In the modern world, unceasing technological advancements are rapidly transforming industrial manufacturing operations. Moreover, a number of industrial manufacturing processes have become automated. This automation in industrial processes is being realized via different tools and technologies. To make these automation processes more manageable and smoother, tools like SCADA systems are gaining much attention.
Many of us know the importance of these systems but are unaware of <strong>how SCADA systems are helping industries</strong>? If you are the one who wants to unravel this secret, this guide will help you find your answer. So, let’s get started!
What are SCADA Systems?
Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition, or SCADA for short, is a control and monitoring system which is comprised of both software and hardware components.
Traditionally, SCADA systems are best suited for automating highly complex operations where human control is considered impractical.
With SCADA systems, industrialists can investigate and collect production data in real-time, manage and monitor alarms, and develop automatic control response. This means that industries would be able to interact with motors, pumps, sensors, and different mechanical processes via the human-machine interface, also known as HMI.
This technology has spearheaded the industrial IoT (Internet of Things) in several countries all over the world. Many industries have adopted SCADA systems due to the high level of convenience that enables the automation of processes. By virtue of this technology, companies have achieved a whole new level of efficiency in their operations. Industrial processes that subsume numerous control factors can also leverage from these systems.
How is this beneficial? Well, you get to monitor and control every process on the go!
If you are still sitting on the fence, here are the potential benefits that would explain how SCADA systems are helping industries.
How SCADA Systems are Helping Industries?
As technology improves, the need for SCADA systems increases due to its ability to make data-driven decisions, based on real-time information. Additionally, it eliminates the possibility of human error. Other possible implications include:
(1) Cost Reduction
High-tech industries integrate SCADA systems to boost safety throughout their operations. This not only helps industries to enhance security and safety, it significantly reduces their medical bills by making the workplace safe and secure.
Moreover, these systems improve the overall production levels of the industry. What this means is that you will manufacture more products within a short period that will ultimately save your money.
Is it reliable?
Yes, it is! SCADA systems make data-driven decisions that provide greater control over industrial processes, reduce cost, and increase output. Meaning, it will, in no time, boost the financial state of your company.
(2) Enhanced Productivity
Improving industrial productivity is the SCADA system’s forte. It helps industrial employees by automating multiple works that are done manually by workers. Consequently, by switching to SCADA software industries can execute their work quickly and efficiently.
The interesting aspect of these systems is that they analyze industrial operations. This allows industries to change these operations to ensure efficient execution of critical tasks.
Another key attribute is that they provide overall plant statistics. You must be wondering how this contributes to productivity, right?
With comprehensive plant statistics, the SCADA systems allow industries to enhance their product quality, avoid downtime, and prevent unforeseen failures.
(3) Efficient Work Delegation
In industrial management, discovering the strengths and weaknesses of employees is always a challenge. There is a limitless factor that needs to be considered, and for that, SCADA systems are a big help.
You can effectively map out tasks and currently available human resources and establish a framework that determines which task needs to be done. This allows industries to effectively and efficiently delegate work. As a consequence, your worker stays content, and your work remains optimized.
(4) Boost Safety at Workplace
Maintaining safety in an industrial environment is a challenge. Additionally, accidents take place almost every day in industries. However, with SCADA systems in place, industries follow a pre-defined process that guarantees worker’s safety.
More importantly, these systems minimize the risk of human error which eliminates any bad decision that could potentially endanger the staff’s life. Industries are deploying this technology to reduce the likelihood of errors that would consequently ensure the smooth running of industrial operations.
(5) Efficient Time Utilization
For any business or production plant, time is equal to money. SCADA systems optimize time by automating the majority of the processes. This saves a significant amount of energy and time that can be used for other critical tasks.
Besides, this technology uses real-time production information to create a historical readings record. Further, the system uses this record to timely correct faults that could delay product delivery. But that’s not it.
SCADA is capable of devising smart maintenance procedures that help industries avoid or tackle future problems.
(6) Real-Time Information for Better Traceability
SCADA helps industries in obtaining real-time information about on-going processes that leads to better traceability. With the help of this technology, industries are capable of storing different operational configurations. This helps them in extracting all data related to a specific process that assists in achieving optimal performance.
(7) Improved Situation Analysis
SCADA systems provide a number of benefits like increased reliability, improved worker safety, reduced cost, and enhanced customer satisfaction. With the help of the real-time views into industrial operations and alarms obtained, companies can prevent trivial problems that have the potential to become big ones.
SCADA Systems Applications in Different Industries
Interestingly, one feature is common among the industries that use SCADA systems and that is the machinery and assets used in the factories and plants; all are disseminated over a large geographical area.
Industries and companies in public and private sectors use this technology to maintain and control efficiency, distribute real-time data for smarter decisions, and timely communicate system issues to alleviate downtime.
Now that you know the commonality between these industries and why they use SCADA systems let’s explore which industries are using these systems.
(1) Food and Beverage
Food and beverage industry significantly benefit from SCADA systems. This industry consists of service, retail, distribution, and production sectors. With SCADA systems, the food and beverage sector can control and monitor data to ensure the quality and safety of products.
(2) Water Treatment
Municipal and state utilize SCADA systems to regulate and monitor the flow of water, pipe pressure, and reservoir levels. Additionally, if there is a problem such as a leak or contamination during processing or along the supply chain, these systems can be used to identify and resolve these problems.
(3) Oil and Gas
One of the greatest examples of SCADA integration is the oil and gas industry. SCADA systems control and monitor oil and gas pipelines, enable wireless control, and assist in automating petrochemical and refinery stations.
These processes, if not handled correctly, can cause significant damage to health and property. Therefore, SCADA systems closely monitor all operations and instantly provide a remedy to critical errors.
Manufacturing industry largely benefits from SCADA systems. It helps manage parts lists, regulate robots and other industrial automation. With the help of this technology, businesses can also monitor quality and control manufacturing processes.
(5) Electric Utilities
SCADA systems are also used by electric utilities that help them in detecting real-time current flow and voltage of remote sites. These systems help electric utilities in monitoring the operation of power breakers, as well as in taking power grid on or off.
Best SCADA Platforms
To exploit the maximum potential of SCADA systems, different platforms are used. Albeit there are many great SCADA platforms like Wonderware Systems Platform. What makes these programs unique is that they can be programmed and integrated with modern languages like PHP, Python, HTML5, and MySQL.
Now that we know how SCADA systems are helping industries, we can safely say that these systems are critical for any industrial application.
Moreover, it is undeniable that SCADA systems have brought a major automation transformation within industrial operations. The level of automation these systems provide is undoubtedly surreal. Before this technology humans were exposed to risk by working under an unsafe environment.
However, now, industrial assets and machinery can be monitored and controlled from a safe distance. As a result, not only industries save time, enjoy a massive reduction in cost and effort, but also keep its employees safe while keeping the production quality excellent.
Also, SCADA systems can learn the process in real-time and monitor several things in no-time. No matter how complex are the industrial processes, this technology can handle all. Moreover, data is controlled effectively as the data is both distributed and centralized.
So, what are you waiting for? If you are a businessman or an industrialist and looking for ways to enhance your production, implement SCADA systems right away! Contact us to get a headstart