Bedrock Automation Integrates Flow Measurement Software

Feb. 10, 2020
With the addition of Flow-Cal algorithms, Bedrock Automation’s platform adds oil and gas measurement and secure custody transfer capabilities.

Since its introduction in 2015, Bedrock Automation’s open, secure automation (OSA) platform has proven its capability to withstand electromagnetic pulses and evolved to include remote access, and anomaly detection. Now the company has integrated the well-known Flow-Cal measurement applications into its platform.

If you’re not familiar with Flow-Cal, the American Petroleum Institute (API) uses Flow-Cal to develop, support, and distribute its standard flow measurement calculations. 

Bedrock Automation says its new OSA +Flow software has been incorporated across all of the company’s controllers providing “unlimited scalability for PLC, RTU or DCS flow control requirements at custody transfer stations, separators, and other oil and gas production facilities. These solutions include full support of multi-drop serial, Ethernet, and HART for Coriolis, ultrasonic, and smart transmitters.”

Albert Rooyakkers, founder and CEO of Bedrock Automation, adds that these new, integrated software capabilities are part of the Bedrock Integrated Development Environment. “This single software engineering environment now includes a maintenance tools set and configuration environment for flow computing. From the user perspective, this means that OSA’s software features are all accessible via a single engineering tool that is free to the user,” he says.

A key market differentiator with Bedrock Automation’s inclusion of Flow-Cal within its OSA platform is the company’s built-in security. “Securing a system without intrinsic security—which is the case with all other flow computers—requires add-on firewalls, intrusion detection, and other devices,” the company says. “All Bedrock technology integrates the same types of authentication and encryption technology used by the military, aerospace, and e-commerce applications.” 

Shawn Bellamy, president of flow control panel builder G&C Optimization, is incorporating OSA Remote +Flow controllers into its lease automatic custody transfer (LACT) system. “The LACT unit is the cash register for oil and gas exchange,” he says. “It must accurately flag any change that could influence measurement. Even a half-degree difference in temperature could impact the transfer by hundreds of thousands of dollars. The Bedrock solution improves accuracy by bringing industry-leading measurement functionality into a high-performance control system, eliminating the need for a separate device. And it does this with end-to-end cyber security protection, unlike anything else in the industry.” 

The OSA +Flow family consists of two products: the OSA +Flow platform and OSA Remote +Flow. Both versions include:

  • Embedded Flow-Cal measurement algorithms;
  • American Petroleum Institute (API) Chapter 21.1 (natural gas) and Chapter 21.2 (liquids) compliant calculation library;
  • Free configuration and maintenance software based on Inductive Automation and Bedrock IDE IEC 61131-3 software tools, with unlimited seats and tags, embedded simulation, and online training;
  • Software-defined, analog and discrete input/output and per channel selectable serial, Ethernet, and HART communications for field devices;
  • Embedded OPC UA and MQTT;
  • ·Built-in Public Key Infrastructure cyber security capabilities;
  • 64 GB secure flash memory, 512 MB program memory and multicore ARM Cortex processors;
  • -40o to +80o C temperature operating range;
  • Extreme galvanic isolation for electrical fast transients and electromagnetic pulse protection; and
  • Sealed all-metal construction to prevent physical damage and ingress of dust and moisture. 

See the video below in which Rooyakkers explains the integration of Flow-Cal into the Bedrock Automation OSA environment.

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