Learning: Profibus, FDT seminars; FDT testing

Traveling seminar series on Profibus and Field Device Technology (FDT) are making the rounds to various North American cities. FDT continues its certification testing efforts. Details follow.


Traveling seminar series on Profibus and Field Device Technology (FDT) are making the rounds to various North American cities. FDT continues

Profibus Trade Organization (PTO)

, in cooperation with the Profi Interface Center, is conducting a series of free full-day training classes. Topics covered are: Basics of Profibus Operation, Bus Physics & Wiring, Physical Layer & System Troubleshooting' Profibus PA (Process Automation), Profisafe, and Profinet.
The Profibus seminar agenda includes time to review displays, technical presentations, a hosted lunch and reception, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Representatives from several sponsoring automation companies will display Profibus products before and after the seminar, during lunch and during breaks. Seminars already took place in Las Vegas, NV, and Milwaukee, WI, in March and April. Upcoming dates and locations are:
May 13 - Richmond, VA;
June 17 - Tulsa, OK;
July 16 - Atlanta, GA;
Sept. 9 - San Antonio, TX;
October - Denver, CO; and
November - Indianapolis, IN.
Michael Aldridge, technical director, Profibus Trade Organization, says the seminars allow attendees an “opportunity to learn more about the world’s leading fieldbus technology.” More information and registration is available at the

PTO Website

FDT Group has scheduled four, free one-day technical seminars this year in North America, “reaching out to end users looking to learn more about FDT technology,” says Maggie Carlson, FDT Group North America. Technical presentations will cover the FDT Group, current situation, customer needs, user benefits, and solutions. Live demonstrations on communication protocols (HART, FOUNDATION fieldbus, and Profibus) using FDT-DTM’s showing what the technology has to offer, Carlson says. End user case study presentations follow with a question and answer session. The seminars target end users, system integrators, EPCs, and other professionals in process, hybrid and discrete manufacturing industries.
April 29, Wilmington, DE;
May 28, Calgary, Alberta, Canada;
Sept. 25, Houston, TX; and
Oct. 28, Greenville, SC.
More information and registration is available on the

FDT Group

A . First meeting in March in Brussels brought together system providers and device manufacturers to provide the end users with integrated solutions out of the box. The test phase started in February and is scheduled to be completed in May.
Since November 2007, 22 FDT Group member companies have participated in a project at the facility of Dietz Automation GmbH in Neukirchen, Germany, FDT Group explained. The project is intended to test the interoperability of the FDT/DTM Technology in diverse settings. The test system setup includes many products from different vendors; 7 frames (systems or engineering tools) from 5 vendors, 21 devices with DTMs from 13 vendors, and 6 communication DTMs from 4 vendors.
The system currently uses Profibus, HART, and Foundation Fieldbus. By checking interactions between these systems and devices, interoperability tests weed out common problems and offer the end user maximum assurance for a problem-free implementation of their FDT/DTM applications in automation projects. As a precondition to test participation, all DTMs had to be certified through the FDT Group Certification process. During the preparation phases, participants had the opportunity to perform tests on their own. While setting up the test, a test procedure was also developed for the frames — the software in which the DTMs are used. This will be the base for the future frame certification procedure.
The group reported that during the project start-up all the frames involved in this test passed the frame test procedure and were smoothly integrated in the system. Some companies accessed the test system via Internet and tested DTMs on-line, an advantage
“This test facility further completes the FDT certification procedure,” says Achim Laubenstein, FDT Group vice president of technology. “Besides the DTM certification we will have shortly a frame certification procedure and a permanent interoperability test bed. This will ensure maximum robustness for the FDT certified products and provide end users the insurance of smooth project implementation.”
FDT Group AISBL, a non-profit corporation of more than 60 leading process and factory automation companies worldwide, aims to provide an open and non-proprietary interface for the integration of field devices with engineering, automation and asset management systems. In this environment, end users, manufacturers, universities and research organizations work together to develop the technology, provide development tools, support and training, coordinate field trials and demonstrations, and enable product interoperability. For further information please visit www.fdtgroup.org
Also read: Industry news: User group presses for device language unity .

– Edited by Mark T. Hoske , editor in chief
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