Can you use an iPad to communicate and use as a remote console on an ABB DCS in an industrial application?
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You can communicate with 800xA operator workplace by means of RDS applications for iPad (such as Pocket Cloud). See 2PAA110154-510 for the details and how to arrange operator workplace to fit it into ipad's screen.
Ensure the target computer (remote OS) isolated from client/server network via router. If you will try to open gateway for connecting iPad on workstation that is connected directly to client/server network you have a risk to get system down by an external DDoS attack.
Yes, you can open operator station on mobile or iPad devices, Check following threads for System 800xA and Freelance, respectively.