This module is designed to cover the fundamentals of Remote Terminal Units (RTUs) and Programmable Automation Controllers (PACs). The four types of connections used for interfacing with field devices are demonstrated, with an emphasis on practical application. A discussion of RTU architecture, communications and practical applications is presented. In addition, an overview of PACs and a comparison of PAC and RTU functionality is described and the differences between PLC and PACs are also highlighted. The main features of DNP3 protocols are introduced, and a discussion of alarm management and its application in RTUs and PACs is also included.

Learning Outcomes:

Upon completion of this module the student will be able to:

  • Differentiate between an RTU and a PAC.
  • List the four types of RTU connections for interfacing to field devices.
  • Identify 7 specifications for selecting an RTU.
  • Define the communications protocol DNP3.
  • Describe the layers of the Enhanced Performance Architecture.
  • Name four common uses for RTUs in industrial applications.
  • Explain the main differences between RTUs and PLCs.
  • Define Alarm Management and explain its use in RTU systems.
  • Identify the five components in an Intelligent Electronic Device.
  • Name three differences between PACs and PLCs.
  • List the five main characteristics of a PAC.
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