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2019 Year in Review: ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute

February 11, 2020

Managing Director’s Message to Members

Once again, the ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute had a great year.  I want to thank the volunteer members and WCI staff who contributed to important activities and initiatives during 2019.  Here are some highlights along with a brief history of ISA100 WCI.

A Quick Brief About the ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute

Since WCI members can’t always meet as a group and learn about the organization, we find it beneficial to provide an overview of the organization when possible.

Historical Background at ISA

The International Society of Automation (ISA) is a globally recognized professional society that will soon be celebrating its 75th year anniversary. ISA sets the standards for automation with conferences, professional development, education, training and, standards development through its ANSI-accredited standards development processes.
 
The ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute operates as a not-for-profit 501 (c) (6) conformity subsidiary of ISA, a global professional society of automation engineers.

The ISA100 Wireless Compliance Institute (WCI), founded in 2008, is a consortium of end-user and supplier companies who use and promote the ISA100.11a-2011 (IEC 62734) industrial wireless standard.  WCI operations are funded by membership dues, sales and licensing of products such as WCI test kits and, product testing and certification fees.

WCI is led by a governing board comprised of WCI volunteer members.  Board members are elected every two years and set the strategy, direction and, budgets for WCI.  

In addition to the WCI volunteer governing board, WCI operations are supported by part-time paid staff including, a managing director, technical director, marketing manager and, other support personnel on an as-needed basis.  

WCI maintains partnerships and liaisons with outside organizations in support of the WCI mission and to ensure relevance in the industrial wireless market.  Companies include FieldComm Group, FDT, OPC and recently, Fundacion Chile.  WCI has a business agreement with Centero, LLC for assembling, distributing and, supporting the ISA100 Wireless test kits (both W2-00 and W2-01) and the recently released ISA100 Wireless Rapid Development Kit which reduces product development time from months to weeks.

To support outreach and promotion of ISA100 Wireless technology, WCI has established regional volunteer teams organized into three geographies; Asia Pacific, Americas and, Europe-Middle East Africa.

WCI established an end-user advisory council a few years ago which meets on an as-needed basis.  The purpose of this organization is to gain input from end-users to guide the WCI technology roadmap and solicit feedback on topics of interest.  The organization chart shows the WCI structure and current leadership.

Organization and Leadership updates

In 2019, WCI created the Strategy and Execution Committee, whose mission is to identify topics of key importance to WCI’s strategy and assemble teams to execute on solutions to completion.  The chairman of this committee is Jorgen Svare from Draeger.
 
We would also like to espress our gratitude to Seiichirou Takahashi of Yokogawa who provided excellent leadership in his role as the ISA100 WCI Vice-chair during his two year tenure.  Seiichirou Takahashi will be replaced by Royo Kurosawa, also from Yokogawa as the new ISA100 WCI Vice-chair.  We look forward to working with Kurosawa-san.

2019 Year in Review

WCI hosts an all-hands meeting at the beginning of each year to review results from the prior year and to confirm plans for the upcoming year.  The 2019 all-hands meeting was held February 2019 at ISA Headquarters in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, USA.  Proceedings from these meetings are available to all WCI members and are posted on the WCI SharePoint site for easy download.  If you do not have a logon to the WCI SharePoint site, please contact Mike Brazda to get a logon (mbrazda@isa.org). 

WCI evaluated submittals for the 2019 Excellence in Automation Award and selected the ISA100 Wireless implementation at ILBOC as the 2019 winner.  The use-case was a 900 node ISA100 Wireless steam trap monitoring application.  The steam trap monitoring application of this large size is an industry first; it also included a unique ESCO (Energy Services Company) contract with Bitherm that had NO upfront costs.  All payments to Bitherm from ILBOC are based upon energy savings.  

Luis Sandro Gomez (ILBOC) and Vicente Blazquez Navarro (Bitherm CEO) presented this use-case at the February 2020 ARC World forum.  See the post on the www.isa100wci.org website for a detailed description and to download copies of the slide presentation of ILBOC ISA100 Wireless steam trap monitoring application.

Standards and Administrative

In 2019, a maintenance version of the underlying IEC 62734 standard was approved as IEC 62734 Amd.1 Ed. 1.0 b:2019, bringing the international standard fully into alignment with WCI-certified implementations.

Collaboration with Industry Groups

A joint working group was formed between ISA100 WCI and OPC under a formal agreement, to standardize a certifiable data model for current and future ISA100 Wireless devices and systems.  This hard-working group agreed upon an architecture in 2019 and the specification is on track for completion in 2020.  Joint WCI/OPC certifications will follow.

As an offshoot of this project, FCG has invited ISA100 WCI to collaborate on an application layer process industry data model.  More details to follow as this evolves.

WCI Device Certifications

The portfolio of ISA100 Wireless products has grown to over 60 devices, with more than 45 devices formally certified. WCI device certifications are the key to ensuring multi-vendor interoperability.  2019 was a good year for certifications, both for the W2-00 Implementation Specification and for the W2-01 Implementation Specification.  Here is the 2019 list of new product certifications:

GE Baker Hughes – Ranger Pro Condition Monitoring Tri-Axial Sensor                  2019 new
GE Baker Hughes – Ranger Pro Single Axis Sensor Condition Monitoring              2019 new
GE Baker Hughes – Ranger Pro Repeater Condition Monitoring                              2019 new
Spirax Sarco – STAPS ISA100 Wireless Steam Trap Monitor                                   2019 update
Metal Samples Company – High Resolution Wireless ER Corrosion Transmitter     2019 new
Yokogawa – W2-01 ISA100 Wireless Stack Implementation (FN510)                      2019 new
Yokogawa – W2-01 ISA100 Wireless Stack Implementation (FN110)                      2019 new
Honeywell – System Certification (FDAP1/FDAP2)                                                 2019 new
Honeywell – System Certification (WDMY/vWDM)                                                2019 new

System Certification Launched in Q4 2019

ISA100 WCI has been conducting formal interoperability events for the past 5 years to confirm that suppliers are offering products that are interoperable with all other ISA100 Certified™ products.  These events prove that the ISA100 WCI certification testing has proper coverage and devices available in the market from multiple suppliers are easily provisioned into any ISA100 Wireless system and meet the ISA100 Wireless specification.

The process uses system managers (often called gateways) from every system manager supplier and connects devices from other suppliers to confirm that they work according to the ISA100 Wireless implementation specification.  In 2019, the WCI technical team formalized this process, adding some proprietary WCI technology to offer a formal system manager certification.  This provides assurances of interoperability in the marketplace and protects the value of the ISA100 Wireless® brand.  It also establishes a means to combat counterfeit products from entering the ISA100 Wireless™ ecosystem.

New ISA100 Wireless Products

Each year companies develop and announce new ISA100 Wireless products that are slated for ISA100 Wireless® certification.  Announcements from 2019 include: 

• Centero – W2-00 communication module                                          2019 new
• Honeywell – W2-01 Smartline Wireless Universal IO (STUW750)  2019 new
• Honeywell – W2-01 Smartline Wireless Universal IO (STUW751)  2019 new
• Honeywell – W2-01 Smartline Wireless Temperature                       2019 new
 
Outreach and Events

Outreach and promotion of the ISA100 Wireless technology are an important dimension of WCI’s activities each year.  This ensures that end-users and prospective suppliers are aware of the technology and benefits.  It helps with product sales to end-users by WCI supplier companies and promotes adoption of ISA100 Wireless from prospective suppliers seeking to develop a wireless offering in their product portfolios.  Events from around the globe include:

In Houston, Texas, WCI members hosted an End User conference covering interesting topics such as use of wireless for Safety applications and the new WCI Rapid Development kit.

In Tokyo, Japan WCI members hosted a booth at the annual JEMIMA Industrial sensors show.  AP members also presented to large audiences on the topics of ISA100 Wireless implementation and Wireless in the Industrial Network

In Hokkaido, Japan WCI members arranged briefings at two end user facilities to provide an overview about the basics of wireless and describe relevant real-world applications of industrial wireless.

In Shikoku, Japan WCI members held a private seminar for a refinery customer describing the relevant applications of ISA100 Wireless technology.
 
In Zoetermeer, the Netherlands, WCI members hosted an end user conference covering the basics of industrial wireless, Wireless for Safety, ISA100 Wireless implementation approaches, benefits of wireless steam trap monitoring, as well as real world use cases.

WCI Webinars 

WCI webinars are an efficient way to reach new and existing audiences interested in wireless technology.  WCI hosted seven webinars in 2019, presented by volunteer members.  In total, WCI registered 625 webinar attendees.  The webinars are recorded and available on www.isa100wci.org website for offline viewing later by anyone interested.  Webinars presented in 2019 include:
   
• “Using ISA100 Wireless to overcome everyday project challenges” Honeywell
• “IIOT – Steam Trap Monitoring Digitalization using ISA100 Wireless”  Armstrong
• “Condition Monitoring with Wireless”      GE Baker Hughes
• “End to End SIL2 with ISA100 Wireless” - North American Time Zone Draeger/GasSecure
• “End to End SIL2 with ISA100 Wireless” – European Time Zone   Draeger/GasSecure
• “Wireless Control with ISA100 Wireless”     Flowserve
• “Accelerate ISA100 Wireless Field Instrument Development  with the WCI Rapid Development Kit”  Centero
 
LinkedIn Group

ISA100 WCI hosts an English language ISA100 Wireless LinkedIn Group and expanded.  We expanded the LinkedIn presence to Japan in May 2018.  We expect the Japan ISA100 Wireless LinkedIn Group to grow quickly over the next few years.  It is a great place to ask questions, describe benefits, announce new ISA100 Wireless technology and share experiences related to use of ISA100 Wireless.  The English language ISA100 Wireless Group followers increased from 300 to 775 from 2018 to the end of 2019.  This is a good spike and attributable to work from WCI volunteer members. Keep up the good work!

ISA100 WCI Technical Projects 

ISA100 Wireless Rapid Development Kit

In 2017 the WCI board approved funding for a project to develop a standardized API and abstraction layer for ISA100 Wireless communication modules.  The resulting work product was completed in 2018 and has been now been productized.  It is now available for sale as the ISA100 Wireless Rapid Development Kit (RDK).  The objective of the RDK was to decrease the time and cost to convert wired instrumentation to ISA100 Wireless devices.  

The project is a resounding success, reducing the time from nine months or more to less than three weeks (often three days!) to develop a prototype ISA100 Wireless instrument.  Interested suppliers can purchase the RDK from Centero, LLC, the exclusive distributor for ISA100 WCI.  In 2019 we released the brand new ISA100 Wireless Rapid Development Kit (RDK). 

The ISA100 Wireless RDK includes everything needed to develop ISA100 Wireless certified field instruments with minimal development effort. It is a comprehensive, user-friendly, end-to-end development platform that includes pre-configured and fully integrated hardware, firmware and software components. It also includes training materials and step-by-step instructions to develop an ISA100 Wireless connected field instrument.  
 
The ISA100 Wireless RDK includes the following hardware and software components:

• SPiN development board (2)
• WISA X-Mikrobus boards (2)
• Application processor Arduino/Freedom board (2)
• NIO200IAG All-in-One Gateway
• Centero Engineering application
• Documentation and Training Package

The RDK lowers the barriers for new product suppliers by significantly reducing the time, cost and, effort to develop ISA100 Wireless products.  We believe the RDK will unleash ISA100 Wireless’ superior capabilities in new industry sectors, as well as provide a new path for low-cost IOT devices.
Visit the website at www.centerotech.com or contact Robert.assimiti@centerotech.com for details on availability, pricing and, support. We are grateful to the WCI board and technical support team for this game-changing achievement.  

ISA100 Wireless 2.01 Test Kits and Transition 

In 2018, WCI completed the W2-01 Implementation Specification update and finished the release testing of the associated ISA100 Wireless 2.01 stack test kits (STK) and device test kits (DTK).  
Suppliers were notified in 2018 about the transition policy and effectivity dates for moving from the ISA100 Wireless W2-00 Implementation Specification to the ISA100 Wireless W2-01 Implementation Specification.  The W2-01 STK and DTK are available for purchase from Centero, LLC the WCI authorized reseller for the ISA100 Wireless test kits.  Contact Robert Assimiti robert.assimiti@centerotech.com for purchasing details. 

New Work in the WCI Technical Steering Committee (TSC)

The WCI TSC added new member engineers in 2019 and launched several new programs.  Interested members who are not already TSC members are urged to participate by contacting Jay Werb, WCI Technical Director at jay@jwerb.com.

• In 2019, a new certification program for ISA100 Wireless systems was specified by TSC and then approved by the WCI governing board.  Previously, WCI certifications have been limited to field devices, however, WCI wants all ISA100 Wireless technology certified.  System suppliers have enthusiastically supported this expansion of the ISA100 Wireless® certification program and the first system certifications are already in progress.

• After careful evaluation by the TSC, in 2019, WCI made a formal decision to replace its infrared provisioning interface with BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy).  The TSC is now working to establish technical specifications for BLE provisioning.   The currently agreed scope covers provisioning and configuration using BLE.  The TSC is also evaluating whether WCI should support BLE more generally for reporting process data.

• The TSC oversees WCI’s joint activity with the OPC Foundation, to standardize a certifiable data model for current and future ISA100 Wireless devices and systems.  This joint project was launched in 2019 and is expected to be completed in 2020.
 
• The TSC provides technical support for the Strategy and Execution Committee, and the groups collaborate as needed. • The WCI Governing Board has asked TSC to propose concepts for a safety profile based upon the ISA100 Wireless technology.  This activity is being launched in 2020.
 
An Industry First – IEC 62443 certification for the advanced security in ISA100 Wireless

Honeywell certified their ISA100 Wireless Device Manager model WDMY R320 to the ISASecure® EDSA Level 1 cybersecurity certification.  This is the first IEC 62443 certified wireless device.
ISASecure certifications assess products to the ISA/IEC 62443 international industrial cybersecurity standards. The certification is an independent confirmation by an ISO/IEC 17065 certification body that the WDMY conforms to ISA/IEC 62443 security capabilities, is free from known vulnerabilities and, is developed using a certified security development lifecycle.   The security development lifecycle provides assurances that the product will maintain its security capabilities as the product is updated and changed over its useful life.  We encourage all WCI members to pursue the ISASecure® ISA/IEC 62443 certification for their products.  
 
Financials
 
ISA100 WCI completed FY 2019 with an operating surplus which exceeded the 2019 financial goal.