"Matrikon’s OPC Tunneller software saved me a significant amount of time from having to devise my own work-around solution, and allowed me to spend the time on development of the OPC Client and experiment."
Lab for Intelligent Process Systems
Department Of Chemical Engineering
University of Connecticut
As a graduate student in the field of Process Control, I am responsible for both theoretical process control, and the construction of an experimental apparatus to test said theories upon. After researching the current "state of the art" practices in industry, my advisor and I decided on designing our own OPC Client to run an experiment remotely from our lab. The experiment is used to mimic an actual plant environment, where the process system is located in an area remote to the control room. The experiment is a simple pumped tank with several disturbances, deliberately failing devices, introduction of sensor and pump lag, and useless sensors, everything a future engineer will experience in a real plant setting. Of course, all of these concepts needed to be programmed into our own client control system using Visual Basic. The concept is to design an undergraduate process control lab experiment, using standard PID controllers along with more advanced forms of MPC, which better prepares students for the real world challenges that they will be presented with. If the final project is successful, then several papers will be published concerning the design, and deployment of such a lab to other Universities and Colleges.
The idea behind OPC sounded simple enough, and the client was written in a very short period of time and tested successfully when installed l