SCADA stands for Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition which utilizes GUI or graphical user interface and data communications to gather and analyze current data for monitoring and controlling pieces of equipment that deal with essential and sensitive events or materials. It came into use during the 1960s and then developed to become an essential component with time. It consists of elements such as remote terminal units, supervisory computers, programmable logic controllers, human-machine interface and communication infrastructure. In this article, we’ve put together all the uses of SCADA that’s beneficial for you.
How does it work?
SCADA comprises of one or more than one Master Terminal Units or MTUs which are used to control and monitor various RTUs or Remote Terminal Units by staffs. Now, what’s MTU? MTU is a platform just like a personal computer or PC that runs the SCADA system. And RTUs are small devices designed for industrial environments and outdoor use. Basically, the system includes controllers, signal hardware, user interface, communications gear, networks and software. Collectively, SCADA defines the whole central system. Usually, a central system uses various sensors to monitor data.
How is it helpful?
- Automation is the most important feature of SCADA which lets a company anticipate the ideal response by scrutinizing. This helps in measuring conditions and automatically executing the responses. When something goes beyond human control, SCADA comes to the rescue.
- It is capable of taking understandable challenges like 24/7 monitoring. Comparatively, it is faster and consists of more factors of control than factors of human control.
- A major area of SCADA application is food production. It is essential for the mass production of food items. A little variation in temperature can destroy the entire batch which makes the stationing of SCADA extremely necessary.
- Utility companies, especially the gas utilities suffer the difficulties of telecom and manufacturing companies altogether. A product needs to be moved through the systems which are spread across large areas. And this is the reason why SCADA fits just perfectly in utility areas. They regulate the motion of gas and power utilizing the distribution chain.
- In the sector of manufacturing, SCADA is useful for ensuring that all systems are run smoothly and the productivity target has been fulfilled. It maintains a record of the number of units that have been manufactured and the number of units that are in the process. Also, it ensures in-time production by managing parts lists, quality control and regulates automation. Analogue values such as temp during the various stages of production are measured too. For example, it is quite important to know the temperature of molten metal to convert it into a usable product.
- In the telecom environment, people use the term ‘SCADA’ for describing control systems and remote monitoring. Monitoring helps against intrusion into sites using sensors of magnetic doors and PIR or passive infrared motion sensors.
- In electric utilities, SCADA is used to detect line voltage and current flow, monitor circuit breakers and to on or off the sections of the power grid.