Table of Contents
- 1. Existing System
- 2. Requirements
- 3. Reasons for Migration
- 4. Results – Success!
OnPing SCADA Case Study: Plow Technologies was asked to move a set of acquired products from a legacy
SCADA platform to OnPing. There were several reasons and requirements for this.
1 Existing System
1.1 Radio Towers
The existing system used a multi tower radio network and was polling remotely across these towers into a data center.
The towers were connected together using a high speed radio network. Then each individual network uses serial modems to poll.
1.2 Cell Networks
In addition to this there were around 30 individual Cell networks that also being polled. Many of these systems had
sub radio networks that were gathering into each cell modem.
Our customer required the project to be done in around 4 weeks.
With over 200 wells and thousands of data points to transfer,
this was a tight deadline and required us to split work into multiple parts…
2.1.1 Data integration
Multiple types of PLC and Measurement data devices needed to be brought into unified visualizations.
This data also needed to be integrated with other systems like accounting software.
2.1.2 Data verification
Critical data, like alarms, measurement data and control set-points needed to be checked against field data in order
to make sure the right values were coming in. This was very difficult as some alarms lived in the previous SCADA,
some lived in the various devices. Many alarms had duplicate instances of the same alarm with only one of the set being enabled.
2.2 Availability & Access
Multiple levels of access for different users had to be established. Engineers, Pumpers and 3rd parties all need access
to this data. The system can’t have any significant downtime as the transition happens.
2.3 Equipment Reuse
It was important to use as much existing equipment as possible.
3 Reasons for Migration
The OnPing SCADA system has several points that really made
the difference in its choice for this project
3.1 Reduced Infrastructure
Because OnPing is a hosted SCADA system it can scale to lots of use cases easily.
Also, it doesn’t require towers talking to towers and everything coming back to a central point.
This means less radio networks in total.
3.2 Streamlined Support
OnPing is backed by 24/7 support. We also have extensive online documentation on the features of
OnPing that are available to all our users.
3.3 More reliable data transfer
The OxBox transforms the various driver protocols… Modbus, Ethernet IP, etc into a
consistent protocol optimized for fast and reliable data transfer. In addition to that,
automated data backup occurs in the event of cellular downtime. Plus decentralizing the
various networks allows for more isolated points of failure.
One tower going down doesn’t take everything down.
Field techs are able to make changes to the system quickly. From data integration to visualization
changes the interface remains consistent. Users are also able to create their own
panels and views
4 Results – Success!
The resulting migration was completed in the allotted time.
This is a testament to the flexibility of OnPing’s data integration system.
The most challenging aspect of this was translating a very complicated network topology into
a more streamlined and isolated system. Before the transition 1 HMI that was dumping packets on
the network might knock down 30 wells. Now the system is much more isolated.
In the initial phase we put our OxBox on each cellular site. It is a very low cost edge device
that allows us to easily push data across a cell network without static IPs and with data redundancy.
On the towers we put 1 OxBox per tower and brought the data in like this. For some particular sites
where more was happening we put an OxBox more locally to drop the packets coming over the radio network
to make it more reliable.
We translated all the SCADA alarms in the legacy system into our virtual parameters and brought the
regular style alarms in.
We set up HMI as per the customers request that are visible on mobile and desktop platforms.
Using the OxBox and separated polling allows us to move from a 15 minute poll time to a 1 minute poll time.
Overall this migration demonstrates how powerful the OnPing platform has become for migrating SCADA