Cromarty’s Incat Project Deliver’s DNV-GL approved Ship Integrated Management System (SIMS)
Cromarty, Ignition Fire Brand Award Winners for 2021, with the Incat SIMS project. The project was to develop a DNV-GL approved Ship Integrated Management System (SIMS) to manage data from various inputs on the ship and present information in a consistent manner on operator workstations distributed throughout the vessel.
The scope of the project included 100k tags, 40 visitor screens, 10 clients, 5000 alarms, various device connections like OPC servers, data logging and PostgreSQL databases.
What was the Problem?
Incat, based in Hobart, Tasmania are builders of high-speed lightweight catamarans, which they supply globally. Each vessel requires a SIMS which collects and distributes various data inputs and presents them consistently around the workstations on the vessel.
Due to the unique nature of the vessel design, a bespoke SIMS system was required. Incat decided that to get a system that would meet the specific needs of the vessel they would need to develop one themselves. The SIMS also needed to be fit for marine applications, achieving DNV-GL approval in accordance with DNV GL rules for the high-speed and light craft.
Cromarty was awarded the contract to develop a SIMS for Vessel 091, a 111-meter wave-piercing catamaran. Cromarty’s main design consideration was to provide a scalable solution that could be applied to this and subsequent vessels while ensuring high availability. To meet this requirement, Cromarty carefully selected proven industrial solutions.
The SCADA platform chosen was a Inductive Automation’s Ignition SCADA. Arranged in a redundant server configuration, Ignition was selected because it is a highly versatile solution built upon trusted industry standards. It is supplied with an unlimited licensing model meaning unlimited tags, clients, screens, and connections, therefore removing the need to purchase additional licensing should the number of tags or clients increase. This scalable, universal solution, combined with instant web-based deployment, alarming, reporting, and redundant servers all on one open and versatile platform made Ignition an ideal fit for the application.
The PLC platform selected was a Schneider Electric Modicon M580 PLC engineered in a hot standby arrangement with Modicon X80 Ethernet RIO modules connected via a redundant Ethernet Ring.
The M580 platform offers an open, flexible, robust, and powerful system supporting high levels of complex applications, and allowed the design and engineering of the PLC code architecture to be scalable and modularized to meet current and potential future vessel requirements.
For local operator interfaces, Winmate rugged Marine Panel PCs were selected. The Ignition operator interface graphics were designed in collaboration with Incat and planned to be deployed around the vessel to offer a simplified graphical representation so that any abnormal or urgent situations could be quickly highlighted to the operators.
After development and before deployment, the system was thoroughly bench-tested to provide comprehensive factory testing assurances and was successfully assessed by a DNV representative to achieve DNV-GL accreditation.
The outcome for Incat and Cromarty was extremely positive. The project was completed within the specified time frame. The hardware and software design achieved DNV-GL Plan approval using readily available industrial-standard hardware and software. The final solution was scalable and repeatable and allowed Incat not only to deliver Vessel 091 with a DNV-GL approved Ship Integrated Management System, but also laid the foundation for the system to be adapted for future vessels — all with locally based support.
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