Professional Certificate of Competency in Industrial Data Communications

Course Overview

This professional development course is designed for engineers and technicians who need to understand how to identify, prevent, and troubleshoot industrial communications problems.

CID

At a glance

Duration
  • 3 Months
Study Mode
  • Online
Fees
Location
  • Online
Intakes
12 Apr 2021
Course Type
  • Professional Certificate

Course Details

Modern industrial control and information systems employ a proliferation of technologies, including various hardware standards and protocols. For many of the personnel working with these systems, the technologies are ‘plug and play’ and are just there to be used. The problems arise when decisions have to be made regarding the most suitable technologies for a given application, or when things go wrong, and troubleshooting has to be performed. Without a thorough grasp of the working of the technologies involved, and without the availability of (and the ability to use) suitable diagnostic tools, this becomes a formidable challenge.

The world of industrial communications abounds with three-letter acronyms, protocols, layered communication systems, fieldbuses, and device networks. There are numerous networking and industrial bus standards, synchronous and asynchronous protocols, baseband and broadband systems, bus and star topologies, connection-oriented, and connectionless protocols. In addition, there is a pronounced migration towards the use of Ethernet and TCP/IP.

This program demystifies the jargon and places the most popular systems, technologies, hardware standards, and protocols in an Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) perspective. It explains how these technologies operate, and equips participants with the tools and skills to do basic hardware and protocol-related troubleshooting on both serial (RS-485) and Ethernet type networks.

The course is composed of 12 modules, covering how to fix over sixty of the most common problems that occur in industrial communications systems.

Module 1: Data Communications Basics

  • Overview of industrial data communications
  • Basic data communications principles
  • Error detection
  • Dealing with noise

Module 2: Serial Communications

  • RS-232 overview
  • RS-232 troubleshooting
  • RS-485 overview
  • RS-485 troubleshooting

Module 3: Introduction to Protocols

  • Protocol concepts
  • Bi-Sync
  • HDLC
  • File transfer protocols

Module 4: Networking Basics and System Components

  • OSI model
  • Topologies
  • Medium access control
  • Repeaters, hubs, bridges, switches, routers

Module 5: Industrial Ethernet

  • CSMA/CD (half-duplex) Ethernet
  • Fast Ethernet
  • Gigabit Ethernet
  • Industrial Ethernet components and Techniques

Module 6: TCP/IP Internet Layer Protocols

  • The TCP/IP protocol suite
  • IP addressing techniques and routing concepts
  • IPv4/IPv6
  • ICMP
  • ARP

Module 7: TCP/IP Host-to-Host and Application Layer Protocols

  • Host-to-Host layer protocols: TCP and UDP
  • FTP, DHCP, HTTP, and other application-layer protocols
  • PING, ARP, TRACERT, and other TCP/IP utilities

Module 8: Fieldbuses

  • Fieldbus concepts
  • HART
  • DeviceNet
  • ProfiBus
  • Foundation Fieldbus

Module 9: Modbus

  • The Modbus messaging protocol
  • Modbus Serial RTU
  • Modbus Serial ASCII
  • Modbus TCP/IP

Module 10: Wireless Communications and Networking

  • Microwave basics
  • Antennas
  • Wireless networking components
  • 11 WLANs

Module 11: OPC

  • OPC concept
  • Overview of OPC specifications
  • DCOM
  • OPC DA3.0 data access
  • Tunneling

Module 12: Network Security

  • Access control
  • Authentication and encryption
  • Firewalls
  • VPNs
  • WLAN vulnerabilities and solutions

To obtain a certificate of completion for EIT’s Professional Certificate of Competency, students must achieve a 65% attendance rate at the live, online fortnightly webinars.  Detailed summaries/notes can be submitted in lieu of attendance.  In addition, students must obtain a mark of 60% in the set assignments which could take the form of written assignments and practical assignments. Students must also obtain a mark of 100% in quizzes.  If a student does not achieve the required score, they will be given an opportunity to resubmit the assignment to obtain the required score.

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Deon Reynders is an electronics engineer with over 40 years postgraduate experience encompassing middle management, engineering consulting, management consulting, hardware and software development, systems engineering, project management, marketing, and industrial relations.

Learn about our instructors.

You are expected to spend approximately 5-8 hours per week learning the course content. This includes attending fortnightly webinars that run for about 90 minutes to facilitate class discussion and allow you to ask questions. This professional development program is delivered online and has been designed to fit around full-time work. It will take three months to complete.

Registrations are open for our upcoming intakes. Please ensure you book your place at least one week before the start date of the program.

Hear from our students

  It helped me understand communication fundamentals.  
  Good and interesting information.  

Helpful Information

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