Alstom has launched ALSPA Series 6, a new suite of power plant control and automation technology that uses the latest state-of-the-art technology said to give power plant operators complete and efficient control of their plant – from individual equipment such as turbines, right through to the whole power station.
The ALSPA Series 6 Control System takes advantage of Alstom's extensive experience in power plant control, integrating the latest technologies for the benefit of the customer. ALSPA Series 6 encompasses all the operation, management, maintenance, automation and safety functions that a modern power plant needs.
Central to Series 6 is ALSPA CONTROPLANT, the state-of-the-art plant automation system, based on a flexible, modular and open real-time architecture (based on Ethernet Power Link) and designed in line with the trend toward increasing data centralisation.
This move away from the distributed management used a few years ago is possible because the new technologies can manage large quantities of information quickly and safely, using reliable and low-cost communication networks.
ALSPA CONTROPLANT can be used from small systems to large complex systems in power station or industrial applications to control, optimise and protect all types of power plants and their turbines – whether thermal, hydro or nuclear.
ALSPA Series 6 uses the latest Microsoft.net technology for the operator screen of the system (or Human Machine Interface – HMI), producing an ergonomically friendly and easy-to-use system. The control room can be configured according to the different architectures needed for the various processes e.g. hydro, combined cycle or supercritical thermal projects.
Control functions, such as the analysis of historical plant operation data, remote maintenance diagnostics and remote power plant supervision can be securely accessed through the internet. Automation cells – machine controllers, distributed controllers and input/output devices – that report information back to the control system are now more powerful, allowing for more complex operations. For example, the main controllers are 300 per cent more powerful than the previous machine controllers.
ALPSA CONTROPLANT can be linked with ALPSA OPTIPLANT, which covers plant management applications such as asset management and scheduling. Complementing ALSPA CONTROPLANT are a series of products designed specifically for major power plant equipment, including; CONTROFLAME for boiler protection and management; CONTROGAS for gas turbine automation and control; and CONTROSTEAM for steam turbine automation and control.
The first pilot installations for the ALSPA Series 6 will be at Alstom's Fujairah (UAE) and Flevo (Netherlands) power plants before the end of this year.
"We have been piloting ALSPA Series 6 with some of our customers and these trials confirm that this high availability, high functionality system corresponds with power plant operators' needs to minimise costs while maximising plant life, operation and safety," said Laurent Demortier, Senior Vice President of Alstom Power's Energy Management Business.
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