classic | mobile
 

Search...

SA Instrumentation & Control Buyers' Guide

Technews Industry Guide - IIoT 2017

Technews Industry Guide - Maintenance, Reliability & Asset Optimisation

 

Lonmin system platform upgrade
November 2011, SCADA/HMI


Lonmin’s Marikana complex is one of the largest and most significant platinum mining and processing operations in the world. Located near Rustenburg in the North-West province, the complex consists of 14 shafts, seven concentrators, a smelter and a base metals refinery.

The Marikana operation uses five ArchestrA Galaxy Repository (GR) servers, 43 ArchestrA Object Servers (AOS), 42 view stations and 14 Wonderware Historian servers. Of this, the Concentrator Galaxy consists of 16 AOS, 16 view stations and nine Integrated Development Environment (IDE) stations monitoring nearly a quarter million tags across 68 PLCs. The rest of the system is used for the shafts, services, smelter and metal accounting.

“This project involved the upgrade of Wonderware’s System Platform 3.0 to release 3.1 on all the concentrators,” says Lonmin automation specialist, Johan Louw, “While upgrades are normally routine affairs, this one bears mention because each of the concentrators involved operates individually and has its own shutdown schedule making it impossible to arrange for a full concentrator shutdown. The upgrade would have to be done live during full production and with no downtime.”

Concentrator architecture

Lonmin has defined an operating environment for its concentrators which, for security purposes, has a DMZ to isolate the control VLAN (PLC connection) from the production VLAN (viewing, development, etc). (Figure 1.) The Historian is also standardised for each concentrator. A viewing station and its backup are included as well as an ArchestrA IDE station. This makes each concentrator a self-contained production unit with a standardised architecture but individual control.

Figure 1. Concentrator architecture
Figure 1. Concentrator architecture

Challenges

* Implement upgrade with no plant downtime – production stoppages could not be tolerated, yet any upgrade normally requires installing new software and restarting the system. A work-around had to be found.

* Operators to have visibility into the plant at all times – once again, this precluded any system downtime.

* Improve system performance – the magnitude of the concentrator complex demands highly optimised approaches if system performance is to be improved.

* Get buy-in from users – it is not unusual for system changes to be viewed with some degree of scepticism and the success of the project depended on users taking ownership of the new solutions.

How it was done

“Fortunately the sites were designed to run two AOS servers (one backup – see Figure 1) and this architecture supported what we wanted to do,” explains Louw. “With the help of Wonderware Southern Africa, we introduced an additional upgraded Galaxy Repository (GR) Server to form a parallel galaxy. We then upgraded the backup AOS servers. This could still be done with no downtime. The next step was to upgrade the view station and the IDE, so that two view stations were running the same applications on two parallel galaxies. Once each IDE was upgraded, users could start doing development on the new galaxy. Any new development on the old galaxy would at this stage be lost. The next step was to change over the Historian and finally the old AOS. After all the sites were done, the old GR was decommissioned and prepared for the next upgrade. The result was a major system upgrade with no downtime and no loss of visibility into the plant.”

Since the rollout was not done on a full-time basis and was interlaced within normal day-to-day activities, it took about three months. “This also gave us time to implement best practices and to validate our existing GRs,” says Louw. “What impressed us most is that, with ArchestrA, engineering and configuration time is sliced in half. Another notable feature is the ability to manage the software from a central point, as well as enforcing standards across the business.”

According to Louw, the most impressive aspects of the system architecture include:

* Scalability. “We were able to do load sharing on areas where a lot of processing power was required.”

* The ability to enable redundancy in critical areas.

* Distributed architecture which simplifies the process of backups and reduces downtime in the event of hardware failure.

Benefits

* Major system upgrade with no downtime and no loss of visibility into the plant.

* Improved system performance.

* Development of a risk-free method for implementing future upgrades.

* Improved user confidence in the capabilities of the system and its upgradeability.

Conclusion

A seamless upgrade of this magnitude goes to show what can be done with modern technology and ingenuity. Systems are there to help monitor, control and improve production - not to stop it dead in its tracks for a routine software upgrade. Marikana’s six historians log 350 million readings a day in the concentrator galaxy alone and to have this continue in real-time during a plant-wide system upgrade with nobody noticing and without missing a beat is impressive. It is a great example of inventiveness merging with technology.

For more information contact Jaco Markwat, Wonderware Southern Africa, 0861 WONDER, jaco.markwat@wonderware.co.za, www.wonderware.co.za


Credit(s)
Supplied By: Wonderware Southern Africa
Tel: +27 11 607 8100
Fax: +27 11 607 8478
Email: contact@wonderware.co.za
www: www.wonderware.co.za
Share via email     Share via LinkedIn   Print this page

Further reading:

  • A game plan for digital transformation
    June 2018, Wonderware Southern Africa, News
    X-Change 2018, Wonderware Southern Africa’s 26th annual User Conference was recently held at the picturesque Champagne Sports Resort in the Drakensberg.
  • Yokogawa’s open scada solution
    June 2018, Yokogawa South Africa, SCADA/HMI
    Scada systems are typically used for supervisory monitoring and control of remote and geographically distributed assets through a more open platform for interfacing with several makes and types of equipment ...
  • Schneider gets smart with new HMI solution
    June 2018, Schneider Electric South Africa, SCADA/HMI
    In a world where quick access to data has become the key to efficiency, Schneider Electric South Africa’s latest innovation in the Magelis range of HMI solutions, Magelis GTU, allows users to create the ...
  • Scada Review 2018
    June 2018, Technews Publishing (SA Instrumentation & Control), SCADA/HMI
    The subject projects of this year’s Scada Review are a worthy reflection of the effort put in by the respondent end-users, SIs and vendors. It is encouraging to see that even in these times of economic ...
  • Scada review 2018: Adroit Technologies
    June 2018, Adroit Technologies, SCADA/HMI
    End-user details    Name: Raymond Bosch    Designation: Electrical foreman cold stores    Company: Two a Day Group    Phone: +27 (0)21 859 7666    E-mail: raymondb@tad.co.za       SI details    Name: Willie Cameron ...
  • Scada Review 2018: Wonderware
    June 2018, Wonderware Southern Africa, SCADA/HMI
    End-user details    Name: Jaco van Heerden    Designation: Project C&I Engineer    Company: African Rainbow Minerals Limited    Phone: +27 (0)11 518 4199    email: jaco.vanheerden@arm.co.za       SI details    Name:...
  • AVEVA drives digital transformation
    June 2018, Wonderware Southern Africa, IT in Manufacturing
    The 2018 Wonderware X-Change conference created the opportunity to launch the new alliance between AVEVA and Schneider Electric. At the helm of AVEVA’s 26-strong contingent was vice president of strategic ...
  • Adroit Scada validated as an IoT platform
    May 2018, Adroit Technologies, SCADA/HMI
    Last year, Adroit Technologies expanded its offerings through its partnership with Sqwidnet, the licensed Sigfox Internet of Things (IoT) network operator in South Africa. From the mid-March, Adroit has ...
  • HMI modular system for hazardous areas
    May 2018, Pepperl+Fuchs, SCADA/HMI
    HMI systems must satisfy the strictest requirements if they are to be used in explosion-hazardous areas. With this in mind, Pepperl+Fuchs has introduced a wealth of new developments for its VisuNet GXP ...
  • Water – the heart of growth and sustainable development
    April 2018, SCADA/HMI
    World Water Day is celebrated on 22 March and each year it highlights a specific aspect of fresh water. This year’s theme is Nature for Water, and it will be amplified through the South African Department ...
  • Fibre optic connector inspection system
    April 2018, Comtest, SCADA/HMI
    Comtest’s latest offering from AFL is the aeRos connected FOCIS WiFi2, the next generation fibre optic connector inspection system that uses an Android or iOS wireless connection for live image video ...
  • Define your game plan for digital transformation at X-Change 2018
    March 2018, Wonderware Southern Africa, News
    Wonderware Southern Africa’s 26th annual User Conference, X-Change 2018, will return to the picturesque Champagne Sports Resort, from 15-18 April.

 
 
         
Contact:
Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd
1st Floor, Stabilitas House
265 Kent Ave, Randburg, 2194
South Africa
Publications by Technews
Dataweek Electronics & Communications Technology
Electronic Buyers Guide (EBG)

Hi-Tech Security Solutions
Hi-Tech Security Business Directory

Motion Control in Southern Africa
Motion Control Buyers’ Guide (MCBG)

South African Instrumentation & Control
South African Instrumentation & Control Buyers’ Guide (IBG)
Other
Terms & conditions of use, including privacy policy
PAIA Manual





 

         
    classic | mobile

Copyright © Technews Publishing (Pty) Ltd. All rights reserved.