Toronto, Canada – 17 September, 2013 – Redline Communications Group Inc., a leading provider of broadband wireless solutions for industrial M2M communications, has announced its Connect family of transport gateway SCADA terminals, a wireless networking system specifically designed for securely connecting industrial SCADA systems.
SCADA, which stands for supervisory control and data acquisition, is a type of M2M communications used in the monitoring and control of industrial processes, such as the flow of oil in a pipeline. A SCADA system is an industrial control system where infrastructure systems like oil fields, energy grids or water treatments are populated with hundreds, and often thousands, of sensors that monitor a wide range of attributes of devices used in the process. These sensors are polled periodically and that data is sent back to a control centre where it is analysed and used in corrective actions.
Connect allows companies to easily migrate from legacy network protocols used in SCADA systems to the highly efficient and ubiquitous Transmission Control and Internet Protocols (TCP/IP), giving them the full benefits of real-time communications with faster polling, simplified networking, greater visibility and improved management of distributed devices such as programmable logic controllers (PLCs), remote terminal units (RTUs), meters and controllers.
Connect-OW™, the first product in the Connect family to be introduced, is specially designed for secure, wireless machine-to-machine SCADA connectivity between distributed TCP/IP-based field devices and the control centre.
“Manufacturers of SCADA network field devices have been introducing TCP/IP support in their equipment, giving them remote management and control capabilities,” said Rod Cronin, director of product management at Redline. “But the addition of TCP/IP alone doesn’t solve the very critical need for real-time communications between SCADA devices and control centres, and many devices are constrained by networks with speeds of less than 256 Kbps, which is far too slow for industrial customers. The Connect-OW terminal is on average eight times faster than other similar systems, delivering 2 Mbps at the port, making real-time transmission of unprecedented volumes of SCADA data possible over local and wide area networks.”
To Redline’s customers operating SCADA networks in some of the world’s most extreme climates and topographies, ruggedness, security and flexibility are attributes just important as data throughput. The Redline Connect OW system is FIPS 140-2 compliant, incorporating military grade cyber-security with AES encryption and secure remote management. The Connect-OW unit itself is fully ruggedised, contained in an IP68 Certified enclosure that ensures uninterrupted operation at temperature ranges from -40°C to +75°C (-40 ˚F to +167 ˚F) and operates over any wireless frequency from 498 MHz to 5.8 GHz, allowing companies to build the optimal network for any terrain, environment, distance, and spectrum availability among other criteria. Its over-the-air configuration system allows customers to upgrade the system from 2 Mbps to 4 Mbps ensuring that the network capacity will grow as more devices are added.
“Redline is the market leader in wide area backhaul networks for the Energy sector, and with the introduction of the Connect Transport Gateway SCADA Terminal it has extended its reach to include those edge devices that are critical to end-to-end field automation,” added Cronin. “SCADA becomes another of many applications that can be seamlessly carried across Redline’s Virtual Fiber backbone.”
The Connect-OW terminal supports virtually all TCP/IP based devices including pump controllers, PLCs, RTUs and meters. Connect is expected to ship in October.