Is HMI/SCADA Dead?
HMI/SCADA systems were invented more than 25 years ago. In the mid-to-late 1980s, the interest and the market grew, slowly at first. There were many operating system choices like UNIX, OS2, and VMS. With the wider adoption of Microsoft Windows in the late 1980s and early 1990s, most HMI/SCADA systems migrated. Windows 3.1 helped accelerate the growth. In the mid-to-late 1990s, Windows NT became the factory-floor standard. Products have matured since then, but they have not fundamentally changed.
Today’s users require more flexibility than ever. Furthermore, engineers and operators often have their own view on the ideal SCADA. The ideal system should only show the data that matters, yet allow the user to navigate at will instantly and request more data if needed. The operator wants a system, which should be intelligent enough to warn him in case of operational errors, and inform him about the causes of abnormal conditions. The engineer wants a system that is easy to configure, maintain and troubleshoot, yet flexible enough to customize and expand based on his management’s needs. The quality engineer wants fast access to lab results. The production manager wants his dashboards at his fingertips. They all need both reactive and proactive information. In short, they all require access to information anywhere, anytime from their favorite device, mobile or not.
In 2013 we will be introducing a new concept called Real Time Operational Intelligence (RtOI), which will define a new paradigm for SCADA. Using the latest technology to increase the operations effectiveness and improve the plant business performance, RtOI will drive better insights and productivity by mobilizing the workforce, shifting the paradigm from polling to exception-based, and reducing noise so that the stakeholders can make decisions faster.
Stay tuned for more!