Alarm Precision and Flexibility
Alarm handling is one of the most important functions of the IGSS system and has therefore been constructed on the basis of precision and flexibility. The Active Alarms module is always present, online as an icon on the process mimic – no matter which part of the plant is being monitored. A total overview of all alarms, both Active and Alarm Log, are just a mouse click away for the operator. Right-clicking on an active alarm in the module enables the operator to call up the Find function to immediately locate precisely where in the process the alarm originates.
Operator Instructions and Notes
When viewing an alarm, instructions to the operator regarding what actions should be taken can be attached. The operator himself can also attach a so-called Note to an alarm concerning his response or observations. This Note is then visible by all other operators on the network.
Operators can be given the right to issue so-called Inhibit Alarm rules for one or more alarms on a given process component while it’s temporarily removed from the plant for maintenance or replacement. Unnecessary alarms are thus avoided until the component is put back on-line.
Operator Defined Filters
Operators can also be given the right to define their own alarm filters by setting parameters that only show alarms for specific areas, diagrams, or process component types. This is a useful tool for paying close attention to critical components in the process.
In addition to alarms, an operator is also able to view all maintenance routines, as defined in the IGSS Maintenance module, in the Active Alarm list. Maintenance routines are easily distinguishable from alarms in that next to each maintenance entry, a special maintenance “wrench and screwdriver” icon appears. Thus the operator never has to leave the Active Alarms module to keep an overview of what’s occurring in the process.
Alarm events are continuously documented by IGSS’s alarm log and alarm statistics. Alarm log files can be saved indefinitely and alarm statistics can be printed out on a regular basis.
IGSS can send alarms off-site with its module for remote alarm handling called Notifier. It ensures that all IGSS alarms designated as remote alarms are sent to locations outside the actual plant. A modem or a GSM modem is set up for communication between the IGSS server and remote locations, and then operators can receive alarms either as a fax, an e-mail, or directly on their remote laptop computers or cellular phones.
IGSS also supports the new wireless protocol called GPRS (General Packet Radio Service). IGSS Development has programmed a special GPRS communications driver that carries data over the wireless link between the IGSS server and remote operator stations.
Alarm Time Stamp
IGSS provides event-oriented PLC communication functionality including external time stamping at the PLC. This time stamping of alarm and process data is accurate down to millisecond resolutions and conforms to the strict requirements in the exacting application areas of off-shore, ship automation and distribution of electricity where heavy demands are placed on SCADA systems. Due to IGSS’s accuracy and speed in alarm handling in this manner, IGSS applications are present today in these demanding industries worldwide.
Embedded Alarm Lists
As an alternative to the global Alarm List, alarm lists can be embedded into the individual process diagrams. For further details, click here.