Ardan Implements a New Greenhouse System
Evogene greenhouses enjoy advanced control system with the collaboration with Ardan Control Tech
Ardan Control Tech implemented an industrial control and data acquisition system (SCADA) from the house of Siemens at Evogene greenhouses.
The system which is based on Siemens WinCC Scada, is collecting real time data from a variety of sensors deployed in the greenhouses, concerning light radiation, humidity, and temperature conditions.
Acquiring the data and monitoring light, humidity and temperature conditions, is essential in order to enable real time alerting of any deviation of the measured values from the standard ones.
Any uncontrolled deviation needs to be attended immediately due to the risk of spoiling the results of the experiments held by Evogene engineers. Thus, making real time alarming a critical factor for Evogene’s success, says Ohad Schwartz, Ardan’s Business Development Manager.
Evogene is an Israeli Biotech company operating in the field of research and development of new plant seeds.
By detecting and mapping the DNA sequence of the plants, Evogene engineers are locating the specific genes, responsible for the traits which they would like to nurture and develop.
The system which was designed, deployed and operated by Ardan, enables not only real time alarming. The data is aggregated and archived in the SQL data base of the WinCC server which is located off site at Ardan’s premises.
The server serves not only as the immediate alarming mechanism, but also as the data storage from which Evogene researchers can generate historical reports used for validating and analyzing the experiments held in the greenhouses.
The reports are extracted over the internet using the WinCC Web Navigator, thus enabling each authorized researcher to gain excess to this data storage.
Positioning the server off site whilst the control cabinet is located on site, is a result of an architecture aimed at achieving maximum system survivability. This is why the off site server is used as the default alarming device, whereas the PLC on site serves as a backup alarming mechanism.
Both devices are connected to cellular modems so that a text message will be reliably sent whenever the conditions on site change.
Both devices monitor each other so that SMS messaging, by either the default server or the backup “on- site” modem, is reported to the other part a feedback. This way a fault proof alarm system is formed and alarming cross check is functionality is achieved.
The server is connected to the Siemens PLC on site over two (2) redundant broad band lines, a cellular and a land line. The redundant point-2-point connection between the sites is managed by two smart synchronized routers, which switch to the available line upon need and assure connection between both sites is available at all times, even in case of a communication failure.
According to Evogene engineers, “Monitoring the conditions in our research facilities at all times, is a critical factor which guided us when we turned to Ardan asking for the most reliable alarming solution”.
“Using the Scada we are able to take immediate action to prevent unwanted changes and thus cut loses of time and money and literally protect our experiments. Having a the added value of a data acquisition and reporting system provides us with a supportive research tool”.
Photos: Evogene Ltd.