Functions Of Scada

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SCADA stands for Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition, which are found in many business ventures. They are mostly used in applications like distributing power for electrical power distribution grids and traffic signals. Some fields of engineering such as the civil engineering branch uses these systems.

Functions of SCADA

These systems often control and manage a number of switches and pumps in the applications that are being controlled by these systems. This may often be referred to as the RTU- Remote Telemetry Unit. The data is provided to users through RTU. The Unit sends data to the user or the operator to prompt a assignment to be carried out. No machine is not capable of performing any task on its own. Usually, it requires the help of an operator to help it complete the process. There are many uses of Data Acqusition, which are applicable and observed in daily life. Some of these instances are listed as follows:

Chemical industry
Waste water treatment
Traffic Lights
Paper and mill Industries
Automative Industry
Food processing

Not only these, but the SCADA system is at times, used in some prominent, big industries which are listed as below:

Power Plants

There is some confusion, related to the differences between the Distributed Control Systems and the SCADA systems. To put it in laymen's terms, the latter is a system that mostly co-ordinates but does not control the processes in the real time. This technology is fairly advanced but it is not entirely fool-proof. It has some shortcomings too, such as handle recent technologies such as newer telecommunication, or allowing reliable, or low latency, high speed communications over enormous areas. There are not a great number of differences between Distributed Control Systems and SCADA and those minor differences can be overlooked.

This system chiefly incorporate a distributed database, also known as a tag database. This form of database is comprised mainly of points or tags. A point is shown by a single input or output value controlled or monitored by the system. Points can be soft or hard. A soft point is the result of mathematical calculations which are applied, whereas hard points are usually a result of actual inputs that exists within the system. Points are usually maintained in value-timesnap pairs, such as a value and the timesnap in which it was recorded or added together.

Of course every new technology has some pros and cons but SCADA has some vulnerabilities which may outnumber the pros. Some of them are listed as below:

1)It uses open system architecture to distribute functionality across Wide Area Network communications for communications equipment and master station
2)They are present everywhere. Web-based products, web portals and thin clients are becoming more popular with major vendors
3)The transparency makes it vulnerable to cyber-terrorism. Breakdown of the system may cause loss of data.
4)There arent many administrative, physical and technical security locks in SCADA systems.
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Brian Jones has 1 articles online

Please visit this link for more information on SCADA and this link for information on SCADA Systems.

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This article was published on 2011/01/18