Case Studies

Control System Consolidation and Upgrade

Posted in Energy and Utilities, HMI and SCADA, Infrastructure, Manufacturing Automation and Intelligence, Oil and Gas Engineering, PLC Programming, Siemens PLC


DMC modernized and consolidated a control system used to purify water for a dual cycle, gas turbine power plant. Three separate control systems utilizing a diverse set of hardware and software were all combined into a single TIA Portal V15 Project. DMC provided a turnkey solution, handling the hardware purchase and install in addition to software. We worked with the client about nine years ago to make different additions and upgrades to the original system. The switchover from the old system to the new system was completed with minimal downtime.



DMC worked with an electricity provider to consolidate the controls for a water purification system in a gas turbine power plant. Initially, the system was split into four parts: 3 PLC/HMI stations as well as a SCADA system. Each PLC/HMI pair was located in a separate electrical panel, and the SCADA system contained operator stations in multiple control rooms at the plant. DMC upgraded each of these systems to modern Siemens hardware and software.

The various hardware and software are listed below:

  1. Allen Bradley PLC5 with GE Fanuc HMI panel and Cimplicity HMI program
    • Upgraded to S7-300 PLC and 12” Comfort Panel
  2. Siemens S7-200 PLC with MP Panel
    • Upgraded to S7-300 PLC and 12” Comfort Panel
    • Program upgraded to TIA Portal v15
    • Controlled drive over Profibus
  3. Siemens S7-300 PLC with MP Panel, programmed with TIA Portal v12
    • Upgraded to 12” Comfort panel
    • Program updated to TIA Portal v15
  4. WinCC Flexible RT SCADA system
    • Upgraded to WinCC Advanced in TIA Portal v15

After upgrading each individual system, the 3 PLCs, 3 HMIs, and SCADA system were all combined into a single TIA Portal V15 project. This combination allowed for troubleshooting/editing of the code from a central location, as opposed to having multiple projects for each of the panels.

The customer also requested the ability to go online with/edit the code from multiple computer stations on their internal network. However, they only had a single TIA Portal license. DMC set up a license server that allowed sharing of the single TIA Portal license between multiple engineering computers. Therefore, numerous locations onsite could view the code.

DMC provided the client with an easy to use, centralized control system that has decreased downtime and allowed for extremely easy troubleshooting and editing. We met the one week install timeline as well. We were able to meet this quick install timeline by doing extensive testing of the panel and PLC before going onsite. The client was extremely satisfied.

The client also had DMC come back onsite to do additional training after the project and said that the system is more reliable than it was in the past. 

Customer Benefits

  • Replaced legacy hardware with readily available and easy to service modern parts
  • Centralized programming and troubleshooting hub for three systems, which improves the ability to monitor and edit code
  • Turnkey solution - DMC purchased and installed all hardware and software
  • Decreased downtime and increased productivity
  • Easy access to troubleshooting and editing from multiple computers using one TIA Portal license


  • Allen Bradley PLC 5 (1785-L20E)
  • Automation License Manager
  • GE Fanuc HMI, Cimplicity programming software
  • RSLogix 5
  • Siemens Comfort Panel, MP Panel
  • Siemens S7-300 PLC, S7-200 PLC
  • Siemens TIA Portal V15, V12
  • WinCC Advanced
  • WinCC Comfort
  • WinCC Flexible