Triple redundancy systems are poised to move down market towards OEMs, systems integrators and machine builders, according to August Systems’ Chris Goring, CEO.
`TMR systems can now be sold to the product market, providing control for lower value, yet still critical applications’, he said as August launched its CS300E TMR last month. `We’ve adopted the Intel and Microsoft Windows NT/95 platforms, and prices have been reduced by 20%’, he added.
`With reductions in software engineering, this amounts to a real 40% cut – before you even consider cost of ownership’, he claimed. Goring said that TMR is thus now viable for applications like rotating machinery, such as compressors and turbines, as well as controlling boiler and burner management systems and critical process installations.
`Although August Systems will continue to build turnkey systems, we are setting up a new company, August Products, to sell the 300E direct to OEMs and system integrators’, he said. He suggested that several of the main DCS vendors are already now quoting the system.
Stuart Brammer, managing director of August, commented that while there are competing GMR, quadruple voting and dual redundant systems, they do not offer comparable availability and, he claimed, they are harder to engineer. He also stated that they now offer no cost advantage.
The CS300E is currently based on fast 486 technology. Microcontrollers have been extended out to the I/O, extending voting and diagnostics. And, remote I/O has been added, extending the system to 2km distributed control. Programming is ladder logic and function blocks, moving up to the IEC 1131 by July.