Kern & Associates define and recommend our clients' SCADA needs
with justifications and specifications and conclude the vendor selection
process with a binding contract. We optionally manage the project
through final, formal acceptance assuring accuracy to contract.
We start with a comprehensive review of the current SCADA business, interviewing
department personnel and departments that provide and rely on SCADA data. We
inventory the current SCADA system from remote measurement devices including I/O
(input/output) counts and telecommunications networks to the SCADA host's
client/server hardware and the SCADA software. We identify business issues and
provide a recommendation. Our experience and a database
of representative costs and delivery schedules allow us to build a compelling
and accurate business case.
This document is a result of the interview process and is a detailed specification
of SCADA requirements and includes;
System Design Requirements - are based on current and future database sizes and
planned system performances such as RTU scan rates, database refresh rates,
display update rates and spare memory (RAM and Disk).System Functionality Requirements - includes detail about data acquisition and
control such as how SCADA data will be collected, the kinds of data that are
required and how the data will be verified and stored. RTU driver requirements
are included. Recording frequency for history database is specified as well as
types of history data such as accumulated per hour, average for the hour,
maximums and minimums with time stamps, etc. Data viewing with Windows-based
utilities and smart-graphics objects is included as requirements.System Configuration - defines minimum computer and disk requirements such as
redundant SCADA servers, an alternate site SCADA server, and how many worksites
are planned and how the various workstations should be configured, etc.
We understand the latest SCADA technology and know the vendors that provide
that technology. The RFQ (request for quotation) is a process of inviting qualified SCADA
vendors to bid on the requirements specifications that we prepare for our
client. The bid package consists of two documents; the agreement that both
parties (buyer and seller) will sign and the SCADA requirements.
Thorough instructions direct the bidder in preparing their reply so that
all bids are uniform and complete.We evaluate the bids and prepare a recommendation that recaps the bidding
process and recommends the best proposed SCADA system.
Contract and Scope of Work
Every SCADA project should have a thorough and accurate contract and scope of
work that will help both parties (buyer and seller) to avoid any confusion
and resolve any difference of opinion throughout the term of the project. A
schedule and plan for payment should be clearly defined. The specifics of
the deliverables should be well defined. There are basic project management
rules that should be adhered to throughout the project - consistent project
status reports, exhaustive acceptance testing, product documentation and
Our project management experience goes back to the early 1970's - that's a
wealth of on-the-job experience and we have references that will attest to
our diligence as project managers. Since we recommend that the contract
and scope of work be written by us with input from the SCADA supplier, our
client's requirements are fulfilled on time and within specification. We
preside over acceptance testing and trace tested features back to the
contract and resolve discrepancies - missing features - expeditiously.
We have provided
operator training - a two- to three-day seminar that deals with the
fundamentals of gas control and SCADA. The course includes a 100-page
document with examples and self-help testing.
Because of our SCADA and RTU experience and Jon's experience with Fisher ROC
RTU, we do a lot of configuration, maintenance and function sequence table
creation for our clients - various
ratio and PID control schemes such as odorization and tank maintenance, meter
tube switching, etc.