Mango Helps Rural Water Authority
Started in 1972 and headquartered in Springdale Arkansas, Multi‐Craft Contractors, Inc. (MCC) has grown to become one of the largest industrial contractor in the state. They provide a 360-degree approach for comprehensive contracting solutions with an offering of mechanical contracting, electrical contracting, metal fabrication, HVAC contracting and services, robotics and automation installation and services, and several other specialized services. With a diversified workforce comprised of over 500+ professional craftspeople, managers and engineers, MCC serves a wide variety of markets including Industrial, Institutional, and commercial customers throughout the United States.hey provide a
One of MCC’s applications uses Mango to provide access to real‐time SCADA information for two water authorities and the individual towns that use the water along a 60 mile
distribution path. The larger of the two water departments provides water to five cities and surrounding communities across northern Arkansas. MCC upgraded their plant automation systems and installed a Schneider Electric software application to handle day‐to‐day operations at the plant and monitor the distribution network. This Windows-based application is very cumbersome at providing outside access to monitor information. For the smaller rural water authority, Mango is the only system used to provide SCADA information to the end user. The Mango system brings tremendous value to these customers because it is an affordable yet very powerful application that allows MCC to provide critical real‐time information via browser, emails, texts, etc. to the plant operators and individuals along the distribution path. Additionally, MCC uses the information to monitor their own SCADA equipment.
MCC was initially able to give the water department distribution manager access to the SCADA information through the Schneider software. However, this was limited to one laptop and was only useful when the computer was able to access the internet through a cell modem or other WIFI spot. Obviously this was not a good solution and MCC was looking for a platform independent solution for remote access to the data when they discovered Infinite Automation Systems (IAS) and the Mango ES. They are now able to quickly, easily, and on almost any platform, give their customers access to the information they need to do their jobs.
Mango Installation and Current Projects
An installation of Mango with IAS could not have been summed up better than by Tom Pedersen of MCC:
Getting started with IAS was pretty straight forward. In one afternoon we had it loaded on a linux box and were interacting with our in house building automation PLCs. It was even easier with the Mango ES product in that they come pre‐loaded. Pretty much just plug them in and take off. IAS has been great to work with. They always seem available and willing to help in any way. And with every release, the software is getting more robust and easier to use and maintain.
MCC is currently working on an automation project with a local brewery (the largest in the AR and OK) and installed Mango to assist with daily operations. Additionally, they are also working with a company on a startup product and will use Mango to monitor the product on the initial beta installs. As they move forward to product release, they are planning to use Mango to gather data from the product to allow the customer to display energy conservation statistics about the product throughout their business.
The system is setup to display information to our end users. They do not currently control anything from Mango. The data points are read from an old PLC that MCC had left from an in house upgrade, and MCC is using this PLC as a data swap device. MCC writes from the various PLC’s in the field to this device, and then Mango reads from it. The in house PLC is not running any programs; they are just using its memory, and they have a couple of hundred numeric and binary data points. They read the PLC every 2 minutes and the data logging is set at 10 minutes.
MCC uses the event detectors to send alarms via email. Some of which are sent as text messages. They also have an in house system that translates the emails into voice which calls an answering service after hours. One of the most useful things, according to Pederson, has been the fact that Mango is browser based so it is very easy for users to access the information. Another is the flexibility of the event detectors to notify the right people of pertinent information.
MCC is currently using a Mango ES with 8 GB memory in their server room.