Frost & Sullivan says SCADA systems competitive with DCSes

  • August 04, 2010
  • News
August 4, 2010 - Frost & Sullivan's World Distributed Control System (DCS) Market report says DCS manufacturers will have to be wary of competition from supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems, which use PC-based software to integrate programmable logic controllers (PLC) on a network to replicate the functions of DCS.Functions such as redundancy and high fault tolerance, that are conventionally associated with DCS systems, are being increasingly offered by SCADA systems, often at a fraction of the price. While traditional DCS users such as chemical plants and oil refineries are unlikely to switch to SCADA technology, these developments are placing DCS suppliers under pressure to reduce costs. Market participants are looking to offset this issue by incorporating new features in their products. "New DCS increasingly offers added functionality, that clearly differentiates it from other controllers as well as enhances value addition for its end-users," notes the analyst. "Additionally, manufacturers have developed powerful software to allow scheduling, monitoring, device calibration, and maintenance alarms, giving further impetus to the uptake of DCS."The report also says investments in power industry controls will sustain DCS Revenues. The DCS market is relying heavily on retrofit orders from developed economies, which are looking to replace their outdated and inefficient control systems to sustain the percent of nuclear power generation to the overall power-generation capacity. DCS manufacturers can also look to cash in on the capacity expansion drives in the power industries in India and China. Application of DCS reduces downtime and also aids improved production using optimal resources. These obvious benefits, along with a robust migration strategy, are expected to appeal to even the customers that are unwilling to change their functioning legacy systems.Apart from power, the oil and gas industry is also emerging as a lucrative end-user segment, especially with the rise in exploration activities. This industry has invested significantly in automation of processes and DCS being a vital component of automation systems, stands to gain substantially. Global climate-control initiatives, the pressure to meet regulatory requirements, and the moves to reduce dependence on fossil fuels and imported energy have given considerable impetus to the market. "Optimizing decision making processes is the top priority of every company. The company cannot afford a decrease in productivity, due to the flexibility demanded in production," says the analyst of this research service. "A DCS system has adequate features that collect data from the process and disseminate the information in a way that enhances understanding of the productivity metrics."The report costs EUR EUR 4,553.00 Learn More

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