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New process visualisation system improves performance

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Siemens Automation and Drives (A&D) is now supplying version 6.2 of its Simatic WinCC process visualisation system. The new version is not only more user-friendly but now comes with additional display functions for messages and curves. Simatic WinCC v6.2 also features greater database capacity plus a series of new options. As a result, WinCC can now also be used as a Simatic Maintenance Station for efficient plant maintenance.

With Simatic WinCC v6.2, the planning engineer can now integrate Microsoft Windows objects in the visualisation interface of the runtime application. This allows the plant controller to use the familiar on-screen Windows elements such as menus, toolbars, software buttons and combination dialogue boxes. The new Alarm Hiding function can be used to suppress unimportant status messages displayed on screen but the messages continue to be archived in the background. With the new WinCC Trend Controls, it is now possible to show current values and historical process values on the same curve for purposes of clarity. For example, it is possible to display only the Y axis of the selected curve.

Configuration

The new WinCC option, Simatic Maintenance Station, assists the maintenance engineer. The software is installed at the same time as the basic WinCC system so that the operator can easily switch between process visualisation and maintenance. It is especially easy to configure the Maintenance Station. The user only has to select the automation systems to be mapped in the Step 7 engineering tool; the Maintenance Station then recognises the equipment belonging to the plant and automatically creates a hierarchically structured maintenance image based on overlapping WinCC windows. During operation, the Maintenance Station shows all the automation components relevant to maintenance - such as control units, switchgear and drives - and also monitors the current status of the plant. It is not only possible to plan the reaction to faults but also to plan suitable maintenance measures in advance, in order to make efficient use of existing maintenance resources.

The database capacity has been increased due to the integration of Microsoft SQL Server 2005 in Simatic WinCC V6.2. As a result, a Central Archive Server can now be set up for purposes of central process data archiving, whereby any Microsoft Windows computer can be configured with the WinCC/Connectivity Station option for access to all the WinCC archives.

New functionality

There are two new WinCC options. A project version numbering tool which can be used to manage project versions has been added to WinCC/Audit. A new feature is WinCC/ChangeControl for back-trackable project management and version numbering. With WinCC/Redundancy, message acknowledgements, signal comments and states as well as internal variables can be compared with and matched to each other in set-ups where redundant WinCC stations are used. Finally, in the case of the WinCC/Web Navigator, the web clients are integrated in the central, plant-wide user administration system with Simatic Logon. This meets the high requirements of the pharmaceutical and food industries for a back-tracking capability.

Further information is available at www.siemens.com/wincc.

22 November 2006

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