO) along with Inventory Routing Problem (IRP) optimization in a Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI) context.

In the manufacturing of industrial gases, advanced control and optimization technologies (e.g., MPC, RTO) are built upon the foundation of instruments and regulatory control (e.g., Proportional-Integral-Derivative (PID) controllers).  In the distribution of industrial gases to customers, decision support tools for the optimal scheduling and routing of truck deliveries are similarly dependent upon a strong foundation of instrumentation.  In a VMI context, the supplier monitors the customer’s inventory and schedules deliveries in order to keep the customer continuously supplied with product. Beyond simple instrumentation, remote telemetry technology regularly communicates each customer’s updated inventory measurements back to the supplier. The supplier then forecasts the customer’s demand with the resulting decline in the customer’s inventory.

This presentation will emphasize the importance of reliable and efficient connections with Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems in achieving EWO.  Furthermore, it will detail some strategies to ensure that quality data is provided to the optimizer.  Finally, it will outline strategies to manage change as EWO elements are implemented – achieving buy-in from end-users and other stakeholders.

Remote Management of Automation Systems

Jason Montroy PMP, MAVERICK Technologies Read Bio

Jason Montroy has spent the last 16 years providing forward-thinking automation solutions for manufacturers.  He currently works for MAVERICK Technologies, the largest platform-agnostic systems integrator in North America.


This paper examines the practice and benefits of remote management of plant automation systems.  As information and operation technologies converge, more and more automation-related activities can be performed from remote locations rather than on site.  In a recent survey, roughly half of respondents indicated that they do not utilize remote services for management and upkeep of their automation systems.  Manufacturers who properly utilize remote services gain competitive advantages by reducing operational costs, decreasing the number of downtime incidents, reducing the average downtime per incident and allowing on-site resources to focus on items closely relating to uptime and safety.  Currently, five automation-related activities can be done remotely: incident management, backup and recovery, software updates, online edits and real-time monitoring.  This paper examines the benefits manufacturers gain by using these remote services and uses real-world examples to illustrate the effects.  

Smart Phones As System Integration Development Tools (Android SCL Simulation Environment as Prototype)

Khalid Elhussein, KETS Read Bio
  • Automation Engineer at KETS a Sudanese Engineering Consultancy Firm in the Sugar Industry
  • Teaching Assistant at University of Khartoum, Faculty of Engineering, Electrical and Electronic Department
  • B.Sc. of Electrical


Smart phones and cloud computing were introduced to the automation industry as components of connected enterprise integration systems. Established protocols and interfacing and the rapid growth of the hardware specification of those devices led industry to think of smart phones as programming and simulation devices. This paper proposes a conceptual design of a system integration work structure based on smart phones and cloud computing. The conceptual design is supported by a prototype of an Android application for Siemens SCL programming and simulation.

The proposal assumes a private cloud with a SAAS/PAAS/IAAS cloud model owned by an automation solutions vendor where the handheld portable computing devices perform typical project organization units (POUs), configuration and/or programming of a preconfigured device (controller), and uploading of the generated and tested code  to the cloud. 

The design aims are: 

  • Enhanced level of integration whereas the portable computing devices are assigned special authentication routines guaranteeing managed distribution of work load (coding management).
  • An effect on the hardware operating costs and/or performance.
  • A plug and play like, modular design of automation integration services where all the POUs are not necessary in the same server/device.

The application presented will be capable of parsing the IEC 6113-1 SCL PLC programming language code, interpreting and checking validity, and generating a .txt file, and assumes a private cloud model and a coding management application on the server side.


  • Christopher Ganz, Bazmi Husain, Martin Naedele, Ragnar Schierholz “Cloud computing for a process control and monitoring system” International Patent EP2293164  (A1), Mar. 9. 2011.
  • P.Sasikala. 2011 .“Cloud computing present status and future implication.” Int. J. of cloud computing Vol.1 No.1.