Blog Home


Remote Field Automation Device Connectivity

Automation Devices such as PLC, RTU, HMI, Smart Instrumentation, Power Meters and Flow Computers may have serial (RS232/RS485) and/or Ethernet Communications. In Automation Systems, these devices are commonly connected together via Industrial Protocols such as Modbus, Modbus TCP, Ethernet IP, and Profibus for SCADA, Data Acquisition, Operator Interface, and Control Purposes.

Additional Serial and Ethernet Connectivity to the individual devices may be required for monitoring, configuration,  support, maintenance, and troubleshooting.  Typically these device will will use the manufacturer’s proprietary software packages for configuration and maintenance.

For devices with Ethernet Connectivity the devices may be accessed using the same ethernet connectivity as the SCADA/Automation Protocol Communication. Sometimes, a separate Ethernet network is used to insure added security.

For devices with serial maintenance connectivity where maintenance must be performed on a separate serial port – a  LOI port, console port; or a USB port.  In these cases, a laptop with Manufacturer’s Software Packages is typically used for configuration and maintenance. When remote serial connectivity to the device is required,  Ethernet to Serial gateways can be used to provide remote connectivity to these devices.  Our SCADALink IP100 Industrial Terminal Server is commonly used for this application in addition to providing Modbus Ethernet to Modbus Serial Connectivity.

VPN’s network are used to provide secure access for maintenance connectivity when cellular or WAN connectivity is used to access to the automation/OT network.

The ability to have remote connectivity to automation device for maintenance can save time and money by reducing downtime and reducing travel. In remote field automation application, remote connectivity is a necessity due to the harsh work environment for field work.