Steps To A Successful Field Device Registration Campaign
Open and Unzip the Foundation Field Device Registration Kit
The registration kit contains all of the required documentation and instructions concerning test and registration of a Foundation Fieldbus H1 device.
Prior to testing the device for Interoperability (ITK) in our lab in Austin, Texas, USA, there are two pre-requisites that must be met:
1. The H1 stack used in your device must have been tested for conformance and previously passed such a test at Fraunhofer IOSB in Karlsruhe, Germany. If you are using an H1 communication stack from a third-party solution provider, they should be able to tell you if the stack is already tested or not. Generally, if you are buying the stack as part of a turn-key project and using the hardware and software of the solution provider, the stack will have already been tested for you. If your company is licensing the stack from someone else and then incorporating it into your own hardware, the stack will need to be retested by FieldComm Group (Austin, TX). ITK testing will not begin until proof of a conformant H1 stack has been provided.
2. The H1 Physical Layer must be tested for conformance to the Foundation Fieldbus physical layer test specification. This test can be done by a solution provider or by the device manufacturer. Test results are recorded on a test report document provided in the registration kit and must be provided with the device when it is sent to us for ITK testing. FieldComm Group reserves the right to audit physical layer test results at any time. If we are unable to duplicate reported pass results on any test, the device manufacturer may be required to correct problems with the H1 PHY before registration can be granted.
In addition to the above requirements, it is highly recommended that the device manufacturer or the development solution provider run their own H1 ITK test on the device prior to scheduling or submitting the device for testing to FieldComm Group. Test time is charged by the hour, with a minimum of four (4) hours each day. Devices that do not pass the H1 ITK in our lab are required to restart the testing from the beginning each time they are modified in order to correct problems with a previous test attempt. This may result in a significant amount of charges in testing fees. Pre-testing is therefore critical to keeping testing fees down to a reasonable rate.
Contact the Test Administrator
Testing in our labs is scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis. When you are ready to schedule an interoperability test:
- Open a Support Ticket, Request "Product Registration" and then "FF H1 Field Device" and attach “FF-283 Testing Request Form.pdf” from the registration kit.
Please fill out the form completely, telling us everything about the device…model name, blocks supported, stack information, etc., along with your contact information.
- Provide a Purchase Order (see the fee schedule published here and the requirements below)
Once your request has been processed, your lab dates are only tentatively reserved. To confirm the reservation in the FF lab schedule, we must also receive a valid purchase order on an official purchase order form from your company.
Purchase Order Requirements
Lab time will not be scheduled until an official purchase order is provided by the manufacturer to cover all expected costs for a typical test campaign of the type associated with the product(s) to be tested.
In all circumstances, there will be two types of fees that should be on this PO:
1. Registration Certificate Fee – these fees differ for each type of product being tested and depending upon if the product has been previously registered with the Foundation. The specific fees are listed at Testing and Registration Fees under the section titled “Registration Certificate Fees”.
2. Testing Services Fees – These fees depend somewhat on the complexity of the device under test, but may also change significantly if the device was not pre-tested to find problems that might exist. See Testing and Registration Fees and review the published fees for “Testing Fees”.
For example, a first-time test and registration of an H1 device would require the following minimum purchase order:
1. H1 Device Registration Certificate Fee (New Device): $2,500 US
2. H1 Device Testing Services (Day 1): $2,450 US
3. H1 Device Testing Services (additional time after Day 1): $2000 US
Services Provided on “Day 1”
“Day 1” of testing services includes:
a. Wiring and configuration of the DUT with the test system.
b. Updating the provided device INI file to ensure the device identification information in the INI file matches the actual test sample.
c. Execution of the automated test system on the test sample through a single pass through all of the test cases in the test system.
d. Review of the initial test results and reporting of those results to the device manufacturer.
For complex devices, the actual test time may run under automation for more than one calendar day, but it will never include more than eight man-hours of labor from the test technician or any services not listed in items a-c.
Additional Test Time After “Day 1”
Additional test time such as shown on line #3 of the PO above is purchased in 4-hour blocks at $250 US per hour. This provides pre-authorization for a typical “day” of labor from the test technician. Pre-authorization of up to $2000 will allow up to two additional 4-hour days of testing after the first day. At least one extra day is typically required for all devices to successfully finish an H1 ITK test campaign. Authorizing a second “extra day” of test time will prevent delays in testing that would be created by going back to a purchasing department to update the existing PO or obtain a new PO in case more time is needed after day 2 (such as a DUT firmware flash, or new DD/CF files that must be tested to fix something found during investigation on day 2). If none of this additional time is pre-authorized on a PO, it will not be possible for the test administrator to do any form of testing after the first day. Any test cases that fail in the first ITK test schedule will not be re-executed again to investigate the failures until we have been given a PO that authorizes additional test time.
Additional test time after “Day 1” can include any or all of the following items:
a. Any time spent re-executing test cases that were verified after day 1 to have failed because of a device or a device support file problem.
b. Capturing bus monitor files and log files of failing test cases to provide to the manufacturer for their own investigation.
c. Flashing of DUT firmware before a campaign starts, or after the first pass through the test suite to fix problems found with the device during test.
d. Modifications to parameter values in device INI file provided by the manufacturer that are found to improperly initialize the device for test on the test system, causing test cases to fail falsely.
e. Running test cases without automation because simulate or write lock functions cannot be automated by relay with the test system automation tool.
f. Running multiple passes through the test system because the device cannot be tested completely in a single execution of the test suite.
g. Restarting the test system due to new device firmware, modifications to the device physical layer, or modifications to the device stack during a test campaign.
Time spent after day 1 re-executing failed test cases will not be billed to the customer if no fault/problem is found with the device or the support files and all test cases pass upon re-execution. Any test time that is pre-authorized on the original PO that remains unused at the end of the test campaign will NOT be invoiced to the customer. It is important to let your purchasing department know that this may be the case so that they do not continue asking us for unbilled testing services after we close a test campaign and register a product.
Complete Required Documentation
Software Agreements (PL-316) and Testing Services Agreements (CS-453):
Testing will not begin until we receive a completed and pen-signed copy of each of these documents. These documents are available in the field device registration kit. These documents can be emailed, but they must contain original signatures. One hard copy of each legal agreement will be signed by our President and returned to you at the close of the test campaign.
Device Under Test Requirements
Prior to the start of a test campaign, send the device support files (DD and CF files) as an attachment to the Support Ticket or include them with the device when it is shipped to FieldComm Group.
Send the initialization file used to configure the device by the test system. For example, to run an ITK, an *.INI file should be provided that includes the necessary block parameters and values to configure the channel numbers, scaling units, and other options necessary to allow all blocks in the device to go into an automatic mode so they can be scheduled to execute. This can be sent along with the DD and CF files.
All field devices that contain AI, AO, DI or DO blocks must include (by specification) a means of setting physical simulate by a jumper or switch. This feature must be manipulated by the test system while the device is operational and under test. This will be done using normally open relays in the ITK Automation Tool. If the two contacts for simulate cannot easily be accessed and wired to the automation tool, the manufacturer is responsible for providing wires from the device to allow testing under automation. The test administrator will not solder wires to contacts on a device.
All field devices that support write lock via hardware (jumper or switch) must follow the same rules as those for simulate. The feature will be tested, so if the contacts for write lock cannot easily be wired to a normally open relay, the manufacturer must provide wiring to allow the feature to be connected to normally open relays of the ITK Automation Tool.
Send the device(s) and all paperwork to:
<< Due to COVID mitigations, we may provide an alternate shipping address. Please contact FieldComm Group before shipping any products >>
Attn: Foundation Fieldbus Test Lab
9430 Research Blvd., Ste. 1-120
Austin, Texas 78759
Please include a wiring diagram for your device if it uses more than two wires.
The information in this document is not all-inclusive of the entire process of registering a Foundation Fieldbus H1 device. Please carefully read the “FF-524 Device Registration Process.pdf” document included in the registration kit.