Visualization and control of boiler rooms in Prague 3

In the second half of 2002, the main control room, which is connected to local gas boiler rooms, was brought online. These boiler rooms provide heating and hot water for about 300 residential buildings in Prague 3.

The main control room is equipped with the Reliance 3 SCADA/HMI system, which is installed on three computer workstations. Apart from this, data is available over the Web browser on various places in the intranet.

The communication server is the heart of the whole room. It provides the connection with the boiler rooms. In cooperation with GEOVAP, the Reliance 3 system was supplied with communication modules providing telephone connection and the transfer of current and historical data from the regulators at the boiler rooms via modems using the TMC protocol (Tecont Modem Communication).

Another two control rooms are connected to the communication server. Alarms/events are generated and further data processed by Reliance. Temperature is also monitored by the software.

Apart from standard SCADA functions, custom program additions in the main control room enable:

  • Telephone connection to the boiler rooms and the collection of current and historical data according to set time intervals
  • Incoming call reception from the boiler rooms in the event of a malfunction or fire, processing of malfunction data, and sending of short text messages to cell phones
  • Sending facility intrusion messages to PCO Securitas
  • Sending emails to other operating facilities in the event of necessary repairs
  • Telephone service
  • Archiving operation values and status changes with optional automatic export for further processing (i.e., MS Excel)
  • Telephone connection statistics including the accounting of operational costs

The control room and its projection system

The control room and its projection system

The communication server provides the periodic updating of data from the boiler rooms according to user-defined intervals. At each connection, in addition to current data and status, historical values saved in regular intervals to the internal memory of the regulator are received. After the transfer is complete, the operator has a complete overview of operational history and recorded values.

In the event of a malfunction or fire, the control system automatically connects to the control room and after data transfer is complete, text messages are immediately sent to selected cell phones of emergency services. To enable users to customize the messages (cell phone number, text of the event report, sending copies etc.), an addition was made to the visualization system. In the event of a fire shut-down of any of the boiler rooms outside of work hours, the telephone server activates an appropriate audio message.

An exchange station

An exchange station

For enabling the monitoring of the operation of the heating sources outside of operator work hours, emergency services can gain remote access to the main control room via a telephone network and monitor the operation of individual systems from any location by use of a portable computer. In demanding situations, remote changes of individual operational parameters can be carried out, eliminating the need to be physically present.

To ease work with data in subsequent processing, another addition was made to the Reliance 3 system, which enables the automatic export of operational data from the database files directly into the MS Excel format. The user interface makes easy work of configuring appropriate reports to the required units. In light of the fact that the control system is connected via a serial link with the M-Bus interface not only to heat meters of individual heating sections and domestic hot water, but also to pulse outputs from gas meters and water meters, the operator has access to the complete overview of operational efficiency for each heating source and can decide, for example, when to plan repairs.

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Boiler room

Boiler rooms in Prague 3