- Yaltes needed to be more competitive but did not want to cut any corners in the development of its maritime control solutions
- Allen-Bradley ControlLogix programmable automation controllers
- Allen-Bradley CompactLogix programmable automation controllers
- FactoryTalk View SE (Site Edition) SCADA
- Rockwell Software Studio 5000 software
- RSLinx communications software
- Open, scalable platform
- Easily adapted to maritime requirements
- More attractive price point compared to other ‘black box’ maritime control solutions
- Easier integration of third party networks and devices
- Greater reliability and enhanced safety
Yaltes designs, develops and builds ship systems’ control products and solutions. Its portfolio leverages its expertise, skills and strategic partnerships for defence and maritime applications and its solutions are specifically tailored to satisfy each customer’s needs.
It has taken an innovative decision in its choice of network and control architectures for the integrated platform management systems it develops for these ships, with major focuses on openness, scalability, flexibility and cost effectiveness. Instead of relying on incumbent solutions designed specifically for maritime applications, it has opted for a control system architecture normally seen in industrial environments – in this instance Logix-based hardware and software components from Rockwell Automation.
These on-board solutions include: naval tactical and combat systems; network and cyber security solutions; integrated platform management, navigation & bridge systems; fire-control systems; maritime/coastal surveillance systems; and electronic chart displays and information systems (ECDIS/WECDIS).
Platforms that deploy its technology include:
- Numerous types of naval vessels
- Hydrographic ships
- Tugboats, and
- Logistic-support ships.
Typical projects would see Yaltes undertaking installation supervision, system integration, harbour acceptance and sea trials.
In many respects Yaltes and its naval customers are no different to industrial customers, in terms of the demands placed on the control solution. Indeed cost, integration, scalability, robustness, redundancy and flexibility for additions to the system are just as important for ship-board systems as they are for any manufacturing or processing environment.
Integration is a major factor, as many of the ships components and systems are supplied by multiple third parties, so a single control solution that can tie all the data paths together and bring them back to operations consoles is essential.
According to Bülent Hamzaoğlu, Programs Director at Yaltes: “There are two reasons behind our choice of deploying a solution from Rockwell Automation. In the first instance we saw the capabilities that it offered when we worked with a Dutch company a few years back. We learned from these experiences and took the decision to start developing similar systems for use in the Turkish Navy. Second, this market is highly competitive, so using an open and flexible industrial solution adapted to the specific needs of maritime applications makes us and the systems we develop far more cost effective.”
This cost effectiveness is driven by the removal of bespoke ‘black box’ hardware. By using commercial off-the-shelf products, Yaltes can design and build control solutions that are just as capable, but at a lower cost point. This lack of bespoke hardware also means it can be far more flexible in its design approach and the systems it develops can be upgraded more easily.
The company uses a combination of hardware and software components from Rockwell Automation to create its Integrated Platform Management Systems. At controller level, depending on the size of the application, it deploys Allen-Bradley® ControlLogix® or CompactLogix™ controllers. These are operated in conjunction with FactoryTalk® View SE (Site Edition) SCADA and Rockwell Software® Studio 5000® software for programming. RSLinx® communications platform is also deployed to browse and configure the network and diagnose network devices.
“We leverage the Rockwell Automation SCADA package and the PLCs to interface with various different ship systems, using either discrete or serial communications,” explains Hamzaoğlu. “We can adapt to systems that use different communication systems, but we try to enforce the use of standard industrial protocols. We then adapt the Rockwell Automation products to fit with our system, because our system is not just made from Allen-Bradley components. We can also design the HMI solutions to the customer’s requirements and by this stage it is almost impossible to tell that they are using an industrial rather than maritime solution.”
The Integrated Platform Management Systems developed by Yaltes cover a multitude of ship-board functions, all of which can interface with the FactoryTalk SCADA solution. They include:
- Door & hatch control
- Propulsion control
- Power management and generators
- Electrical distribution
- Fresh water, sea water, sanitary & sewerage
- Firefighting, detection & damage control
- CCTV (external & internal)
- On-board training; and
- Subsequent integration into other ship’s systems.
The Integrated Platform Management Systems runs on a 100 Mbps Ethernet-based data network and a 10 Gbps fibre optic backbone, with no limitations in IO count and, due to the Rockwell Automation architecture, there is no need for links or OPC bridges. A typical installation could comprise between 10 or 12 Logix controllers distributed in cabinets throughout the vessel.
“By deploying a commercial off-the-shelf control architecture we have developed an impressive modular and scalable solution that matches the precise needs of our customers,” Hamzaoğlu elaborates. “We can deliver slave screens for different systems, joystick and trackball operation for ease of use and the flexibility to deploy different display sizes (19” - 32”) depending on the application; and it is all designed to meet MIL-STD 810 and MIL-STD 461 standards or IEC 60945 standard.
“Our customers gain more reliability and enhanced safety coupled to redundant automation systems. They can also reduce their manpower demands and fully automate many vital ship-board functions. We have received training from Rockwell Automation and we have put this to good use and combined it with our knowledge of the demands on naval systems, creating a solution that matches the precise requirements of our customers.
“Our first Rockwell Automation based system was installed in 2010 and we have not had any need to undertake any remedial action, it has been working flawlessly. The Rockwell Automation equipment we use is very tough and of the highest quality and we have had no issues adapting it to maritime applications. Our engineers are very happy working with their Rockwell Automation counterparts in Turkey, too, in both the commercial and engineering discussions. Whenever we have had an issue, the Rockwell Automation engineers either helped us to solve it or pointed us at the right people who could. They are always communicating and are always able to get what we need for our engineering projects.”
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