You’re involved in the process industry and you’ve got equipment that includes alarms that alert the operator to a variety of situations. Now the new IEC 62682, “Management of alarms systems for the process industries,” is here to provide guidance on systems based on programmable electronic controllers and human-machine interface technology. You’ll use it for alarms for process control systems, safety instrumented systems, fire and gas systems and emergency response systems.
This is the first edition of the new standard. It is based, in part, on the ANSI/ISA 18.2 from 2009 (also titled “Management of Alarm Systems for the Process Industries”). It provides the requirements for both alarm management and alarm systems. You’ll use it if you manufacture alarms systems, embedded alarm systems, or alarm system software, design or install such systems, operate or maintain them, or audit and assess them.
Clauses 1 to 5 are introductory in nature. They cover the usual scope, referenced documents, and definitions sections. Then Clause 4 covers conformance to the standard itself. Clause 5 provides you with a complete review of alarm system models, including lifecycle, states, response timeline and feedback considerations.
IEC 62682 Clauses 6 to 18 cover the actual requirements themselves. This is an in-depth discussion of such alarm systems. It starts with the philosophy issues that guide the choices for the lifecycle stages. Next there’s coverage of the requirements specification, identification and rationalization, and specific detailed design requirements. The last Clauses cover implementation, operation, maintenance, monitoring, change management and auditing. A bibliography finishes off the document.
This is a lengthy and detailed document, with a number of tables giving you a clear view of such things as recommended alarm state indicators and lifecycle stage inputs and outputs. Since alarm systems are the primary way for operators to know about equipment or process malfunctions, it’s imperative that they be operating correctly and effectively. The IEC 62682 provides you with the technical details necessary to insure such functioning.
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