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Download: PDO Uses MatrikonOPC to Connect Field Devices to Multi-Vendor Applications

"The key reason we chose MatrikonOPC
was that no other OPC driver was as
robust as theirs. Implementation went
smoothly and MatrikonOPC’s
support desk was valuable."
Thomas Schmid
Head Application Software Development
for Intelligent Production
Petroleum Development Oman (PDO)


Operators, maintenance personal, engineers and others use the archived data to monitor, control, optimize, and analyze well performance.

Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) is the premier hydrocarbon exploration and production company in the Sultanate of Oman. Using a standard communication protocol, PDO integrated a real-time communication architecture enabling them to collect and move data from oil wells and other facilities to a Process Historian. Operators, maintenance personal, engineers and others use the archived data to monitor, control, optimize, and analyze well performance.

Integrating Multi-Vendor Control Systems
As PDO’s operation evolved, new and disparate control systems including Remote Terminal Units (RTU), Remote Pump Controllers RPC), Intelligent Electronic Devices (IED) and Fieldbus Control Systems were integrated into PDO's standard IP Real-time Architecture. An issue that quickly surfaced was that the communication protocol used by the different devices varied, a common problem encountered by many integrators. For example, many RTUs used Modbus; however, PDO has over 1,000 remote Beam Pump wells that communicate with the RPC (Remote Pump Controller) using a legacy Baker protocol. Traditionally the solution to interface these different protocols with applications would be to develop proprietary drivers. This alone is very expensive and time intensive not to mention the testing, integration and debugging also needed. Consequently, PDO decided to use OPC, a published communication standard, as their data communication infrastructure. This decision enabled them to interface their devices easily to multi-vendor client applications – thus achieving true interoperability. The decision to move to OPC also extended the life of their existing control and communication assets, since PDO did not have to rip-and-replace anything. PDO had to collect data from over 1,000 Beam Pumps at remote locations

Using OPC Standard Protocol to Interface Disparate Controllers and Applications
Thomas Schmid, Head Application Software Development for Intelligent Production in PDO, chose MatrikonOPC as the vendor to provide the plug and play drivers. Using the OPC Server for Modbus and the MatrikonOPC Server for Baker, Schmid's integration team easily interfaced the RTUs, RPCs, IEDs and Fieldbus Control Systems to multiple client applications including FieldWare, a well monitoring and optimization package, and Shurooq Production Web Portal. Each application, including the centralized OSI PI Process Historian, were OPC compliant enabling them to communicate with the MatrikonOPC server. In other words, the MatrikonOPC Server would translate the Modbus and Baker protocols into the standard OPC protocol and provide the data as OPC whenever the client application made a request to the server.

A standards-based OPC communication infrastructure was used to integrate the various data collection systems. "We needed to communicate with devices talking a legacy protocol and still have the software integrate with our standard infrastructure," said Schmid. "The key reason we chose MatrikonOPC was that no other OPC driver was as robust as theirs. Implementation went smoothly and MatrikonOPC’s support desk was valuable. In addition, MatrikonOPC made a visit to the site, which was very helpful in system debugging issues."

Since integration in January 2004 the OPC communication infrastructure has been performing well. PDO deployed their systems in less time with fewer challenges. So far 4,000 points have been connected which are updating every 30 minutes and plans are in place to increase the point count to 12,000.

About MatrikonOPC
With a library of more than 500 OPC products and interfaces and a worldwide installation base of more than 100,000, MatrikonOPC is the world’s leading developer, trainer and distributor of OPC products. Matrikon is a charter member of the OPC Foundation and has a proven commitment to providing the best possible products, support and training to foster the use of OPC as the industrial standard for open connectivity.

About PDO
PDO is the major exploration and production company in the Sultanate of Oman. It accounts for more than 90% of the country's crude-oil production and nearly all of its natural-gas supply. The Company is owned by the Government of Oman, the Royal Dutch/Shell Group, Total and Partex.

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