Providing UL-Certified VELA Rack Computers for the Nuclear Industry

CASE STUDY

Scope

A customer in the nuclear sector wished to replace the rack computers at heart of their control system, as critical system components had gone out of support. The control system itself forms part of an essential cog in the nuclear supply chain, and is deployed in numerous locations around the world.
Challenge
Assessment
Design
Build
Support
The customer challenge
Due to the nature of their installed asset base and ongoing project roadmap, a globally certified system was required along with various features to ensure backwards compatibility with control systems. Existing sites with older versions of the control system would need updating with new computing equipment to extend the assets' operational life whilst new installations needed to make use of the very latest technology to ensure maximum longevity in the field.
Impulse 360 Assessment
Through our 360 assessment Impulse recognise the need to ensure site integration is made simple for our clients end customers, as connections to each PC may differ depending on the age of the control system. Impulse Design Engineers also consider the requirement for a system UL certification, which would affect component choice at the design stage. Whilst not identified in the initial brief, it also becomes apparent that the system needs a flexible approach to expansion, as some ageing systems use older expansion bus technologies.
System design
In order to facilitate the UL certification requirement, Impulse design engineers select a range of 19" long-life rack PC components from Advantech. Project engineers then engage with Advantech production engineers in their UL-certified factory to create the UL technical file, and nominate a range of IO and communication expansion cards within it, giving flexibility at the production stage.
Build and testing
Working with Advantech, Impulse production engineers specify the base build for each retrofit project. Systems are then fitted with the requisite I/O and communication cards, along with necessary fibre optic terminations. Moreover, a full system schematic label is attached to the rack chassis, with very clear I/O connection instructions tailored for each end customer site. Finally, operating system installation and customer image is applied and a thorough stress and soak test performed before despatch.
Post-sales and service support
Owning to the varied nature of the systems, a comprehensive spares package is arranged with the customer to facilitate the needs of the different projects. Global service support is made available via Advantech's presence in 26 countries worldwide, and first-line technical support is provided by Impulse, always free of charge and for the lifetime of the project.
Impulse capabilities used in this project
Industrial Computing
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Device Supply
Leading technology products with expert advice and support.
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Impulse services used in this project
Design services
Build services
Support services
Design services

Analysis
We recommend a suitable hardware and core platform for your project based on our 360 Assessment with you
Prototyping services
Custom I/O ports can be added to all our embedded systems to enhance flexibility and scalability for your application
We can integrate and test additional peripheral cards with your core computing platform ensuring compatibility with driver installation and system imaging
Custom or market specific connectors and specifications can be created and supplied in-house with all embedded and industrial computing solutions
We can personalise splash screens, additional features and persistent settings on your core computing platform for continuity and reliability
We can create, install and deploy operating systems (Linux/Windows) with the option of Windows OS customisation to add features not available on desktop variants
We offer preloading of your software to ensure compatibility and inclusion in the imaging setup process
Build services

Build services
Our programmised system build routines are undertaken in our antistatic controlled engineering facility based in the heart of the UK
We offer secure and controlled imaging services in-house providing you with your own captured golden image for repeatable and dependable system deployment
Our advanced test services are designed to meet your specific needs including extended soak, full load, burn in and software testing
We supply as standard, detailed photographic and documentary evidence of our build process for all computer system solutions
Support services

Logistics services
We can become an extension of your own stock-holding with fast call-off or pre-agreed inventory for improved cashflow and JIT manufacturing (based on a project SLA)
For OEMs requiring next day/Just-In-Time (JIT) delivery of custom systems with inventory/build management and pre-agreed delivery scheduling
For more demanding logistics needs we can offer you our advanced delivery services including FORS, same-day and pallet despatch
After-sales services
We can offer global extended warranties of up to 5 years on all of our product range giving your peace of mind for the duration of your project lifetime
Our in-country RMA service is available in over 26 countries and allows for localised returns and repairs, reducing your overall cost of ownership
Our after warranty capability offers you peace of mind beyond standard product warranties essential for long lifetime industrial system supply
We offer complete 3rd line UK technical support, free of charge for the lifetime of your product
We offer proactive management of end-of-life (EOL) and product change notifications (PCN) across all components within your system
Get in touch
Our technical sales team are ready to answer your questions.
T: +44 (0)1782 337 800 • E: sales@impulse-embedded.co.uk
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