In the mid 00s the SK Biotek Dublin facility selected the Gecma Challenger series Zone 1 Hazardous area terminals to allow operations interact with their Emerson Delta V control system while maintaining a presence on plant floor. Gecma Challenger series was selected due to its compatibility with Delta V, Flexibility in terms of mechanical installation, easy of integration, reputation for reliability and strong local support provided by Hanley Technology in terms of product selection, commissioning and all technical support required throughout product lifecycle.
The Gecma Challenger series HMI terminal was flagged for end of life in 2015 with all clients notified of timelines leading to complete end of life in late 2019 where no further spares available or repairs possible. By then many of our clients had begun the process of migrating to a current solution to meet their needs and like SK biotek many researched the market, reviewing multiple manufactures to determine the best fit going forward, and like SK Biotek most of our clients have returned to Hanley Technology and Gecma to move forward with the Gecma GWS Series solution with over 400 Terminals currently in service across Ireland and the UK and more further afield.
The selection of GWS was made easy for SK Biotek due the fact that the existing Challenger solution used on site was a KVM over copper solution where the client mounted a Dell Wyse Thin client in the safe area and connected over copper (CAT6A) to the challenger terminal in the field. This proprietary solution from Gecma used intrinsically safe principals (Ex ib) facilitating a low cost cable run of standard unprotected CAT6A cable. Cognisant of the many thousands of Challengers in service around the world Gecma ensured that an Intrinsically safe KVM Over copper solution would be included in the range to facilitate the upgrade from Challenger to GWS without having to re run data cables or indeed power cables. From a mechanical perspective despite the new GWS Housings being of a slim line form factor the new terminals can fitted to existing floor pedestals, ceiling mounts and wall mounts, further simplifying the installation process and minimalizing process interruption.
The Gecma GWS Series is an Emerson DeltaV Gold Alliance member.
Full support and training was provided by Hanley Technology on site in the early stages of this migration process.
SK Biotek took the opportunity during the migration to move the screens to 22” 1920 x 1080 (HD) resolution. 24” and 19” solutions are also available where the 19” solution can fully retrofit to existing challenger housings where the challenger is in a tight location or is integrated into a piece of equipment or wall.
Going forward SK Biotek are aware of the modularity of the GWS solution allowing Fibre Optic connectivity, integrated Thin Client or PC (as a module swap) and the later inclusion of 3rd party peripherals such as barcode scanners or Biometric readers.