Case Study: P&O Site Wide SCADA



The container cranes are the backbone of the P&O ports facility at Port Botony; any crane down time can be disastrous to the company’s bottom line. P&O recognized that there was a need to efficiently deal with breakdowns and to present effective process and maintenance data to management. I S Systems was contracted to design, install and commission a Site wide SCADA System to help addresses these issues. The SCADA system was to be ground based and interface to the PLC in the mobile crane electrical rooms.


A WinCC (Siemens SCADA Software) server was installed in the IT department’s computer room. It communicates with the PLC’s on each of the seven Quay Cranes via a wireless Ethernet network. The WinCC Server includes a MS SQL based Historian for long term archiving of Alarms, Trends and operational data. It acts as a Web Server which makes the SCADA screens, actual and historical data available via the LAN, Intranet or Internet to the Web Clients. All that is required to access the WinCC SCADA system from a Web Client are a PC and Internet Explorer. This means that crane information is accessible on every PC on the site. Furthermore, the wireless Ethernet network enables maintenance staff to access and troubleshoot the PLC software from their maintenance offices.

All permissives including operator security keys are plainly identified on the main crane SCADA pages for each individual crane. Operational issues and minor faults can be identified immediately from the engineering office and rectified by instructing crane drivers by radio without skilled personnel having to travel to, and access the cranes. PLC I/O’s are represented on each individual crane SCADA page by generic names. Tooltips show the PLC I/O address when the mouse cursor is moved over an object on the screen, thus allowing quick reference to the PLC program. Each crane has a series of sub screens representing major crane components comprising; boom hoist, trolley, main hoist, spreaders and power distribution with the clear visualization of their respective operating data sets and status.

Screens present related drive data in a format that facilitates evaluating cause-effect relationships. Joystick demand, drive SV, PV and error signal as well as armature current, field current, speed and armature voltage are represented together for each individual main drive.

P&O operations and maintenance personnel are extremely happy with the result.

Client: P&O Ports (now DP World)

 pando sitewide scada1

pando sitewide scada2