Listen in: 100 innovative years, Invensys celebrates Foxboro


Invensys Process Systems (IPS) is honoring 100 years of Foxboro innovation in a June 24 celebration at the IPS manufacturing plant in Foxboro, MA. At that Neponset Street location, brothers E.H. and B.B. Bristol started Foxboro in 1908, moving three businesses to an empty factory there.

Paulett Eberhart

Paulett Eberhart, IPS president and chief executive officer

Listen in: Paulett Eberhart, IPS president and chief executive officer, tells Control Engineering magazine
More than 1,000 employees, retirees, and other dignitaries and guests are expected to participate in festivities. IPS offers consulting, services, and a proven portfolio of specialized offerings from the legacy brands of Foxboro, Triconex, SimSci-Esscor, and Avantis, Eberhart noted, praising employees, current and former. The company unveiled a a more unified online presence for the brands, effective June 1, 2008.
Foxboro product offerings can be found in three categories in the Product Portfolio section: Automation & Controls, Measurements & Instruments, and InFusion Enterprise Control System. Foxboro services include project delivery, lifecycle management and training, and are accessible under Consulting & Services. The Foxboro Client Support Center is available under Support.

Jack Souza

Jack Souza, IPS vice president, directs manufacturing and operations in Foxboro

Jack Souza, IPS VP, who directs Foxboro manufacturing and operations, “Foxboro automation has been setting the industry standard for 100 years, and our experts have contributed numerous innovations. Now, with more than 50,000 customers worldwide, the Foxboro brand and our people are known throughout the world for quality, reliability, and innovation. We should also be very proud that the technology and innovation that started here are playing an important part in the long-term success of IPS and Invensys as a whole.”
Excerpts from Foxboro history:
1908 Brothers E.H. and B.B. Bristol began as the Industrial Instrument Co. and renamed the company Foxboro in 1914.
1909 First multiple pen temperature recorder.
1910 First shipped products include round case pressure gauges and temperature recorders.
1915 Buick, Edison, Ford, Firestone are among customers.
1920s First direct set pneumatic controller and pneumatic operational amplifier. Model 10 Stabilog controller introduces reset (integral) function to process control.
1930s Pyrometer controller and Verigraph, Rotax electromechanical contact control, and flowmeters proliferate in gas fields of Southwest.
1940s First direct-reading dewpoint temperature recorder, and home-grown Dynalog for low electomotive force measurements. Company helped with WWII torpedo mechanisms.
1950s First successful magnetric flowmeter, controller with derivative action, all solid state electronic controller.
1960s M9700 process computer, first feedforward control installed to refinery distillation colmn, first direct digital contol system, bumpless/balanceless transfer between manual and automatic.
1970s First true distributed control system, Spec 200; Fox 1 computer offers variable function keyboard; Nitinol motor provides closer view of process; Ferrograph measures bearing oil online to predict failures and wear.
1980s I/A Series introduces object management using Unix, Ethernet, and other standards; Sanitary Vortex flowmeter gets 3A approval for food processing industry; Command Center was launched; Exact controller does self-tuning.
1990s I/O replacement cards end need for rewiring; Foxboro and SAP certify first interface to an ERP system. In 1990 Siebe plc buys Foxboro, and in 1999 Siebe and British Tire and Rubber merged to form Invensys plc.
2000-08 Next generation I/A Series workstation; first Coriolis mass flow system for two-phase gas/liquid flows; InFusion, first Enterprise Control System; and the InFusion Collaboration wall.

Invensys Process Systems employees John Biagioni and Mike Godek give IPS president and CEO Paulett Eberhart with a golden transmitter in honor of 100 year anniversary of the Foxboro brand.

Near vision of future: Enhanced real-time HMI, immersive 3D environments enhance visibility and understanding; semiconductors create electricity directly from processes waste heat; nanotechnologies enhance distributed sensing, batteries, and wireless control.
And beyond: Interstellar manufacturing will include virtual participation, electromagnetic freeways, radiation-free fusion electricity generation; fully automated, diagnosing and self-repairing process manufacturing.
Invensys formed IPS by combining Avantis, Foxboro, Triconex, and SimSci-Esscor businesses. IPS works with clients to integrate automation, simulation, and operations management technologies that help clients execute business strategies.
IPS, based in Plano,
Also read: New Invensys Process Systems president: Paulett Eberhart takes the reins.

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