Marine Dynamic Positioning System (DPS)
Dynamic Positioning Systems (DPS) are critical tools for maintaining the position of deep well drilling rigs on the open sea, or for piloting ships and barges to dock through crowded harbors. One of the core requirements for a DPS computer is the capacity for easily and securely integrating a variety of already existing ship systems. The computer that will serve as the main processing hub in a DPS must be capable of conveniently linking to subsystems like gyro compasses, motion sensors, and wind sensors. For all but the most rudimentary dynamic positioning systems, this requires a computer that is capable of managing computationally-intensive automated control systems that calculate in real-time every possible effect on the ship’s position: pitch, sway, heave, yaw, roll, and surge. Thus, effective computing units for DPS are industrial-grade, high performance embedded platforms that built with processors that are powerful enough to reliably and stably crunch a lot of data in real time, even under the harsh environmental conditions found on ships at sea.
• Large number of native serial interfaces
• Durable reliability
• High computing performance
• Quick, effective after-sale service
One of the world’s leading manufacturers of dynamic positioning systems chose the Moxa DA-682 embedded computer to be the heart of its DPS. A standard DPS workstation is served by a trio of DA-682 computers housed in two separate workstations, to protect against loss of DPS control on the open seas by providing full system redundancy at every level.
While the DA-682s fulfilled the specified durability and performance requirements, what really made the DA-682 stand out from other systems were its sixteen software-selectable serial interfaces. These sixteen serial ports come in two removable modules of eight each, and may be configured for use as RS-232, -422, or -485 interfaces.
Moxa’s DA-682 computers were chosen for three main reasons: their durability, their high computing performance, and their large number of native serial interfaces, which allow for easy integration into the company’s DPS designs. Originally designed as a fanless computer for use in electrical power stations, with their modular design, powerful CPU, and high life expectancy (MTBF over 7 years) the DA-682 easily passed DNV certification, to be quickly put to use on ships and other maritime vessels.
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