Plant & Works Engineering
Software solution helps log critical asset data
Published:  14 May, 2020

Water treatment company, Nordikeau, has used Fetch Data Collector software from MAC Solutions to view critical assets data in real-time. PWE takes a closer look

Nordikeau , a water and wastewater treatment company based in Quebec province, Canada has used MAC Solutions’ Fetch Data Collector software to log data from critical assets and equipment in real-time (every 10 seconds), providing data for alarms and early notifications of any equipment or process issues.

Fetch Data Collector is a software package designed specifically for Ewon remote access VPN routers that makes data collection easier, faster and more secure than ever. The software collects historical data from the data storage memory within the Ewon Flexy remote access VPN router. The software can be configured in an easy three-step process with minimum technical knowledge required and minimal configuration within each Ewon device.

With more than 100 sites across Canada, Nordikeau specialises in drinking and waste water treatment. Martin Fafard, director Smart City at Nordikeau comments: “We wanted to view asset data in real-time so that we could react more quickly to issues and to provide our staff and clients with live data and dashboards via mobile phones and laptops using alarms and notifications. We therefore installed the Fetch Data Collector and an Ewon Flexy remote access router in September 2019 at one of our water treatment plants.”

While maintaining the highest levels of data security using HTTPS encryption, Fetch Data Collector can connect to any number of remote machines via the Ewon device and Talk2M Remote-Connectivity Cloud. Alternatively, Fetch Data Collector can be configured to collect data on a local basis, from locally connected Ewon devices. This is designed for end-users, who wish to store production data in local machines and then archive the data into a centralised data storage, for real-time analytics. Data collected can be stored to either ODBC-compliant databases or a series of CSV files, with fully customisable file formats and naming conventionsconventions. This ensures maximum compatibility with third party software, such as historians, analytical tools and IoT (Internet of Things) connectivity environments.

As Martin Fafard states: “We’ve configured the Ewon Flexy router to collect data from more than 50 sensors connected to critical processes and items of equipment at the treatment plant. For example, parameters being collected include water levels in tanks and reservoirs, pump speeds, turbidity, network pressures and flow rates. These are critical parameters where the data needs to be collected or refreshed every 10 seconds, so it really is ‘live’ data.

Fetch Data Collector was the only tool that allowed us to do this. It is very flexible and easy to adapt for our own purposes.” Fetch Data Collector stores the data in a SQL Server database at Nordikeau and is shared with the company’s Nordicité global software solution, where staff and clients can visualise the data in customised dashboards. Alarms and notifications can be sent via SMS text messages to engineers or clients on remote devices such as mobile phones or laptops.

Martin Fafard recalls a recent incident where Fetch Data Collector helped: “One of the reserve water levels in the plant reached a critical level and so an alarm notification was triggered. We were able to react quickly and find the source of the problem, which turned out to be a breach in a water pipe that was losing water quickly. We were able to repair this breach quickly and effectively.”

He added: “At present, we are only using Fetch Data Collector on one water treatment plant, but we plan to roll out the software to other sites in Canada. We are very pleased with the software and the technical support we’ve received from MAC Solutions and we look forward to continuing this relationship in the future.”

What is Ewon + Talk2M?

Ewon + Talk2M is a Remote-Access solution which provides a secure, reliable method, to connect with machine control devices (PLCs, HMIs, etc), anywhere in the world, across the Internet. Launched in 2007, there are now more than 245,000 devices connected and 21.5 million VPN connections made. The Ewon + Talk2M solution consists of two elements: the Ewon remote-access VPN Routers and the Talk2M cloud-based connectivity service. The Ewon remote-access VPN Routers include a full range of features that are powerful and valuable for machine manufacturers and automation systems integrators, including real-time PLC monitoring, e-mailing capabilities, customisable web-server pages, scripting engine, data and event logging.