Narragansett Bay SCADA Upgrade

Industry: Water & Waste Water


The Narragansett Bay, located on the north side of Rhode Island Sound, is New England's largest estuary. The Narragansett Bay Commission (NBC) has two wastewater treatment plants, one located at Field's Point, near Providence, R.I., and one approximately five miles across the bay at Bucklin Point, R.I. Each plant had a different control system technology and vastly different human machine interfaces (HMIs).The NBC desired to migrate the existing HMI at both the Field's Point Plant and the Bucklin Point Plant with a new Wonderware-based HMI. NBC chose the Wonderware Application Server and the InTouch HMI to be the new standard for the HMI at each plant.


For this project, the objective was to replace the currently employed but unsupported Bailey/ABB VMS system HMI with Wonderware's Application Server (now known as System Platform), while preserving the plants' existing look and feel but with upgraded graphics, functionality and accessibility. The original VMS consoles could then be removed as the project progressed and by completion, only the new HMI terminals would remain.

The NBC was initially developed using Wonderware Archestra 3.1 and was upgraded successfully to Wonderware System Platform 3.5 SP1 in late 2012. At that time, all servers were upgraded to Windows Server 2008 R2 64bit operating system in order to utilize the full potential of installed RAM. Terminal Services was employed via two Stratus Fault Tolerant Servers to provide 20 HMI stations to the operators in the form of Thin Clients managed by ACP Thin Manager. The client selected single and dual monitor Arista Thin Clients.

The plant is comprised of two physical locations, Field's Point and Bucklin Point, separated by at least five miles of open water over Narragansett Bay. The network is gigabit Ethernet with a microwave link between the two facilities. The system platform architecture includes the following: Eight Object Servers, four per location each configured with two redundant pairs; Four IO Servers, two per location each configured as a redundant pair; Two Terminal Servers; Historian; Galaxy Repository; Twenty Thin Clients.

System Platform communicates with a variety of PLCs and data sources, including Bailey Infi90 via Rovisys OPC90 OPC server, the Siemens PCS7 CPUs via the Wonderware S7 IO Driver, GE Powermeters via Modbus TCP DAS Servers, Allen Bradley Compact Logix PLCs via Wonderware ABCIP DAS Servers and the Goldwind Wind Turbine Farm, via an OPC client installed directly on the Goldwind IO servers. Optimation wrote custom failover code for the Siemens PCS7 PLCs, which tracks the master PLC rack and points all other objects to this rack within five seconds of failure. There were two master HMI InTouch templates developed, one for Field's Point and the other for Bucklin Point. Between the two HMI applications, there are about 100 screens that replace the original 600+ screens configured in the Bailey VMS and PCS7 systems. This reduction in screens, along with a dynamic navigation system, makes any screen accessible in a maximum of two clicks and allows the client to configure additional navigation on the fly.

The Galaxy itself is host to over 1,000,000 IO points distributed over 10,000 objects. Each object is capable of individual configuration (descriptions, eu, ranges, alarm parameters, IO sourcing, etc.) via an Excel Spreadsheet link which provides updating and changes in bulk, thus eliminating the need to configure objects individually, by hand. This adds a lot of value to the end product by saving the client resources in time and money. The plant is now operating solely via the System Platform HMIs and is enjoying the added functionality and serviceability of a modern HMI.


The client now has a single database for connectivity to Bailey and Siemens controllers, as well as a similar look and feel of operations between the two plants. The client also benefits from advanced graphics and technology for expansion, regardless of control platform used.
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  • Water & Waste Water

  • Project Management
  • Software Engineering

  • SCADA and HMI
  • System Startup
  • Systems Integration

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