New RTP NetSuite Release July 25, 2004
POMPANO BEACH, FL-July25, 2004 – RTP Corp. has announced that the newest version of its RTP NetSuite measurement and control software includes major enhancements in language capabilities, programming and alarm management. In describing the technologies chosen for the new release, Sal Provanzano, president of RTP Corp., noted that, “We work closely with our customers and listen carefully to their concerns, and these functions were included in response to specific requirements they gave us.”
C / C++ Code Addition
RTP has included User Defined Functions (UDF) written in C / C++ into the NetArrays Developer Studio for the 2300 Series of controllers. This allows users to define their unique functionality (UDF) and have that execute in the controller without having to purchase an expensive compiler. The GNU compiler will be used to compile these UDF’s and will be included on the distribution CD along with NetSuite. Prior to this release UDF’s had been native only to RTP2000/2200 systems.
IEC 61131-3 Compatible Structured Text
Addition of Structured Text (ST) language supplements the four graphical languages in the NetArrays Developer Studio with a text-based programming tool. ST is typically used for functions that are more easily implemented in programming style than in graphical format. Such functions typically include process calculations involving complex math operations. Another advantage that ST offers the user with a legacy system is the ability to transfer their control logic programs from the existing environment into RTP Corp. controllers, with minimal effort.
A structured text file is defined using a factory-supplied library of standard ST operations and statements. Users can build on these standard operations and statements to develop their own functions and function blocks.
The RTP Structured Text language was developed to conform to the guidelines of IEC 61131-3:2003(E), “Programmable controllers, Part 3: Programming languages,” Second Edition 2003-01. Other languages already in the NetArrays studio include Sequential Flow Charts, Ladder Logic and Fuzzy Logic (IEC61131-7 compliant), Objects, and User Defined Functions (UDF) written in C / C++.
New Lookup Function
RTP continues to add sophisticated objects to the NetArrays Developer Studio, with the latest being the Lookup Function Object. A user developing advanced control applications may require a method to retrieve data from a secured area where it cannot be overwritten, this is typically to perform interpolation for an algorithm. The new lookup function accesses a constant array by an index supplied during runtime. The user can design the constant array by entering the values interactively in the NetArrays Developer Studio property or by simply importing it from an external comma separated values (CSV) file. The constant array data is secured and cannot be changed during runtime, either by control logic or by Human-Machine Interfaces (HMI).
Future versions of this object will incorporate a generic two-dimensional array with a selection of interpolation algorithms: step, linear and cubic-spline.
Enhanced Alarm Management
The new release includes a fast fault-tolerant alarm management system designed specifically for the high integrity, redundant applications which constitute the core market for RTP systems.
RTP’s Alarm Management System (RTPAMS) now adds redundancy to the client server functionality of prior releases to make it one of the most powerful alarm systems available. The alarm list resides in the controller and at the end of each scan sends changes to the host system for evaluation and logging. Systems that pole for alarms at defined intervals can lose transitory alarms if they become active and then reset during the poling interval. This is not the case with RTP’s alarm system as the data is evaluated each scan.
All RTP control systems can be configured for the user’s choice of dual or triple modular redundancy. The new release of the RTPAMS is designed specifically for redundant applications and ensures no alarms will be missed. At the same time-because it operates on an exception basis and does not poll all points constantly-it places minimal demands upon system resources.
RTP NetSuite version 5.2 ships to users in late summer, 2004.