SCADA Alarm Messaging


Thread Starter

Chris Signorelli

I need advice on how to send SMS messages to many mobile phones upon the occurance of alarm tags in a PLC. I've already tried using a GSM modem (Sony Ericsson GM29) with alarm monitoring software such as: GSM-Control, MovBridge and U.C.ME and have limited success. Most of the problems have been with the GSM modem. I would like to know if someone has had experience with this technology and how they achieved the task.

The requirements of my system are the following:
- No phone line available. Hence the need for
a GSM modem.
- No hardware alarm diallers (No more
available hardware outputs on PLC).
- Alarm Monitoring Software.
- Software that supports OPC communications.
- Software must support multiple message
- Software must support multiple alarms.
- Cost: around $1500 AUD.

The PLC I'm using is an Allen Bradley ControlLogix L55 the software I'm using is RSView SE Studio, RSLinx and RSLogix 5000.

One thing I've been thinking is that although most software claims support for standard GSM modems (maybe due to the apparent infancy of software in this area) not all GSM modems are really supported. I'm thinking of trying out the Siemens MC35 GSM modem.

Has anyone successfully used this modem in this kind of application?

Some feedback on a solution to this problem would be greatly appreciated.
Try looking at using a Scripting Language such as perl, I have used it for various application such as controlling Sprinklers via a web page, I.E talking out a comm port. There is an OPC module and a GSM modem module, basicly you would plug both modules toghether in your program and away you go.

The above links will get you started, just google and you will be suprised what you find..

Regards Matt

Lars-Gösta Johansson

Here at MAX-lab National Laboratory, Sweden we have for some years use Products from Klinkmann Automation with success. Our application is almost identical to yours. We use hardware such as ControlLogix,SLC500 and Siemens S7. As a alarm OPC server we use RSView32 and as OPC alarm client we use Klinkmanns GSM-Control. Our GSM-modem is a Siemens TC35 Currently we have some 50 alarms and send them to 5 mobilephones. Klinkmann ( ) sell a kit for about 1510 EUR (2417 AUD) and it contains:
GSM-Control software with HASP dongle key
Siemens TC35IT modem, antenna, power supply and modem cable.

One thing I have notice is if you shut down RSView (for maintanence) you have to restart GSM-control (Connection with RSView OPC server is lost). Maybe there is a workaround for this described in the manual.

Best regards
Lars-G Johansson
MAX-lab National laboratory

Raymond van der Tas

To send SMS messages to mobile phones upon the occurance of alarm tags in a PLC you do the following:

- buy a GSM modem and connect it to the Windows XP professional Serial/USB port.
- Install an OPC DA Server (OPC Data Access)
- Install ICONICS AlarmWorX32 Multimedia software

In case your OPC DA server also includes the OPC A/E specification (alarms & events) you can directy have AlarmWorX32 Multimedia subscribe to the OPC A/E information and the alarms/events will be presented on the screen, logged to a database and directed to FAX, EMAIL, SMS, Text-To-Speech...

In case your OPC DA server is not that modern yet, you can configure the ICONICS OPC Alarm Server to set the alarm limits (Hi/Low, HiHi/LoLo), digital alarms (on/off), rate of change alarms and deviation alarms. AlarmWorX32Multimedia will then subscribe to this OPC A/E server.

The software will start at about US$2000. It's a bit more than your budget allows, but then also provides you with a complete scheduler to have multiple users with their own working schedule. Also escalation is provided to ensure that an alarm will be redirected in case action is not taken in time.

When connecting a GSM Modem to your PC (instead of using a standard modem) it can receive the
Alarm Acknowledgement via SMS.

To get the budget you explain the enduser that AlarmWorX32 is web-enabled. This allows to open up a web browser to monitor and acknowledge the alarms in the list. Certainly handy when the mobile phone runs on low battery on the recharger was left behind on site.

Good luck!

Raymond van der Tas

For more details:

Michael Meirovitz

Dear Chris,

The problems you experienced with U.C.ME are due the fact that the Sony Ericsson modem is not supported. You may use the Siemens TC35i or MC35i modem that works with no problems.

The Sony-Ericsson will be supported in the near future.

Best regards,
Michael Meirovitz
Control-See Software Solutions

Michael Meirovitz

Please note that you can use U.C.ME-OPC to send SMS message using ANY GSM cellular modem, or, a standard analog modem using TAP protocol.

The advantages of analog modem:
1. Much cheaper than cellular modem.
2. Cost of a phone call may be cheaper than SMS.
3. No problems of cellular coverage and reception.

Prices starts at 800 $ US.

See more at

Michael Meirovitz

Cinzia La Morgia

Did you try SMS Server? SMS Server is a add-on for CitectSCADA that lets you to notify via SMS and/or email the alarms coming from the plant. It is equipped with an address book and a calendar by means of which it is possible to define the persons, or groups of persons, to which notify the alarms and time scheduling. SMS Server is strongly configurable and allows you to select single alarms or categories of alarms, or groups of alarms and groups of categories of alarms.

The current version 2.11 is on our web site:

After December 17th, the new beta version will be available. It will have support for Citect server redundancy and remote connections.

Cinzia La Morgia