What is Telecontrol Technology?

”Telecontrol“ describes the remote control and monitoring of off-site objects. By means of signal-converting procedures, process data can be transmitted and received from one or more locations.

In the 1950s, telecontrol technology was still a “human.” Switching commands, e.g., in energy technology, were transmitted by analog telephone and personnel at a substation then performed by hand. The “feedback” was then returned by a call. Nowadays, the data is traditionally obtained from a substation (e.g., PLC) that transforms it and transmits it via various transmission media (GSM, radio or wired) to the central station or control system.

Various data protocols transmit this sometimes very sensitive process data. For example, the IEC 60870-5-101, IEC 60870-5-103, IEC 60870-5-104, IEC 61850 and DNP 3.0 protocols have established themselves as standards for supply technology in particular.

System requirements are high. In addition to a rugged design, the probability of failure and special measures for security and data protection are the main focuses.

Example Application

  • Control of supply networks (electricity, gas, water, district heating) as part of a power grid control system

  • Control and monitoring of energy consumption (gas, electricity and water meters)

  • Control of traffic systems (traffic lights, street lighting)

Telecontrol Technology for Power Grids

The electricity, gas, water and heat infrastructures in particular have widely branched service areas and remote stations. Since they make modern life possible, smooth operation is essential. Malfunctions must be detected and fixed immediately since they can severely impact human lives in an instant. Thus, the quality of the products must always be guaranteed to avoid health or economic damage.

Advantages of WAGO Telecontrol Technology

  • Remote station monitoring

  • Process, measurement and control

  • Quick reaction in the event of a fault

  • Remote access

  • Availability of various transmission media

Why WAGO Telecontrol Technology?

Thanks to first-rate products, solutions and top service for telecontrol technology in all sizes and ranges (e.g., public infrastructures, renewable energies and process industries) for secure and economical access to remotely located systems, WAGO is key to success for telecontrol technology and smart grid applications.

WAGO's telecontrol technology has been an integral part of the WAGO product portfolio for over ten years. The system has all major worldwide approvals and is used in the harshest conditions, such as power stations of all voltage levels, mining, offshore installations and pipeline systems. Both signal level flexibility and bus protocol availability are unique.

Of course, WAGO's telecontrol technology supports the IEC 60870, 61850, DNP 3 and Modbus® protocols. These are easy to configure and easy to operate for a non-PLC programmer.

The highest degree of attention is given to the utilities sector. WAGO is addressing this issue and has controllers that can be hardened according to the BDEW White Paper standard. In particular, the energy sector lives with the fear of being hacked, but WAGO-equipped telecontrol stations have industry-leading protection.

Use our flexible remote control solutions to monitor power distribution networks, and guarantee the energy supply. Further applications are control, regulation and remote monitoring of gas, water and heating systems since the integrated PLC directly fulfills automation tasks.

Application Examples

  • Automation of disconnection points

  • Protocol conversion function

  • Connection of short-circuit indicators

  • Remote generator, consumer and storage system can be controlled

  • Automation of gas transfer stations

  • Adaptation of heat point controllers to the control system

Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity: Denying Access to Hackers

There can be serious consequences for energy producers if they aren't securely connected to the Internet. Cybercriminals can use system controllers to hack into control centers and shut them down, jeopardizing the power supply and even threatening wide-range blackouts in a worst-case scenario. The good news: Operators now know the dangers and cybersecurity is becoming more important. WAGO controllers will play a crucial role in your company's security policies and procedures. PC-based operating systems must receive weekly security updates as they do not otherwise provide sufficient cybersecurity; the hardened firmware of a WAGO controller, however, does meet the corresponding security requirements. Advantages of WAGO's solution:

  • Both PFC100 and PFC200 Controllers are characterized by a cross-platform real-time Linux®.
  • The PFC Controllers use an open-source operating system that can be scaled, updated and supports tools such as Rsync.
  • The Linux® foundation supports essential security protocols and is constantly being enhanced.
  • Support for CODESYS PLC runtime
  • Interface and fieldbus variety: CANopen, PROFIBUS DP, DeviceNet®, IEC 60870, IEC 61850, DNP 3 and Modbus TCP
  • Fulfills the highest security requirements per ISO-27000 series
  • On-board VPN functionality: VPN tunnel possible via IPsec or OpenVPN directly
  • Data encoding in the controller directly via SSL/TLS 1.2 encryption
  • Parallel data access: Data transmission to the cloud via MQTT or OPC UA, also wireless
  • WAGO meets all relevant guidelines in the area of cybersecurity, and even a large number of the requirements from the German government’s BDEW white paper for applications in the field of energy and water supply. BDEW requirements are part of the “critical infrastructure” (KRITIS).
  • PFC200 can be used as a scalable node

Certificates and Approvals

Valid approvals and certifications are prerequisite for safe, secure operation of telecontrol technology around the word – especially where the functionality of supply and distribution grids is concerned.

Therefore, we have verification for the three most important telecontrol protocols IEC 61850, IEC 60870 and DNP 3 and renew it regularly. So you can use WAGO Telecontrol Technology without any cares at all. The certified telecontrol protocols add an extra level of security whenever third-party components are integrated or attached to the WAGO telecontrol system.

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