How to use 800xA HMI designed for use with AC450, with other controllers
We have an 800xA version 5.1 system with HMI developed and working with AC450 controllers (via AC400 Connect). We need to swop out the AC450 controllers to different controllers from another vendor (for various reasons) but want to still use the 800xA HMI, just re-routing/mapping all signals from/to the new controllers via OPC.
Is there a way to do this?
if your controller has an OPC server, then you can create under Control Structure, Root a "Generic OPC Server Network (found in 3-rd party OPC server support).
Then use Uploader aspect to upload instances from the OPC server.
Finally create graphic elements per instance.
Yes, theres a way to do this, but as you will have picked up from the comments to the previous answer there is no EASY way to do this.
In theory, you can map all of the data from your new DCS into the OPC points that currently drive your existing graphics. In reality, that is potentially a huge task that will take a reasonable amount of 800xA knowledge and has a moderate risk of not working (or taking a significant amount of time to get right). If the new DCS properties ( like say motor interlocks, PID setup, valve configurations, analog handling, digital handling) do not match the AC450 properties EXACTLY, then the mapping cannot work and you wont be able to completely reuse the AC450 display elements and graphics. You will soon find that AC450 display elements are pretty complicated.
The "normal" way of integrating a third party controller is to build new object types for the controller and create the various aspects and graphic elements for each of those object types. In your case, you could use the AC450 elements as "templates" to make specific object types and aspects for your new controller. This means that you can make your system look and feel like an AC450, but the graphic elements will function properly with whatever application logic is programmed inside your new controllers
This work needs to be included in your total project cost. Creating a "controller integration" package - while very possible, and relatively easy in 800xA - is not trivial and will take a lot of engineering time.
If you are looking to prototype software and make rapid changes to test alternative configurations, then you could consider using an AC800M controller with the Pulp and Paper library. This library is designed to look very similar to the AC450 and has matching elements for all of the AC450 AMPL function blocks. If you want to test code off line without using a controller at all, then you can run the code in a soft controller. You can then build code in the AC450 with high confidence that it will work. I have done this for a couple of customers that use both AC450 and AC800M on the same site and it works pretty well.