|Numéro de publication||US20060168013 A1|
|Type de publication||Demande|
|Numéro de demande||US 10/998,202|
|Date de publication||27 juil. 2006|
|Date de dépôt||26 nov. 2004|
|Date de priorité||26 nov. 2004|
|Autre référence de publication||CN101128812A, CN101128812B, EP1836594A2, EP1836594A4, US20130297748, WO2006058090A2, WO2006058090A3|
|Numéro de publication||10998202, 998202, US 2006/0168013 A1, US 2006/168013 A1, US 20060168013 A1, US 20060168013A1, US 2006168013 A1, US 2006168013A1, US-A1-20060168013, US-A1-2006168013, US2006/0168013A1, US2006/168013A1, US20060168013 A1, US20060168013A1, US2006168013 A1, US2006168013A1|
|Inventeurs||Irvine Wilson, Markus Paul, Ewald Weiss|
|Cessionnaire d'origine||Invensys Systems, Inc.|
|Exporter la citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Référencé par (28), Classifications (15), Événements juridiques (3)|
|Liens externes: USPTO, Cession USPTO, Espacenet|
The present invention generally relates to the field of networked computerized process control systems. More particularly, the present invention relates to supervisory process control and manufacturing information systems. Such systems generally execute above a control layer in a process control system to provide guidance to lower level control elements such as, by way of example, programmable logic controllers.
Industry increasingly depends upon highly automated data acquisition and control systems to ensure that industrial processes are run efficiently, safely and reliably while lowering their overall production costs. Data acquisition begins when a number of sensors measure aspects of an industrial process and periodically report their measurements back to a data collection and control system. Such measurements come in a wide variety of forms. By way of example the measurements produced by a sensor/recorder include: a temperature, a pressure, a pH, a mass/volume flow of material, a tallied inventory of packages waiting in a shipping line, or a photograph of a room in a factory. Often sophisticated process management and control software examines the incoming data, produces status reports, and, in many cases, responds by sending commands to actuators/controllers that adjust the operation of at least a portion of the industrial process. The data produced by the sensors also allow an operator to perform a number of supervisory tasks including: tailor the process (e.g., specify new set points) in response to varying external conditions (including costs of raw materials), detect an inefficient/non-optimal operating condition and/or impending equipment failure, and take remedial actions such as move equipment into and out of service as required.
Typical industrial processes are extremely complex and receive substantially greater volumes of information than any human could possibly digest in its raw form. By way of example, it is not unheard of to have thousands of sensors and control elements (e.g., valve actuators) monitoring/controlling aspects of a multi-stage process within an industrial plant. These sensors are of varied type and report on varied characteristics of the process. Their outputs are similarly varied in the meaning of their measurements, in the amount of data sent for each measurement, and in the frequency of their measurements. As regards the latter, for accuracy and to enable quick response, some of these sensors/control elements take one or more measurements every second. When multiplied by thousands of sensors/control elements, this results in so much data flowing into the process control system that sophisticated data management and process visualization techniques are required.
Highly advanced human-machine interface/process visualization systems exist today that are linked to data sources such as the above-described sensors and controllers. Such systems acquire and digest (e.g., filter) the process data described above. The digested process data in-turn drives a graphical display rendered by a human machine interface. Such data includes mode changes, events, and alarm messages rendered by process controllers in response to a variety of detected process conditions/circumstances.
Process alarm messages are traditionally sent from plant control processors to alarm displays on workstations to notify operators of plant upsets. Generally, alarm messages are issued by control processors when a measured or calculated value is rendered outside a pre-configured range. The plant controller transmits the generated alarm to one or more operator workstations coupled to a separate (e.g., application) network. Detection, generation and transmission of alarms can potentially place a heavy load on a controller.
Known process control systems support a variety of alarm ordering techniques including assigning alarm priorities and filtering alarm messages according any of a variety of characteristics. The alarm prioritization/filtering functionality carried out by the control processor assists operators in assessing plant/process status and facilitates expedited correction of problems as they arise in a plant process. In general, the alarm priorities are relatively fixed and are changed through human intervention. Prioritizing alarms/messages alone will not avoid overwhelming an operator with a shower of alarm messages during a major plant failure or succession of cascading process/plant component failures. Overlooking a particular alarm or class of alarms, during an alarm shower can lead to harm to both humans and the plant itself.
The present invention provides a method and facility for managing messages, for example alarms, that pass from control processors to a variety of destinations (e.g., workstations, printers, historians/databases) associated with supervisory control of an industrial process. Managing messages is carried out by interposing appropriate management functionality between sources of messages (e.g., control processors) and the message's final destinations. Such arrangement facilitates executing a variety of functions on the message stream.
More particularly, a message management facility routes a stream of messages received from the control processor to a set of supervisory destinations. The facility includes a message receiver for receiving a message including a message group ID field. The facility also includes message routing information comprising a set of message routing entries. Each of such routing entries includes a message group ID value, and a set of message routing destinations for received messages specifying the message group ID. The facility also includes a destination server for transmitting the message received by the message receiver to one or more network destinations based on an ID specified in the message group ID field and a set of message routing destinations specified in a corresponding routing entry of the message routing information.
The facility also carries out a message monitor role wherein the facility monitors a stream of messages received from a control processor and initiates executing a command in response to detecting particular identified messages in the stream of messages. In this regard, the message monitor includes a message table including a set of message table entries. Each entry comprises a message ID and a command ID. A message receiver of the facility includes a message monitoring functionality for receiving a message including a message ID value, and identifying a categorized message by locating an entry in the message table corresponding to the received message. Finally, a command execution functionality initiates executing a command associated with the command ID, of the entry in the message table for the categorized message, in association with the message receiver identifying the categorized message.
The facility also carries out a status message monitor roles wherein the facility initiates executing a command in response to detecting status changes contained within messages in the stream of messages. In this regard, the message monitor includes a message receiver including a message monitoring functionality for identifying status changes relating to modes/events specified in a received message. The facility also initiates executing actions in accordance with a current mode/events status in view of the received message. The actions comprise, for example, setting a new priority for an alarm.
In yet another role, the facility monitors the volume of messages passing over a period of time, and in response to detecting a message (e.g., alarm shower) the facility operates to restrict messages passed to intended destinations by applying a suppression criterion on the steam of messages. For example, when a shower is detected, messages/alarms that do not meet a message priority threshold are discarded by the facility. Other criterions are contemplated in alternative embodiments of the invention.
While the appended claims set forth the features of the present invention with particularity, the invention, together with its objects and advantages, may be best understood from the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings of which:
Structural and functional features of exemplary embodiments of the present invention are described herein with regard to configuration and runtime aspects of a message management facility. At runtime, the functionality of transmitting (“routing”) alarm messages, from control processors residing on a control network to one or more operator workstations (or other nodes) residing on an application network, has been extracted from the control processors and placed in one or more message management components executing on nodes coupled to a control network that hosts the control processors. The message management nodes are coupled to both the control network and the application network. Detecting and generating alarms takes place in the control processors (as before). Placing alarm routing functionality in a workstation or other node coupled to the application network reduces the computational and memory load on the control processor. Furthermore, placing routing functionality in a separate (e.g., application workstation) node facilitates supplementing base routing functionality with enhanced alarm message handling capabilities.
For example, in addition to routing alarm messages, a workstation configured to receive/route messages issued by control processors on a control network also monitors alarm flow. While monitoring alarm flow, a workstation applies previously configured policies to particular alarm messages. In response to detecting an identified alarm in a received message, the message management facility invokes particular actions/functions/programs on a workstation. To this end a configurator application and user interface enables a user to design/customize the message management facility to invoke a program upon detecting a pre-configured alarm being routed to a destination. The invoked program can perform any of a variety of functions including, by way of example, issuing a voice message (stored as an MP3 or WAV file), sending an email message, or generating output to a printer, historian, etc. The responses are created, identified, and stored in command databases that are customized via the configurator application.
Another feature incorporated into the message management facility described herein is automatic reprioritization of alarms in response to events and operation mode transitions. In the exemplary embodiment the message management facility dynamically updates (and modifies if necessary) alarm priorities based upon changes to a current status of the process control system. The status is defined, by way of example by a mode and/or event(s). During configuration, dynamically assignable priorities of a particular alarm (or alternatively a class/group of alarms) are defined, for example, in a matrix comprising mutually exclusive modes and non-mutually exclusive events. For each mode/event combination within the matrix, an alarm priority is potentially specified for the alarm. The message management facility responds to events and mode transitions by looking up a potentially new priority for each alarm for which priorities are potentially dynamically re-assigned. In an exemplary embodiment, mode transitions and/or events are defined/associated with simple state alarms. The state alarms are, for example, hard wired to key switches. The state alarms are also potentially soft alarms generated within the process control system based upon certain sensed plant conditions or control logic output.
In accordance with yet another feature of the exemplary message management facility, an alarm shower suppression functionality counts alarms flowing per time slice to detect a potentially overwhelming quantity of alarms. It compares the count value in the time slice to a pre-configured limit. If the limit is exceeded, then an alarm shower state is entered and alarms having a priority lower than a pre-configured priority are not passed on to a destination workstation and are thus suppressed until a subsequent count of alarms over a period of time falls to a point where the alarm shower state can be exited. Thus, during an alarm “shower” only the most important/critical alarms are forwarded to an intended workstation. In this way, the most important/critical alarms will not be masked or delayed by lower priority alarms.
Turning to an exemplary runtime arrangement depicted in
The message management facility 100 carries out a variety of functions. Such functions include, by way of example, receiving messages including mode changes, events, and alarms from message delivery services running on nodes on the control network 102; modifying the messages (e.g., adding an alias to a message); and dispatching alarm messages to designated destinations (e.g., alarm management subsystems on operator workstations, alarm logs/databases, alarm printers, etc.). In the case of an alarm management subsystem, the alarm messages drive graphical user interface displays and alarm annunciation components that generate an audible/verbal alarm message. In addition to passing alarm messages to designated destinations, the message management facility 100 is capable of: dynamically adjusting alarm priorities in response to messages identifying sensed events and operation mode (e.g., standby, startup, run, etc.) transitions; invoking a command (performed either locally or on another node coupled to the application network 104) in response to a particular received alarm message; and commencing an action resulting in issuance of an audible (e.g., verbal) message based upon a particular received alarm message.
In the illustrative example, the message management facility 100 is presented in a redundant form including an active message manager 100 a and a standby message manager 100 b. The redundancy can be implemented in any of a variety of ways in accordance with various embodiments of the invention. In an exemplary embodiment, the redundant message managers 100 a and 100 b synchronize and monitor status of their redundant partners by communications transmitted via the control network 102. However, in alternative embodiments synchronization is carried out via the application network 104 or even a third physical network (requiring a third network interface for each of the redundant message managers 100 a and 100 b). In the event the currently active partner fails, the standby message manager automatically takes on the active role previously held by the failed partner.
Each of the message managers 100 a and 100 b of the message management facility 100 are associated with network connections to one or more of a set of N control processors 106 on the control network 102. The control processors 106, by way of example, execute a variety of automated distributed process control programs (loops), carried out in the form of compounds and blocks, that facilitate receiving data from sensors/devices deployed in a plant, analyzing the received data in view of current set points, and issuing control commands to actuators on plant equipment. The set points are provided, for example, by automated supervisory process control programs as well as human input via the application network 104. While not shown in the drawing, the control processors 106 are communicatively coupled to one or more sub-networks that host communications between the control processors 106 and sources of field data. The sub-networks include, for example, a plurality of field communication modules. The field communication modules, in turn, comprise a portion of a field device sub-network/bus including various sensors and actuators that facilitate automated control of a industrial/plant process.
The active and standby message managers 100 a and 100 b, by way of example, receive alarm messages issued by a message delivery server (MDS) executing on each of the control processors 106. Both active and standby message managers 100 a and 100 b process messages received from the control processors 106 concurrently. However, as explained further herein below, processing alarm messages on the standby message manager 100 b does not include issuing messages to devices configured in the message manager's device database.
The message management facility 100 establishes connections to one or more of a set of operator workstations on the application network 104. In the illustrative redundant message manager configuration depicted in
Having described an exemplary runtime environment including the message management facility 100, it is noted that in alternative embodiments, the message management facility 100 is carried out in alternative network topologies. For example, in a minimal network environment, the node executing the message management facility 100 incorporates the functionality of other nodes of the application network 104. For example, the alarm database and workstation functionality is incorporated into a node connected to the control network 102 that also runs the message manager 100 b. In yet other embodiments, multiple instances of the message management facility 100 are provided to share message management responsibilities for a set of devices coupled to the application network 104. Still other embodiments will be contemplated by those skilled in the art in view of the disclosed embodiments described herein.
Having described a general runtime arrangement of a process control environment including the (redundant) message management facility 100, attention is directed to
A configuration database 204 contains configuration information, extracted from a configuration (see
The following describes an exemplary set/sequence of operations supported by an exemplary messaging interface between the message manager 100 a and a message delivery server (MDS) on the control processor 106 a. Initially, at startup, the message manager 100 a uses inter-process communication services to initialize a connection between a dedicated message delivery server thread within the packet receiver process 200 and the MDS running on the control processor 106 a. After initializing the connection, the message manager 100 a issues a START_SESSION message to the MDS to register the control processor 106 a and waits for a START_SESSION_REPLY message from the MDS.
After sending a START_SESSION_REPLY message, the MDS sends message group device definitions to a corresponding dedicated MDS thread of the packet receiver 200. The group device definitions include device information from connected MDS's on the set of control processors 106. The device information, maintained in a device database 202, indicates which devices (e.g., workstations, printers, alarm databases on the application network 104) receive certain identified messages. The device information is, in effect, the routing information (destinations) for subsequently received messages. The packet receiver 200 stores the extracted device (message routing) information in the device database 202.
In an exemplary embodiment, the device database 202 holds a set of group device definition entries. Each entry contains, by way of example, the following fields:
The device database 202 is also capable of being updated during normal runtime of the message manager. In this case, the MDS sends a message to the message manager specifying new message destination information. The packet receiver 200 recognizes the type of message and updates the appropriately keyed entry within device database 202 accordingly. A device server process 220, described herein below, is notified when updated to the device database 202 occur in view of the possibility that a new threads may needed or old threads terminated in view of the device database 202 update.
During initialization and in response to update requests from alarm management subsystems (AMSs) on the workstations 108, the MDS threads of the message manager 100 a obtain current status information by sending a CURRENT_STATE_REQUEST to the MDS on the control processor 106 a. In response the MDS returns message packets containing current alarm and contact input (CIN) states, which are associated with mode and event variables, present on the control processor 106 a as MESSAGE_DATA messages. The responses from the MDS also include any MESSAGE_DATA messages buffered by the MDS on the control processor 106 a before initialization operations. The message manager 100 a acknowledges each packet with a RECEIPT_CONFIRMATION message. The current state data transfer/acknowledgement cycles are repeated until a CURRENT_STATE_END message is received by the message manager.
During the normal operation mode of the message manager 100 a, the packet receiver 200 issues a MESSAGE_MAINTENANCE_REQUEST to the MDS and waits for the MDS to issue a MESSAGE_MAINTENANCE_REPLY message. All messages are transmitted by the MDS in the form of MESSAGE_DATA messages within message packets, and the message manager 100 a acknowledges each packet by transmitting a RECEIPT_CONFIRMATION message to the MDS on the control processor 106 a.
The packet receiver 200, extracts messages from the MESSAGE_DATA message packets and places the messages into one of: a variable determination messages queue 206, a categorized messages queue 208, a modified messages queue 210, and the device database 202.
While operating in this normal mode, the packet receiver 200 executes alarm shower detection according to a set of alarm shower parameters provided by a configuration database 204. In the illustrative embodiment, alarm shower detection is characterized by a specified number of alarms received within a time period and an alarm priority value. The alarm priority value establishes a priority threshold for alarms passed to devices, such as the workstations 108 on the application network 104, in the event that an alarm shower is detected. Alarms having insufficiently high priority are discarded by the packet receiver 200. Configuring alarm shower behavior for the message management facility 100, including the message manager 100 a is described further herein below.
It is noted that the standby message manager 100 b, though assigned a passive role in forwarding alarm messages to devices, also registers/initializes with the same MDSs as the active message manager 100 a to ensure that all messages are received by both of the redundant message managers.
Finally, in the event that the message manager 100 a detects a connection failure, the message manager 100 a, after the cause of the failure has be eliminated, attempts to re-establish the connection to the MDS on the control processor 106 a. If an initial attempt fails, further attempts are initiated every second.
The messages received by the packet receiver 200 are parsed and stored, after potential modification, within an appropriate one of the message queues 206, 208 and 210.
The modified messages queue 210 is used to pass data from the packet receiver 200 to a device server process 220. Each entry in the modified messages queue 210 includes, by way of example, the following fields:
The device server process 220 reads messages from the modified messages queue 210 and routes the retrieved messages to appropriate device (e.g., workstation, alarm database, printer, etc.) destinations according to routing information provided by the device database 202. The device server process 220 contains destination-specific threads that convert the retrieved messages to a format specified for the particular device type of the identified destination residing on the application network 104. The messages destined for the alarm database 110 pass through an alarm database collector 222. The collector 222 communicates with the alarm database 110 via the application network 104 to place the alarm data in the database 110. However, if the alarm database 110 is unavailable, then the alarm data is buffered in a temporary alarm data buffer 223. When the alarm database 110 becomes available, the buffered alarm data is retrieved from the buffer 223 and passed to the collector 222 before placing current alarm data in the database 110. As previously noted, device data can be updated during normal runtime operation of the message manager 100 a. The device server 220 dynamically creates and deletes connections to devices via the application network 104 according to updates to the information placed by the packet receiver 200 in the device database 202.
In an exemplary embodiment, communications between the message manager 100 a and an alarm management subsystem (AMS) on the workstations 108 proceed as follows.
In an exemplary embodiment, AMS server threads within the device server process 220 operate as message collectors for specific corresponding AMSs on the workstations 108. Each AMS server thread packs messages together so that a packet of messages is sent rather than single messages. A timer function ensures that messages are sent after a time period even if a message packet is not full. The time (e.g. 500 ms) and the number of messages (e.g. 3) will vary according to various implementations. All alarm messages are time stamped.
The message manager 100 a includes a redundancy control subsystem 224 that facilitates exchanging information between the message manager partners of a redundant message management facility configuration. Examples of functions carried out by the redundancy control subsystem 224 include declaring a role and synchronizing configuration data. In the illustrative embodiment, the redundancy related data passes between the partners via the control network 102. However, such data can be passed via the application network 104 or even a third (e.g., dedicated) network link. The operation of the redundancy control subsystem 224 is customized according to a set of redundancy parameters stored in a system configuration file 226. During normal operation, threads within the device server 220 inform the redundancy control subsystem 224 about current status of connections to associated devices.
The message manager 100 a includes a calculation and dynamic filtering process 228. The calculation and dynamic filtering process 228 relies on information from the configuration database 204 (described herein below with reference to
In addition to the above-mentioned command execution function, the calculation and dynamic filtering process 228 also reads a message, previously placed by the packet receiver 202, from the variable definition messages queue 206 to identify changes in mode and/or event variables. An entry from the variable definition message queue 206 includes a single alarm state message associated with a mode or event variable.
In response to events and mode transitions specified by a retrieved entry from the variable definition message queue 206, the process 228 initiates executing configured parameter actions on one or more specified control block parameters. By way of example, and not limitation, the configured parameter actions include setting new alarm priority values based upon mode/event priority matrices provided for identified alarms. In a particular embodiment, the new priorities for particular alarms are transmitted by the message manager 100 a to the control processor 106 a in the form of an application object parameter action identifying a compound, block, and parameter/value.
During initialization the calculation and dynamic filtering process 228 reads category attributes and variable definitions from the configuration database 204. The calculation and dynamic filtering process 228 reads the variable determination message queue 206 and the categorized messages queue 208 and takes the following actions. A variable determination message is read from the queue and a new value for a mode or event variable is determined. The first messages in the variable determination message queue 206 are the CURRENT STATE messages from contact input (CIN) blocks that determine the values of mode and event variables. The values of the mode/event variables, in turn, are applied to a set of category action matrices to determine actions on parameters (e.g., assign a new priority to an alarm parameter) in view of the change to the mode/event state.
In view of the functionality performed by the calculation and dynamic filtering process 228 in conjunction with mode/event change messages retrieved from the variable determination message queue 206, when a mode or event variable changes, a table of action trigger message attributes is reviewed, and parameter values (e.g., alarm priorities) affected by the mode/event change are detected. For these parameters the new value (e.g., priority), configured in a table of action category attributes in the database 204, are determined and sent to the control processors in the form of parameter values on identified control blocks executing on the control processors. In processing event messages retrieved from the variable determination message queue 206, a mutual exclusivity indicator, defining whether an event is mutually exclusive or not, is taken into account. In such cases, the most recently received event is the only one taken into account when determining parameter actions. In the case of non-mutually exclusive events, the highest priority is used when more than one event is simultaneously set.
In closing, with regard to
Having described the general functional components that make up an exemplary message manager, attention is directed to a set of exemplary data structures utilized by the message manager to communicate with message delivery servers (MDSs) on the control processors 106 and alarm management subsystems (AMSs) on the workstations 108.
MDS/Message Manager (MM) Message Format
The data structures described below are exemplary MDS and MM message structures. The structures represent messages sent from the MDS to the MM and messages sent from MM to the MDS.
MDS_CONCAT_MSG: the structure of message packets exchanged between the MM and MDS. This data structure contains the following fields:
The data structures described in this section represent incoming messages to the MM from the MDS. The MDS concatenates multiple messages, up to a specified value (MAX_MSG_PER_PACKET), in one message packet and then sends the packet to the MM. The maximum size of a packet is specified by a value MAX_PACKET_SIZE. The MDS_MAX_MSG_PER_PACKET (initially 10) and MDS_MAX_PACKET_SIZE (initially 5000) are configurable.
FROM_MDS_MSG: defines the various types of a single message delivered to the MM from MDS, and contains the following information:
Type of the message block (type of the union variant)
Union of the different types (described further herein below), namely:
MDS_START_SESSION_REPLY_MSG: used for the message block type MM_START_SESSION_REPLY MDS_CLIENT_SIMPLE_REPLY_MSG: used for the message block types MM_END_CURRENT_STATE_UPDATE, MM_MESSAGE_MAITENANCE_REPLY, MM_TEMPORARY_DISCONNECT_REPLY, MM_RECONNECT_REPLY and MM_END_SESSION_REPLY MDS_DATA_MSG: used for the message block type MM_DATA_MESSAGE
MDS_START_SESSION_REPLY_MSG: defines the data structure of the reply to a start session message received by the MM and contains the following:
E.g., MESSAGE_MAINTENANCE_MODE, CURRENT_STATE_UPDATE_MODE and MSGGROUP_DEFINITION_MODE
Format of Messages Sent by the MM
The data structures described herein below represent outgoing messages from the MM to the MDS. The MM sends only one message in a message packet.
FROM_MM_MSG: defines the various types of a single message delivered from MM to MDS, and contains the following:
Union of the different types; namely
MDS_START_SESSION_MSG: used for the message block type MDS_START_SESSION MDS_CLIENT_REQUEST_MSG: used for the message block types MDS_START_CURRENT_STATE_UPDATE, MDS_MESSAGE_MAITENANCE, MDS_TEMPORARY_DISCONNECT, MDS_RECONNECT_REQUEST and MDS_END_SESSION MDS_RECEIPT_CONFIRMATION_MSG: used for the message block type MDS_RECEIPT_CONFIRMATION MDS_START_SESSION_MSG
MDS_START_SESSION_MSG: defines the data structure sent by the MM to indicate a session start, and contains the following:
MDS_MSG defines the data structure received by the MM and provided by a Control Processor or a Data Provider through MDS. These messages are received by the packet receiver 202. MDS_MSG is used to format a buffer in MDS_DATA_MSG if the message mode is CurrentStateMode or MessageMaintenanceMode, and contains the following:
The following describes a set of exemplary message structures used to send messages from the MM to the AMSs running on the Workstations 108. These message structures represent messages sent from the MM to an Alarm Alert (AA) task. The Alarm Alert task is the part of the AMS that communicates with the MM via the application network 104. The data structures described herein below represent incoming messages to the AA from the MM. The MM concatenates multiple messages, up to MAX_MSG_PER_PACKET, in one message packet and then sends the packet to the AA. The maximum size of a packet will be MAX_PACKET_SIZE. By way of example, the MAX_MSG_PER_PACKET is equal to 3, and the MAX_PACKET_SIZE is equal to 2048, but both values can be altered.
AMS_CONCAT_MSG: used in defining the message packets. This data structure contains the following:
As an alternative to the above-described AMS/MM message formats, the following message formats are utilized to send alarm messages from the MM to the AA task running on a workstation. These message formats are also used to send process and system alarm messages to a printer (as a print command with an attached buffer containing the alarms to be printed).
ALARM_MSG: a buffer defined in a header definition (e.g., alarmmsg.h) is used to send process alarm messages from the MM to the AA (or alarm printer).
S_APRNF: a buffer defined in a header definition (e.g., aprintf.h) is used to send user defined messages via APRINT to an alarm printer.
Having described the general functional components and message structures associated with the message management facility 100, attention is directed to a message manager configurator that is used to specify/tune the operation of the message management facility 100. The message manager configurator enables specifying the following:
The configurator output, referred to as a “message manager configuration set”, is stored in the form of an XML file. With reference to
General Information 360
In an exemplary embodiment, the general information 360 includes: a configuration name, a definition of modes, a definition of events, and alarm shower parameters. As mentioned previously above, the message manager 100 a utilizes alarm states of CIN blocks to determine current values for mode and event variables. The numbers of configured modes and events define a 2-dimensional matrix organizing up to 32 fields (cells) for specifying resulting parameter actions. The parameter actions are potentially utilized for reprioritization, inhibition, and disablement of alarms. The data within the general information 360 contains the following information:
The above-identified alarm shower parameters are one example of many potential ways to suppress a sudden surge of alarms so that only ones meeting a particular priority threshold are passed along to devices. For example one may instead measure a shower based upon alarms passed to a particular device rather than all received alarm messages. Such modification, addresses the differing capabilities of various specific destinations on the application network 104 to handle high volumes of alarm messages. Also, the alarm threshold may be applied in a stepped manner such that as the number of unacknowledged alarms increases, the threshold priority raises (as a guard against setting too low a threshold priority). Furthermore, a further parameter facilitates specifying a minimum time period within which shower suppression will be turned on, once activated, to avoid excessive toggling between on/off shower suppression states.
With reference to
Message Table 300
The message table 300 includes a set of n message entries wherein each entry includes a set of message attributes that belong to a particular identified alarm message. Each entry contains, by way of example, the following information:
The command categories table 310 is populated by a set of m entries wherein each entry specifies attributes (e.g., executable commands) for each identified command category. By way of example, each entry in the table contains the following:
The command table 320 contains a set of j entries corresponding to the various commands invoked by the message manager 100 a on occurrence of particular alarms specifying a particular command ID. Each command table 320 includes, for example, the following information:
With reference to
Action Triggers Table 330
The action triggers table 330 includes a set of r entries corresponding to particular blocks, for which actions (e.g., setting a new alarm priority) are to be invoked when the mode or event changes. Each entry contains the following information:
The s matrices within the action categories table 340 contain parameter action IDs. A particular cell is accessed, within a matrix (corresponding to a specified action category ID), based upon a current mode and/or event, and the parameter action ID within the selected cell determines a group of one or more parameter actions accessed within the parameter actions table 350. Each matrix entry is associated with:
The parameter actions table 350 contains t entries specifying groups of m parameter actions, that have to be performed when a state alarm occurs which is configured to change the value of a mode or event variable. Each of the t entries in the table contains the following information:
During runtime of the message manager 100 a, parameter actions within the parameter actions table 350 are accessed/triggered, by changes to a mode and/or event state, to change values on target parameter instances maintained by control processors 106. Such parameter actions are carried out, for example, using application objects.
In the exemplary embodiment the configuration name appended to the compound number makes up a unique application identification, the block name comprises the object part, and the parameter name comprises the attribute part of the whole application object connection name which is specified in the form of A:O.A (application:object.attribute). Changes in a previously saved configuration potentially removes parameter actions from the parameter action table 350. In response to such removal, corresponding application object connections are also removed. Removing an existing application object connection is done by overwriting a previously configured application object connection entry in the configuration database 204 with a default value.
Having described a set of components making up a message management facility configuration file with reference to
The general information 360 includes four keyword lines containing special keywords as the first entry in the line. Each of these four key-word lines mark the beginning of a particular section of the general information 360. The first line of the general information contains a first keyword line that specifies whether alarm shower detection is switched on. The two alternatives comprise, for example, “ALARM_SHOWER_DETECTION_ON” and “ALARM_SHOWER_DETECTION_OFF.” If alarm shower detection is specified to be on, the first keyword line is followed by a line, before the second keyword line, having three values. The three values represent the alarm shower parameters: number of unacknowledged alarms (range 1 to 10,000), time period in milliseconds (range 1000 to 60000) and threshold alarm priority (range 1 to 5).
The second keyword line of the four keyword lines determines whether the modes are displayed in rows or columns of an action categories matrix (displaying priorities for an alarm according to present mode/event status). This display option facilitates displaying the mode/event matrices based on the number of modes and the number of events. The content of the second keyword line is either “DISPLAY_MODES_IN_ROWS” or “DISPLAY_MODES_IN_COLUMNS”. After the second keyword line and before the third keyword line, multiple lines are inserted that contain three values defining the supported modes (one mode per line).
A third keyword line determines whether listed events are mutually exclusive. The content of the second keyword line is either “EVENTS_MUTUALLY_EXCLUSIVE” or “MULTIPLE_EVENTS_AT_THE_SAME_TIME)”. Between the third keyword line and the fourth keyword line, multiple lines are provided that contain three values defining the events (one event per line).
A forth keyword line determines whether the matrices are one-dimensional or two-dimensional. One-dimensional matrices are defined either by only modes or by only events, two-dimensional matrices contain cells defined by both modes and events. The text of the fourth keyword line is either ONLY_MODES, ONLY_EVENTS or MODES_AND_EVENTS. If ONLY_MODES is specified, then an error is generated at validation time if there are any lines (defining events) between the third and the fourth keyword lines. Similarly, if ONLY_EVENTS is specified, then an error is generated at validation time if there are any lines (defining modes) between the second and the third keyword lines.
General Information Example:
ALARM_SHOWER_DETECTION_ON 50,100,2 DISPLAY_MODES_IN_COLUMNS MODECOMPOUND,BLOCKMAINT,MAINTENANCE MODECOMPOUND,BLOCKSTART,START MODECOMPOUND,BLOCKNORMAL,NORMAL MODECOMPOUND,BLOCKSHUT,SHUTDOWN EVENTS_MUTUALLY_EXCLUSIVE EVNTCOMPOUND,BLOCK001,TRIGGER EVNTCOMPOUND,BLOCK002,STOP EVNTCOMPOUND,BLOCK003,HIGH PRIORITY EVNTCOMPOUND,BLOCK004,NOTICE EVNTCOMPOUND,BLOCK005,SPECIAL EVENT MODES_AND_EVENTS
The message table file 300 contains five entries per line separated by commas. All four separators (commas) are mandatory. Entries may be empty for data exchange, but may be required later for correct validation. The first three entries in a line contain the message ID including: a compound ID, a block ID and alarm type ID. The fourth entry specifies a command category ID for the message. The fifth entry represents the alias name. As shown in the first line of the example below, if the alias name contains any comma this entry is quoted. If the alias contains any quote symbol, the whole alias is quoted and the internal quote is doubled.
Message Table Example:
IACOMPOUND01,BLOCKNAME001,HIOUT,A001,“Alias, incl.“”,“” (commas"es)” IACOMPOUND01,BLOCKNAME002,LOABS,CATEG003, Alias name without any comma IACOMPOUND02,BLOCKNAME001,HIABS,,No category defined IACOMPOUND03,NEWBLOCK,LODEV,NOALIAS, IACOMPOUND03,BLOCKNAME001,HHABS,C003,Alias Text for this Alarm.
The command categories table 310 contains three entries per line separated by commas. The separators are mandatory. Entries may be empty for data exchange, but may be required later for correct validation. The first entry specifies a command category ID. The second and third entries identify up to two commands (by name/identifier) to be executed for alarms specifying the command category ID identified in the first entry of the line.
Command Categories Table Example:
CATEG003,APPLICATIONA,VOICEMSG01 A001,APPLICATIONB, C003,,VOICEMSG02 C004,APPLICATIONC,VOICEMSG03 C005,,VOICEMSG04 NOALIAS,APPLICATIOND, A002,, A003,,VOICEMSG05 STRING-15-CHARS,,
The command table 320 contains three entries per line separated by commas. Both separators are mandatory. Entries may be empty for data exchange, but may be required later for correct validation. The first entry contains the command ID (specified by entries of the command category table 310). The second entry contains the hostname of a network node that will execute the command/action. The third entry contains command line text (including any parameter values needed to invoke a desired action). If the command line contains a comma, then the command line entry is quoted. If the command line contains any quote symbol, the command line is quoted and the internal quote is doubled.
Command Table Example:
VOICEMSG01,WP07C1,C:\Prog\WinMediaPl\mplayer2.exe/Play CheckAlarm01.wav VOICEMSG02,AWXNT1,C:\Prog\WinMediaPl\mplayer2.exe/Play HighPriority.wav VOICEMSG03,AWXNT2,C:\Prog\WinMediaPl\mplayer2.exe /Play Horn.wav VOICEMSG04,WP08D2,C:\Prog\WinMediaPl\mplayer2.exe /Play Attention.wav VOICEMSG05,WPAA00,C:\Prog\WinMediaPl\mplayer2.exe /Play Music.wav APPLICATIONA,WPAB00,“C:\Prog\AppendLogEntry.exe“”AlarmType01Occurred”“” APPLICATIONB,AWC1D1,“C:\Prog\AppendLogEntry.exe“”AlarmType02Occurred”“” APPLICATIONC,AWC2D1,“C:\Prog\AppendLogEntry.exe“”AlarmType03Occurred”“” APPLICATIOND,AWC3D1,“C:\Prog\CopyLog.exe”
The action triggers table 330 contains three entries per line separated by commas. Both separators are mandatory. Entries may be empty for data exchange, but may be required later for correct validation. The first entry contains a compound ID and the second entry identifies a block ID for which actions have to be triggered when a mode or event changes. The third entry contains an action category ID specifying an entry within the action categories table 340.
Action Triggers Table Example:
IACOMPOUND01,BLOCKNAME001,TABLEA01 IACOMPOUND01,BLOCKNAME002,TABLEC01 IACOMPOUND01,BLOCKNAME003,EXCEPTIONTABLE IACOMPOUND01,BLOCKNAME004,TABLED01
The action categories table 340 contains a variable number of entries dependent on the number of modes and the number of events. The total number of entries per line is equal to (number-of-events*number-of-modes)+1. All separators are mandatory. Entries may be empty during data exchange, but may be required later for correct validation. The first entry contains the action category ID (referenced by entries in the action triggers table 330). All the remaining entries of the line (from the second to the last) contain the parameter action IDs (corresponding to entries in the parameter actions table 350) that are stored in a matrix corresponding to the action category ID. The number of modes and the number of events depend on the current configuration in the general information file where the modes and events are defined. Therefore, for the import of the action categories table 340 into the message management facility 100, the number of modes and events must already be configured as needed for the action categories in the file. If the general information table 360 is empty, then a file containing the general information is read to obtain a number of events and number of modes. The data is thereafter stored within a table mode by mode including all events for each mode.
Example Action Categories Table (Note: the Names Assigned to the First Line Such as MxEy are Chosen to Demonstrate the how the Elements of Each Mode/Event Matrix are Stored Rather than the Actual Values Stored at the Location.):
TABLEA01,M1E1,M1E2,M1E3,M1E4,M1E5,M2E1,M2E2,M2E3,M2E4,M2E5,M3E1,M3E2, M3E... TABLEB01,REPR1,NOINHIB,,,,REPR2,,R2NOD0,,INHALMGRP2,REPR3,INHIB,,,, REPR4... TABLEC01,REPR1,INHIB,R1NOD0,INHALMGRP1,INHALM2,REPR2,,R2NOD0,,INHALM2, REPR3 EXCEPTIONTABLE,REPR1,REPR2,REPR3,REPR4,REPR5,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, TABLED01,,INHIB,,,,,NOINHIB,,,,,INHIB,,,,,NOINHIB,,,
The parameter actions table 350 contains three entries per line separated by commas. Both separators are mandatory. Entries may be empty for data exchange, but may be required later for correct validation. The first entry contains a parameter action ID referenced by a matrix entry from the action categories table 340. The second entry contains a parameter name. The third entry contains a new value for the parameter identified in the third entry. The parameters for which new values are set include, by way of example, alarm priorities. However, any parameter value is potentially modified using this mode/event-driven value selection procedure.
Parameter Actions Table Example: M1E1,HHAPRI,3 M1E1,OUTPRI,2 M1E2,HHAPRI,1 M1E3,HHAPRI,2 M1E4,HHAPRI,4 M1E5,MEASPR,2 ... M4E1,MEASPR,2 M4E2,MEASPR,3 M4E3,OUTPRI,1 M4E4,OUTPRI,2 M4E5,MEASPR,4 REPR1,MEASPR,1 REPR2,MEASPR,2 REPR3,MEASPR,3 REPR4,MEASPR,4 REPR5,MEASPR,5 INHALMGRP1,INHIB,0 INHALMGRP1,INHALM,48 INHALMGRP2,INHIB,1 INHALMGRP2,INHOPT,1 INHALM2,INHIB,1 INHALM2,INHOPT,2 R1NOD0,MEASHL,80 R2NOD0,MEASLL,10 R3YESD2,MEASPR,3 R3YESD2,INHIB,1 R3YESD2,INHOPT,2 INHIB,INHIB,1 NOINHIB,INHIB,0
Having described the set of configuration tables created/edited by a message manager configurator for the message management facility 100, attention is directed to a set of graphical user interfaces associated with the message manager configurator that displays the above-described configuration tables in a readily understood manner for a system developer/engineer. In the illustrative example, the tables are accessed by selecting one of a set of correspondingly named tabs on the configurator application's main window. The content of each exemplary graphical user interface has been previously described and therefore will not be repeated here.
Turning initially to
With regard to the portion of the graphical user interface depicted in
The check box “Only Modes” at the bottom of the mode list allows specifying the matrices for parameter actions to be one-dimensional and defined only by modes (no event can be defined). In an exemplary embodiment, the mode/event matrices are limited to 32 cells. Therefore, if “Only Modes” is checked, the number of modes must be less or equal than 32. If “Only Modes” is unchecked the product of multiplying the number of modes by the number of events specified in the general information for a particular configuration is less or equal than 32. So the maximum number of supported modes is limited by a previously configured number of events. Appending and inserting modes is disabled when the maximum allowed modes is reached.
With regard to the portion of the graphical user interface depicted in
The check box “Only Events” at the bottom of the list allows specifying the matrices for parameter actions to be one-dimensional and defined only by events (no mode can be defined). As mentioned above, in an exemplary embodiment, the mode/event matrices are limited to 32 cells. Therefore, if “Only Events” is checked, the number of events must be less or equal than 32. If “Only Events” is unchecked the product of multiplying the number of modes by the number of events specified in the general information for the particular configuration is less or equal than 32. So the maximum number of supported events is limited by a previously configured number of modes. The buttons to append or insert further events are disabled as soon as the maximum is reached.
With regard to filling out the fields of an entry within the message table 300, a command category ID and/or an alias name is assigned to each displayed message entry. If a command category is not filled, then no command category is assigned to the message. If a command category ID is configured it is used as a search key for an entry within the command categories table 310. The compound name for a message entry is specified from a list of all compounds which are available in the system, or alternatively, typed in directly. Once a compound is entered a block is similarly selected. Thereafter, an alarm associated with the selected block is similarly designated. The command category ID may either be selected from a list or typed in directly. Furthermore, an optional alias name (a text message describing an alarm), if configured, is added by the packet receiver 200 in the message manager 100 a to a received message at runtime.
Each entry in the exemplary command categories graphical user interface depicted in
When a user selects one of the listed entries under the Action Category ID, a corresponding mode/event matrix is displayed in the right-side panel of the graphical interface. The illustrative matrix for the currently selected ACtg-1 action category, is a two-dimensional matrix including four modes (identified in the column headings) and five events (identified at the head of each row)—resulting in a total of 20 potential cells for specifying a parameter action ID.
The matrix is one-dimensional, if either “Only Modes” or “Only Events” is checked on the “General” page of the configurator user interface. If “Only Modes” is checked, one cell for each mode is displayed and there is no event title above or before the cells. If “Only Events” is checked, one cell for each event is displayed and there is no mode title above or before the cells.
With regard to editing the content of the matrices, the graphical user interface allows selecting a previously defined parameter action from a list box or directly inputting a parameter action identifier—which is defined later.
With reference to
A parameter action ID column of the exemplary user interface identifies parameter action IDs for parameter actions stored in the parameter actions table 350. As indicated in the illustrative example, the parameter action ID values are not unique and thus a single parameter action ID can result in changing multiple parameters on a block. A group of parameter actions invoked at a same time are assigned a same parameter action ID. During configuration, a user may write all values directly into the parameter action table cells.
In an embodiment, the configuration information described herein above is stored in the form of an XML file. At startup, the message manager 100 a parses the XML file rendered by the configurator and stores resulting alarm and message management configuration information in the configuration database 204.
Having described the general functional components, data structures and configuration interfaces for a message management facility, attention is now directed to steps performed by the message management facility to process received messages. Turning initially to
At step 1430 the packet receiver 200 consults the message table 300 to determine whether a corresponding message entry can be found. If at step 1430 the received message's ID cannot be located in the message table 300, then control passes to step 1435 wherein the received message is placed within the modified messages queue 210 without modifications by the packet receiver 200. As previously mentioned, the device server 220 retrieves the messages from the modified messages queue 210 and passes them to one or more destinations in accordance with destinations identified in the device database 202. If, at step 1430, the received message's ID is located in the message table 300, then control passes to step 1440.
At step 1440, an alias (if provided in the entry within the message table 300) is added to the received message before adding the entry to the modified messages queue 210. Next, at step 1450 if the packet receiver 200 determines the received message is associated with a category (i.e., the corresponding entry in the message table 300 includes a category ID), then control passes to step 1455. At step 1455 an additional copy of the received message, along with its associated category ID (obtained from an entry in the message table 300), is placed in the categorized messages queue 208. Processing of an entry from the categorized messages queue 208 (described herein below with reference to
If the message is not associated with a category ID, then control passes from step 1450 to step 1460 (also entered from step 1435 described herein above). At step 1460 if the received message is a variable determination message (i.e., one providing notification of an event/mode change), then control passes to step 1465 wherein a copy of the received variable determination is placed in the variable determination messages queue 206 for further processing. Processing entries retrieved from the variable determination messages queue, e.g., updating alarm priorities in response to events/mode changes, is discussed further herein below with reference to
The set of steps described herein below are intended to describe an exemplary way in which to detect alarm shower conditions—as well as persist an alarm shower condition parameter value once such shower conditions have been detected. Those skilled in the art will readily appreciate that there are a variety of ways in which to carry out such shower detection and persist a shower detection parameter value once a particular shower state is detected. In the exemplary method, at the end of an alarm count period (determined by the alarm period parameter discussed herein above) control passes to step 1500 wherein an alarm counter value for the just completed period is determined. Thereafter, at step 1510 if the alarm counter value exceeds a configured number of alarms (a maximum number of received alarms permitted in the alarm count period by the message manager without triggering an alarm shower condition), then control passes to step 1520 wherein the alarm shower detection parameter is set to indicate the presence of an alarm shower. As noted above in the description of
Alternatively, if the alarm counter value does not exceed the configured number of alarms, then control passes from step 1510 to step 1530. At step 1530 the alarm shower detection parameter is reset to indicate that alarm shower conditions were not present in the just completed alarm count period. Control then passes to step 1540 wherein a next alarm count period is commenced. Thus, in the exemplary embodiment, the alarm shower parameter state is based upon a just completed count period, and a current alarm shower parameter state will persist until a next count period is completed.
At step 1700, the action category ID specified for a particular entry in the action triggers table 330 is applied to the action categories table 340 to locate a particular mode/event matrix corresponding to the action category ID (see
At step 1720, if the accessed cell in the mode/event matrix is empty, then control passes to the End. Otherwise, control passes to step 1730 wherein the parameter action ID determined during step 1710 is applied to the parameter actions table 350 (see
With regard to the steps described in association with
The structures, techniques, and benefits discussed above are merely exemplary embodiments of the invention. In view of the many possible embodiments to which the principles of this invention may be applied, it should be recognized that the embodiments described herein with respect to the drawing figures are meant to be illustrative only and should not be taken as limiting the scope of invention. For example, those of skill in the art will recognize that some elements of the illustrated embodiments shown in software may be implemented in hardware and vice versa or that the illustrated embodiments can be modified in arrangement and detail without departing from the spirit of the invention. Moreover, those of skill in the art will recognize that the disclosed principles are not limited to any particular local area network protocols and/or topologies. Therefore, the invention as described herein contemplates all such embodiments as may come within the scope of the following claims and equivalents thereof.
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|Classification coopérative||G05B23/027, H04L67/02, G06F9/546, G05B19/4184, G05B2219/31438, H04L45/00, H04L12/1895, H04L43/08|
|Classification européenne||H04L12/18Y, G05B23/02S6F2, G06F9/54M, H04L45/00, G05B19/418F|
|6 janv. 2006||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: INVENSYS SYSTEMS, INC., MASSACHUSETTS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:PAUL, MARKUS STEPHAN;WEISS, EWALD GERHARD;WILSON, IRVINEWILLIAM;REEL/FRAME:016983/0290;SIGNING DATES FROM 20051209 TO 20051212
|13 juil. 2006||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: DEUTSCHE BANK AG, LONDON BRANCH,UNITED KINGDOM
Free format text: SECURITY AGREEMENT;ASSIGNOR:INVENSYS SYSTEMS, INC.;REEL/FRAME:017921/0766
Effective date: 20060713
|9 août 2013||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: INVENSYS SYSTEMS, INC., MASSACHUSETTS
Free format text: RELEASE BY SECURED PARTY;ASSIGNOR:DEUTSCHE BANK AG, LONDON BRANCH;REEL/FRAME:030982/0737
Effective date: 20080723