Are you working with projects using smart junction boxes and remote I/O technology? Remember that moving automation control systems into the field requires efficient sealing of cable and pipe entries.
Field-based I/O in oil, gas or chemical projects means focusing on hundreds of strategically located control cabinets instead of relying on big RIE buildings far from the action. You save space and can benefit from the ease of plug-and-play features and remote electronic configuration. It is, of course, also very practical to execute an entire project with factory-tested and certified cabinets approved for use in hazardous locations.
Many cable penetrations to seal
However, when adopting new technologies, you always face certain challenges. One of the toughest within field-based I/O is the need for sealing all cables according to requirements.
Here are three things to consider when handling control system protection in the field:
1. Match the certificates
Select pre-tested cable seals that fulfill the demands and have all certificates and approvals needed. The sealing solutions must have at least the same protective capacity as the cabinet itself. In this way, you eliminate reoccurring costs for travel, onsite testing and inspection.
2. Go for high quality
Choose cable transits of high quality materials. Frames and fittings should be in stainless steel, while sealing components and compression units should be made of premium quality rubber compounds. They must work onshore and offshore, for armored and non-armored cables.
3. Reduce the total cost of ownership
Standardize with flexible seals for cables of different sizes and materials. You can save a lot by using space efficient cable entry seals and fiber optic cables in small cabinets instead of grouping I/O in the traditional marshalling way with large buildings and costly copper cables.
Having covered these challenges, you still need to handle the extremely high cable density.