ABB has looked to upgrade its ABB Ability™ System 800xA Minerals Process Control Library with a new graphical interface that provides operators with relevant process information in its “situational context”.
Successfully operating in more than 450 cement and mining sites worldwide, the Minerals Process Control Library is an automation software solution for both industries designed to achieve the highest plant productivity, availability and safety, as well as the best operator efficiency, ABB says.
The new ABB 800xA 6.1 automation platform update has further improved the solution, according to the company.
It comes with a completely new clear and intuitive graphical interface for process displays, faceplates and workplace layout, which enables awareness of any given situation in a plant, according to the company. It also offers an extensive set of options for adapting presentation so that the focus can be tailored, and users can navigate to the required information much faster.
A key new feature that comes with the update is the “unique alarm system”. This enables plant operators to immediately detect, understand and resolve all types of process situations and disturbances in minimum time, according to the company.
“The most critical elements of the production process are emphasised through a combination of context-based information and consistent alarm colours and shapes, ensuring that attention is always drawn to those requiring immediate response.”
The wider release follows the first installation of the updated ABB Ability™ System 800xA Minerals Process Control Library at the Hoghiz cement plant in the Brasov region of Romania, which produces 1 Mt/y of cement.
Razvan Cocea, Head of Electrical and Automation for CRH Hoghiz Plant, said the latest version of the system, which has been in operation at the plant since early July, provides a much clearer process displays.
“”With the new visual control graphics, it is now immediately obvious which equipment requires attention,” he said. “The new process alarms instantly alert operators when something is wrong. They can then easily navigate to the detailed displays to find the root cause of the problem and take appropriate measures to bring the process up and running again.”
Michael Marending, Lead Engineer at ABB, said the growing level of automation and intercommunication in industries such as mining and cement means fewer people are managing much larger plant areas.
“This adds complexity to daily plant operation and places increasing demands on today’s control room personnel,” he said. “The ability of humans to be able to respond, with good decisions at the right time, is crucial for the optimization of plant efficiency and reliability.”
He continued: “Visualisation is critical to the process, providing the main interface between humans and the production site. This new HMI offers a whole new set of functions and makes real-time information much more accessible to operators. The new visual control graphics make it easier for all users of the system to take the right decisions in any situation and allow operators, maintenance and engineers to collaborate in new ways. Visual control graphics can be easily integrated into other existing ABB and external vendor subsystems.”
ABB Ability™ System 800xA Minerals Process Control Library is part of the ABB Ability™ MineOptimize portfolio of digitally connected products, services and solutions that enable mines and cement plants to maximise visibility, reliability, productivity and energy efficiency and optimise performance.