For decades, automation projects have used controller-centric distributed control system (DCS) architectures. Such architectures create a significant number of interdependencies between project tasks that can easily lead to considerable cost overruns and delays should any change orders be implemented. ABB has developed a new I/O family – complete with engineering tools and methodologies – that eliminates this scenario and takes project efficiency to the next level, making over-budget or late automation projects a thing of the past.
One example of project interdependency is when a “design freeze” is declared before hardware purchase, which, in turn, has to precede application engineering, and so on. Any changes to the design, like changing I/O types, adding I/O, moving I/O to a different controller, etc., require potentially costly change orders due to the amount of work needed to make changes after design freeze.