Analytical instrumentation
Cables and accessories
Control systems and automation
Earthing and lightning protection
Pressure and level measurement
Energy and enviroFiciency
Ian Jandrell
often have the privilege of visiting other universities – some
All South African universities have some way to go before they
in South Africa, and some abroad – with the specific objective
can really claim to be excellent - but let me assure you that they
of scrutinising their engineering education processes and
are all world-class.
outcomes in order to ensure that we all reach the agreed levels.
The most rewarding aspect of any visit to other universities is to
Indeed I have had the privilege of visiting a number of national
interact with students - even when this interaction requires the
bodies whose job it is to accredit engineering programmes in
services of a translator.
their various nations.
South Africa is producing excellent engineering graduates. I defy
Well, what blows my mind is the openness with which these
anyone who speaks to any student in any of the South African
processes are carried out.
programmes to not leave that experience a better informed and
a highly impressed person. This is the nature of engineering
Imagine the scenario – you arrive, and want to see all the dirty
education, and a spin-off of the desire to scrutinise ourselves and
laundry. And you are shown it!
each other – and to allow that process to take place.
Why? Because we are all interested in only one thing –
South Africa may face many challenges – but we continue to
graduate world-class engineers.
Let me be honest: none of us is perfect. Furthermore, especially
in South Africa, state funding for engineering programmes
is not what it should be if we are genuine about our national
commitment to science and engineering education. But we are
Improvement is a team sport. I learned many years ago that the
best way to improve is to surround yourself with the smartest
and most outspoken people – people who will not hesitate to
point out faults and errors.
Ian Jandrell
Pr Eng,
BSc (Eng) GDE PhD,
Some years after that I learned to listen to them…
Genuine improvements come from two key ingredients: the will
to achieve excellence, and the willingness to listen to criticism.
Electricity+Control is supported by:
The views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher, the editor, SAAEs, SAEE, CESA, IESSA or Copper Development Association Africa
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
• Analytical instrumentation
• Cables and accessories
• Control systems and automation
• Earthing and lightning protection
• Pressure and level measurement
• Energy and enviroFiciency
Analytical instrumentation
Preventative role of PAT testing
By J Wallace, Seaward Group
Round UP
Cables and accessories
Reducing failure in underground cables
By Y Wang, EA Technology Group
Round UP
E+C OCT 2013 cover.indd 1
Control systems and automation
Logic solver application software and operator interface
By RJ Perry, control systems consultant
Measuring malt spirit strength
By N Moffat, Rototherm Canongate Technology
Round UP
2013/09/20 10:28:45 AM
SIMATIC WinCC from Siemens
is a scalable process visualisation
system with powerful functions
for monitoring automated processes. Read more on page 31.
Earthing and lightning protection
Copper electrical wiring for safety
By E Swanepoel, Copper Development Association Africa (CDAA)
Lightning and surge protection for PV systems on solar plants
By A Barwise, DEHN Protection South Africa
Round UP
Pressure and level measurement
Process calibration tools for pressure
By G van Rooy, Comtest
Round UP
1 Comment
31 Cover story
64 Light+Current
65 Bizz Buzz
68 Social Engineers
72 Clipboard
Energy and enviroFiciency
VSDs – power saving in cooling pump systems
By A Chalmers, Irri-Gator Products
Round UP
Jenny Warwick
Advertising Managers:
Helen Couvaras and Heidi Jandrell
Wendy Izgorsek
Karen Smith
Editorial Technical Director:
Ian Jandrell
Reader Enquiries:
Radha Naidoo
Design & Layout:
Adél JvR Bothma
Quarter 2 (April – June 2013)
Paid circulation: 57
Free circulation: 4696
Total circulation: 4753
Published monthly by:
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October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Analytical instrumentation
Preventative role of PAT testing
By J Wallace, Seaward Group
There is an onus on the duty holder to ensure that equipment in the workplace is maintained to prevent danger. It is this obligation that introduces
an implied requirement to perform periodic inspection and testing because without such actions, the duty holder will be unable to establish the
potential dangers posed by faulty or unsafe appliances.
he recommendation of the recent Löfstedt Review that the
health and safety executive further clarifies the requirement
for portable appliance testing (PAT) promises to bring some
much needed clarity to a situation that has long been the subject of
debate and discussion.
In particular, any moves to encourage a sensible and common
sense approach to PAT should also help to improve professional
standards in the industry for the benefit of all involved in maintaining
a safe working environment. The periodic testing of portable electric
appliances has been performed in the UK for over three decades and
within certain sectors it was common practice before the introduction
of the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989.
The Electricity at Work Regulations 1989 sets out to raise the
standards of safety within industry and commerce, but nowhere in
the documentation is there a specific requirement for the testing of
portable appliances. There is, however, an onus on the duty holder
to ensure that equipment in the workplace is maintained to prevent
danger. It is this obligation that introduces an implied requirement
to perform periodic inspection and testing because without such actions, the duty holder will be unable to establish the potential dangers
posed by faulty or unsafe appliances.
Existing guidance and practices
To clarify the issue of in-service periodic inspection and testing of
electrical appliances, both the Health and Safety Executive and the
IET (formerly IEE) have produced guidance documents, based on the
advice and experience provided by experts in the various sectors.
Using a process of risk assessment, a duty holder is able to refer
to these guidance documents to determine whether inspection and
testing is appropriate and, if so, how often this should be taken.
This rationale is generally regarded as sound and realistic by the
majority. However, there are some situations where misinformation
and an over-zealous interpretation of the requirements have led to
claims of over compliance.
Who performs PAT?
An analysis of the data associated with the purchase of PAT instrumentation shows that the type of users is broken down into
two groups. Around 45% of users are individual organisations or
companies who perform their own in-house testing and 55% are
electrical contractors and specialist PAT companies providing a test
service on a sub-contract basis. Further investigation of the differ4
Electricity+Control October ‘13
ences in testing regimes between different types of user, shows that
organisations that perform their own tests tend to integrate portable
appliance inspection and testing into broader health and safety and
asset management policies.
Rates of test failure
The extent of portable appliance test failure is illustrated by an industry
analysis of 80 000 portable appliance inspection and test reports that
have been performed by both in-house test engineers and contract
test companies across a wide range of industry sectors.
Detailed analysis of 43 000 records from organisations in different sectors showed an average electrical appliance failure rate of
1,7% - indicating that the presence of over 1 300 potentially dangerous appliances in the full sample would not have been discovered if
inspection and testing had not been carried out.
Total Tests
Total Fails
% Fails
Housing Association
4 356
Local Authority A
8 713
Local Authority B
2 450
16 271
Total Tests
Total Fails
% Fails
Process Industry A
1 539
Car Manufacturer
1 018
Engineering Company A
Factory Workshop
3 010
Total Tests
Total Fails
% Fails
University A
9 039
Further Ed College
1 829
University B
3 305
University C
9 965
24 138
Table 1: Within different sectors the results also confirmed the presence of
different levels of risk associated with the type of equipment being used,
their patterns of use and the working environment (actual company and
organisation names have been withheld).
ESC – Electricity Safety Council
FPA – Fire Protection Association
HSE – Health & Safety Executive
PAT – Portable Appliance Testing
WHS – Work, Health & Safety
Take note
These results (see Table 1) not only demonstrate the value of the
inspection and test process but also confirm that the general advice
and guidance provided by the IEE Code of Practice is an appropriate
and realistic approach to this subject.
Nature of faults
Analytical instrumentation
•In-service testing of portable electric devices is important.
•Unsafe electric devices pose many risks.
•Often, equipment is not tested at all.
is available), each year faulty appliances and leads were identified as
the cause of between 25% and 32% of accidental fires in non dwelling type buildings.
According to statistics collated by the Fire Protection Association
(FPA), between 2000 and 2005, in 346 reported fires that were electrical in origin in business premises, the reported losses totalled over
£178 M, with an average loss per incident of over £51 000.
Examination of the reasons for test failure show that there was a high
proportion which failed visual inspection due to defects in the cable,
appliance enclosure or the mains plug.
However, approximately a third of those items which failed had
defective protective conductors or insulation and these faults could
only be detected by carrying out specialist electrical testing or checking using an appropriate test instrument.
Initial and repeat inspections
The nature of portable appliance inspection and testing regimes
means that the number of failed appliances recorded is always likely
to be higher during an initial test programme – simply because items
may have been in use for an extended period before testing has been
Clearly the rate of test failures is likely to decline during subsequent reviews, as more potentially defective equipment is routinely
identified and rectified.
This is best illustrated by recent sequences of tests undertaken
by trading standards officers in a programme funded by the Electrical
Safety Council. In this programme the average proportion of defects
discovered during ‘first-time’ appliance testing of a range of electrical
equipment was 12%.
Figure 1: Causes of accidental fires in buildings other than dwellings from
1999/2000 to 2010/11. Courtesy: Fire Statistics, Great Britain).
Consequences of electrical faults
Individual experiences
There is considerable evidence that faulty electrical appliances continue to pose a real threat to people and property.
In the opening remarks on electrical safety included in the Löfstedt
Review, reference is made to the 1 000 workplace accidents and 30
fatalities involving electric shock and burns that are reported to the
Health and Safety Executive each year.
However electric shock and electrocution represent only part of
the problem associated with faulty electrical items and full consideration also needs to be made of the contributory role of faulty electrical
appliances in property fires which are also a major cause of deaths,
injuries and considerable costs to businesses.
In particular, successive annual Fire Statistics show that faulty appliances and leads continue to pose the single most common problem
as the main cause of accidental fires in other buildings (non dwellings).
In 2011 faulty appliances and leads were the cause of 25% of all
accidental fires in non-residential buildings.
Between 2000 and 2011 (excluding 2010 for which no breakdown
Other evidence demonstrating the dangers and hazards associated
with the use of unsafe electrical appliances featured strongly at the
Electrical Safety Council’s 2013 Product Safety Conference, where a
number of organisations reported on their own experiences.
Individual presentations included the following facts:
• London Fire Brigade reported 891 fires caused by large domestic
appliances in the period 2008 - 2011.
• Statistics from Essex Fire and Rescue showed that from 2006 2008 there were 438 primary fires as a result of faulty electrical
appliances, causing 75 casualties.
• An appliance testing programme carried out by the trading
standards office of Suffolk County Council revealed that 26% of
electrical items tested were non-compliant and 45% were unsafe.
• A safety campaign carried out by Essex trading standards officers
revealed that 5,8% of the electrical items tested were found to be
faulty. It estimated that if all the faults had led to fires, the total
costs could have been as high as £88 M.
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Analytical instrumentation
As part of a fire safety campaign run by Bolsover District Council,
120 electrical appliances were tested and 47 faulty items had to
be replaced.
Counterfeit electrical goods
Portable appliance inspection and testing is also one of the main ways
in which dangerous counterfeit electrical equipment is identified.
BEAMA6 recently summarised the problems related to the infiltration of traditional supply chains by counterfeit electrical equipment that had not been subject to normal compliance testing and
Approximately £30 M of counterfeit electrical products entered the
United Kingdom market in 2010. Counterfeit electrical products include
everything from domestic appliances to cables and leads, lighting
products, power tools and wiring accessories. 12,9 million counterfeit
products have been seized and destroyed in the last 10 years.
Cost of PAT
There is a great deal of recorded evidence that illustrates that electrical
inspection and testing has identified many situations where defective
equipment could have caused electrocution or fire.
In the vast number of cases, the cost of taking a reasonable approach to inspection and testing can be considerably lower than that
associated with other forms of assessing health and safety risks – and
certainly lower than the likely financial cost of any personal injury
or fire damage to premises that can result from faulty appliances
remaining undetected.
For example, a basic test instrument, with a training video and
test record book, can be purchased for a few hundred pounds. Such
a system should have a life of up to 10 years. A small organisation
with 100 appliances should be able to perform the inspection and
testing in less than a day each year. In such an example the company
will therefore have a minimal cost associated with this aspect of its
electrical health and safety policy.
With larger organisations the cost will be proportional to size and
type of industry. However there are excellent test products, software
and accessories available which can greatly reduce the time associated with the inspection and testing process.
Achieving compliance
In reality, a duty holder can demonstrate compliance with the regulations by a variety of means, of which inspection and testing is one, and
it is up to the duty holder to determine how this can best be achieved
in relation to the risk posed in their own particular environment.
In doing so, adequate electrical safety measures can be - and in
many cases are already being - maintained without the imposition
of an overly excessive test regime.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Figure 2: Demonstrating compliance.
The existing regulations and guidance notes have proved themselves
as the basis of successful preventative maintenance programmes,
although it is also clear that there are undoubtedly situations where
there has been over zealous implementation of the inspection and
test regime.
In an attempt to address this concern, two guidance booklets have
been produced from within the PAT industry to help put the subject
of inspection and test into perspective and to help duty holders act
in a reasonable and practical manner.
‘A responsible PAT testing business builder’ is aimed at the PAT
testing contractor and ‘a common sense approach to electrical safety’
is intended for use by in-house health and safety professionals.
There is indisputable evidence that the periodic in-service inspection
and testing of portable electrical equipment saves lives and prevents
fires that may otherwise have caused injuries, loss of life and serious
damage to work premises.
In this respect the Electricity at Work Regulations 1989, HSE
Memorandum of Guidance and the IEE Code of Practice provide
sound advice based on industry experience and quantifiable evidence.
The process of electrical inspection and testing has therefore
made a significant contribution to improving and maintaining safety
in the workplace, although it is clear that there is a continuing need
to both educate the contractors who provide this service and better
inform those organisations who carry out inspection and testing on
their own behalf.
Clearly a problem rests with the actions of unethical contractors
and in this respect the industry needs to consider how higher levels
of responsibility and professionalism among PAT contractors can be
encouraged. This is an area where a number of the electrical trade
organisations could play a significant role in helping to raise standards
within the industry.
Analytical instrumentation
The clarification on PAT recommended by the Löfstedt Review
is therefore very welcome and should help to encourage a
better and more widespread understanding of this vitally
important area of health and safety.
[1] Löfstedt Review. 2011. Reclaiming health and safety for
[2] Electricity at Work Regulations. 1989. Health and Safety
Executive/ Local Authorities Enforcement Liaison Committee (HELA).
[3] Market figures derived from analysis of Seaward Group
customer database.
[4] Analysis of test records supplied by Hawkesworth Appliance Testing and from instruments returned to Seaward
for calibration and repair.
[5] ESC Product Safety Conference, October 2011. Fire Statistics, Great Britain, from 2010-2011.
[6] RiskFix Newsletter. 2011. Risk Management.
[7] ESC Product Safety Conference. 2011. BEAMA Anti Counterfeit Presentation.
Jim Wallace is associate director of the Seaward
Group, where he heads up the company’s product
development and new technology programmes.
He has been with Seaward for approximately
15 years, during which, as engineering manager
and product and technology manager, he was instrumental in
the development and introduction of a range of advanced test
instruments. Jim is also chairman of the Gambica Electrical Test
Instruments Group and an active member of several IEC standard working groups. Enquiries: Email jimw@seaward.co.uk.
About the author
Counters with no moving parts
s a long-term user of mechanical sensors such as positive displacement meters or turbines for flowmetering applications, who
better than you knows the serious disadvantages of these moving
parts: they cause drift overtime, they are subject to wear and therefore require all too frequent maintenance in order to avoid the risk of
breakdown - even the filters require attention.
Endress+Hauser can assist to reduce periodic maintenance of your
instrumentation without influencing process availability.The solution
is to use counters with no moving parts, offering better performance
and reducing the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) compared to their
mechanical counterparts. How would you like a sensor that you could
easily install in your existing application that would offer reliable event
diagnosis according to NAMUR?
This Coriolis flowmeter simultaneously measures mass, volume,
density and temperature: you do not need to combine several device
technologies. Measuring either volume or direct mass, the device
offers linear accuracy and higher repeatability. Hydraulic losses are
reduced.The high resonance frequency enables total immunity to process vibrations.The detection of build-up increases process reliability.
The measuring principle is completely applicable to homogeneous
single-phase fluids (viscosity < 20000cP), solutions that include dissolved substances and batch applications lasting more than 10 seconds. Designed according to SILIEC61508, the Promass E 200 fits for
SIL2 or SIL3 safety applications. Intrinsically safe or explosion-proof
options meet the major hazardous area application requirements.
The solution meets the requirements of the chemical, oil and gas,
and life sciences industries. The measurement is not influenced by
the medium’s viscosity and the flow profile, therefore no inlet run is
required. Better still, no holder and no filtration is required! You can
use existing HART cabling to connect the sensor to the network (PLC,
remote I/O, etc).
Enquiries: Frans van den Berg. Tel. 011 262 8000 or email info@
Ground resistance tester
est Instruments Africa (TIA) has launched a 600 V, rugged,
safe (CAT IV), clamp-on ground resistance tester. Chauvin
Arnoux’s CA6416/17 is ergonomically designed specifically for
ground measurements in urban areas - typically with limited access to set up ground stakes. The CA6416/17 ground clamps can
be used to perform selective measurements on a parallel ground
system without disconnecting conductors. The CA6416/17 ground
clamps can be used in the following applications:
• Measurement of grounds in parallel on MV/LV installations
• Ground measurements in urban areas, and on buildings with
Faraday cages
• Measurements on telecommunications lines
• Measurements in the railway sector
• Ground measurement on buried or surface pipelines
High-performance magnetic materials are used to limit the unit’s
weight. Minimal effort is required to keep the clamp open due to a
new feature – a force compensation system installed on the trigger – which optimises the handling of the product while reducing
user fatigue. A protective guard prevents the user’s hand from
slipping during measurements
and a moulded-silicone rotary
switch is can easily be operated
even when wearing safety gloves.
Enquiries: Justin Clarkson.
Tel. 011 608 8541. Visit www.
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Analytical instrumentation
Analytical instrumentation
New high temperature infrared thermometer
he Comtest Group, Fluke’s authorised
Test and Measurement distributor, has
announced the arrival of the new highly accurate Fluke 572-2, high temperature, infrared thermometer for extreme heat conditions
over long distances.Typical applications are:
• Manufacturing: repair and maintenance
of motors, pumps with data logging
• Electrical HVAC installation: repair and
maintenance of panels, fuses, circuit
breakers, compressors, ducts, and remote access vents
• Power utility: measurement of nodes
between power transmission and distribution
• Metals: maintenance and quality control
Miniature sensor for
accurate distance
aumer has made yet another move towards
miniaturisation with the IWFM 05U9701/S05
inductive linear sensor.Thanks to its unique compact design (5 x 5 x 32 mm), it can be installed in
the most confined spaces. The IWFM 05U9701/
S05 is the smallest rectangular inductive sensor
with linear output measurement available on
the market. Taken together with its cylindrical
counterpart, the IWRM 04, Baumer now has the
smallest distance-measuring inductive sensors
in the world, for both types.
The small size of the sensor makes it possible
to measure distances in applications that has not
been possible until now. That means anywhere
where a sensor with a cylindrical housing would
be too long.
At the same time, this rectangular ‘baby’
version gives an impressive performance. With
a high resolution of 1 micron at a measuring
distance of 1 millimetre, very small movements
can be measured, even at different temperatures.
With a response time of only 0,5 milliseconds,
measurements can be made in very fast applications. Repeatability is 0,01 millimetres.This linear
sensor can be used in a wide range of applications, but is especially suited to handling and
assembly or in machine tools.
Controls. Tel. 011 791
6000 or email sales@
Electricity+Control October ‘13
where there is monitoring of temperature during the process
• Petrochemicals: maintenance of the
exterior of the kiln (temperature), monitoring the surface temperature of the
reformer tubes
The Fluke 572-2 measures between -30°C to
900°C with ±1% accuracy. Measurements
from further away are accurate with a 60:1
distance-to-spot ratio with dual laser sighting
for fast, accurate targeting. It displays current
temperature plus MAX, MIN, DIF, and AVG
temperature with adjustable emissivity and
predefined emissivity tables.
The unit features a multiple language
(user select) interface and is compatible with
standard K-type mini-connector thermocouple probe (KTC), and is shipped with a USB
2.0 computer interface cable.
Enquiries: Comtest. Tel. 011 608 8520 or email
First in torque measurement
orenz Messtechnik has developed a digital torque transducer which interfaces
directly with PC software to log and record torque, speed and angle measurements. The DR-3000 rotating torque transducers are available in capacities from 0,5
to 5'000 Nm, and are supplied with traceable calibration certificates and free PC
data logging software.
Founded in 1985, Lorenz Messtechnik GmbH operates as a family-run company in
Afldorf, Germany, specialising in the manufacture of torque and force transducers,
as well as signal conditioning equipment.
The Lorenz product range includes sensors for a wide variety of applications, including static and rotating torque transducers with various mounting options, such
as flange, shaft, and hub-type sensors. The Lorenz range of measurement equipment
is German-engineered, accurate, reliable, and affordable in comparison with other
competing manufacturers.
Uses for torque measurement span across a number of industries, from analysing motor torque efficiency in test beds, monitoring assembly forces in automated
processes, to measuring viscosity in quality monitoring applications.
The DR-3000 is the first of its kind in torque measurement. Lorenz has taken out
the hassle of additional amplifiers, indicators and data logging systems by providing
an elegant digital
Elexsys supplies
the entire range
of Lorenz sensors
and amplifiers, and
is the sole representative for Lorenz Messtechnik in
Enquiries: George
Chapman. Tel. 021
930 0214 or email
Point level detection
ammapilot FTG20, the latest instrument
from Endress+Hauser for point level detection, combines all of the strengths of the
brand – uncompromising quality, the highest
degree of safety for users, more efficient processes and substantial cost savings over its
entire lifecycle.
Based on Geiger-Müller technology, the
Gammapilot FTG20 has the highest measurement sensitivity for the automation industry
in its class.The Gammapilot FTG20 consists of
two separate units. A detector which contains
one to three Geiger-Müller counter tubes and
a transmitter.
The latter, first converts the measured value
into a switching command and then provides
the switching in form of a relay or a 8/16 mA
output. Both units (detector and transmitter)
are connected via a cable which is available
in lengths of 5, 10 and 20 m.This guarantees
the highest degree of flexibility in installation.
The device features a modular design
and can therefore be used with one, two or
even three Geiger-Müller counter tubes with
very high sensitivity. In addition, the concept
permits the device to fit perfectly into any
application and to reach very low radiation
values even in the shortest switching time of
0,4 seconds.
The separate transmitter provides additional
safety. The installation staff can commission
the instrument without being exposed to the
radiation path ie less radiation than in conventional radiometric point level detectors.
The Gammapilot FTG20 uses the HistoROM
concept which has already been tried and
tested in other product lines.
Factors such as ease of installation and
commissioning due to the separate housing
concept provide cost savings over its entire
The HistoROM system provides self-monitoring of electronics and all of the data relevant
to the operation of the instrument is cyclically
stored. This makes recalibration in case of the
exchange of electronics superfluous. Normal
decay is compensated for in the software.
Enquiries: Jan Gerritsen. Tel. 011 262 8000 or
email info@za.endress.com.
Analytical instrumentation
Analytical instrumentation
New ultra-compact, multi-function, touch screen oscilloscope
est Instruments Africa (TIA) has introduced the brand new, simple to handle,
compact and lightweight, METRIX OX 6000
II models which combine the functions of a
digital oscilloscope, a multimeter, a recorder
and an FFT/harmonic analyser. With only 32
keys for direct access to the different modes
and parameters, a universal ‘Windows-like’
menu is available in five languages. The
keyboard on the front panel can be used for
selection or immediate adjustments (time
base, printing, etc). The touch screen and
magnetic stylus allows users to modify settings directly on the screen, using graphic
elements that are moveable, such as the
position of the traces, the trigger level, the
cursors or the zoom. In performance terms,
the OX 6000 II models offer fast sampling
and high resolution with their 10-bit / 1 GS/s
converter, 50 GS/s sampling on periodic
signals and 2 ns transient capture function to
avoid undersampling. In oscilloscope mode,
the OX 6000 II models offer a wide range of
triggering possibilities: edge, pulse width,
delay, count.
Equipped with two 4,000-count TRMS multimeters, the OX 6000 II models can be used
for traditional voltage, resistance, continuity,
capacitance and frequency measurements,
as well as for diode tests. In this mode, the
bandwidth is 200 kHz. In multimeter mode,
triggering on measurement thresholds is
available on both channels. Calculated on 2
500 points, the FFT analysis can be set automatically using the autoset key. The 10-bit
conversion provides an improved dynamic
range of 60 dB. The OX 6000 II models can
record very slow signals with a recording
rate in pt/s, min. or h over long periods.Their
acquisition interval can be as little as 40 μs
between two measurements.
Enquiries: Justin Clarkson. Tel. 011 608 8541.
Visit www.testinstrumentsafrica.com.
High performance process controller – short case
KC Instrument has introduced the FB100 high performance temperature/process controller with an accuracy of 0,1%.
The 1/16 DIN is housed in a panel saving 74 mm short case which
has NEMA4X and IP66 waterproof and dustproof protection.
Sampling time can be selected as 50 ms, 100 ms, or 250 ms depending on the application. A special start-up tuning feature calculates
optimum PID values and eliminates time that conventional autotuning or a more advanced Brilliant II autotuning feature which allows
selectable PID control. Available from Temperature Controls, the
FB100 has a universal input and three digital outputs. A multi-memory
area function stores up to eight sets of control parameters and may
be set easily through front key operation, DI, or communications.
The multi-memory area may be used to create up to 16 segments of
ramp/soak control.
A loader port comes standard to permit communication with a
PC using its USB port. Win-UCI software is provided to make data
monitoring/logging easy in setting control parameters or copying
parameters to another FB series controller via PC. Communication
capabilities include RS-232C, RS-422A, RS-485
and Modbus. Intercontroller communication is
an available option using a second port. Other
options include up to four event alarms, heater
break alarm, analogue re-transmission output,
remote setpoint, power feed forward function
and feedback resistance (FBR).
Enquiries: Tel. 011 791 6000 or email sales@
Contactless flow measurement
eveloped for flow metering of dry bulk
solids with high levels of flow performance, MaxxFlow HTC replaces complicated
or expensive mechanical solutions, such as
impact plates or measuring chutes. With its
completely open profile and low installation
height, MaxxFlow HTC from SWR, measures
almost all dry solids from the exit of prefeeding devices such as screw conveyors,
air slides, rotary valves, bucket elevators
and other feeders. The Maxxflow HTC works
without any mechanical system and requires
no expensive, additional installation height,
irrespective of the material to be measured
Electricity+Control October ‘13
in large mass flows. The device is suitable
whenever large quantities of bulk solids have
to be measured downstream of mechanical
conveyor systems. There is no upper limit to
the flow rate. Maxxflow HTC is ideal for mass
flow measurement for flows in excess of
20 t/h and is pressure resistant up to 10 bar in
temperatures of up to 12O°C.The instrument
can be installed on round pipes or ducts, and
operates according to the latest microprocessor technology.The instrument is dust-proof,
and can be installed at an angle if required.
The mass flow measurement is independent
of flow characteristics, and with no mov-
ing parts in the system, no maintenance is
required. SWR Engineering is represented
locally by OEN Enterprises.
Enquiries: Mike Andrews. Tel. 011 675 4447 or
email mike@oenenterprises.co.za.
Analytical instrumentation
HD modular control system
KC Instrument has introduced the new
SRZ DIN rail mounted high-density
modular system with a sample cycle time
of 250 ms providing an accuracy 0,2%. Control method is selectable between position
proportional control and cascade control in
addition to the typical heat only and heat/cool
methods. The Brilliant PID II algorithm with
enhanced tuning achieves a quick rise/drop
to setpoint and with greater protection from
overshoot/undershoot caused by external
disturbances. True universal input includes
10 thermocouples types, RTD, voltage or
current. A single module may provide up to
four channels of heat only or two heat/cool of
which up to 16 modules may be connected.
Four assignable CT inputs are provided
for HBA including three phase. Numerous
alarms choices include loop break alarm,
heater break alarm and alarm interlock. CT
modules and DIO modules may be used to
provide expanded options. Additional functions include auto-tuning and start-up tuning,
eight memory areas which can be used for
ramp/soak applications, peak current limit,
output distribution function, feed forward,
differential setpoint and an auto temperature
rise learning function so all channels reach
setpoint at the same time, eliminating partial
burns or thermal swelling.
Available from Temperature Controls, the
SRZ is designed for mounting on the inside
of an instrument panel to save space and
to replace banks of discrete temperature
controllers. Addition or removal of individual
modules can be easily done without cycling
power to the unit. It is an excellent solution
for adding multi-zone PID temperature control to new equipment or retrofit existing
control panels. This controller may also be
connected to a PC, touch screen or PLC and
linked together to operate as one system.
It may also be connected to a third party
machine interface already in operation on
the machine. The flexibility of the SRZ series makes it an ideal instrument for both
end-users and the OEM market in a wide
range of industries including extrusion,
semiconductor, test stands, environmental
chambers, plastics, packaging and heatrelated processes.
Enquiries: Tel. 011 791 6000 or email sales@
Digital measurement made simple
uilt for logging and recording measurement data, the Lorenz LCV-USB2
digital amplifier from Elexsys allows users to easily monitor and record
measurement values from sensors such as load cells, force and torque
transducers. The LCV-USB2 is available with strain, voltage, or current input,
and includes free PC software for data analysis. The Lorenz LCV-USB2 digital
amplifier may be coupled with virtually any analogue transducer to produce
a digital output, and is supplied with traceable calibration certificates and free
PC data logging software. The LCV-USB2 digital amplifier supports a range of
applications across industries. From press fit monitoring, weighing applications, rope force or pulley measurement, capturing motor torque output, or
measuring ball bearing friction, the LCV-USB2 in-line amplifier works with
most measurement sensors to provide detailed measurement information.
Elexsys supplies the entire range of Lorenz sensors and amplifiers, and is the
sole representative for Lorenz Messtechnik in Africa.
Enquiries: George Chapman. Tel. 021 930 0214 or email sales@elexsys.co.za
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Cables and accessories
Reducing failure in
underground cables
By Y Wang, EA Technology Group
Launched in 2013, the ‘cable data collector’ is a test instrument which measures partial discharge activity in live distribution voltage cables,
without the need to de-energise them.
hen maintained in good condition, underground cable
distribution systems provide an exceptionally high security
of supply compared with overhead line systems, due to a
low incidence of failure from external causes such as severe weather
or external accidents. However, underground cables are subject to
deterioration from a range of root-causes, and without dedicated asset
management, the systems will inevitably under-perform.
As most cable failure root causes can be traced back to the manufacture, installation and operation phases, it is believed that utility
cable asset management should start at an early stage and continue
throughout the cable’s lifecycle. Management involvement is required
from the procurement phase, through installation and maintenance –
right up to replacement at the end of the cable’s service life.
has become the globally preferred cable for both transmission and
distribution underground networks. Failure modes for XLPE cables
include insulation deterioration due to natural ageing, water treeing,
electric treeing and outer metallic sheath arcing. Table 1 shows the
link between cable type, failure mode, and root cause in different
phases in the cable lifecycle.
Failure mode
Root cause
over long term
Partial discharge
Thermal runaway
Local heating
* Mutual heating from
neighbouring cables
* Cable surrounding material
with high thermal resistivity
* Overloading - incorrect design
Moisture ingress
Outer sheath damage
Oil leak
Oil pipe corrosion due to outer
sheath damage
Thermal runaway
As for PILC cable type
* Natural ageing mainly due to
cyclic thermal
* Mechanical aggression
* Manufacture defects
Water treeing
Moisture ingression
* Outer sheath damage
* Without water barrier
* Outer metallic sheath
* Fault joint
Electric treeing
* Defect in insulation
* Thermal ageing
Outer metallic
sheath arcing
* Corrosion due to outer sheath
Thermal runaway
* As for PILC cable-type
Failure modes and root causes
Most cable types used for underground cable distribution networks
are paper-insulated cable, oil filled paper-insulated cable and XLPE,
with the trend of increasing the use of XLPE cable.
Paper-insulated cables with a lead sheath, and protected on the
outside by steel armour tape have, in general, given very good service,
as is evidenced in the fact that many of the pre-war cables are still
giving satisfactory service. In New Zealand, for example, a service
life of 70 years is expected for PILC cables. Failures on PILC cables
are mainly age-related as these cables have reached the end of their
service lives. The main failure mode is deterioration of the paper
insulation over a long term due to partial discharge (PD).
Oil filled paper-insulated cables are known as PD-free in the paper
insulation. This feature gives the cable insulation almost infinite life.
However, many utilities have experienced oil leak issues and treat
oil leaks as the main failure mode. It is easy to know if an oil-filled
cable is leaking oil, but it is expensive to locate and repair the leak.
The oil leak is usually due to metallic sheath corrosion caused by
moisture ingression.
XLPE cables were first installed in the late 1960s; the first generation of XLPE cable had a poor service record with many having a far
shorter service life than expected due to issues in construction, design,
material quality and manufacturing processes. With development
progress in manufacturing techniques and processes, XLPE cable
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Table 1: Cable types, failures, root causes and phases in cable lifecycle.
For almost all cable condition-related failures, the root causes can
be traced back to the manufacture, installation or operation phases
in the cable lifecycle. With installation condition becoming more
difficult and complex as ‘green field’ becomes less available, cable
installation has become the predominant factor in building a reliable
underground cable network. The following examples are related to
cable installation and operation issues.
Figure 2 was taken from a thermal survey that was conducted to assess cable trench soil and backfill material thermal resistivity.
The purpose of installing backfill around the cable is to help cable
heat dissipation. Good cable backfill material should comprise well
graded particles and have stable low thermal resistivity when it loses
its moisture content, and at fully dried state its thermal resistivity can
be expected not to exceed 1.2 Km/W.
Unfortunately an inappropriate material has been used as cable
backfill in Figure 2, as the fine sand contains the opposite physical
and thermal properties of a suitable cable backfill. It was found that
the cable backfill thermal resistivity varied from 3.0 to 7.0 Km/W, thus
exposing the cable to the risk of overheating.
Figure 3: Mutual heating in multiple cables in parallel.
Figure 1: Local heating caused by cable installation configuration. (Substation exit cable photo courtesy AECOM).
In Figure 1 multiple feeder cables are laid over each other without
appropriate separation. The cables are poorly arranged in the trench
with unsuitable material installed as the cable backfill resulting in
overheating and accelerated ageing.
A feeder cable connecting two substations is always joined by
other feeder cables at various locations along its route. Due to space
limitation and the number of cables involved, the location where the
multiple parallel cables share the trench can be a hotspot.
In these hot spots, a PILC cable, usually, will suffer more derating if it has XLPE neighbouring cables, as the maximum operating
temperature is usually limited to 70°C at the conductor, compared
with an operating temperature of 90°C for XLPE cable.
Cable asset management
The goal for utility cable asset management is to achieve highly
reliable performance while keeping the cables in service as long as
possible. This can only be achieved with dedicated asset management
throughout the cable lifecycle, including the stages of procurement,
installation, operation, maintenance, and replacement.
Figure 2: 220 kV Transformer cable buried in sand (photo courtesy AECOM).
• Cables are reliable and offer a secure supply option.
• Cables must be managed over their lifecycle.
•Monitoring devices for cables offer a reliable way of condition management.
ake note
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Cables and accessories
PD – Partial Discharge
PILC – Paper Insulated Lead Covered Cable
VLF – Very Low Frequency
XLPE - Cross Linked Polyethylene
Cables and accessories
Figure 4: Cable lifecycle management.
Finding fault before failure
Launched by EA Technology in 2013, the Cable Data Collector is a
new type of test instrument which measures PD activity in live distribution voltage cables, without the need to de-energise them. This
is a major advantage compared with offline testing, which inevitably
causes disruption.
The instrument detects and quantifies PD activity in cables by measuring radio frequency currents and works with most types of single and
three phase insulated cables at distribution voltages, up to several
miles in length.
The process of capturing PD data with the Cable Data Collector
is quick and simple with expert analysis of the results which include
cable condition reports and recommendations for action – provided
by the author’s company. The company also provides an offline
cable PD mapping service, which is non-invasive and effective on
underground cables up to 66 kV.
The technique involves energising the cables at very low frequencies. This allows the measurement of cable length, by time of flight
measurements, as well as identifying any PD activity in the reflected
waveforms. The company’s software then analyses these results
to produce a comprehensive report on the health of the cable and
identify any areas that may require further investigation or repair.
Both the online and offline testing techniques offer many benefits
compared with extensive and costly physical excavations, to inspect
the condition cables visually. In addition to identifying the presence
of potentially failure-causing PD activity, they are equally valuable
at assuring operators when cables are functioning without PD being
present, and thus at low risk of failure.
Cable failure rates can be reduced by dedicated lifecycle asset management, from cable procurement, through installation, operation,
maintenance right up to replacement at the end of cable service life.
In particular, they can be reduced by eliminating root causes from
the installation phase for new cables, and detecting hidden failures
on aged cables by VLF and PD testing in maintenance stage.
This article is based on a paper presented by Ying Wang at the EEA
(Electricity Engineers’ Association) Conference and Exhibition, New
Zealand, in June 2013.
Following 13 years at AECOM as a principal cable
engineer, Ying Wang joined EA Technology Australia in
March 2012 as principal consultant (power systems),
working on condition-based risk management in power
systems’ asset management for Australian and New
Zealand clients. Based in New Zealand, she is an electrical engineer with 30 years’ engineering consultancy experience in the
electric power and coal mining industries. Enquiries: Email ying.wang@
eatechnology.com.au; john.hartford@eatechnology.com. Tel. 011 432 6958
or email fred@ipiholdings.co.za.
Figure 5: Offline VLF cable PD mapping with the Cable Data Collector.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
About the author
Getting process cabling right
elukabel has developed a wide range of cables for different applications
and diverse operating conditions. These range from extreme temperature applications, to high vibration or corrosive environment applications
amongst others. Similarly, its range of electro-magnetic current (EMC) cables
and accessories has also been developed to withstand tough conditions
with the addition of advanced EMC shielding to ensure the integrity of high
speed data regardless of outside interference.
According to Helukabel South Africa managing director, Doug Gunnewegh, cable failures are a primary cause of stoppages on plants. Likewise,
EMC interference is a primary cause of corrupted data that can slow a plant
down. “Our carefully researched and developed cable solutions ensure that
there is no interference and are also designed to be easier to install and
more durable than traditionally used cabling.
“For example, our advanced EMC glands do not require the cable to be
stripped to connect and are simply clipped-on to make a perfect connection. This eliminates errors on high value installations and once in place
provides a strong connection that is completely shielded from the environment (moisture, gases), as well as from EMC interference,” says Doug. The
EMC glands provide a fast and safe means of connecting cables for plant
and machine construction, robot construction and automation technology.
They are quick and simple to assemble and can be mounted close together
with no locknuts required.They are also designed to provide optimum strain
relief for longer cable runs.
Cables are available for different applications with unique abilities for different industries and applications. Advanced EMC shielding is provided to
ensure high performance of equipment at all times.The cables are specially
designed in Germany with assistance from representatives from various
industries including, machinery construction, automobile production, automation engineering and various other suppliers. Helukabel products are
certified by leading global quality and standards authorities.
Enquiries: Doug Gunnewegh. Tel. 011 462 8752 or email doug.gunnewegh@
Quality industrial cabling is critical to ensure plant reliability.
Cables and accessories
Cables and accessories
Test laboratory for flexible cables
he igus test laboratory has been operating
for over 20 years.The chainflex laboratory
focuses particularly on tests and experiments
that are absolutely necessary for determining the service life and operation of moving
cables, but not supported by the relevant
standard norms and laboratories. There is
an almost infinite variety of cable providers
today, who also sell cables for the so-called
’chain-compatible’ area but the question arises
as to how appropriate these cables are for use.
The commonly used experiments and tests
stipulated in the standards meet the special
requirements of customers only in the rarest
of cases, since these specific applications simply cannot be described in terms of standards.
It is these customer requirements that
the igus laboratory prescribes. Beyond the
standard norms or rules formulated by bodies such as VDE, UL and others, igus has also
created testing and manufacturing standards
for the chainflex cables, which meet the actual
requirements of cables for the continuously
moving area. igus considers different tests
and reviews:
Material tests: New materials for conductors,
insulation or jackets are developed according
to customers' requirements.
Structural inspections: New superstructures,
manufacturing processes and the related
impacts on the service life are assessed systematically.
In-process quality tests: After the end of
production and the standard tests customary for cable production, random cables are
subjected to special igus tests according to
certain selection algorithms.
Long-term service life tests: These test projects that need to run for up to four years,
examine the actual maximum service life of
the selected cables. The focus on continuous
monitoring of the parameters occurs particularly to detect failure promptly.
Customer specific applications: These tests
- based on the customer-specific movement
sequences of the application and in particular
on critical operations, provide the significant
advantage of defining the limits resulting
from the tests.
The chainflex lab: In order to implement these
tests usefully, systematically and reproducibly, various conditions have to be met.
Enquiries: Ryan Hancock. Tel. 011 312 1848 or
email mailing@igus.de.
Tailor-made cable – short lengths and time
amuna Cavi is a Lapp Group Company
that manufactures industrial cable and is
ISO 9001:2008 certified.The factory is located
in Edolo in Northern Italy. The product range
includes control, instrumentation and data
cables as well as extension/compensating
thermocouple cables and low voltage control
cables. Most of the cables are designed and
manufactured to fulfil customer needs. Cables
manufactured are devoted to measurement
and control, to connect sensors and actuators
and to be installed in dangerous areas such
as intrinsically safe or explosion proof zones.
Industries served include the petrochemical
industry, oil refineries and gas plants, off
shore exploration and drilling, the energy
industry, mining, iron and steel, shipbuilding
and civil engineering. Camuna Cavi is able
to manufacture tailor-made cable in short
lengths and also in a very short time. Another
advantage the company offers is that they
can design and manufacture the AL/HDPE/
PA technology as an alternative to the lead
jacket cable.
Enquiries: Mark Dilchert. Tel. 0861 222 537 or
email Mark.Dilchert@lappgroup.co.za.
Single cable lifeline
ecker Mining South Africa has extended
its range of Tractel personal protection
equipment to now include the new Travsmart lifeline system, which is designed for
safe and reliable use by up to five workers
at one time.
“Travsmart is a single cable lifeline which
facilitates automatic travel through intermediate and turn anchors, with no need for
manual intervention. A user can pass right
or left of the lifeline, without having to unhook the system when changing sides. This
is a key feature for enhanced safety during
installations, cleaning or maintenance,” says
Charlotte Megannon, product manager for
Becker Mining South Africa. “The flexibility of
this system means it can be easily installed in
all configurations, with inclinations of up to
15°.Travsmart can be mounted on traditional
and low strength structures, including under
ceilings, on walls, under an inclined surface,
on the ground or on a post.
“This lifeline cable system, which is
quick to set up without the need for heavy
assembly tools, eliminates the risks of an
incorrectly crimped cable end. Intermediate
supports can be easily changed if necessary
and in the event of a fall, components are
replaced, without having to disassemble the
entire lifeline.”
Travsmart consists of a slider - which is an
opening-type anchor point that slides on the
lifeline cable and can be positioned and removed anywhere along the lifeline. For user
convenience, this device can be opened with
one hand only. This positive-locking safety
slider prevents an unintentional release
from the lifeline. Self-blocking end-pieces
ensure the lifeline cable is always under
tension (100 kg).
Other components include galvanised or
stainless steel cable (5 strands x 19 wires, or 7
strands x 19 wires) with a cable thimble, INRS
shock absorbers, as well as intermediate and
angle supports.
Becker Mining South Africa’s range of
Tractel equipment, which includes lifting
and pulling equipment, as well as personal
protection systems, meets stringent international safety and quality specifications.
The company offers a test, repair and maintenance service to ensure all equipment
operates in perfect condition.
Enquiries: Tel. 011 617 6300 or email info@
Cables and accessories
Cables and accessories
Connectors for renewable energy production
odern wind turbines consist of a large number of highly specialised individual components. They control and regulate the
systems and system parts, from the wind tracking system to the rotor
blade placement equipment and the system for preparing and converting the electrical energy.The system’s efficiency depends substantially
on the interaction of all the integrated systems.
In addition, a number of safety devices are required and stipulated.
A few examples of these are the brake system, fire and lightning
protection equipment and beacon and lighting systems.They all have
in common concepts for a modular configuration for the turbine as
a whole.
The advantage here is obvious - individual components can be
manufactured and tested completely in the factory and the transport
to the installation site and the assembly are uncomplicated. When
servicing is required, this concept allows simple replacement of individual components. This approach is complete when the interfaces
between the respective components have been unambiguously defined and allow simple connection using connectors. New concepts
can consequently follow the current trend which demands a lean and
green product design.
For implementing powerful interfaces, Harting has introduced a
connector series that is coordinated to the current and future requirements in the renewable energy production sector. The starting
point for the new Han-Yellock 10 development was formed by the
larger Han-Yellock 30 and 60 versions that have already established
themselves on the market.
Like these, the new series also features a locking mechanism that
is integrated into the connector housing. The encapsulation that this
achieves offers two important advantages.
On the one hand, it keeps dirt and external mechanical influences
from interfering with the locking function. On the other hand, it provides design leeway for the connector’s moulding. The two housing
halves lock together automatically and directly during the insertion
process. Two stainless steel springs keep the connector locked securely. Simply activating the yellow latching button unlocks the con-
Electricity+Control October ‘13
nector. The patented mechanism decouples the two housing halves,
which then can be separated effortlessly.
The integrated protection against unintentional unlocking is an
important feature. Rotating the yellow pushbutton by 90° is sufficient
to block the unlocking mechanism so that the actuating button cannot be pushed.
The functionally smart design also stands out from existing standard solutions. The connector is made of high-grade metal in two
colours. The bulkhead-mounted housing has a shiny metal surface
that is coordinated to the dark powder coating of the hood. The connectors are easy to clean and have no corners or edges that allow
dirt to collect. In addition to straight models of bulkhead-mounted
housings and hoods, angled versions of both housing types are also
available. The new connectors make it possible to serve most common applications right from the start.
A further outstanding feature relates to the cable entry. In addition to
the cable entry for M20 cable clamps common with this size, versions
with an M25 opening are also available. This is not only significant
for cables with larger core cross-sections.
Elaborately shielded data cables frequently also have outer diameters that push conventional connectors to their limits. Particularly in
view of modern data transmission, the Han-Yellock 10 offers another
innovation: The seal between the bulkhead-mounted housing and
the switch cabinet/device is countersunk into the bulkhead-mounted
The user benefits from the simplified assembly − the seal does not
have to be held separately. Once the bulkhead-mounted housing has
been screwed to the panel and held securely by four screws, there is
a direct electrical connection between the connector and the panel.
This guarantees good EMC properties.
In keeping with the demand for such properties, the hood slides
over the bulkhead-mounted housing during the insertion process. This
nesting supplies a further aspect for good EMC properties.
Enquiries: Errol Mann. Tel. 011 575 0017 or email errol.mann@HARTING.
Test and inspection products
FL has appointed Comtest Technologies as its sole distributor in South Africa
and selected countries in southern Africa, for its test and inspection products.
AFL manufactures, engineers and installs the fibre optic products and equipment
that communications providers need to provide quad-play solutions to their customers. AFL’s test and inspection products consistently meet and exceed customer
needs, delivering exceptional fibre optic test equipment and service. Nick Cole,
AFL’s regional sales manager for the test and inspection division, responsible for
South Africa, has confidence that Comtest will take AFL sales to new heights and
will quickly become a leading force in the test and inspection market in South Africa.
“AFL’s ISO certification and quality practices ensure you receive excellent products
and documentation,” says Cole. Gary Casper, the Comtest product specialist, will
spearhead the sales and marketing for the new agency.
Cables and accessories
Enquiries: Tel. 011 608 8520 or email gcasper@comtest.co.za.
Gary Casper (left), Comtest
product specialist and Nick
Cole, AFL's regional sales
manager (SA).
Connectors for signal, data and
power transmission
hoenix Contact has expanded its product line with new M17, M23, and M40
round-plug connectors. This means a full range of plug connectors from M5
to M58 are now available for signal, data, and power transmission.
The three new models M17, M23, and M40 add moulded round-plug connectors
to the portfolio. The straight and angled plug connectors are available for signal
transmission with up to 17 pins. Six and eight pins are available to transfer power
of up to 70 A.The new molded, angled M23 can be rotated by 240 degrees, allowing
conductors to flexibly and easily exit any device in various directions.
Another new addition to
the range is the Advance
product line with freely
configurable, EMC-protected M23 round-plug connectors for signal transmission
with up to 19 connections.
All new plug connectors
are also optionally available with the Speedcon
quick-locking system for
quick installation in just
half a turn.
Enquiries: Sean
Hadley. Email seanh@
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Control systems and automation
Logic solver application
software and operator interface
By RJ Perry, Control Systems Consultant
Correctly implemented and structured functional logic, together with operator interface displays, can improve overall functional safety management
and reduce systematic failures leading to fewer process plant accidents.
great deal of technical literature exists on sensors with associated self diagnostics and final element ESD valves with trip
action diagnostics and partial stroke testing. However, there
seem to be far fewer application examples available on the logic solver
functional logic structure, including process operator graphics indicating the SIS status and operator/maintenance interface. IEC 61508
Part 3 [1] clearly defines the objectives of safety-related application
software, but as with IEC 61511 [2], provides few practical examples.
Prior to 1998, there were few standards dedicated to functional
safety management as applied to programmable instrumentation
systems, and initially there was a reluctance to use ‘software’ in safety
applications due to issues with reliability and systematic ‘bugs’. A
typical electromechanical trip relay system as shown in Figure 1 was
the standard design of the day, but although reliable with well defined
failure modes, it suffered from many drawbacks such as system
modification and lack of intelligent communications.
Figure 1: Trip relay.
One of the earlier functional safety publications in 1987 was the UK
Health & Safety Executive 2 part guideline on ‘Programmable Electronic Systems in Safety Related Applications [3]’ and in 1989 the
German DIN 19250 [4]. In 1996 ANSI/ISA published S84.01 – ‘Application of Safety Related Systems for the Process Industries [5]’, probably
driven by their impatience of the time being taken by the IEC body in
developing an international approved standard. However, at the end
of 1998 the seven part IEC 61508 [1] – ‘Functional Safety of Electrical/
Electronic/ Programmable Electronic Safety-Related Systems’ started
to be released. This was followed in 2003 by the three-part IEC 61511
[2]. These IEC standards addressed all aspects of functional safety
Electricity+Control October ‘13
from developing an overall safety instrumented system (SIS) safety
requirements specification (SRS), performing a hazard risk analysis to
determine the required safety integrity level (SIL), safety instrumented
function (SIF) hardware and software design realisation, through to
testing and maintenance. In all, these cover 16 Phases collectively
known as the Safety Lifecycle Model. This article explores some key
aspects of an application software safety requirements specification,
which is part of the design realisation Phase 10, together with a typical
control room operator SIS graphic display configuration indicating the
status and health of the SIS.
Software requirements
IEC 61508 Part 3 [1] (mainly for safety equipment manufactures) and
also IEC 61511 Part 1 [2], provide the minimum application software
framework requirements and functional guidelines, they also allude
to the need for a good operator interface, which is lacking with many
current system designs. The embedded software which forms an
integral operating part of the programmable electronics, and also
ensures safety certification, will not be reviewed. Probably one of
the first decisions to be made is which programming language to
use for the safety approved programmable electronic system application software. This will normally be a limited variability language
(LVL), being textual or graphical conforming to IEC 61131-3 [6] such
as Ladder, Boolean including Function Block Diagrams or Sequential Flow Chart also referred to as State Transition Diagrams. The
author’s personal preference is Boolean with Function Blocks, which
has a high degree of configuration flexibility and is well understood
by most control systems practitioners. It is good practice to follow
the external failsafe principle ie logic ‘1’ or 24 Vdc being the normal
healthy state and Logic ‘0’ or 0 Vdc being the safe tripped state, right
through to the functional logic. One of the prime requirements is that
the software safety functions together with applicable software systematic capabilities are well specified to enable initial design; these
are defined in the Software SRS. The software execution plan should
define the strategy for procurement, development (normally by the
SIS Logic Solver vendor), integration with other systems, verification,
validation and any required modifications following a management
of change (MOC) procedure. As with the overall SIS safety lifecycle,
a specific software safety lifecycle is also followed, refer to Figure 2.
Verification and overall software validation testing will use the
typical V-model, where each step is cross checked to ensure compli-
Figure 2: Realisation Phase – Software Safety Lifecycle.
The SIS objective is to provide the operational task requirements
necessary to implement the safety instrumented functions consistent
with the SIS architecture and specified SIL. The Logic Solver application software SRS provides the executable software functionality
with operating properties, and specifies how the inputs condition
the outputs together with associated communications, both internal
and external. Where a physically separate SIS logic solver is used
with a dedicated basic process control system such as a DCS, one
should not underestimate the amount of inter-communications data
required and the integration testing time, this can be up to double
that of a combined DCS/SIS equipment package. The software SRS
as a minimum, needs to cover the following functions as applicable:
• How a safe process state is achieved and maintained
• Safety related communications
• Capacity and response time performance
• Online software modifications
• SIF structure partitioning
• Provide guidance as to application software configuration eg
required function block (FB) library needs and FB linking
• Internal Tag conventions and notations
• Trip Reset requirements including interlock Permissives
• Sensor and final element fault handling including field wiring
• Online testing of SIF loop components (mainly sensors and final
• Interfaces with other systems specifically the DCS
• Operator SIS display graphics with interaction requirements
• Invalid or potentially dangerous operator commands
• Sequence of events recording
Software configuration
The application software structure is partitioned into specific Group
SIFs using certified or well proven function blocks selected from a
library. These are interconnected with maybe a few discrete Boolean
Figure 3: Typical SIF schematic.
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Control systems and automation
ance and correctness that the output requirements of the previous
step satisfies the input requirements of the next. Software is often
developed which consists of both safety and non-safety related functions and these should be segregated within the software structure
wherever practical. An example would be the trip outputs to ESD
isolation valves being safety related and the associated valve status
limit switch feedbacks, which form no safety function perse, but
provides the operator with indication of correct trip action. Should
an ESD trip valve fail to operate on command, this would raise an
Emergency alarm; if it fails with no command say on a trip solenoid
coil failure, then a High priority alarm is raised. It should be noted that
unless it can be demonstrated that failures of non-safety functions
cannot adversely affect the safety related functions, then all software
should be treated as safety related.
ANSI – American National Standards Institute
DCS – Distribution Control System
DIN – Deutsches Institut für Normung eV (German Institute for Standardisation;
ESD – Electrostatic Discharge
FAT – Factory Appliance Testing
FB – Function Block
FMC – Fixed Mobile Convergence
I/O – Input/Output
IEC – International Electrotechnical Commission
ISA – International Standards Authority
LVL – limited variability language
MOC – Management of change
MOS – Maintenance override switch
OOS – Operational override switch
SIF – Safety Integrity Function
SIL – Safety Integrity Level
SIS – Safety Integrity System
SRS – Safety Requirements Specification
Control systems and automation
logic elements to form the required functional safety application. The
connections to other SIS SIF Groups as well as the external communication requirements with the DCS SIS operator’s graphic page are
also defined, refer to Figure 3 for a typical schematic.
Implementing the SIF functional logic using standard function
blocks as shown is very quick and also aids factory acceptance
testing (FAT). The functionality within the function blocks contains
various options, should any option not used be used, it will not
prevent the correct operation of that block, all that may be required
is to apply a dummy logic ‘1’ on that option input. Figure 4 shows a
more detailed function block interconnection for a simplified SIF, ie
no voting requirements. The following is a brief description of those
I/O connections.
The smart sensor 4 – 20 mA input (analogue is always preferred),
is connected to the logic solver analogue input module, this then transmits the digital value in engineering units to the trip value comparator.
The input module also monitors for a faulty input signal, the sensor if
a conventional transmitter, will use internal diagnostics to detect any
malfunction and drive the output signal in a pre-determined direction using the NAMUR NE43 standard, which differentiates between
a transmitter under/over range and an actual fault, refer to Figure 5.
FB 01 - any input fault raises an alarm and if Fault Tolerance
(override) is selected, will initiate an automatic maintenance override
switch (MOS) for a limited time eg four hours to enable corrective
action. The Group Trip input is used to cancel the Input Fault MOS if
in a tripped state. The Process Trip is the safety related function input.
A Time Delay can be included which delays the trip function, this is
always set to at least one or two seconds if Fault Tolerance is used to
allow the sensor to drive to one end, but can be set longer if required
such as on low flow trips, if the process safety time allows. The FO
(first out) Reset is used to reset the ‘hold’ on a Process Trip. First Out
holds any subsequent Process Trip inputs so that the operator can
immediately see on the DCS Graphics what initially tripped the SIS
Group (within one CPU cycle time).
Figure 4: Function Block connections.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
The MOS Permissive is a master MOS switch controlled by the
control room operator following a Work Permit enabling the testing
of a SIF. MOS is for the activation of the individual SIF to perform
testing or maintenance, which overrides the process trip but not its
alarm. OOS is used for an individual SIF operational override switch
to enable a SIF to pass through its trip value during process start-up
mode; it is then automatically removed based on a time interval or
process value or both. An output Fault Alarm is raised on a detected
process input fault.
A 30 minute Trip Warning is given via the DCS if a manual MOS
is not initiated within the four hours of an automatic MOS being
initiated by an Input Fault. The Trip Input is the safety function for
driving the Trip Output FB 08, it may be combined with other SIS
Group trips via an ‘&’ element. The Trip Status is the SIF alarm to
the DCS (if a voting block is not incorporated). The MOS Alarm and
OOS Alarm provides associated SIF status to the DCS, these alarms
are automatically re-initiated after two hours (if still in operation), as
an operator ‘jog’.
FB 08 – a Trip Reset is normally manually initiated, this will reset
the Group Trip Output if all Permissives and Trip Inputs are healthy.
Permissive Input allows the Trip Output to be reset if all are healthy.
The Trip Input is the combined Group safety functions which trip the
output. The Trip Output trips the final element to bring the process to
a safe state, a Group Trip alarm is also taken to the DCS.
A Ready to Reset, indication (if not automatic), is provided on the
DCS so that the operator is aware that the SIS Group can be reset.
The First Out is connected to all associated Group Trip input blocks
to hold the first out trip alarm for operator acknowledgement. A
SIS Trip Group connection is also provided to trip other designated
SIS Groups, this is taken via a 1 second time delay to hold First SIS
Group trip and may also incorporate a Mono element if any SIS
Group is not required to be permanently tripped until the initiating
SIS Group is reset.
Figure 6: DCS Controller Faceplate.
Figure 5: NAMUR NE43.
The limitation to this article prevents a description of the more interesting voting blocks and others such as 2oo3 Mid-Value to DCS for
control purposes, but it is suffice to say that all voting function blocks
automatically change their voting logic to the next safest state, eg
2oo3 to 1oo2, following a MOS or faulty sensor input on one leg. A
MOS or fault on a 2oo3 Mid-Value will change to the Average of the
remaining two good inputs. They also prevent a MOS being applied
to ‘healthy’ inputs if a fault is present on any input as this would often
trip the SIF, in addition, they only allow one simultaneous MOS to
be applied on voted SIF ‘healthy’ inputs. An additional feature,
if selected, prevents a spurious trip (for a short period) and
much embarrassment from occurring, when a MOS is initiated
and the technician starts to work on the wrong transmitter of
a voted input. Another feature which prevents a spurious trip
due to technician error is that the MOS will not be allowed to
be removed if the trip input is still in a tripped state or has a
fault, as this will also trip the SIF.
Operator Interface
In the past, little attention has been given to SIS operator interface and associated DCS Graphic display design, although
recently this is being acknowledged as a very important aspect
of process control and functional safety management. The
operator SIS display, with associated response, needs to be
well defined as a subsection of the SIS Software SRS. All SIS
analogue input values together with trip setting values should
be transmitted to the DCS over the communications link. The
trip setting value should be displayed on the associated DCS
controller, so if a MOS is applied on a 1oo1 SIF, ie no safety
protection available, the pre-trip alarm automatically gets a
•Software is ubiquitous in modern control systems.
• Plant safety can be affected by software on the plant.
•Safety requirement specifications can be implemented – but
guidelines must be followed.
Take note
The DCS interface
must under no circumstances influence the safety integrity of the SIS.
The operational state
of the SIS needs to
be monitored for potential problems, also the interface can perform vital system trouble
shooting and maintenance activities such as MOS control. A number
of display formats exist and a typical SIS interface Graphic example
is shown in Figure 7.
Control systems and automation
higher priority and the operators can then clearly see if and when
to perform a manual ESD action, otherwise how would they know?
(See Figure 6).
Control systems and automation
Figure 7: Typical DCS SIS display.
The basic display page takes the form of a ‘flat’ cause and effect diagram which helps the operator to clearly understand the SIS Group
I/O functional relationship. At the top of the page is some general
information and common SIS alarms. The display is divided into the
different unit ESD or SIS Groups and the Groups contain the applicable
SIF information split into the five sections. The first on the left gives the
SIS Group identification, followed by the applicable Permissives, and
then we have the functional Trip Inputs, this is then followed by the
actual Group Trip and Resets information, and lastly we have the Trip
Outputs. There are a number of ‘Help’ buttons which when selected
pop-up a window to assist the operator with additional information.
Under the ESD Group description a Help button describes the overall
safety function of that SIS Group. The Permissives are displayed and
need to be satisfied to allow a safe SIS Group Reset following a trip,
once the Group is reset then the Permissives play no further part.
Should any Permissive input be faulty, there is a short Manual Override of 30 seconds (under permit conditions), to allow the SIS Group
to be reset, provided all Trip Inputs are healthy.
All the Group SIF Trip Inputs are shown each with a Help button
which describes that specific safety function. Should any input be
faulty, its respective Tag will start flashing. Clicking on an input Tag
will pop up the respective process value faceplate, a good feature
when performing loop testing and maintenance. Any trip time delay
of five seconds or more will be indicated. Each SIF will have its own
MOS for online periodic input testing and maintenance, it will flash
on an Automatic MOS initiation from a faulty input (if Fault Tolerance
is selected), and be permanently lit on a Manual MOS initiation. If
the SIF has a process start-up OOS, this will also be displayed when
in operation. The Group Trip and Reset section displays the overall
SIS Group state, first there is a ‘soft’ Manual ESD (double click confirmation action), then there is a warning if the Group is about to trip
following a time-out function, an actual Group Tripped indication is
displayed, followed by a First-Out Reset command, indication when
a Local Reset has been initiated (if applicable) and finally the Group
Reset which will flash when ready to reset. The final section covers
the trip outputs including the tripping of associated SIS Groups and
any DCS controller FMC actions via the Help button, and the final
element status. Some outputs may require an additional sequential
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Reset which has been catered for, and any valve fault will flash the
respective Tag. A final element Test is available which allows for
operating the valve during commissioning or following a Group trip
under permit conditions, also any Manual valve partial stroke test
can be performed when online.
It is hoped that this article, although only being a basic introduction
to SIS logic solver functionality, has provided the reader with a useful
insight in developing a practical Software SRS.
[1] IEC 61508. 2011. Functional safety of electrical/ electronic/ programmable electronic safety-related systems.
[2] IEC 61511. 2003. Functional Safety: Safety Instrumented Systems
for the Process Industry Sector.
[3] UK Health and Safety Executive two-part guideline on ‘Programmable electronic systems in safety-related applications’. 1987.
[4] DIN V 19250. 1989. Fundamental safety aspects to be considered
for measurement and control equipment.
[5] ANSI/ISA S84.01. 1996. Application of safety-related systems for
process industries.
[6] IEC 61131-3: 2013. Programmable logic controllers. Part 3: Programming languages.
Dick Perry has been in the Measurement and Control profession for 50
years. He started his career as an apprentice instrument technician in the
chemical industry in the UK. He came to South Africa in 1970. He was
with Fluor SA for over 20 years and held the position of control systems
design director. He retired in 2012. He currently consults to a number of
companies specialising in safety instrumented systems, hazardous area
instrumentation and burner management systems. He is a Fellow of the
SAIMC and a past president. He is registered with ECSA as a Professional
Technologist (Pr Tech Eng). Enquiries: Email rjperry@nashuaisp.co.za.
About the author
Control systems and automation
•In whisky production, it is crucial that spirit cuts are done at the correct strength.
• An instrument has been developed that provides accurate and consistent process control points
to ensure the quality of the spirit.
•The instrument can be used in conjunction with a control system to ensure efficient operation of
spirit and wash stills.
ake note
Measuring malt spirit strength
By N Moffat, Rototherm Canongate Technology
One of the crucial points in the production of malt whisky is ensuring the spirit cuts are done at the correct strength. Since controls were introduced
to discourage the production of illicit spirit in 1823, this has been done using a combination of hydrometers and thermometers in a spirit safe.
he first liquid to emerge from the spirit condenser is known
as ‘foreshots’ which contains undesirable methanol or other
unwanted low molecular weight compounds. Once the spirit
strength reaches the predetermined strength typically 72 -74% ABV
the liquid flow is diverted from the foreshots to the spirit receiver. The
spirit runs to the spirit receiver until the strength drops below a typical
value of 62 - 64% ABV, the precise switch point will vary depending
on the distillery. Once this switch point has been reached the liquid
flow is diverted to the low wine and feints receiver. The distillation
carries on until the spirit strength reaches approximately 1% ABV - at
this point the still is switched off.
Traditionally the samples are measured in the spirit safe by turning a control handle on the front of the safe which opens an internal
valve and fills a glass test tube with liquid. The glass tube contains
a hydrometer and thermometer which are read by the operator. The
alcohol measurement is corrected back to 20oC using alcohol tables.
The safe contains two hydrometers for each spirit still and one for
the wash still.
The Canongate DensiCheck TX can be used in conjunction with
a control system to ensure consistent and efficient operation of both
spirit and wash stills. The system uses high frequency ultrasonics
and temperature to calculate the concentration of the liquid. The
instrument is connected via a flange into a flooded section of the
distillate pipeline. The stainless steel sensing element has a large
measurement window and is unlikely to be blocked with verdigris
deposits from the still or condenser. The strength indication from the
instrument is typically read by the distillery's control system (PLC),
using the Modbus serial communications link. The control system will
either divert the liquid flow automatically by using a combination of
valves or by turning the spout in the spirit safe.
The instrument provides accurate and consistent process control
points to ensure the quality of the spirit. There is a reduction in the
labour cost as the spirit safe does not need tending. With the current
cost of energy it is important that the stills are switched off, before any
benefits of spirit collection are out-weighed by the cost of the energy
used to produce it. Installed successfully in over 100 malt whisky stills
over the last 15 years, the Canongate DensiCheck TX has proven to be
the ideal instrument for online alcohol concentration measurement.
Neil Moffat has 28 years’ experience working with
non-contact ultrasonic technology and inline CO2 measurement, with an in depth knowledge and expertise of
their application within the Beverage and LPG sector.
He is currently responsible for the new product design,
development and support of the Canongate Technology
Instrument range. Enquiries: Scott Hunter. Instrotech. Tel. 011 462 1920
or email sales@instrotech.co.za.
bout the author
Electricity+Control October ‘13
• Analytical instrumentation
• Cables and accessories
• Control systems and automation
• Earthing and lightning protection
• Pressure and level measurement
• Energy and enviroFiciency
SIMATIC WinCC from Siemens
– scalable process visualisation
E+C OCT 2013 cover.indd 1
IMATIC WinCC from Siemens is a scalable process visualisation
system with powerful functions for monitoring automated processes. WinCC offers complete SCADA functionality for all industrial
sectors – from single-user stations to distributed multi-user systems
with redundant servers as well as for multi-site web solutions.
WinCC V7.2
• SCADA system for global deployment in every sector
• Integrated Microsoft SQL server for data archiving and user
developed databases
• High-performance long-term archive SIMATIC Process Historian
• Plant transparency with Plant Intelligence
• SIMATIC Information Server for comprehensive, web-based
analyses and reports
• Efficient and user-friendly engineering and operation
• Full scalability – including web solutions, centralised historians
and MES systems
• Maximum availability and security
• Open standards for easy integration
• Integral part of Totally Integrated Automation
SIMATIC Process Historian
The historian functionality of WinCC is built into each server, archiving data into the built-in MS SQL Server. Historical data from various
WinCC servers can optionally be forwarded to a central historian
to ease data access and extreme long term storage requirements.
SIMATIC Process Historian acquires and archives data from any
number of lower-level WinCC systems in real time. It is scalable and
can be adapted to the required data volume at any time – without
interrupting production. This supports rapid decisions on the basis
of secure data and is, therefore, the first step to greater productivity.
Plant-wide long-term archive for any number of WinCC systems
Archiving of process values and messages in real time
Easy step-by-step configuration
2013/09/20 10:28:45 AM
Retrospective scalability, without interrupting production
Easy access to historical data through standard interfaces,
SIMATIC Information Server
The SIMATIC Information Server is the easy way to create and manage reports and analyses and make them available via web-based
interfaces. Based on the Microsoft Reporting Services, transparent
access to all data archived in WinCC or SIMATIC Process Historian is
possible without the need for any programming knowledge. Depending on the task (management, quality assurance, service), the relevant
plant metrics can be summarised in target-group-specific reports and
evaluations. It is also possible to carry out evaluations in the familiar
Microsoft Office environment in Word and Excel using add-ons. The
SIMATIC Information Server can be implemented independently of
the SIMATIC Process Historian.
• Easily generated reports based on Microsoft SQL Reporting
• Web-based management and data provision
• Transparent access to all historical plant data (WinCC Archive
and SIMATIC Process Historian)
• Integration in MS Word and Excel
• Automatic report distribution by email
• Easily combine standard SCADA type data (trends and alarms)
with custom data from user defined databases implemented on
the embedded MS SQL Server.
WinCC in the South African context
The winning combination of WinCC together with the SIMATIC S7
controller has been applied to all fields in the South African automation industry. Today this powerful combination can be found in the
local mining, automotive, food & beverage, building automation,
most of the major airfields and airports, manufacturing, energy,
nuclear, pharmaceutical, harbours and materials management sectors, to name a few.
Enquiries: Keshin Govender. Email keshin.govender@siemens.com.
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Control systems and automation
Full range photoelectric sensors and new security curtains
CDC Dynamics, sole distributors of the Datalogic product range
of sensors and safety products in South Africa and Africa, has
introduced their full range of safety light curtains and the new S15
line of Universal photoelectric sensors.
Datalogic offers a complete line of type 2 and type 4 safety light
curtains for machine safeguarding and access control in dangerous
areas, with basic and advanced functions, such as integrated muting,
override, blanking, cascadable, configurable models.
The new range of safety light curtains is a fully integrated series
that perfectly combines the SAFEasy concept with applicative flexibility, reliability and performance. Offering the totally zero dead zone
as a distinctive characteristic of all the models from 300 mm to 1 800
mm the range also offers high and low resolution for finger, hand
and body protection and includes presence control.
With the growing demand for safety in the workplace, the S15 line
offers the same safety features and sound designs and reliability as
the other Datalogic sensors, however with its shorter barrel and IP69K
protection rating on its protective plastic or stainless steel case, it
offers a whole lot more.
Further benefits gained from using the S15 line would include:
• Trimmer models that can be used instead of the standard tubular
sensors (S51, S50, S5 series) when a shorter housing is needed
or better degree of mechanical IP protection is required
• Pinout compatibility with S51 series
• Space savings as the barrel is much shorter than the standard
sensor length
• Cost savings, basic NPN or PNP output models
• It can be used in harsh environments with its enhanced durability
These environments would include areas such as where
there are water-jets present as well as where aggressive
cleaning agents are required such as in the food industry
• The sensors will offer better performance with a greater sensing
• A better degree of protection being compliant to IP69K + IP67 +
IP65 on all of the new models in the range
• A Johnson Diversey certification for use with detergents
• Atex II 3DG certification
Enquiries: Farrel Sher. Tel. 010 202 3300 or email info@acdc.co.za.
Largely automated engineering across consistent database
he latest Version 2.3 of the EPLAN Platform, available soon, is
characterised by standardised and largely automated engineering
across a consistent database. There is comprehensive support for
new standard-compliant designations based on ISO/IEC 81346 and
the safety values focused VDMA 66413 exchange format. The central
administration of phased-out items and a new search function for
system settings are additional new features of the CAE software to
allow interdisciplinary cooperation and configuration. For example
macros: Version 2.3 offers extensive options for handling macros/
typical circuits and their variations. What is new is the fact that these
macros can be edited and if needed be updated across the entire
project within an incredibly clear table view. This means that comprehensive changes can be made within the project with just a few
clicks of a mouse - potential error sources are reduced by means of
central data storage.
Secure in accordance with standards: ISO/IEC 81346
and VDMA 66413: The definition of mechatronic solutions and the appropriate designations in the documentation are typical everyday designing tasks.The standard
IEC 81346 ‘Industrial Systems, Plants and Equipment
and Industrial Products - Structuring Principles and
Reference designations’ is widely accepted on an international level. The EPLAN Platform 2.3 allows project
structures and project designations to be implemented
on a user-friendly basis in compliance with this current
standard. There is also the issue of fail-safety of components and safety function in line with machinery directive
2006/42/EU. EPLAN supports a consistent electronic
data exchange format for the relevant safety-related
values for automation components in accordance with
VDMA 66413.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Central administration of phased-out devices: Phased-out items are
generally replaced by a newer model, but are still used in existing
projects and must be administered transparently. In Version 2.3, the
EPLAN Platform makes the central administration of phased-out
articles easier by allowing marking in the article administration system. There are also new check runs to give users even more safety
in designing.
Easier searches, quicker results: The new Version 2.3 also incorporates a high-performance search function which makes it easy to find
and adjust the system settings by means of keywords. For the project
data navigators available in EPLAN, users can now define whether
and which additional information is displayed in the tree view.
Enquiries: Gerhard Badenhorst. BLM Software & Service. Email
Control systems and automation
Minimise plant downtime and cost
lants designed in document type applications with deliverables
in document format only proved that plant downtime cost increased over time due to documentation not being kept up to date
purely because too many documents have to be updated manually.
With designs being done within a database application ensures that
changes like tag changes only have to be made once in one place
and all associated documents, list and reports would be updated
simultaneously thus minimising plant downtime and cost throughout the plant lifecycle. The DesSoft application comprises hookups,
datasheets, built in report-designer, racking and routing, cable block
diagrams, auto-generation of loop and termination diagrams, template style diagrams in various formats like DWG, VSD, etc. Some
benefits of database applications:
• As there is no duplication of information engineering is more
• Information can be accessed, edited by all users (with administrative rights) from a central database.
Robust Ethernet I/O for
hazardous locations
oxa has introduced Ethernet I/O ioLogik E1200 series
with Class I, Division 2/ ATEX Zone 2 certification.This
robust remote I/O meets the demanding requirements of a
variety of hazardous applications, and enhances the safety
and reliability for remote monitoring in harsh environments
In some hazardous areas fires and explosions could
occur when a hazardous gas and energy source combine.
Automation system components need to be properly
designed to be installed in this kind of environment to
eliminate the risk of an accidental explosion. Moxa's Class
I, Division 2 ATEX Zone 2 Ethernet remote I/O products are
designed to provide an industrial-grade solution to monitor
remote devices used in harsh environments. Key features
• Active communication with patented Active OPC Server
• 2-port Ethernet switch for daisy-chain topologies
• Save time and wiring cost with peer-to-peer communication
• User-defined Modbus/ TCP addressing
• UL/cUL Class I Division 2, ATEX Zone
2 certification
Enquiries: Tel. 011 781
0777 or email info@
Concurrent license management reduces total license cost.
PLC code, SCADA graphic can be designed faster with our user
Documents, lists, reports are generated automatically from the
Data can be imported and exported for re-use.
Checking and rework limits most traditional documentation to
much less accuracy where 100% accuracy is possible within
DesSoft applications. Thus greater accuracy at less cost.
More accurate design means less onsite delays and rework.
Improves commissioning performance and handover.
Impact of design changes can easily be assessed by accessing
various lists and reports indicating spare capacity of cables, cores
and terminals.
Enquiries: Justin Alberts. Tel. 012 644 2974 or email Justin@dessoft.
Easy automation - handling systems
first for customers, Bosch Rexroth has developed the innovative
EasyHandling system, which seamlessly integrates electro-mechanical
axes, pneumatic axes and drives and controls in one pick and place system
and is now available in the South Africa market through sole distributor
of Bosch Rexroth solutions, Tectra Automation.
Rexroth’s EasyHandling makes the automation of handling systems
much easier, faster and more economical. This comprehensive handling
system simplifies the automation process by integrating all drive and
control technologies with linear systems, standardised mechanical and
electrical interfaces and new commissioning assistants, all of which are
perfectly matched.
“Previously separate technologies were required for the automation process. Now with the bundling of the technologies and expertise, the EasyHandling system can combine pneumatic axes with electro-mechanical
axes, making it more than just a modular set of mechanical components,”
says Kevin Lombard, general manager of Tectra Automation.
EasyHandling is designed to simplify various phases of a project, offer excellent scalability and optimise the process from engineering right
through to the operational phase, reducing the strain on resources across
the board.
The system is
available in three
variants; basic,
comfort and advanced, which provide outstanding
solutions for all
layers of assembly
and handling automation.
Enquiries: Kevin
Lombard. Tel. 011
971 9400.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Control systems and automation
Switches optimise PLC network performance and management
oxa has introduced EtherNet/IP and PROFINETenabled managed switches, the EDS-405A/408AEIP series and the EDS-405A/408A-PN series, for
industrial PLC network applications. With the plug-nplay feature, users can directly integrate and manage
the switches in existing SCADA systems without the
need for additional configurations and modifications.
Fast network recovery (under 20 ms at a 250-switch
load) and 10 s fast booting time ensures high network
availability and reliability. The EDS-405A/408A-EIP
series and EDS-405A/408A-PN series provide advanced
efficiency for PLC networks. These plug-n-play EtherNet/IP and PROFINET-enabled switches can be directly
installed into existing PLC networks to reduce deployment time. Switches can also be visibly managed
and monitored on existing SCADA systems. The EDS405A/408A-EIP series and EDS-405A/408A-PN series
support Moxa’s Turbo Ring and Turbo Chain network
redundancy technologies. When a connection failure
occurs, they enable fast network recovery under 20ms
(with 250 switches loads) for high network reliability.
These switches also come with fast booting time in
under 10s to ensure system availability and reduce
maintenance costs.
All of Moxa industrial managed switches support
EtherNet/IP communication for industrial automation
applications, including 10GbE industrial core switches
(ICS series), industrial high-port-density Ethernet
switches (IKS series, EDS-700 series), and industrial
compact Ethernet switches (EDS-600/500/400 series),
which allow users to choose devices that are bestsuited for each application requirement with the benefit
of seamless interoperability for industrial EtherNet/
IP systems.
Enquiries: Tel. 011 781 0777 or email info@rjconnect.
Decentralised drive system reduces CO2 footprint
eading glass bottle manufacturer Consol has managed to significantly reduce its CO2 footprint at its flint glass manufacturing plant
in Nigel, Gauteng, by adopting the Movi-gear decentralised drive
system developed and by supplied by specialist drive engineering
company SEW-Eurodrive.
The glass manufacturing process requires a considerable amount
of energy and Consol, which has an estimated capacity to produce
more than one million glass containers per year, introduced a number
of environmentally friendly measures in its production process in 2011
to reduce its power consumption, and the Movigear drive system is
among these energy saving solutions.
The SEW-Eurodrive Movigear mechatronic drive system offers advantages over traditional drive solutions, as it combines the gear unit,
motor and drive electronics into one single housing. The integration
and coordination of these drive components leads to an extended
and reliable service life.
Consol manufacturing services manager Grant Bailey explains that
the Movigear drive system at the manufacturing plant has over ten
stations - each of which can be used to form four bottles simultaneously - and each station is operated using 18 servomotors. "The entire
system is controlled numerically so that parameters can be accessed
and stored quickly and easily."
According to Bailey, SEW-Eurodrive delivered the Movigear drive
solution on time and within budget, and has provided excellent after
sales service and technical support.
Enquiries: Rene Rose. Tel. 011 248 7131 or email rrose@sew.co.za.
Electricity+Control Features – November 2013
• Drives, motors and switchgear
• Control systems and automation
Plant maintenance, test and measurement
Temperature measurement
Energy and EnviroFiciency
Send editorial contributions to: Wendy Izgorsek (editor). Email: ec@crown.co.za
Advertising queries: Helen Couvaras. Email helencou@crown.co.za
Heidi Jandrell. Email heidij@tiscali.co.za
Tel. 011 622 4770
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Battery Inverters
The Sunny Islands offer you first class possibilities in
the installation of self-sufficient energy systems. In
conjunction with a battery pack the devices form a self-sufficient
AC voltage grid, which meets with the highest of quality
Product Name
AC Voltage
Max AC
Battery DC input
230 V/172.5 V ... 264.5 V
20 A
48 V/41 V ... 63 V
230 V / 202 V ... 253 V
26 A / 120 A
48 V / 41 V ... 63 V
230 V / 202 V ... 253 V
21.7 A
48 V / 41 V ... 63 V
230 V / 202 V – 253 V
9.6 A
24 V / 16.8 V ... 31.5 V
93.6 %
Battery Inverters
The intelligent energy manager. Modular and flexible. The
optimal upgrade for existing photovoltaic systems. A special
highlight is the capacity to switch virtually without interruption
to backup power in the event the public grid fails.
Product Name
Rated output and charging current
(25 °C)
5 kW / 104 A
Peak output power (< 30 s)
12 kW
Max. recommended power of ACcoupled solar inverter
10 kW
Max. recommended PV power 7.7kW
DC side
MPP Range 350V...600V
Open-circuit voltage800V
Battery voltage (nominal)
48 V
DC input voltage range
40 V ... 68 V
Number of strings2
Battery Voltage48V
True Sine Wave
Product Name
Input Voltage
Output Voltage
TS-200-212B / TS-200-224B
TS-400-212B / TS-400-224B
TS-700-212B / TS-700-224B /
230Vac ±3%
by front panel
TS-1000-212B / TS-1000-224B /
TS-1500-212B / TS-1500-224B /
TS-3000-212B / TS-3000-224B /
TN-1500-212B / TN-1500-224B /
TN-3000-212B / TN-3000-224B /
selected by setting
button S.W
Steca AJ
The Steca AJ inverter series stands out with its wide range of available power
classes and DC input voltages. This enables the optimal inverter to be used for
any application.
Characterisation of the operating performance
System voltage
12 V
24 V
48 V
48 V
12 V
12 V
24 V
200 VA
300 VA
300 VA
500 VA
800 VA
2,000 VA
2,000 VA
Battery voltage
10.5 V … 16 V
21 V … 32 V
42 V … 64 V
42 V … 64 V
10.5 V … 16 V
10.5 V … 16 V
21 V … 32 V
Max. efficiency
93 %
94 %
94 %
94 %
93 %
92 %
94 %
Also Available
Steca PLI-300
Steca XPC
Steca XPC
1000-12 600W
Steca XPC
Steca XPC
3000-72 000W
19” Telecom Back-up Inverters &
Static Transfer Switch
STS118 - Static
19”, 1U Switch
“Hot plug-in“ design
with backplane
STS207 - Static Switch
1/4x19”, 2U
CAN-Bus interface
“Hot plug-in“ design with
backplane connection
IBF-DC/AC-INV (Inverter)
Compact design and simple
House up to 3 Inverter
UPC4 Master
Extensive battery
DIN Rail mounting
230VAC, 50hz output
Product Name
OutBack FX 230VAC Sinwave Inverter/Charger
Outback FX2012ET
Outback FX2024ET
Outback FX2348ET
Outback VFX2612E
Outback VFX3024E
Outback VFX3048E
Outback GFX1312E
Outback GFX1424E
Outback GFX1448E
solution compatible
in both Off-Grid
and grid-interactive
applications, the
Radian delivers 7.000
watts of pure sinewave continuous
power with unsurpassed surge
capacity. 50/60Hz and 220-240V
Cotek Inverters
Cotek Pure Sine Wave Inverter
True Sinewave
Advance microprocessor control
Thermo Fan
Tri-colour indicators display
Power ON&OFF remote control
S-Series Inverters 1501500Watt, up to up to 94%
SK-Series Inverters 2003000Watt, up to up to 94%
ST-Series Inverters 6002500Watt, up to up to 94%
With Transfer Switch
Chargers & Inverters
Pure sinewave output, high peak power and high efficiency.
Combined high frequency and line frequency technologies ensure
the best of both worlds.
Phoenix Inverter 12 / 24 / 48 Volt
Phoenix Inverter Compact 12 / 24 Volt
Input voltage range (V DC)
9,5 – 17V 19 – 33V 38 – 66V
Output voltage: 230 VAC ±2% Frequency: 50 Hz ± 0,1% (1)
VE.Bus communication port
MultiPlus 800VA - 5kVA
Input voltage range (V DC)
9,5 – 17V 19 – 33V 38 – 66V
AC Input
Input voltage range: 187-265 VAC Input frequency: 45 – 65 Hz Power factor: 1
Quattro 3kVA - 5kVA - 8kVA - 10kVA
Input voltage range (V DC)
9,5 – 17V 19 – 33V 38 – 66V
Peak power3000-10 000Watt
Two AC inputs with
integrated transfer
Telecom Power backup inverters &
static transfer switch
Delta’s inverters and static switches, combined with our DC power systems, provide a modular
UPS for AC power backup.
MidD APS 1500A-230-6 SSW
API 1500A Series
The Delta API 1500A Series inverter
is high efficient, modular single phase
MidD APS 1500A-230-6 SSW Is ideal
AC power system for space critical
applications with high power density. The
system includes up to six inverters with
DC and AC connections. An integrated
modular system allows flexible and
adaptable installations. MidD APS 1500A230-6 SSW is available with five or six
Delta API 1500A inverters and SSW 7500A-230 static switch. The
applications are modular UPS configurations either in indoor or
outdoor containers.
SSW Series static switch
The Delta SSW Series static switch
provides uninterruptible AC power by
acting as an electronic switch between
the AC mains and the Delta API 1500A
series modular inverters.
010 591-1713
Fax: 011 462-0420
051 011-0158,
Tel: Fax:
031 569-2854
031 569-2864
086 657-9836
021 300-1727
Fax: 021-300-1728
view our
Machine operation with smart phone convenience
ne of Germany’s most renowned
controls and automation technology
companies, Schleicher Electronic, is revolutionising the operation of machine tools,
handling devices and industrial robots
with the ProNumeric OP 50 M hand-held
operating device. This is the first time that a
machine can be controlled with smart-phone
“We are excited about being able to offer
this game-changing operating device to our
customers”, says Karin Visser, managing director of Johannesburg-based Anglo Allied
Engineering, the sole supplier of Schleicher
control devices in South Africa.
The large touch display of the handy
device visualises the individual user interface, which is communicated by the device
controller via a web browser. Traditional operating elements such as the high-resolution
hand-wheel that eases real-time interaction
between the operator and the controller are
provided at the same time. Best of all and
unique at that, compared to conventional
operating devices, the ProNumeric OP 50
M not only enables optimised handling but
also supports problem-free interfacing with
the leading machine networks EtherCAT and
sercos III. A ProfiNet version is currently in
the planning stage.
The powerful real-time Ethernet solutions
EtherCAT and sercos III allow for construction of machine control systems with a
single network for I/O, drives and operating
devices. The ProNumeric OP 50 M is the first
hand-held operating device of its kind that
supports these two common protocol versions in an optimised fashion and the first
that can therefore be connected to a wide
range of controllers provided by well-known
A Schleicher gateway that is compatible
with both real-time protocols is installed
in the network for this purpose. The appro-
priate communication
system can
then simply be selected by flicking a switch.
The economic viability of a ProfiNet version
is currently being investigated.
The device was equipped with an integrated web browser to make it possible to
disconnect the ProNumeric OP 50 M during
operation from one machine and to reconnect it to another. It is therefore possible to
program an individual user interface with
all standard visualisation functions. The
visualisation project is not stored on the
hand-held device but on the mass storage
device of each controller. The user interface
can therefore be called up immediately
once a new controller has been connected.
Problem-free updates - and even remote
services - are therefore possible.
Enquiries: Hilda Bouwer. Tel. 011 766 1180 or
email info@angloallied.co.za.
Mini-controllers for mechanical engineering
hoenix Contact has expanded the Easy
Automation system to include ILC ME
mini-controllers, designed specifically for
mechanical engineering, and the compact,
easy-to-configure TD 1030T HMI device
from the Minitouch line. The ILC 191 ME/AN
and ILC 191 ME/INC mini-controllers feature
Ethernet, RS232, and RS485/422 ports as
well as connections for pulse and frequency
outputs.They also offer analogue and digital
inputs and outputs, high-speed meters, and
incremental encoder inputs.This makes them
particularly well suited for activating drives
by way of step motor drivers or frequency
converters.TheTD 1030T HMI device features
a 2,8 inch multiline screen used to display
data in alphanumeric format. Users interact
with the device using four freely configurable buttons on the display, with PC Worx
Express used to programme the device.
Because several standard, predefined user
interfaces are available, no visualisation
software is required.
Enquiries: Andre Kemp. Email andrek@
Building systems – save energy, gain efficiency
chneider Electric, a global specialist in
energy management, has launched the
‘lite’ version of its SmartStruxure solution,
providing a fast way to future-fit and retrofit
small to medium-sized buildings for HVAC
control, lighting and metering. With SmartStruxure Lite, users can save energy, gain
efficiency, maintain a healthy and productive
environment and access their building systems anytime, anywhere. According to Artur
Socha, Buildings Division product manager
at Schneider Electric South Africa, with the
introduction of SmartStruxure Lite solution,
small- to medium-sized commercial buildings
now have an affordable building management
solution to meet their needs. “By providing
anytime, anywhere access to building information on a simple user interface, SmartStruxure Lite solution lowers energy costs
without compromising on comfort,” he says.
As a simple web-based solution delivering
one-click access to building system information, the product provides a single interface to
connect HVAC, lighting and metering. It is customisable to fit the specific needs of the user’s
facility and is a scalable, high-performance
system based on open protocols. “Up to 60%
of energy costs in a building are related to
lighting and HVAC,” Socha explains. “This solution helps reduce energy costs and increase
building performance while simplifying daily
operations. It also provides users with remote
access to their systems via a mobile device
or the cloud.”
Aside from reducing installation time,
labour and cost, it is a suitable retrofit solution for HVAC, lighting and metering applications. Optimal environmental comfort
also increases employee productivity. The
product’s ecosystem delivers open system
functionality from basic control up to the
cloud. It consists of a wireless site manager/
gateway, a universal controller, input/ output
controller and room controller.
Enquiries: Belinda Aslett. Tel. 011 254 6400 or
email belinda.aslett@schneider-electric.com.
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Control systems and automation
Earthing and lightning protection
Copper electrical wiring
for safety
By E Swanepoel, Copper Development Association Africa (CDAA)
A serious electrical fire can cause the total loss of a building - commercial, residential or industrial - and its contents.
lectrical fires pose one of the more disastrous dangers involved in building ownership or property management. Fires
caused by faulty or malfunctioning wiring can quickly get out
of control and can be difficult to extinguish as they often begin hidden behind walls.
As urbanisation increases and more and more people congregate
closer together, the risks associated with fire increase. Unfortunately
this situation is exacerbated when imported, sub-standard cables and
components are installed; the use of which the consumer is unaware.
In the case of formal built-up areas, the National Building Regulations,
SABS 0400-1990 Part T [1], first published in 1987 controls fire safety
in buildings, considerably limiting the incidence and spread of fires in
formal areas, as well as the damage caused by fires. In South Africa,
our informal settlements seem to be most affected by fire due to illegal connections, with devastating effects on life, shelter, livelihood
and possessions.
National fire statistics are unavailable in many countries, and
where they are available they are, at best, inaccurate due to informal reporting, with data availability being worst in Africa and Latin
America. The following statistics come from the Fire Protection Association of Southern Africa and pertain to South Africa.
In 2011, fires resulted in 410 deaths and damage to property
totalling over ZAR 2 085 M. Of the total number of fires in buildings
(37 721), 9% were caused by electrical faults (3 261); however, this
figure rose dramatically to 35% when looking at the common causes
of structural fires in residential properties, making it the most common cause. In the 2009 statistics, the breakdown of the causes was
given, with the main culprits being appliances, such as toasters and
heaters; short circuits; and overloaded cables and conductors, which
accounted for 26, 25 and 19% respectively. The remaining causes
of the electrical fires were faulty devices, such as socket outlets,
switches, circuit breakers, fuses (7%); contacts and connections
Electricity+Control October ‘13
(almost 6%); electrical distribution leads and wires (just over 3%);
degradation of insulation (10%) with the remainder being classified
as causes ‘unknown’.
Causes of electrical fires
The three main groups of fire causes are accidental, natural and incendiary. Of the accidental fire causes, electricity often plays a major
part. Electricity can also be involved in incendiary and natural causes.
Three elements must be present in order for a fire to initiate: oxygen,
fuel and heat. Electricity can play an important role in this process by
providing the heat source.
One example of an electrical heat source is a short circuit. There
exist two main types of short circuits; a dead short circuit and a limited
short circuit. A dead short occurs when a live wire comes into contact
with a common or ground wire (or the positive and negative wires are
connected in a dc circuit) and the circuit is subsequently energised. In
properly fused circuits this will cause the fuse to blow and the circuit
to de-energise. This type of situation does not create sufficient heat
to ignite combustibles. However, if the circuit is not fused properly,
the current can continue to pass through the wires causing them to
significantly overheat. This type of situation can ignite surrounding
combustibles causing a fire.
The other type of short circuit is a limited short circuit. In this
case, wires come into contact such that the volume of material
through which the current flows is smaller than the fusible link. This
will create a spark or flash and result in the melting of the wiring.
This situation can also cause ignition of combustibles provided the
mass of the combustibles contacting the heat source is small enough
that the heat source can cause it to reach ignition temperatures and
initiate a fire. It is difficult to ignite concentrated, solid combustibles
such as wood, plastic and even paper with this type of heat source.
Earthing and lightning protection
However, cotton products, sawdust, wood chips and combustible
gases can be ignited.
Another electrical heat source can be created when a circuit is
over-fused. Over-fusing of a circuit can result in high current flow
through the wires overloading the circuit. Although electrical wiring
is designed to carry current at much higher than its rated capacity,
increasing current above this rated capacity causes the wire to generate excess heat. This is not a problem as long as the heat can be dissipated from the wire. However, if the wire is enclosed within a small
insulated space, such as the holes through which wires run through
floor joists in a building, the heat in these areas may not be able to
dissipate as quickly as it is being generated. As a result, the surrounding combustibles can pyrolise and eventually ignite, causing a fire.
Fires can also be caused electrically through what is called leakage current. Leakage current occurs when water is in the presence
of electricity. Exposed wiring, which exists primarily at connectors
and switches, can come in contact with water. Since water conducts
electricity, a current will flow through the water between contacts, or
from the live to ground (common). Over time, the water will accumulate salts which increase its ability to conduct a current. This current
can eventually develop to a point where it generates a significant
quantity of heat which begins to pyrolise and carbonise the combustibles in the area. This can eventually result in a situation where
a carbon bridge is formed, creating a continuous arc or significant
generation of heat. Ignition of surrounding combustibles can result
in a fire. Fires have also been known to initiate this way in electrical
boxes which become damp or wet.
Additionally, electrical contacts can fail, resulting in uncontrolled
heating. Each time a contact is opened or closed, a small spark is
generated. This causes degradation of the surface of the contact.
Contacts can fail ‘open’ in which case the circuit simply becomes
inoperable. However, they can also fail ‘closed’ and weld together,
resulting in uncontrolled heating.
A simple spark can initiate a fire or devastating explosion if a
combustible gas/air mixture is located at the position of the spark. As
discussed previously, a spark is usually created whenever a contact
is opened or closed. For this reason, specially designed switches and
contacts are required for installation in an environment in which you
can reasonably expect combustible gaseous mixtures to be present.
rial to be approved by all electrical codes worldwide. It is resilient,
reliable, and most importantly, safe.
Copper electrical wiring is used commercially and residentially
because it is easy to work with and can be easily, securely and safely
connected to outlets and other electrical equipment. It requires less
maintenance and its connections are much less likely to loosen and
corrode over time. It is these advantages, not to mention copper’s superior conductivity, that make this metal the preferred choice among
professional contractors working on a building’s wiring systems.
Electrical wiring is everywhere, nestled just behind every wall of
your home or office. It is just not worth the risk to rely on non-copper
wiring materials that can corrode or give under pressure. It is hard
to find a material better suited than copper to prevent electrical fires
and keep building occupants safe.
Copper wiring is known for withstanding an overload better
than other materials because of its significantly higher melting point
(1 984°F or 1 084°C), compared with aluminium’s melting point of
1 221°F or 661°C. Additionally, repeated cycling is less likely to loosen
How can copper help?
Almost no modern building material is more time-tested than copper
electrical wiring. From generators and motors to electric lights, copper
is recognised as the industry standard and is the only wiring mateOctober ‘13 Electricity+Control
Earthing and lightning protection
a copper joint. Corrosion is another major risk of using other metals
and alloys in wiring. Commonly called a ‘noble metal’, copper is not
susceptible to galvanic corrosion when connected to non-copper
metals. It effectively resists moisture and humidity driven corrosion
that can destroy other wiring systems, reducing the risk of power
outages, system failures and fires. Copper wiring typically does not
require the use of conductive greases at its connections, and torque
is not critical.
The unique combination of strength and ductility allows copper
electrical wiring to be bent further, twisted tighter and pulled harder,
all without stretching, creeping, nicking or breaking. Such exceptional
strength ensures that copper is the safest and most preferred wiring
material available to electricians.
Avoiding electrical fires
Steps can be taken to prevent electrical fires, which will help keep
buildings safe from this potential threat. The first is to avoid overloading the building’s electrical circuits. This is the easiest step in
reducing the risk of electrical fires, and it is also one of the most
effective. Each circuit is only designed to deliver so much electricity,
and stressing these circuits by drawing too much power can cause the
wires to spark or deteriorate. The simplest way to avoid overloading
circuits is by minimising the amount of electrical equipment plugged
into each outlet. In particular, it is important to minimise the use of
power strips as much as possible, trying instead to limit the use of
each outlet to the two plugs it provides. If the building is very old, it
may have very few plug outlets and circuits, as plug-in appliances
and equipment were not as numerous when the building was erected.
A costly, but effective, measure to reduce stress on each circuit is to
have an electrician run new wiring and install new circuit breakers
on the electrical panel.
Secondly, frayed wiring, either in an appliance power cord or in
the building’s wiring, poses a major risk of electrical fires, and must be
discarded and replaced. While electrical tape can be used to provide
temporary protection against arcing or melting of exposed conductors, it should not be used as a permanent solution.
Thirdly, it is important to remember that electrical wiring only has
a lifespan of about 30 or 40 years, so buildings older than that may
be relying on deteriorated wiring. In addition, older wiring setups
•Standards are in place to protect the public.
•In 2011 in South Africa, 9% of building fires were attributed to
electrical faults.
• Faulty electric wiring can be the cause of fires.
Take note
Electricity+Control October ‘13
were not typically designed to handle today's large electrical loads.
Heavy reliance on extension cords, or if your circuit breakers trip
often, means that more power is being drawn than the old wiring
can handle, and a certified electrician must be called to inspect the
wiring. Older homes may contain aluminium wiring which poses
a more significant risk of degrading and causing fires than copper
wiring. It is essential to insist on copper wiring for all electrical needs
when wiring or rewiring buildings.
Having an electrician replace all or most of a building’s wiring
can be a costly upgrade, but will provide a virtual guarantee against
electrical fires for decades.
Finally, it is critical that sub-standard imports are avoided and that
only SABS compliant electrical components and appliances are
installed and used.
[1] SABS 0400. Part T. 1990. Fire protection and fire installation.
About the Copper Development Association Africa
The Copper Development Association Africa (CDAA) has represented
the local copper industry in southern Africa since 1962 and now
promotes copper usage throughout Africa. The CDAA’s head office is
based in Johannesburg and, on behalf of its members, the organisation
is committed to promoting and expanding the use of copper and copper
alloys throughout Africa.
Visit www.copperalliance.org.za
Evert Swanepoel is centre director for the Copper Development Association Africa (CDAA) - responsible for promoting
and expanding the use of copper in Africa. His vast experience in managing large businesses has provided him with
the skill and knowledge to promote both current and new
copper projects that are positioned to increase the demand and utilisation
of this ductile metal throughout Africa. Enquiries: Tel. 011 824 3916 or
email evert.swanepoel@copperalliance.org.za.
About the author
Earthing and lightning protection
ISDN - Integrated Services Digital Network
IT - Information Technology
LEMP - Lightning electromagnetic impulses
PC - Personal Computer
PV - Photovoltaic
Lightning and surge protection
for PV systems on solar plants
By A Barwise, DEHN Protection South Africa
Measures to protect the sensitive electronic system components from failure due to lightning flashes and surges are essential.
n recent years, photovoltaic (PV) systems have become a significant
sector within the energy market, with the International Energy
Agency in 2011 saying that: ‘The development of affordable,
inexhaustible and clean solar energy technologies will have huge
longer-term benefits.
'It will increase countries’ energy security through reliance on an
indigenous, inexhaustible and mostly import-independent resource,
enhance sustainability, reduce pollution, lower the costs of mitigating climate change and keep fossil fuel prices lower than otherwise.
These advantages are global’.
Given that these costly plants are frequently subject to climatic influence, measures to protect the sensitive electronic system
components from failure due to lightning flashes and surges are
Lightning surges in the PV system can damage PV modules and
inverters, leading to both high repair costs and considerable profit
cuts for the operator of the plant related to system failure.
For a complex PV installation, such as a solar power plant,
the aim is to protect both the operation building and the PV array
against damage by fire (direct lightning strike) and the electrical and
electronic systems (inverter, remote diagnostics system, generator
main line) against the effects of lightning electromagnetic impulses
Air-termination system and down conductor system
For the protection of the PV array against direct lightning strikes, it is
necessary to arrange the solar modules in the protection zone of an
isolated air-termination system. According to the class of lightning
protection system, the height and the quality of the air-termination
rods required is determined by means of the rolling sphere method.
Furthermore, it has to be ensured that the separation distance is
kept between the PV supporting frames and the air-termination
rods. Also, the operation building must be equipped with external
lightning protection. Down conductors must be connected with the
earth-termination system by using terminal lugs. Due to the corrosion risk at the point where the terminal lugs come out of the soil or
concrete, they have to be made out of corrosion- resistant material
or be protected by corresponding measures (applying sealing tape
or heat-shrinkable sleeve, for example).
Earth-termination system
The earth-termination system of the PV system is designed as a ring
earth electrode (surface earth electrode); whilst the earth-termination
system of the operation building should be designed as a foundation earth electrode. The metal supporting frames, onto which the
PV modules are fixed, must be connected to the earth-termination
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Earthing and lightning protection
system approximately every 10 metres. The earth-termination system
of the PV system and the one of the operation building, have to be
connected to each other via at least one conductor.
The interconnection of the individual earth-termination systems reduces considerably the total earthing resistance; whilst the
intermeshing of the earth-termination system creates an equipotential surface that considerably reduces the voltage load of lightning
effects on the electric connecting cables between the PV array and
operation building.
Lightning equipotential bonding
In principle, all conductive systems entering the operation building
from outside have to be generally included into the lightning equipotential bonding.
The requirements of lightning equipotential bonding are fulfilled
by the direct connection of all metal systems and by the indirect connection of all live systems via lightning current arresters. Lightning
equipotential bonding should be performed preferably near the entrance of the structure in order to prevent partial lightning currents
from penetrating the building.
Surge protection measures in the PV array
In order to reduce the load on the isolation inside the solar modules
at a lightning strike into the isolated air-termination system, thermally
monitored surge protective devices are installed in a generator junction box as loosely as possible to the PV generator.
On the dc side, a surge protective device is installed in each
generator junction box. The surge protective devices in the generator junction boxes assume the protection for the PV modules locally
and ensure that no spark overs caused by conducted or field-related
interferences come up at the PV modules.
• PV systems are being deployed rapidly in South Africa.
• PV systems require lightning protection.
• Comprehensive solutions are required for the protection of PV systems.
Take note
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Surge protection measures for IT systems
The operation building provides a remote diagnostics system, which
is used for the quick and easy function check of the PV systems,
permitting the operator to recognise and remedy any malfunctions
at an early stage.
The remote supervisory control system provides the performance
data of the PV generator constantly in order to optimise the output of
the PV system. Measurements of wind velocity, module temperature
and ambient temperature are performed via external sensors at the
PV system and can be read directly from the acquisition unit. The
data acquisition unit provides an Ethernet interface, which a PC or
modems are connected to for remote enquiry and maintenance. Thus,
the service engineers can determine the cause of a malfunction by
tele-diagnosis and then directly eliminate it.
In order to provide a reliable trouble-free and continuous transmission
of the measured data to the measuring unit, it is necessary to lead
the sensor cables entering the building via surge protective devices.
When choosing the protective devices, it has to be ensured that the
measurements cannot be impaired.
Safety in the forwarding of the measured data via the telecommunication network per ISDN modem must be given as well in order
to provide a continuous monitoring and optimisation of the performance of the installation.
Alexis Barwise is the managing director of DEHN PROTECTION SOUTH AFRICA (a subsidiary of DEHN + SÖHNE
GmbH + Co.KG). Prior to spearheading this new operation
in Johannesburg, he filled the role as key vertical account
manager at Schneider Electric. Barwise has an in-depth
knowledge of electrical design and systems engineering and project
management in the engineering, procurement, construction and information technology fields. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Electrical and
Electronic Engineering from the North-West University. Enquiries: Email
About the author
New standard set in motor control and power switching
he introduction of the new AF range of
contactors completes the ABB portfolio
of motor protection and control, which includes thermal and electronic overload relays
and manual motor starters. By combining ac
and dc with surge suppression in a single
contactor and additionally controlling the coil
electronically, ABB brings a product to the
marketplace which offers multiple benefits
over the conventional alternatives.
Meeting the requirements of all major
national and international standards, ABB
contactors provide unquestioned quality and
an extensive range.These motor control contactors cover applications from 9 A to 1050 A,
in all popularly installed sizes. Furthermore
ABB’s AF range enables a single contactor
coil to handle 100 V – 250 V for both ac and
dc applications. Flexibility of this nature
enables these contactors to be included in
designs destined not only for South Africa,
but throughout Africa, Asia, Europe and
North America. Coil energy consumption is
reduced by 80%, which allows for the building of smaller panels and the use of more
compact transformer designs. Design and assembly planning to take advantage of these
improvements is assisted by easy access to
ABB CAD drawings and coordination tables.
Advantages of the AF range are not restricted to the technical innovation; logistics
aspects have also been considered. With
only four contactor coil sizes across the
entire range the number of product variants has been reduced by 90%, with a direct
saving in administration and stock holding
New range of power
circuit breakers
chneider Electric, has introduced the South
African version of the EasyPact MVS range
of low-voltage power circuit breakers and switch
disconnectors for applications from 800 to 4 000
A. As part of the EasyPact family of protection and
control products, the EasyPact MVS range delivers
a high current withstand rating (Icw) and a level
of functionality unusual in its price range. “Precision engineered to meet up to 90% of common
protection applications in medium and large-sized
commercial and industrial buildings, EasyPact MVS
circuit breakers are designed to provide superior
value throughout their lifecycle and to make installations safer and more reliable,” says Levy Moholola,
low-voltage product manager at Schneider Electric
South Africa. The EasyPact MVS range has been
designed for reliability and extended service life,
with the flexibility to meet a wide range of common
applications. Suitable for systems up to 690 V, the
entire range is rated for Ics = Icu = Icw = 50 and 65
kA, at 440 V for 1 s. A selection of electronic trip
units enhance protection, while a fast 25 ms break
time helps further reduce the stress on electrical
networks. Locking safety shutters and various key
lock and padlock options ensure safety for installers
and technicians. A number of cost-saving features
include copper and aluminium conductor compatibility and convenient horizontal or vertical terminal
Enquiries: Belinda Aslett.
Tel. 011 254 6400 or email
requirements. In environments where voltage fluctuations occur, motor stoppages are
commonplace. AF range contactors ensure
continued operation in unstable networks;
voltage sags, dips and surges can be absorbed, keeping plants operational.
Enquiries: Sarel Erasmus. Tel. 010 202 5000 or
email LP@za.abb.com.
Earthing and lightning protection
Earthing and lightning protection
Programming and display unit for relays
ewElec’s MA RDU 216 is a panel-mounted keypad entry
display unit that can be used as a handheld programming and display unit for the company’s MA range of
motor protection relays. The MA RDU 216 permits the
user to set all protection parameters and monitor the
actual values while the motor is in operation. It also
allows the user to view the fault alarms and real time
clock logged faults.
A dongel connected in line with the serial communication cable is required in order to alter any settings,
eliminating unauthorised alterations. If the dongel is not
available, read only functions are tolerated by the device. All
functions are accessible via a membrane keypad, while the 2 x
16 backlit LCD display is used to indicate the menu-driven requested
values. It is also used to prompt the operator as to
which key to press in the event of a multiple keystroke sequence.
The MA RDU 216 accommodates up to
eight memory slots that are useful for storing information, even when the auxiliary
power supply is removed, to allow the setting parameters to be downloaded to the
appropriate MA motor protection relay. This
benefits maintenance personnel who no
longer require to use excessive time to set the
relays up on site.
Enquiries: Luc Dutrieux. Tel. 012 327 1729 or email sales@
Insulated tools and equipment
AUPA’s 1 000 V insulated tools are manufactured and tested in accordance with
the latest conditions set out in national and
international standards. If the additional safety
measures are observed, they offer the greatest
possible protection when working with voltages of up to 1 000 Vac and 1 500 Vdc.
HAUPA’s protective equipment includes
1 000 V insulated helmets and visors, insulated
gloves from 500 V to 26 500 V, tested safety
suits in accordance with DIN IEC 304 (500 V),
1 000 V insulated boots in accordance with VDE
0680/1 through to insulated mats in accordance
with VDE 0303 = 20 000 V.
The HAUPA safety handle with sleeve should
be used where the insertion and removal of
NH safety inserts with disrupted arcs could
be expected or when higher currents are to
be switched. In these instances, the HAUPA
visor with helmet holder or the electrician's
protective visor should also be worn. The
dip-insulated 1 000 V tools have an insulated
multiple layer, red on the outside, yellow on the
inside. The two-colour multiple-layer insulation
clearly supports the relevant VBG 4 directive.
The red exterior insulation on the handle makes
defects easy to spot. HAUPA is represented
locally by Surgetek.
Enquiries: Johan van Staden. Tel. 011 792
1303/4/5 or email info@surgetek.co.za.
Power factor correction and harmonic filtering
ower electronic devices that have rapid and frequent load variations have become abundant today due to their many process
control related and energy saving benefits.They also bring a few major
drawbacks to electrical distribution systems, such as harmonics and
rapid change of reactive power requirements. Harmonics may disrupt
the normal operation of other devices and increase operating costs.
Symptoms of problematic harmonic levels include overheating of
transformers, motors and cables, thermal tripping of protective devices, logic faults of digital devices and drives. Harmonics can also
cause vibrations and noise in electrical machines - motors, transformers, and reactors. The lifespan of many devices can be reduced by
elevated operating temperature. Plus, rapid reactive power changes
demand timely reactive power (VAR) compensation.
An active harmonic filter (AHF) provides an effective means to
mitigate harmonics, reduce process-related voltage fluctuations and
improve equipment operating life and system capacity. It can be part
of a power factor correction and harmonic filtering system.
Low voltage capacitor compensation systems can provide the
Electricity+Control October ‘13
similar benefit of a centralised solution at an attractive cost for most
mid- and small industrial, commercial and institutional users.
Global specialist in energy efficiency, Schneider Electric provides a
comprehensive power quality solutions portfolio, namely ReactiVar
and AccuSine, to help companies improve their energy efficiency.
ReactiVar, a power factor correction fixed capacitor (PFCD), is ideally
suited for power factor correction in applications where the load does
not change or where the capacitor is switched with the load, such as
the load side of a motor starter. Assemblies are available unfused or
fused with three fuses and three blown-fuse indicators.
AccuSine PCS active harmonic filter (AHF) injects harmonic and
reactive current to limit harmonic distortion and improve displacement
power factor for the electrical distribution system. As a full spectrum
product, AccuSine PCS measures the entire load current, removes
the fundamental frequency component and injects the inverse of the
remaining wave form for nearly complete cancellation of harmonic
Enquiries: Belinda Aslett. Tel. 011 254 6400 or email belinda.aslett@
Phase angle meters – easy to use
egger’s PAM400 phase angle meters
are compact, lightweight, fast and
easy to use. They offer a convenient and
cost-effective solution for a wide range of
applications, including checking polyphase
metering installations, testing protective
relays, making comparative tests in electrical substations, and verifying phase angle
deviation on power transformers.
The PAM400 range includes two models.
The PAM410 provides facilities for accurately
and quickly measuring the phase angle between two voltages, two currents or between
one current and one voltage. Voltages up to
500 V and currents up to 25 A can be connected directly to the instrument, and the
current range can be readily extended by
using external current transformers. The
instrument displays phase angle directly,
Motor protection for
three-phase LV motors
ewElec’s KE / KD range of motor protection
relays are designed to protect low voltage
3-phase motors with an accent on pumps. The
relays self-record every setting alteration, every
event (2 000 off in a rotating buffer) and the last
60 faults.The current value at the time of the fault
occurring, the minimum voltage present at the
time, the circuit interruption time, as well as date
and time of occurrence are also recorded. KE/ KD
relays will also record the running hours of the
motor, the number of starts and trips, apparent
and real power usage and thermal utilisation of
the motor for the last 10 start sequences. Protection features are embedded into the relay, and the
free accompanying software permits selective
activation of each protection attribute so that the
user may choose what is appropriate for the application.The relays require no additional current
transformers right up to 50 A but are available
for use up to 400 A with the use of separately
installed interposing current transformers.
Enquiries: Contact: Luc Dutrieux. Tel. 012 327 1729
or email sales@newelec.co.za.
with a resolution of 0,1º with no need for
calculation or interpolation.
The second instrument in the range, the
PAM420, provides phase angle measuring
functionality identical to that of the PAM410,
but adds facilities for two-channel voltage,
current and frequency measurement. It also
has a high-accuracy timing function that
can be triggered by voltage signals or voltfree contacts, and can measure times up
to 999,999 s with a resolution of 1 ms. The
PAM420 has a built-in rechargeable battery,
allowing it to be used in almost any location.
Supplied complete with a carrying case,
test lead set and, in the case of the PAM420,
a mains-operated battery charger, Megger’s
new compact phase angle meters feature
robust construction to ensure long life even
in tough operating conditions. They have
a CAT III 500 V/CAT IV 300 V safety rating,
except for the timer inputs on the PAM420,
which are rated CAT II 250 V. Both models can
be calibrated locally – full instructions are
given in the user manual – which eliminates
the inconvenience and cost of having to
send them to a specialist calibration facility.
Megger is represented locally by Surgetek.
Enquiries: Stuart Ashton. Tel. 011 792 1303/4/5
or email info@surgetek.co.za.
Earthing and lightning protection
Pressure and level measurement
Process calibration tools for
By G van Rooy, Comtest
Process Calibration Tools (PCT) is a family of tools that enables users to calibrate temperature, pressure, flow and electrical sensors, transmitters
and gauges in-situ and in I&C and I&E shops.
complete pressure calibration system includes components
to generate, control and measure pressure (and normally to
log data from some or all of these functions). Some systems
include two or all of these functions in a single unit. A procedure to
adjust the unit is also usually required.
Pressure monitors and references are digital readouts or gauges
that convert the pressure into numerical pressure units.
Pressure sources generate either pneumatic (gas) or hydraulic
(oil, water or alcohol typically) pressure. For PCT field applications,
a hand-pump or comparison test pump can be used, in conjunction
with a reference calibrator; these normally provide sufficient control
for field applications. On the bench, for higher pressures and where
a greater degree of control or automation is required, a gas bottle or
shop air can be used with a controller.
Deadweight testers and the related electronic deadweight tester
are portable systems that provide all three functions - generation,
control and measurement - in a single unit, and are suitable for both
field and bench use.
Analogue and digital pressure gauges are often used to monitor
pressures in processes. Gauges have an internal mechanical or
electro-mechanical mechanism to convert input pressure to a reading.
Sensors and transmitters comprise both a sensor assembly, to
detect and measure the pressure, and a transmitter, which converts
the pressure into an electrical signal, typically a 4 - 20 milliamp signal,
that can be transmitted to a control panel, PLC or other readout. In
this case, there are two items to be calibrated.
The first and most important step is to calibrate the pressure-toresistance (or pressure-to-voltage) relationship of the sensor, and the
second step is to calibrate and verify the linearity and offset of the
conversion of electrical signal from the sensor into a 4 - 20 milliamp
signal. Calibrating the sensor requires a pressure source such as a
handheld pump and a reference calibrator such as a Fluke 700G if
the sensor can be removed from the circuit or a reference calibrator
placed in circuit adjacent to the sensor. Calibrating the transmitter
requires a multi-function calibrator or documenting process calibrator.
If the sensor or transmitter is found to be out of tolerance, the span
and offset have to be adjusted on the transmitter. If the transmitter
uses a digital communication protocol the span and offset is adjusted
through a digital communicator or with a documenting process calibrator capable of digital communication. Otherwise, trim pots on the
transmitter are used to adjust the span and offset.
Figures 1 and 1a: A pressure calibration
system needs to accurately measure
pressure and may also need to measure
pressure transmitters.
Figure 2: Electronic
deadweight tester.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Pressure and level measurement
DUT – Device Under Test
PCT – Process Calibration Tool
PLC – Programmable Logic Controller
TAR – Test Accuracy Ratio
TUR – Test Uncertainty Ratio
• Process calibration tools enable calibration of industrial instruments.
•No instrument can be used without being calibrated – and maintained.
• Properly calibrated equipment can save money.
Take note
Why calibrate?
The need to achieve consistent results is one of the most important
reasons why we calibrate. Accuracy is an important feature of a calibrator. You may need a particular level of accuracy to comply with
standards that specify a test accuracy ratio (TAR) or test uncertainty
ration (TUR). For example, many standards require a 4:1 ratio between
the specified tolerance of the device under test (DUT) and the accuracy
or uncertainty of the calibration equipment.
Accuracy is also important because when accurate standards are used
most of the time, downtime only needs to be long enough to verify
that the instruments are still in tolerance. However, with inaccurate
calibration standards, more borderline and out-of-tolerance indications are found. This means that a routine verification turns into an
additional adjustment procedure and a final verification at each of
the test points to prove the 'as left' condition is in tolerance. This
more than doubles the downtime and the technician time involved
in completing the calibration. This is because inaccurate standards
tend to not be consistent with each other causing us to make more
adjustments to correct phantom errors.
Figure 3: Deadweight testers
generate and control pressure
in a calibration system.
Figure 4: Analogue pressure gauge.
Pressure gauge
Figure 6: Pressure transmitters convert signals from pressure sensors
to a 4-20 ma signal.
Figure 5: Digital pressure gauge.
Gavin van Rooy has sold Fluke products for the past 18 years and has
been with Comtest for the last 10 years. Aside from looking after the local
Fluke dealers, he has travelled extensively in Africa, assisting new Fluke
dealers with set-up and on-site training. For the last two years, Gavin
was assigned to the Western Cape region, offering support to the local
agent and dealers. Always involved in the full Fluke portfolio of electrical/
process/ thermal/ power quality/ scopemeters, on his return to Gauteng
he was given the opportunity to focus on the Fluke Process Tool range of
instruments. Enquiries: Tel. 011 608 8520 or email gvanrooy@comtest.co.za
About the author
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Pressure and level measurement
Most efficient way to measure compressed air
or efficient machine and plant processes, compressed air must be
analysed and monitored as thoroughly as possible while being
optimally integrated into the control system. A compact all-in-one
solution for this is the EP3744 EtherCAT Box. The IP 67 rated module
combines compressed air measurement, EtherCAT connectivity
and digital I/Os for use directly in the process, outside of electrical
cabinets. In addition to six digital inputs and two digital outputs, the
EP3744 EtherCAT Box has four pressure inputs with integrated 6 mm
fittings. The pressure is measured as the difference to the fifth pressure connection, which is fed via a hose into a protective housing
for IP 67 conformity. The measured data is provided in the form of
16-bit values which are transmitted in an electrically isolated manner
to the controller. The measuring range is 0 to 1 bar (15 psi), with a
resolution of 1 mbar per digit.
This all adds up to a compact stand-alone device for the direct
measurement and monitoring of pressure in the field. On the one
hand, long routes or hose connections from the process to the control cabinet are eliminated. On the other, the frequently stipulated
isolation of electrical and pneumatic systems is incredibly simple to
achieve. Further advantages of this system- integrated solution are
the short reaction times - due to local measurement using only one
Trimming the inventory
ndress+Hauser's standardised
instrument platform for pressure measurement not only helps
save costs in production but also
in the warehouse. Measurement
instruments fitted by plant builders on skids and other pieces of
process equipment can often overly complicate the field instrument
installed base and spare parts supply system. As a result, inventory
warehouses contain far too many
instruments from too many suppliers.This offers the procurement
manager considerable cost-cutting
potential, as it costs money to
maintain material master data for
every storage point and every instrument in storage.The following
pressure measuring instrument
example clearly illustrates how
inventories can be significantly
slimmed down by adopting the
standardised instrument platform
from Endress+Hauser.
Regardless of the measurement
parameter, every company is
looking to standardise its instruments and keep the number of
different types and models to a
minimum. To ensure that at least
the ‘mechanics’ fit, it makes sense
Electricity+Control October ‘13
to define a factory standard that
specifies uniform process connections, lengths and communication
Standardised spare parts, such
as electronic inserts and display
units, make for short repair times.
The electronic insert is always the
same, regardless of whether you
are measuring pressure (Cerabar),
hydrostatics (Deltapilot) or differential pressure (Delta bar) or if you
are working in an Ex or SIL application. Therefore all you need are
just a few spare electronic units.
Enquiries: Natlee Chetty. Tel. 011
262 8000 or email info@za.endress.
A/D converter - as well as the EtherCAT connection and additional
digital I/Os, integration into the control system is particularly efficient.
In addition to control or regulation, analysis and diagnostics are
indispensable wherever pneumatic systems are used. For example,
the operating pressure can be monitored using the EP3744 EtherCAT
Box and an altogether better transparency of the machine is achieved.
Enquiries: Email K.MCPherson@beckhoff.com.
Digital valve controller with
stainless steel housing
merson Process Management’s Fisher Fieldvue DVC6200
digital valve controller family gains added capability with
its all stainless steel housing that withstands the corrosive
atmospheres often experienced in chemical plants, pulp
and paper mills, as well as near-shore and offshore oil and
gas installations.
All DVC6200 series instruments utilise a patented linkageless, non-contact feedback design to detect valve position.
This valve positioning technology eliminates any travel
feedback issues caused by corrosion, high cycle or high
vibration applications.
In addition to external protection, corrosion resistance
is found within the stainless steel housing with the digital
controller’s fully encapsulated printed wiring boards. Internal
component protection is further enhanced by a separate,
weather-tight field wiring terminal box that isolates the
field wiring connection from other areas of the instrument.
With over one million units installed worldwide, Fieldvue
digital valve controllers prove highly suited to difficult process environments, where they provide unmatched valve
The DVC6200 series is offered with CSA, IECEx, ATEX and
FM hazardous area approvals as well as other certifications/
approvals. It is also listed in the Lloyd’s Register for industrial,
marine and offshore use.
Enquiries: Email Danielle.Aychouh@emerson.com or mark.
Pressure and level measurement
Efficient, consistent pressure sensors
O-Link is a simple, point-to-point, communication protocol between an IO-Link
enabled device, typically a sensor or
actuator, and an IO-Link master. This technology has now been implemented in ifm
electronic’s PN7 series pressure sensors. If
the IO-Link functionality is not used, then
the sensor operates as a pressure switch
with two switching outputs. Values above
or below the ideal system pressure are
reliably prevented resulting in increased
machine uptime and consistent operation.
The PN7 pressure sensor offers a choice
of switchpoints or analogue values and
parameter setting, diagnosis and transmission of process values via IO-Link.The sensor features high switchpoint accuracy and
switching frequency. Its overload-resistant
ceramic measuring cell is designed for
more than 100-million switching operations. Different versions are available with
pressure ranges between -1 and 600 bar.
When connected to an IO-Link master
the sensors can benefit from additional
features. For example, IO-Link allows the
process measurement data, parameters
and diagnostic information to be transmitted via the standard connection cable.This
information is then made available to the
host PLC allowing, for example, the transmission of the pressure as a digital value,
rather than going through a digital to
analogue conversion for transmission and
then the opposite conversion on reaching
the PLC.This allows a more accurate value,
free from conversion errors, on which to
base plant control decisions. Additionally,
IO-Link masters to specification 1.1 store
the setup parameters of the connected
sensor. If ever a replica sensor is installed
(eg due to mechanical damage of the
original), the IO-Link master recognises it
is a ‘blank’ replacement and automatically
copies the stored setup into the newly
connected sensor. The need for complex
re-parameterisation is eliminated.
Enquiries: Chris Cronjé. Tel. 012 450 0370 or
email chris.cronje@ifm.com.
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
and level
Preventing storage tank overfill
torage tanks in the oil and gas industry are used for
environmentally damaging liquids which could cause
serious incidents including personnel injuries, if not properly monitored. A simple faulty fuel gauge can fail to alert
operators that fuel storage is being filled to an alarming
high level, causing large quantities of petrol to overflow.
As a consequence, vapor clouds are formed leading to
explosions and fire that can last for days. Overfill prevention systems are a must for obvious reasons but they can
be costly, tedious to implement and difficult to maintain if
custom-built. Endress+Hauser's pre-configured solution
package reduces project costs by up to 20% and lowers implementation risk as it is based on a standard approach with
repeatable designs that have been tested and documented.
The system was developed with Rockwell Automation
and resulted in a complete and integrated solution able to
address the entire safety loop, from measuring and monitoring to correcting elements. Devices are pre-integrated
which means there is only a need for on-site parameteris-
ing, but the whole solution itself is modular and can be
easily extended. Endress+Hauser delivers market standard
compliance and ensures:
• Scalability to your needs
• Suitability for manual and automated operated facilities
• Up to SIL 3
• Display of detailed warning and alarm messages on
both text display and operating panel
• Possibility of FailSafe high warnings and high high
• Integrated automated proof-test procedure (patent
• Automatic recording of all events for better transparency
and traceability
• UPS for 30 minutes operation
• Free tank selection by the user to simplify alarm assignment
Enquiries: Ivan De Waal. Tel. 011 262 8000 or email info@
Inductive sensors for extremely high ambient temperatures
he new high-temperature IF6074 range of
inductive sensors from ifm electronic is
designed for the steel and glass industries.
They are also suited for other hot environments and applications, such as industrial
furnaces, burners and incinerators.
Standard sensors are not suited for
temperatures above 100°C as electronic
components and tin solder would be damaged. Thanks to the special mechanical
construction and the use of select materials
and electronic components, the ifm sensors
are perfectly suited for temperatures up to
180°C. With a compact and sturdy design,
the new series offers maximum long-term
stability and reliability even under the most
challenging operating conditions.
The sensors have a compact design since
sensor and evaluation electronics are housed
in one unit and they provide greater flexibility thanks to their M12, M18, M30 and M50
stainless steel housings. In addition, their 5 m
silicone cable allows terminals to be outside
the critical area.
Enquiries: Chris Cronjé. Tel. 012 450 0370 or
email chris.cronje@ifm.com.
Mass flowmeter for bulk materials
he MF 3000 is developed for online mass
flow measurement in metallic pipes from
a few kg/h to many t/h.The system is suitable
for on-line measurements of powders, dust,
pellets, and granular from 1 nm up to more
than 2 cm in pneumatic or free fall applications. Mass flow of a few kg/h up to many
t/h can be measured accurately.
The measurement principle of the MF
3000 is based on the physical Doppler-Effect.
The sensor generates a uniform microwave
inside the pipe. These microwaves are being reflected by particles passing through
the pipe and the reflected waves are picked
up by the sensor. Calculation of frequency
and amplitude changes allows for accurate
determination of solid flow. Non-moving
particles like dust accumulation are excluded
Electricity+Control October ‘13
from calculations. The measurement is very
fast and therefore also sudden fluctuations
in mass flow are detected. The installation is
simple and cost effective via a weld-in socket,
i.e. a robust stainless steel version, through
which the sensor is screwed flush with the
inside of the pipe, which enables contactless
measuring. There are no armatures protruding into the pipe and the device is abrasion
and maintenance free. The sensitivity adjustment makes it possible to measure with
the MF3000 in very small or very large pipe
diameters. The sensor is connected to a galvanic separated DIN-rail mounted transmitter
with limit alarm monitoring including alarm
contact. Measurement values can be output
either as analogue 4...20 mA or digital RS 232
and RS485 signal for connection to a process
control system.The distance between sensor
and transmitter can be up to 2 000 m.
Start up and Calibration is simple, quick
and cost effective by using a notebook with
the MF–SMART software. For the calibration
process either one or multiple reference flow
amounts are required. Twenty-four different
products can be calibrated and stored in the
system. An ATEX-version for Ex-applications
is available for zones 20 and 2.
In addition to the MF3000 Mütec Instruments offers a wide range of sensors for
flow monitoring and moisture measurement
for solids.
Mecosa is the sole agent for Mütec Instruments GmbH in South Africa.
Enquiries: Tel. 011 257-6100 or email mail
Transparency in compressed air networks
he number one choice for measuring compressed air and technical gases in
the bulk solids processing industry is the Endress+Hauser's t-mass 150 thermal
mass flowmeter, specially designed for use in compressed air and supply networks.
Compressed air networks with leak rates of 30% and more are normal in many
plants around the world. Quite startling, considering that energy conservation
and reduction is top of nearly every company's agenda. For this reason, more and
more attention is being focused on compressed air and supply networks. A detailed
insight into a system is needed to locate and minimise leaks in the network. By
using several low-cost measuring systems in one line instead of one more accurate
and more expensive main measurement, users can get a far clearer picture of their
compressed air network. Endress+Hauser has the instruments to make this possible.
While small leaks in the overall gas flow go unnoticed when a primary-measurement system is used, measurements on a line reliably indicate an increase
in the measured value. Experience
shows that 3 - 6 line measurements are
typically required for one primary measurement. Here, reproducibility is often
more important than absolute accuracy
in order to achieve long-term savings in
the extensive distribution networks. In
addition to minimum pressure loss, reliable operation is also a decisive factor
for successful instrument deployment.
This is because the measuring point,
once commissioned, can often only be
accessed with a great deal of effort.
The device is supplied as a completely
preconfigured device in line with the client's requirements. The t-mass comes
with an integrated ‘gas engine’. At the
device, users can directly select air, argon, nitrogen or CO, as the gas. By using
the ‘gas engine’ no recalibration onsite
is required.
Enquiries: Frans van den Berg. Tel. 011 262
8000 or info@za.endress.com.
Read all
Electricity+Control articles
– and more –
on E+C Spot ON!
Pressure and level measurement
and level
Level control in the wood chip silo for cellulose production
onitoring and control of levels are part
of all production industries, whether
the product being monitored is a liquid or
a solid. The pulp industry is no exception
and is one of the many industries to which
VEGA, a leading manufacturer of level instrumentation, supplies precise and innovative
measuring sensors.
Wood chips are the raw material for producing cellulose and mechanical pulp. Made
from debarked logs, they are shredded on
chippers or bought in as sawmill waste. The
chips are fed via conveyor belts into silos up
to 25 m high. After that they are sorted by
size and quality and transported to the pulp
digester or the TMP (Thermo Mechanical
Pulp) system. The wood chip silos are filled
and emptied in batch quantities, which create
material cones, large amounts of dust and
bridges that can collapse during emptying.
The optimal solution for level measurement is the radar sensor VEGAPULS 68,
designed for continuous measurement of
bulk solids under difficult process conditions. Compared with conventional radar
sensors, the instrument has a considerably
higher signal sensitivity, which ensures that
the measurement works reliably even during filling. The sensor is not in contact with
the product and its function is independent
of the dust and noise which are generated
during the filling process. This continuous
monitoring also means dependable logistics
planning is possible.
Further applications for VEGAPULS 68 are
in the bark silos as well as the blowing tank
following the pulp digester. The sensor is a
cost-effective and reliable measuring instrument which is easy to install and wear and
Enquiries: VEGA Instruments SA. Tel. 011 795
3249 or email info.za@vega.com.
Temperature transmitter with display and IO-link
he new TD temperature transmitter from ifm electronic is the first
transmitter with display and IO-Link for food applications. With
its bright, 4-digit LED display for optimum readability, the transmitter
has a fast response time of T05/09 = 1 / 3 s and is available in various
probe lengths from 30 to150 mm.
The integrated clamp and G1/2" process adapters allow quick and
easy installation. No complex set-up is required as the transmitters are
supplied with a pre-scaled measuring range. For special applications
the temperature range can be conveniently scaled via IO-Link 1.1.TD
temperature transmitters are
characterised by a compact and
hygienic design with integrated
adapters as well as a display for
local temperature indication.
Protected to IP 69K standards
and featuring a fully welded high-grade stainless steel housing, the
transmitters are designed to operate in particularly harsh applications.
Enquiries: Chris Cronjé. Tel. 012 450 0370 or email chris.cronje@ifm.com.
Increased combustion performance
&W’s ACFM-2200 is a fully automatic coal flow monitor, which
collects pulverised coal samples from pneumatic transport
pipes between mills and burners. It provides increased combustion
performance and fuel savings. The measured results are transmitted
to the control room for evaluation and control of the coal flow. The
sampling operation is carried out according to the international ISO
9931standard. Typical applications include routine flow measurements, adjustment of fuel distribution, sampling of coal, monitoring
of pulverising distribution settings in connection with low-NOx burners and test firing of new coal types. The sampling unit consists of
Electricity+Control October ‘13
a motorised rotating sampler arm with four coal extraction nozzles.
The measuring unit separates the coal particles from the extracted
gas stream and collects them in a measuring tube where the volume
is measured by a fibre optics measuring device. The control unit supervises the function of all components and converts the measuring
signals for display on the operator’s panel (facilities for remote indication is available). The control unit can operate up to eight sampling
and measuring units according to requirement. M&W Asketeknik is
represented locally by OEN Enterprises.
Enquiries: Mike Andrews. Tel. 011 675 4447 or email mike@
IO-link sensor for position
and level detection
Modular sweep angle control
he new capacitive KQ sensor from ifm electronic allows easy
parameter setting via IO-Link before installation. The sensors are
ideal for position and level detection and the IO-Link allows versatile
data processing. The sensor features a clearly visible display of the
switching status with a freely selectable NO/NC function. Mounting
adapters as well as cable ties guarantee easy and fast installation.
Capacitive sensors detect bulk materials or liquids through non-metallic vessel walls.Typical applications for the detection of these products can be found in the semiconductor, paper and wood industries.
The parameters can either be set via the buttons on the sensor or
via the IO-Link interface. This can be done using a USB interface or a
memory plug. A standard M12 cable transmits process data, parameters and diagnostic information to a connected IO-Link master. When
IO-Link is not in use, the sensor works with one switching output.
ifm’s existing capacitive sensor range was
enhanced with the IOLinkfeature, and data as
well as the order numbers
remain the same.
Enquiries: Chris Cronjé.
Tel. 012 450 0370 or email
weep Angle Control valves from PSV Mitech are ideally
configured for service with highly erosive liquids where
pressures and/or temperatures are too high for pinch valves or
similar slurry valves. They are also ideal for applications where
severe flashing is expected. Modular in design, the valves are
available in sizes from 1”to 16” and larger sizes are available
on request. The Sweep Angle Control valve has flange ratings
of up to #2500.The plug and seat can be manufactured in hard
material, up to and including tungsten carbide or other ceramics,
and the body can be bronzed or coated with high velocity spray
coated tungsten carbide in critical areas.The Sweep Angle control
valve has a flow-to-close configuration
with few components in the flow path
eliminating any sharp changes in direction. The seat ring is clamped between
the valve body and the downstream pipe
work, so there is no need for a traditional
retainer or cage.
Typical applications for the valve include those found in mining, petrochemical, food, pulp and paper and power
generation industries.
Enquiries: Greg Walker. Tel. 011 657 6000
or email sales@mitech.co.za.
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Pressure and level measurement
and level
Reliable dust measurement
WR Engineering’s ProSens dust monitor operates on the ‘triboelectric’ principle. If the dust to be measured is constant,
then the generated measuring signal is
proportional to the dust concentration, even
if there are dust deposits on the measuring
probe. This measuring method provides
accurate results with little maintenance.
The measuring device provides measurement values for dust concentration, either
as a trend signal or as absolute values for
emission measurement. ProSens is used
when the dust concentration is to be output
as an absolute value in mg/m3, or for exact
measurements even with large channel
diameters, as well as for applications in
hazardous explosion zones (GasEx-Zone 1,
DustEx-Zone 20). The instrument is ideally
suited for the measurement of dust concentration even at high temperatures. The
measuring system consists of a welded casing to serve as a sensor receptacle, a PMS
sensor and the PME 100 transmitter. The
unit can be supplied in a field housing with
touch panel display or as a DIN-Rail version.
In the case of a DIN-Rail version, software
for parameter setting is supplied. SWR is
represented locally by OEN Enterprises.
Enquiries: Mike Andrews. Tel. 011 675 4447 or
Pressure reduction and noise control in process plant
team is normally produced in industrial boilers at
high pressures and temperatures, since in this superheated condition it carries more energy and results
in more efficient production of power in the turbine.This
high pressure also allows the steam to be transported
around the plant in smaller lines with less heat loss. For
use in a process plant, both the pressure and the temperature have to be reduced. A letdown station solves
this problem. It comprises a pressure reducing valve
and the temperature reducing apparatus. The solution
is to use a valve with a special trim that is engineered to
solve the complex requirement of both pressure reduction and noise control. A PSV Mitech energy dissipating
disk stack that fits into the company’s range of standard
Globe valves is one of the best methods to achieve this.
The pressure is dropped across many stages. The disk
stack combines the concept of many restrictions in series
(along each passageway) with multiple paths in parallel
(several passageways in each disk and many disks in a
stack). This enables the valve to handle low flow rates as
well as the maximum flows. One or more diffuser plates
may be installed downstream of the valve to create backpressure to enable a smaller valve to be used. Reducing
the pressure of the superheated steam does very little
to reduce the temperature. To reduce the temperature of
the steam a desuperheater is utilised to add water to the
superheated steam.To vaporise the water a large amount
of energy is required to overcome the latent heat. The
high temperature steam provides this. The result is an
increased flow of steam at a reduced temperature. By
varying the amount of water added, the temperature
can be controlled.
Enquiries: Greg Walker. Tel. 011 657 6000 or email sales@
Detect limit level of dry bulk solids
WR’s Pro Gap microwave barrier is
designed to detect the limit level of all
types of dry bulk solids or to position objects.
Pro Gap assures simple and uncomplicated
retrofitting and reliable fill and limit level
detection. With its process adapter, up to
220°C and 20 bar pressure can be realised,
and with ceramic mounting, temperatures
up to 1 100°C is possible.
The microwave barrier uses a contactless
measuring procedure. It can be installed in
containers, pipelines, shafts or free-fall sections. The range, depending on the model,
is either 0 - 4 m or 0 - 18 m, and if required,
larger ranges can be supplied.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
During the detection process when container
walls, housings or pipelines are not metal,
it is possible to measure the object from the
outside.This makes it possible to completely
uncouple the measurement from the process
through suitable windows made of non-metallic materials. This is especially interesting
in the use of aggressive, abrasive or coarse
materials or in cases of extreme pressures
and temperatures. The use of microwaves
also ensures a high level of insensitivity to
any caking on the sensor window.
Pro Gap is compact in design and no separate electronics are required. The Pro Gap S
model can also be applied in Ex-zones by
means of a process-adapter.
Enquiries: Mike Andrews. Tel. 011 675 4447 or
email mike@oenenterprises.co.za.
Energy and EnviroFiciency
VSDs – power saving in
cooling pump systems
By A Chalmers, Irri-Gator Products
If VSDs are applied correctly, substantial power savings can be realised. However, find the right person, suitably qualified, to undertake a thorough
investigation of any pumping plant, before embarking on the capital outlay for this machinery.
umerous production facilities around South Africa make use
of conventional centrifugal end suction-type pumps to circulate water through their production cooling systems. Often
these pumps are either running unnecessarily at full speed while the
production plant is operating well under maximum production capacity or regulating valves are employed to throttle back the system’s
operating pressure in an oversized pumping system resulting in a
huge wastage of power consumed.
By replacing conventional ac motor starter equipment with variable speed drives (VSDs) and a simple control system, it may well
be possible to unlock substantial energy savings in the production
plant’s energy bill.
End suction centrifugal pumps deliver a fixed performance curve
at a constant operating speed when fitted with a specific impeller
diameter. An example of this is shown in a typical pump curve as
illustrated in Figure 1 where the pump is operating at a constant
speed of 2 900 RPM (using a normal 2 pole motor at standard 50 Hz
frequency) and fitted with a 259 mm impeller.
Figures 2 and 3
Figure 1
By altering the pump’s motor speed it is possible to change this
performance curve and thus meet the required system’s operating
pressure or flow. Figures 2 and 3 show how the same pump’s performance curve changes with a change in motor speed. The same flow
is capable of being delivered at the reduced speed yet the system’s
operating pressure is reduced accordingly.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
The important factor to note is that that the power consumed by
the pump has reduced substantially with the reduction in motor
speed as is evident in the red curves as shown in Figures 2 and 3.
This principle of operation is known as the ‘Affinity Law’ is briefly
described as follows:
Laws of Affinity with a constant impeller diameter:
* Change in flow rate proportional to change in impeller speed
* Change in head proportional to the square of change in impeller
* Change in kilowatt proportional to the cube of change in impeller
By providing real time system pressure feedback to a VSD, you are
able to make use of a PID (proportional-integral-derivative controller)
control loop. This allows the pump’s motors speed to be regulated
based on the actual pressure in the system versus that which is required (reference point). In layman’s terms what this means is that
the more production machinery there is in operation, requiring higher
system flow, the faster the electrical motor will run in order to meet
the required preset system pressure (reference point). The opposite is
also true that when production demand is lower and less machinery
is operational, requiring less cooling water, the system will reduce
speed to meet the required preset system pressure (reference point).
By using the principle of having a preset system pressure, it is also
now possible to fully open all regulating valves in the system that are
being used to throttle back the high operating pressure experienced
in the system when flow demand is lower. Power is now being used
more efficiently by the cooling pumps and it is possible to unlock
energy savings.
Case study
Let us look at a typical real life application in the cooling pumping
plant of a plastic's conversion factory and understand the level of
energy savings that are achievable. In our case study an existing
Rapid Allweiler 65/250 pump equipped with a 214 mm impeller and
coupled to a 30 kW 2 pole (2 900 RPM) motor was in operation. At best
efficiency point (68,5%) this pump is capable of providing a flow rate
of 110 m³/Hr to an operating pressure of 5,5 Bar. Currently the plant
requires considerably less flow due to lower production output and
as such the operating pressure increases to as much as 6,1 Bar. The
additional pressure being generated by the pump is throttled back
to 4,0 Bar using a regulating valve on the delivery side of the pump.
In order to provide realistic power calculations with which to carry
out comparisons between full speed pumping versus VSD controlled
pumping, five different flow rates were selected that could represent
the changes in the plant’s flow requirements as and when production machines were utilised. Table 1 provides a summary of the
comparisons and the potential power savings that can be unlocked
by pumping with a VSD.
Motor Speed
Motor Frequency (Hz)
Pressure (Bar)
Power Absorbed (kW)
2 900
2 355
2 900
2 361
2 900
2 413
2 900
2 506
2 900
2 633
Table 1: Comparisons and potential power savings.
•If correctly applied, VSDs can provide substantial power savings.
• Pumps are commonly used, and combining them with a VSD may result
in savings.
•No VSD should be installed without a proper investigation.
Take note
If a flow rate of 100 m³/Hr was used as the average flow rate required
by the plant, and pumping took place over 6 480 hours annually (six
days per week x 24 hours per day x 45 weeks per year), a potential
saving on the running of the pump would be R 26 114,40 based on
an electricity tariff cost of R0,65 per kW/Hr. As one can deduce from
Table 1 the potential savings are substantial if the plant production
output was reduced beyond the 100 m³/Hr flow requirement, which
is evidently the current situation.
During this investigation, it was concluded that the original pump
selection could have been more optimal, but after consultation with
the plant manager, it was understood that the pump was originally
oversized to cater for additional plant growth and is thus currently
under-utilised at the expense of additional power being consumed.
With the year-on-year increase in the cost of electricity in South
Africa, it remains imperative that any quality plant manager would
be searching for feasible processes and products to achieve energy
savings. It goes without saying that a VSD is a fantastic tool and, if
applied correctly, can unlock substantial savings on the power bill
- but it is imperative that a thorough investigation of any pumping
plant is conducted by a suitably qualified person before embarking
on the capital outlay for this machinery. Where the system flow rate
and system operating pressure can change from time to time during
operation, it is well worth investigating the feasibility of implementing VSDs as an energy saving measure. VSDs offer many other
benefits such as enhanced motor protection and, if lower operational
machinery speeds are achievable, less plant maintenance is likely
to be required.
Alister Chalmers joined CL Cameron Planned Irrigation in 1981
where he started out as a system installer, later becoming
system designer. In 1986 he joined Gili Irrigation and in 1987
he became area manager for the Overberg region where he
promoted the concept of automated irrigation. In 1989, in Malawi, he
worked on large scale irrigation projects for coffee and tea plantations.
Returning to South Africa in 1991, Alister joined forces with Eppie Steyn
and the late Pieter Fouche and together they grew and developed Agriplas,
which was later sold to the WPK group. In 2003, Alister and Martin Giles
formed Irri-Gator Products with the focus on providing automated irrigation control solutions. Enquiries: Tel. 082 490 5922 or email alisterc@
bout the author
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Energy and EnviroFiciency
PID – Proportional-Integral-Derivative
RPM – Revolutions Per Minute
VSD – Variable Speed Drive
Energy and EnviroFiciency
Project management for Cape Town solar plants
ES, an ISO 9000 certified company, which
provides management, engineering and
technical auditing solutions, has embarked
on a contract in the renewable energy sector,
applying its engineering project management techniques to two solar Photovoltaic
(PV) plants in the Cape. These plants form a
significant part of the extensive solar energy
developments currently being undertaken in
South Africa.
“South Africa, a country beset by dire
power capacity challenges, is increasingly
turning towards renewable energy, and this
new era of renewable energy generation,
while still in its early stages, is nevertheless
fast gaining momentum,” states Bradley
Hemphill, managing director of EES. “It is
also vital that the country moves away from
its reliance on coal-fired power and reduces
its carbon footprint. The use of alternative
clean energy sources is a natural step in the
right direction.”
The Cape, where the two PV plants are situated, and its surrounding areas have some
of the highest Direct Normal Irradiance (DNI)
values globally, comparing favourably with
Brazil, a country where multiple solar energy
plants have recently been constructed very
The projects are an outcome of the first
round of the Department of Energy’s (DoE)
Renewable Energy Independent Power Producers Programme (REIPPP), which reached
financial close in late 2012. Integral to the
REIPPP is a structured policy framework
helping facilitate the country’s Integrated
Resource Plan (IRP), which is expected to
change the power generation paradigm
Enquiries: Email Bradley.hemphill@eeslive.
Highly commended
agnet has won a best product award highly commended – at the 2013 Green
Supply Chain Awards held in Johannesburg
“The installation of a 100% locally designed, engineered and manufactured
energy efficient lighting control system at
Unilever’s Distribution Centre (DC) in Johannesburg, combines two technologies for
lighting control – passive infrared and radio
frequency,” says Stephan Allen, Magnet’s
technical director. “This programmable lighting control system has reduced the kilowatt
hour volume of the total utility bill by an
average of 43%.”
This project involved the installation of the
control systems for the warehouse lighting,
occupancy sensors control for outside lighting beneath the canopies and a reduction in
the number of luminaires in over-lit areas, for
example the inbound, outbound, storage and
cages areas inside the warehouse.
Unilever was the winner in the best project
category, between R1 M and R10 M, for this
energy saving project.
Enquiries: Tel. 031 274 1057 or email sales@
Magnet’s Stephan Allen receives the award from
Susan Custers, Promech Publishing.
13 - 14 November 2013
Urged on by an energy crisis and global warming Renewable and
Alternative Energy is quickly emerging as the fastest growing industry
globally. With a Carbon Tax on the horizon and the Renewable Energy
Independent Power Producer Procurement projects coming online
South Africa has invested billions of rand into this industry with a
lot more to come.
With this global attention the 2013 SAEE Convention has dedicated
a day track to Renewable and Alternative Energy. Twelve 30 minute
sessions focusing on opportunities, obstacles, financing and case
studies in the renewable and alternative energy industry, will be
showcased as part of this year’s annual convention.
As opening speaker, Dr Stephen Roosa, business development,
Energy Systems Group, US, will enlighten the delegates on renewable energy policies and technologies looking at mega solutions and
Electricity+Control October ‘13
net zero buildings while Dr Tobias Bischop-Niemz, chief engineer for
energy planning in the renewable unit at Eskom will be looking at the
regulation and potential for embedded PV generators in South Africa.
Other confirmed speakers in the renewable and alternative track
include, but are not limited to, Gregor Küpper, the managing director of
Solarworld Africa,Trevor de Vries, managing director for sub-Saharan
Africa at AEG Power Solutions, PhumzileTshelane, chief executive officer of The South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa), Johan
Cilliers, regional director for sub-Saharan Africa at First Solar South
Africa, Lehlohonolo Tinte, programme manager, Eskom.
Join a network platform of more than 500 delegates engaging with
78 industry leader speakers over two days in parallel sessions.
Enquiries: Tel. 018 290 5130 or email convention@saee.org.za.
onstruction of a 50 MW concentrated solar power (CSP) plant
began on 12 August 2013 on the farm Bokpoort, near Upington, in
the Northern Cape, with a projected completion date of 2015.
The project will employ up to 600 people from the surrounding
communities during construction and 53 people during its operation.
Of the people employed during construction 30% will be previously
disadvantaged people from the area.
Handling the independent Environmental Impact Assessment, which
includes an Environmental Management Plan (EMP) as well as Environmental Control and Monitoring during construction, is international
consulting engineering company Royal HaskoningDHV.
Compared with most CSP plants which only have a storage capacity
of up to three hours, this installation at Bokpoort can store eight to
ten hours of electricity.
This technology enhancement of large scale energy storage creates
the reality of being able to release the power to the national grid for
a period of eight to ten hours after the sun goes down, enabling the
use of solar electricity even at night.
Royal HaskoningDHV (then SSI) was appointed in 2010 for the
inception phase of the project, to undertake the EIA process for the
plant. The work also included amendments to the Environmental
Authorisation due to the plant’s design. In addition the company was
responsible for the compilation of a Basic Assessment for the pipeline
abstraction of water from the Orange River and assisted in applying
for the water-use licence.
The availability of water for the power plant was a critical consideration in terms of securing water allocations and extended to ensuring
that the design of the plant’s cooling system guaranteed the optimal
use of water, whilst still achieving the desired generation output and,
subsequently, profitability levels.
Amendments to the project’s water-use licence had to be made,
owing to the importance of the agricultural sector to the economy
of the Upington area and their dependence on the Orange River as a
primary source of water. Climatic changes added to the pressure on
water resources leading to a challenging project where these different
environmental components had to be merged in a sustainable way.
Wastewater is also used in the process of photovoltaic (PV) power
generation and will be treated at an on-site wastewater treatment plant
and then returned to the CSP system.
Enquiries: Hillary Erasmus. Tel. 011 798 6511or email hillarye@rhdhv.
Efficient fossil-fired power
iemens Energy and its partner, GS Engineering & Construction
(GS E&C), handed over the most efficient fossil-fired power
plant in Asia to the South Korean power utility GS EPS Co. The
handover of Dangjin 3 (formerly Bugok 3) combined cycle power
plant took place twelve days ahead of schedule.Thanks to the main
components, Siemens’ world record-breaking H-class gas turbine
and the special steam cycle, the power plant has a gross efficiency
of almost 61 percent and an electrical capacity of 415 MW. The
Dangjin 3 power plant is located in Dangjin-City, Chungchong
Nam-do Province, approximately 120 km south of Seoul. As the
head of a consortium, Siemens built the plant as a turnkey project
together with GS E&C and supplied a SGT6-8000H gas turbine,
a SST6-5000 steam turbine, an SGen6-2000H hydrogen-cooled
generator, a Benson heat recovery steam generator as well as
parts of the electrical equipment and the SPPA-T3000 instrumentation and controls system. The company was also responsible for
commissioning the power plant. “We are proud to have built the
most modern and most efficient combined cycle plant in Asia,”
said Roland Fischer, chief executive officer of Siemens Energy’s
Fossil Power Generation Division. “Thanks to our advanced Hclass technology, our customer saves both fuel costs and the cost
of maintenance and repairs. So far, eight of the 24 H-class gas
turbines we have sold to date have been sold to South Korea.” “At
the moment, Korea’s biggest challenge is to even out the imbalance between power consumption and demand,” emphasised WK
Lee, chief executive officer of GS EPS. “Our Dangjin 3 power plant
uses Siemens technology for maximum flexibility. It is the best
available on the market. Thanks to Siemens H-class technology,
our plant operates safely, efficiently and economically.”
Enquiries: Hulisani Nemaxwi. Email hulisani.nemaxwi@siemens.
Energy and EnviroFiciency
CSP plant for Northern Cape
Energy and EnviroFiciency
Copper in aquaculture
uch has been written about the depletion of natural fish stocks
in rivers, estuaries and the oceans because of overfishing. Aquaculture, an industry that has emerged only in recent decades, has
become one of the fastest growing sectors of the world food economy.
Aquaculture already supplies more than half of the world’s demand
for fish; a percentage that is predicted to increase dramatically over
the next few decades.
In March of this year, South Africa's Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) launched a R800 M incentive programme for marine and
freshwater fishing projects aimed at growing the country's fledgling
aquaculture industry.The Aquaculture Development and Enhancement
Programme, launched by Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies,
intends to stimulate investment in this relatively untapped sector.
But, this industry is not without its challenges. According to Copper Development Association Africa’s (CDAA) centre director, Evert
Swanepoel, the damage inflicted by predatory species can lead to
both fish and economic losses.The principal predators include aquatic
mammals, for example otters and seals, reptiles like crocodiles, invertebrates, such as crabs, and birds.
Predators may cause damage to livestock or farm facilities either
directly, indirectly or both. Direct damage results when the fish or other
cultured organism is killed or seriously maimed by the predator and
is therefore lost from production. Indirect damage is highly variable,
and includes: non-lethal wounding of fish; chronic stress with a consequent reduction in feeding efficiency or health; transfer of harmful
disease-causing organisms; and sometimes even physical damage to
the animal enclosure system leading to escapement.
“Often, the indirect damage caused by a predator can result in a
greater economic loss than that caused by direct damage. For example,
a crocodile that tears a hole in a net-cage and eats a few fish is a small
loss compared to the pending escape of potentially large numbers of
the remaining fish,” says Swanepoel.
Various materials including nylon, polyester, polypropylene, polyethylene, plastic-coated welded wire, rubber and galvanised steel are
commonly used for netting in aquaculture fish enclosures around the
world. “All of these materials are selected for a variety of reasons,
including design feasibility, material strength, cost, and corrosion
resistance,” explains Swanepoel. He continues: “Recently, copper alloys have become important netting materials in aquaculture. What
sets copper alloys apart from the other materials used in fish farming is that they have strong structural properties. Attacks on nets by
predators are not uncommon and to prevent damage to holding nets
made from traditional materials, additional predator nets often have
to be installed. Globally in fish farms where fish have been secured in
copper cages, it has been found that there is no need for an additional
predator net. Copper also demonstrates corrosion-resistant properties
in marine environments, which has made it the material of choice for
decades in traditional applications such as condenser tubing, water
intake screens, ship hulls, offshore structure and sheathing.
Additionally, in the marine environment, the antimicrobial and
algaecidal properties of copper alloys actually prevent biofouling,
making them a viable alternative to chemical biocides.
“It is the combination of all of these properties –high strength, corrosion resistance and antifouling – that has made copper alloys a desirable material for marine applications, with the aquaculture industry
now actively deploying copper alloy netting and structural materials
in commercial large-scale fish farming operations around the world,
and more recently on the African continent too,” concludes Swanepoel.
Enquiries: Copper Development Association Africa. Tel. 011 824 3916 or
email evert.swanepoel@copperalliance.org.za.
Solar solutions partnership
n a logical step to offer turn-key energy management and engineering solutions to its clients, 14 year old South African energy
management specialist company Energy Cybernetics, has embarked
on including PV solar as an option to further expand the energy
savings possibilities for clients as part of a comprehensive energy
solutions offering.
SUNCybernetics culminates a combination of German quality,
know-how, and extensive renewable energy project experience which
resides in SUNfarming, with the energy management expertise
within Energy Cybernetics. Clients enjoy maximum ROI on renewable energy investments as sizing can be appropriated according to
actual requirements once energy management is under control, which
means less renewable energy needs to be acquired to supplement
or replace grid-tied energy. This sets the offering of SUNCybernetics
apart from it fellow PV solar suppliers as a more holistic approach
to renewable energy as part of an overall energy solution is the core
of Energy Cybernetics’ business. SUNCybernetics is able to offer
competitively priced, world-leading solar PV typically ranging in size
Electricity+Control October ‘13
between 3 kW up to around 1 MW directly to customers. SUNfarming
in Germany ensures quality controlled manufacturing and shipping
of its high-performance mono- and polycrystalline silicon solar cell
modules which are all TÜV-certified.
Enquiries: Yolanda de Lange. Tel. 041 367 1041 or email y.delange@
SUNfarming Headquarters in Germany.
& Product News
he death ofTony Farah on 10 August 2013 was a great shock to the
electrical engineering and high technology business fraternity.The
large turnout at a Memorial Service held in Woodmead, Johannesburg
was a fitting example of the popularity of such a fine gentleman.
Friends and family who had had the privilege of working and being
associated withTony gathered at an extremely moving service at ‘Our
Lady of the Cedars’ church on 17 August.
To almost the last minute of chatting with his entire family in his
home in Bakoven near Camps Bay in Cape Town, he was relentlessly
full of humour - but he passed away peacefully in his sleep after an
uncomfortable period of cancer and bone-marrow degeneration.
Tony was born in Johannesburg of Lebanese parents on 12 November 1948. He matriculated at Marist Brothers Observatory and
went on to complete a BSc Electrical Engineering degree in 1972 and
MBA in 1974 at the University of the Witwatersrand.
In 1990 he took a sabbatical from Spescom to complete an Advanced Management Programme at Harvard Business School. This
tertiary education stood him in good stead for the continued development and success of the multinational and JSE-listed Spescom
Group which he founded in 1977.
Prior to the founding of Spescom, Tony was an executive director
at Hubert Davies Electrical Engineering from 1974 to 1977.
During the period 1988 to 1992Tony served as vice-president of the
Electronics Industry Federation. From 2001 to 2007 he served on the
Presidential National Commission for Information and Development
as well as Public Administration and Defence.
In 1997 Tony was nominated Lebanese World
Businessman of the year by the Lebanese
Cultural Union.
OnTony’s retirement, after 30 years at the helm
of Spescom, this popular and highly respected entrepreneur reminded an interviewer that the group had
developed and patented many technologies over the years including
'tokenless' prepaid metering, a technology that is now successfully
marketed internationally. But during the latter years of his leadership
as Executive Chairman and Group CEO,Tony admitted that he found,
particularly over those last few years, that the added administration
and red tape required by more and more strict corporate governance
rules, made it much more difficult to react quickly to market conditions
and hindered his entrepreneurial expertise – but, in his words - 'it's
all been a great journey'.
He was MSAIEE until the time he resigned from Spescom. On his
retirement to Cape Town, Tony established a new Farah investment
company – New Investment Creation. This new entrepreneurship
involved advising and investing in new innovative ventures as well as
a host of financial, marketing, strategic planning and business advice
activities. Finally he was investor and advisor on a new venture at
Zulustar – a new Farah family growth company - the activities of which
became very close to his heart. The late Tony Farah is survived by
Judy, five adult children and families. Tony’s legacy and spirit lives on.
By Ken Baker
50 years in business
o mark the celebration of its 50th anniversary this year, ACTOM Power Transformers
held a cocktail party at its Wadeville (Germiston) premises on 28 August to which it
invited a number of its customers, including Eskom, municipalities, consulting engineering
companies and project management contractors. Other guests who attended the function
included Willi Felber of Felber Engineering of Austria, an internationally renowned company
of power transformer design consultants that ACTOM Power Transformers uses regularly
to assist with designing new products, as well as Ben Jansen, a high voltage test expert
who is a director of an international electrical and industrial management consultancy and
assists in the design of ACTOM Power Transformers’ advanced test facilities.
The 50th anniversary function coincided with the official opening of the company’s recently upgraded test facility, following the latest expansion of its plant capacity to include
production of 315 MVA generation and transmission transformers for Eskom. The new test
facility, established at a cost of over R30 M as an addition to the company’s existing test
facility, is the most advanced facility of its kind in Africa and one of the best in the world.
Addressing guests at the 50th anniversary function, ACTOM’s Group executive director
Andries Tshabalala said: “During the 12-year period since being acquired by ACTOM, the
company’s turnover has increased 5,8 times or 600%. The company has long been recognised as one of the leading local manufacturers of power transformers. It has greatly
enhanced its status in this respect through the technological advances and production
capacity expansions it has achieved – especially within the past six years.”
Ronnie Russell, ACTOM PowerTransformers’ Divisional CEO, is by far the longest serving
of the three CEOs who have headed up the company since its inception, having served for
28 years in this capacity. “He has also been with the company for almost as long as it has
existed - 47 years,” Tshabalala commented.
Enquiries: Tel. 011 824 2810 or email ron.russell@actom.co.za.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
ACTOM Power Transformers’ Divisional CEO, Ronnie
Russell (right) and quality manager Mohamed Alli
stand beside the 2,4 MV impulse generator in the
company’s new world-class test facility.
Centre of excellence
llustrating its commitment to being both a solutions and services leader, Schneider
Electric South Africa has established a Solutions and Services Execution Centre.
According to Mark Marucchi, who heads up the new Execution Centre, Schneider Electric South Africa prides itself on being able to offer holistic solutions to its
clients in both the private and public sectors.
“As a global specialist in energy management, Schneider Electric has, for many
years, offered a number of products and solutions to its clients. Recently, it has
simplified its organisational structure and now offers its all encompassing solutions under one Schneider Electric brand, across various sectors such as energy,
industry, buildings, data centre, networks, and residential customers,” he says.
Of the new execution centre Marucchi says: “As a one stop solutions shop, the
Solutions and Services Execution Centre leverages the capabilities, skills and competencies of Schneider Electric South Africa’s resources. By doing so, it expands
its portfolio of high value systems and services in order to meet the specific need
of its customers in targeted customer segments. It is also aimed at strengthening
cooperation with the front office and designed to develop key competencies around
solutions and services in order to drive growth for the company.”
Enquiries: Belinda Aslett. Tel. 011 254 6400 or email belinda.aslett@schneider-electric.
POWER-GEN Africa and DistribuTECH – March 2014
The co-located POWER-GEN Africa and DistribuTECH Africa exhibition and conferences will take place from 17 – 19 March, 2014 at the Cape Town International
Convention Centre, South Africa.
Free seats
PennWell Corporation, the organiser of these events, is offering two free threeday conference seats at both POWER-GEN AFRICA and DistribuTECH Africa 2014.
For updated news and opportunities in Africa’s energy and distribution sectors,
and to stand a chance to receive one of the FREE three-day conference seats, ‘Like’
the POWER-GEN Africa and DistribuTECH Africa Facebook pages by 15 October
2013 and email your name to Stephanie@tradeprojects.co.za .
Visit www.powergenafrica.com and www.distributechafrica.com for more
Fit for a King
he DuraLabel 9000 label and sign printer in conjunction with the MPS 150T
print station were crowned the 2013 winner of the American New Equipment
Digest King Awards in the packaging equipment and supplies category. The King
Awards competition, named after long time chief editor Bob King, was established
to honour superior industrial product innovations. The print and digital readers of
the New Equipment Digest determine the winners by voting for the best products in
10 specific industrial categories. More than 2 100 votes were cast! The readers were
proud to bestow these awards on significant
and inventive products that enable all
involved in manufacturing to do
their jobs more efficiently and
effectively. DuraLabel is represented locally by Aspercon.
Enquiries: Gavin
Pletschke. Tel. 011 918
8340 or email sales@
& Product News
Bizz Buzz
LEM has a new catalogue
LEM has released a new 100 page catalogue describing
its industrial voltage and current transducers. The catalogue provides an outline on applications, technologies
and specific industry sectors. The first section outlines
transducers optimsed for drives, welding, renewable energy and power supplies. The next section is for railway
traction and trackside applications, ie onboard current
transducers for locomotive propulsion systems, as well
as for substation and signalling equipment. There is a
section dedicated to the high precision industry with
very high accuracy transducers, ranging in current from
12,5 A up to 24 kA and a section describing transducers
manufactured specifically for the automotive industry.
Enquiries: Denver Technical Products. Email denvertech@
Australian company assists in
Ibhubesi gas project
Wood Group Kenny (WGK) Australia has been awarded a
contract to provide engineering and project management
services to Sunbird Energy for the Ibhubesi gas project,
off the west coast of South Africa. The initial phase of
WGK’s work involves the concept and definition phases,
with the objective of moving the project into front end
engineering design (FEED) in 2014. The project is likely to
include a subsea gathering system, an offshore processing facility, a subsea pipeline, approximately 400 km in
length, and an onshore plant. Sunbird Energy executed
an agreement to acquire a 76% stake in the Ibhubesi
gas field in 2012. The Ibhubesi gas project has multiple
development opportunities to supply the high value
South African energy market. Sunbird’s joint venture
partner in the project is PetroSA (24%), the national oil
company of South Africa.
Enquiries: Email bobbie.ireland@woodgroup.com
Medupi boiler supports ‘steel’
the show
The main frame and boiler grid supports project at
Medupi Power Station is the Mining and Industrial category winner as well as overall winner for Steel Awards
2013. The judges said: ‘The boiler support structures really exhibit excellence in the use of structural steel. It is a
classic heavy engineering project of spectacular proportions. It is heavy engineering at its best. The structures
look so clean and simple, especially before all the rest
of the steelwork, platforms, boiler casings and piping
bundles, and other equipment enclose them. These four
legged braced monsters soar 105 metres into the sky!’
Enquiries: Renee Pretorius. Tel. 726 6111 or email info@
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
& Product News
Partnership brings HV solutions to Africa
frica's economy is growing faster than
any other continent, and one-third of
Africa's countries have GDP growth rates
of more than 6% annually, according to the
African Development Bank (AfDB). With tremendous economic and population growth
comes a greater need to build out reliable,
safe and efficient electrical infrastructure.
Building on their commitment to be closer
to customers in Africa, GE and XD Electric
Group today announced the formation
of a new partnership that combines GE’s
intelligent controls with XD Electric’s com-
prehensive portfolio of high-voltage equipment. Originally announced in May 2012,
the partnership expands GE’s capabilities
as a leading provider of transmission and
distribution (T&D) solutions and creates a
new global competitor to provide utilities
and energy-intensive industries with highvoltage (HV) solutions.
“In Africa, we’re focused on grid expansion
projects and greenfield network interconnections as we continue to create a modern
power grid that is stable, resilient and energy
efficient,” said Amen Saeed, senior product
manager for GE’s digital energy business,
Luis Perez, general manager for EMEA, GE’s
digital energy business (Africa). ”Adding
high-voltage capabilities will help our utility
customers to transmit power with minimal
losses over long distances and rough terrains
- from the generation point to the consumers
in large cities. We’ll also continue to eliminate
power islands, creating energy reserves and
allowing us to more efficiently use a greater
supply of energy.”
Enquiries: Thulisile Phiri. Email Thulisile.
For engineers designing with open source hardware
S Components (RS), the trading brand of Electrocomponents plc,
has launched its ‘Open Source Design Centre’, a comprehensive
free guide to open source electronics design hosted on designspark.
com - the company’s online resource for electronics design engineers.
The Open Source Design Centre brings together all of the elements
involved in open source design in a single, easy-to-access reference
point. It provides reliable information on matters ranging from open
source licensing guidelines to advice on hardware and software
management. Its aim is to educate engineers in open source design,
and to aid and encourage their active participation in open source
design projects.
RS has developed the Open Source Design Centre in cooperation
with Andrew Back, a leading industry expert in open source hardware
and founding member of the Open Source Hardware User Group
(OSHUG), the UK’s leading open source hardware group established
in 2010.
“While open source hardware has until recently been at the low end
of the electronics design spectrum, it is steadily increasing in inter-
est as the opportunities for industry, education and experimentation
become apparent,” commented Back. “By working with RS, we are
tapping into a vast global base of engineers on designspark.com,
many of whom will be the key players in taking forward open source
hardware into mainstream electronics design.”
Enquiries: Samantha Swanepoel. Email samantha.swanepoel@rscomponents.com.
Businesses move forward
oncor Engineering and Wade Walker,
both wholly owned Murray & Roberts
subsidiary companies operating with the
Group’s Engineering Africa Platform (EAP),
are poised for growth in sub-Saharan Africa
as the synergies between these two companies are increasingly extracted to meet the
individual needs of customers in the region.
Companies in the EAP business platform
are primarily focused on the Group’s core
competence in industrial engineering which,
if properly applied in the early design and
feasibility phases of projects, offers significant value to customers.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Wade Walker is an integrated electrical,
instrumentation and control solutions company with a focus on the mining and minerals
and power generation sectors, while Concor
Engineering offers integrated structural,
mechanical, platework and piping solutions
to the mining and minerals sector. Both companies are housed in same building in the
Murray & Roberts Group precinct in Skeen
Boulevard, Bedfordview, affording personnel
easy interaction and open communication.
Concor Engineering managing director,
Milé Sofijanic was also recently appointed
managing director of Wade Walker and re-
gards this development as being expedient
to the shared objectives of both companies.
Enquiries: Anishca de Beer. Tel. 011 372 8558
or email anishca@wadewalker.co.za.
& Product News
Next generation fire suppressant
M’s Novec 1230 Fire Protection Fluid has distinguished itself as the only sustainable fire extinguishing fluid that will not damage the materials it is
sprayed on, and has the greatest margin of safety, with
no adverse effect on humans and zero ozone depletion
potential. “Novec 1230 is a remarkable fire extinguishing fluid and is the epitome of sustainable technology,
as it has the largest margin of safety among chemical
clean agents for use in occupied spaces,” saysYemi Fatunla, electronics and energy business group country
leader, 3M South Africa.
Novec is a fluoro ketonea proprietary 3M technology that offers a number of important advantages
over conventional halocarbon-based suppressants. It
works as a gas, yet is a liquid at room temperature and
extinguishes fires via its cooling effect. A unique and
world-first feature is that Novec 1230 will not damage
the materials it is sprayed on, making it particularly
beneficial for spaces which house high-value electronic
equipment as well as environments such as libraries,
document warehouses, government departments
and cultural facilities where valuable items such as
artworks or documents would usually be damaged
by other fire-suppressing agents.
Enquiries: Clinton Hodgson. Tel. 011 806 2069 or email
HA Mofutho bridge wins SAHDGA Awards
onsulting engineers Royal HaskoningDHV received accolades for a recently
completed project - the HA Mofutho Pedestrian Bridge in Lesotho – from the SA Hot
Dip Galvanizers Association at their awards
function, held recently at the Montecasino
complex in Fourways, Johannesburg. Not
only did the HA Mofutho Bridge win its
category - Infrastructure and Community
development, but was awarded the overall
prize, winning the coveted WGS Barnett
Trophy. The Kingdom of Lesotho, Ministry of
Public Works and Transport appointed Royal
HaskoningDHV (then SSI) to carry out engineering investigations, detailed design and
preparation of detailed drawings and tender
documents and the site supervision of the
construction of a pedestrian bridge across the
Senqu River near the village of HA Mofutho
in Quacha’s Nek District, a very remote area
in Lesotho.
The footbridge provides access for pedestrians and domestic animals between the villages of Tsoelike (also known as
Auplus) in HA Makhaola and HA
Mofutho. Previously, river crossing took place by small boats or
directly through the river during
low flow conditions, but access
during the rainy season was
hazardous due to fast flowing
and high water levels. The engi-
neering team met and exceeded the client’s
objectives of the project: The footbridge had
to be an economic suspension bridge and
• Involvement of local community participation and serve to transfer skills to
emerging local contractors
• Be acceptable by the local community,
usable and safe
• Aesthetically and environmentally acceptable
• Durable and easy to maintain
The HA Mofutho Pedestrian Bridge provides an important link between the villages
of Tsoelike - Auplus in HA Makhaola and HA
Mofutho improving the quality of life of the
local residents and livestock and will also
save lives of future generations that no longer have to cross the dangerous Senqu River
by boat. The bridge has been appreciated by
the local travelling public and is well used.
Enquiries: Hillary Erasmus. Tel. 011 798 6511 or
email hillarye@rhdhv.co.za.
Industrial rack PC with performance boost
he Siemens Industry Automation Division has equipped its new
19-inch industrial rack PC, Simatic IPC547E, with powerful fourth
generation Intel Core processors and the latest PC technology. Core
i7 four-core processor, HD onboard graphics and fast work memory
reduce the power loss by one third as compared to the previous version and offer 30% higher computing performance and almost three
times better graphics performance. Raid hard disk configuration with
additional hot spare hard disk and automatic restore in the event of a
fault guarantee high system availability and data security. Up to five
monitors can be connected for control centres and multi-monitoring
applications.The new industrial PC is particularly suitable for use as a
compact workstation or server for the fast acquisition and processing
of large data volumes, for example in industrial image processing
and process visualisation.
The new rack PC Simatic IPC547E is compatible with its predecessor
model in terms of installation, interfacing and software. The minimal
housing depth of 446 mm allows for space-saving installation in 19inch control cabinets with depths from 500 millimetres. A version
with a housing depth of 356 mm will be available soon for control
cabinets from 400 mm.
Enquiries: Keshin Govender. Email Keshin.govender@siemens.com.
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Social Engineers
St John’s College – first in 2013 Siemens Junior Cyber Junk Yard Challenge
St John’s College (Johannesburg) received top honours, on Tuesday
technical high schools and further education and training colleges
(10 September 2013) in the final round of one of South Africa’s most
which went head-to-head in their design and model of an energy-
popular science and engineering competitions – the Siemens Junior
saving house.
Cyber Junk Yard Challenge.
The five teams were selected from 25 schools and colleges which
Learners were required to design, build and programme a fully func-
participated in the regional round of the Siemens Junior Cyber Junk
tional home energy management system. They had to implement
Yard Challenge in July.
principles of load balancing, power usage calculations, basic logic
control and cost management. St John’s College was one of five
Enquiries: José Machado. Tel. 011 652 2160 or email josemachado@
From Siemens: Hugo du Plessis (project leader) and Kenneth Naicker.
Winning team, St John’s College (Johannesburg): Chris Maree, Carl
Beekhuizen, James Allsop and Mitchell Terblanche.
Hoër Tegniese Skool (Technical High School) Daniel Pienaar (Uitenhage,
Eastern Cape): Tristan Zaaiman, Eben van Zyl, Omri Jacobsz and deputy
principal, Sampie Marais.
Brackenfell High School (Western Cape): Aldo Siegling, Bennie van Eerden,
Angelique le Roux, Joshua Elliott, Educator Johann Nieuwoudt.
George Campbell School of Technology (Durban): Daniel van Niekerk, Timothy Leask, David Kellermann, Mfundo Dhlomo.
Hoër Tegniese Skool (Technical High School) John Vorster (Pretoria):
Educator D Breitenbach, Phillip Greeff, Michael Maritz, Inie de Lange and
Brian Champion.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Social Engineers
Eaton (South Africa) Product Showcase Open Days
An Eaton product showcase event took place over two days - 6 and 7 August 2013 - at Eaton Electric (South Africa) in Wadeville, Gauteng, South
Africa. The latest developments and innovations of electrical power management for any industrial application were introduced. Suppliers, endusers, engineers and contractors enjoyed hands-on practical demonstrations and participated in actual working scenarios.
Enquiries: Email AdriVogel@Eaton.com
Eaton’s Gert Jonker (Eaton Training manager).
Jason Loock (Eaton automation and sales support).
Trevor Sansom (Eaton PDCD business unit manager).
Rockwell Automation - Automation University
Rockwell Automation brought top local and international
management, associates and colleagues together for two
days - 14 and 15 August 2013 - at Emperors Palace.
This impressive manufacturing exhibition gave delegates the
opportunity to experience Rockwell Automation solutions
through hands-on labs, live demonstrations, seminars and
industry sessions.
Rockwell Automation’s technology partners participated
in a large central exhibition area, where visitors could see
products and technologies come to life. During a special
presentation executives provided insight on the automation
industry from a leading-edge and global perspective.
Rockwell Automation executives: John McDermott (senior vice president,
global sales and marketing), Urs Marti (regional sales director, South region
EMEA), Hedwig Maes (president, Europe, Middle East and Africa), Barry Elliott
(managing director, sub-Saharan Africa), Hein Hiestermann (business manager,
global solutions division South Africa).
New uniforms for Kingsway School Choir
VEGA Instruments SA, a sponsor at Kingsway School, has been actively involved for many years
in helping the children who attend this primary school and recently sponsored uniforms for the
school choir. The Kingsway School caters for disadvantaged children from the Honeydew area
in Johannesburg. The choir was formed to help many of the musically talented children who
attend the school develop their gift. The children are between 11 and 13 years of age and meet
once a week to practice with the teachers involved.
Enquiries: Chantal Groom. Tel. 011 795 3249 or email info.za@vega.com.
VEGA Instruments SA managing director, John Groom, with Kingsway School choir members:
Mzwethu Sonjani, Thabang Seisa, Tsholofelo Mokgatsi and Ayanda Ngwenya.
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
Social Engineers
6th SA Innovation Summit
‘Innovation goes viral – catch it for growth’
The 6th Innovation Summit took place at the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) of South Africa from 27 – 29 August 2013. Those
who attended participated in inspiring discussions and received practical tips on how to put their innovative ideas into practice. They were
given many opportunities to network with successful individuals. The ‘inventors’ garage’ was fascinating… these are some of the exhibitors.
Enquiries: Email info@innovationsummit.co.za.
Tshepo Thulo and Kenneth Miya of Goll with their mobile security ‘eNotify’
cellphone. Enquiries: Email kennethmiya1@gmail.com.
Mashka Taylor and Crosby Menzies of SunFire Solutions with the SunFire
Solar Dish (and other fuel efficient appliances). Enquiries: Email Crosby@
Danie Heymans of ‘Hands on Technologies’ with a robot created
from Lego. Enquiries: Visit www.handsontech.co.za.
Electricity+Control October ‘13
Chris van Zyl of ‘eChaja’ with Tiyani Nghonyame (Tshwane University of
Technology, Limpopo). ‘eChaja’ is a commercial solar powered cellphone
charger. ‘eChaja’ is fully portable and may be set up as a small business for
instant income. Enquiries: Tel. 084 072 7078.
Pretoria High School for Girls was one of many schools well represented at
the Summit.
Kalaivani Pillay and Naadiera Patel, Siemens.
Social Engineers
6th SA Innovation Summit
Gary Murray and David Stratford of Wintec Innovation showing furniture
created using StratFlex technology. Enquiries: Email info@wintec.co.za.
The SABS Design Institute joined the IDC, Telkom, Sasol and Eskom as an
official design partner in the Summit. ‘Designed to fly’ are Grace Ramadi, Pako
Magagane, Koketso Komane and Ntwanano Mamitwa.
Sustainable education development
Wear control specialist, Filter Focus, and library resource service provider, Qualibooks, have teamed up with Love Trust charity to provide
underprivileged children in Tembisa with a brighter future through education. The company decided to support Nokuphila, due to the inspiring
work being undertaken at the school. Chief operating office, Craig FitzGerald said: “This is a project that is dear to the hearts of many Filter
Focus employees and we see tremendous value in what it is being achieved there."
Enquiries: Email cfitz@filterfocus.co.za.
Left: Filter Focus: Craig
FitzGerald and Magda Sly.
Right: Children at Nokuphila
October ‘13 Electricity+Control
EPLAN: BLM Software & Service
Kirk S Risch, sales
Johannes Oelofse, sales
Edgar Botes, business
development manager
Alexis Barwise,
managing director (front)
Sefie van Schalkwyk,
technical support consultant
Musts for your diary
Aberdare Cables....................................19
Syntell Sustainability 2013 Forum
11 – 13 November 2013. Hyatt Rosebank Hotel,
The African forum for municipal financial sustainability designed for African metropolitan,
district and local municipalities and traffic
authorities, local and provincial government,
councils and cities from across the continent.
This interactive event will showcase the latest
technologies and best practices for effective
revenue management (including revenue collection and procurement) in order to improve
service delivery.
Enquiries: Tel. 021 700 4300 or email Zayeen.
8th Southern African Energy Efficiency
Convention (2013SAEEC)
13 & 14 November 2013, Emperors Palace,
This two-day convention will feature over 70
speakers, 50 exhibitors and 500 delegates and
annually brings together stakeholders in the
energy efficiency sector including equipment
suppliers, consulting engineers, energy service
companies, end-users of energy, utilities and
Topics to be covered range from mining and
industrial energy optimisation, tax rebates,
carbon incentives, business case studies,
technical case studies, energy management
in buildings, alternative energies to standards
and government requirements.
Enquiries: Erika Kruger. Tel. 018 290 5130 or
email convention@saee.org.za
Energy Training Foundation
* 14 - 18 October 2013, Johannesburg
Certified Energy Manager (CEM) an AEE course
- 5 CPD credits
* 16 - 18 October 2013, Johannesburg
Certified Measurement and Verification Professional (CMVP) an AEE course - 3 CPD credits
* 16 - 17 October 2013, Johannesburg
Energy Management System Implementation
Course (EnMSI-ISO 50001) - 2 CPD credits
* 18 - 21 November 2013, Johannesburg
Certified Renewable Energy Professional (REP)
and AEE course
Enquiries: Email info@entf.co.za.
Power-Gen Africa & Distributech Africa
17 – 19 March 2014
Solutions for Africa’s Energy Future
A three-day event, Power-Gen Africa serves
the industry’s information and networking
needs with a trade show floor featuring the
prime movers in the conventional power and
renewable energy industries. A multi-track
conference covering strategic, technical and
renewable topics will feature commercial and
practical solutions (including case studies) for
power industry businesses.
Enquiries: Visit www.powergenafrica.com.
ACDC Dynamics (Datalogic).....................2
ACDC Dynamics (Gewiss)......................12
Applied Energy Solutions.......................15
CBI electric: african cables....................23
Countapulse Controls.............................51
Cummins Power Generation..................63
Current Automation..........................Insert
Denver Technical Products.....................20
Eaton GmBH...........................................29
Eaton South Africa.................................33
Impact Energy.....................................OBC
LAPP Group.......................................... IBC
Marthinusen & Coutts...........................43
Power-Gen Aftrica..................................52
RET Automation Controls......................IFC
RJ Connect........................................Insert
Schneider Electric....................................7
Siemens.............................................. OFC
Temperature Controls.............................13
Electricity+Control October ‘13