Project Delivery and Procurement Challenges in Implementing a Large Scale SCADA System
Authors: Wilson, Andrea; Szymansky, Don; Sweeney, Michael; Assef, Saeed; Evans, Darryl; Carr, Jim
Source: Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation, WEFTEC 2002: Session 1 through Session 10 , pp. 441-446(6)
Publisher: Water Environment Federation
Abstract:In the early 80's, the Louisville and Jefferson County Metropolitan Sewer District (MSD) began deploying a telephone-line based telemetry system to monitor equipment at over 300 pump stations and wastewater treatment plants. Like other public utilities, MSD found that to improve staff productivity and to become more efficient they needed to upgrade this early monitoring system to a large scale supervisory control and data acquisition system (SCADA). MSD's approach to SCADA deployment had to consider the following questions: how do you protect the value of past financial investments, how do you make long-term decisions about changing technologies to get the systems you want, how do you overcome procurement red tape, how do you expedite construction and control costs?
For MSD, the approach revolved around two key elements: implementation of an “open systems” architecture and dividing the work into manageable tasks to be executed either by MSD staff or through a “design/build” approach with local contractors. MSD realized that the one common thread between their telemetry/SCADA sites was the human machine interface (HMI) software. The software would need to be standardized to remove existing software constraints and allow MSD to monitor and control all facilities in the same way, regardless of communication path.
MSD executed the work in five major parallel tasks: 1) software conversion; 2) design and procurement of RTU panels with PLCs; 3) multi-year, “design/build”, time and materials electrical and control service contracts; 4) renewable, GSA priced equipment and service contracts; 5) MSD inspection, programming and start-up. MSD's approach to development of a flexible architecture with a seamless interface has allowed them to protect their existing technology investments and afford themselves the ability to try new technologies. Their “design/build” implementation approach has allowed them to deploy sites more rapidly at lower cost with increased MSD oversight.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 2002
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