Substation SCADA Protocol Conversion
Distribution System Operators (DSO) typically use a variety of outstation devices, master systems and protocols. Each new protocol increases the test, maintenance, deployment and IT system overheads, so most DSOs are looking to consolidate around a master running a specific protocol for SCADA.
Virtual Access Mini RTU
Virtual Access substation hardened routers include a function called Mini RTU that provides any-to-any protocol Gateway that allows the DSO to consolidate on a single protocol. This means that the SCADA master configuration, testing and maintenance can all be simplified.
Mini RTU includes the following functionality:
A data point mapper maps between the master and RTU protocols providing completely generic mapping between outstation and master, meaning that it can work with any outstation or master device that is compliant to the standards. Even if it is not, there are setup parameters that allow it to work in non-compliant situations.
The protocol table below shows the protocols currently available, planned for upcoming release and planned for 2018.
|Protocol||Router = Controlled Station||Router = Controlling Station|
|IEC 60870-5-104 (TCP)||Yes||Yes|
|IEC 60870-5-101 (Serial)||Q4 2017||Yes|
|DNP3 Serial||Q1 2018||Yes|
A key difference in our solution is the carrier-grade Activator provisioning and monitoring system designed to scale to tens of thousands of devices. This means that devices do not need to be pre-configured and can be installed without staff skilled in networking. The solution allows the DSO to maximise the level of process and field deployment automation by integrating with northbound IT systems and enabled devices behind the VA router in the substation’s cabinets to be configured identically, while still being individually addressable from the central SCADA systems.
Protocol Gateway Summary