This course covers the essential elements of SCADA systems with particular emphasis on the DNP3 protocol, with an overview of the IEC 60870.5 and IEC 61850 protocols as well as new developments in this area.

The course commences with a review of the fundamentals of SCADA systems hardware, software and the communications systems that connect the outstations to the SCADA Master control station. The R S-232 and RS-485 interface standards are reviewed, along with MODBUS, Ethernet and TCP/IP protocols. The application of both Local Area and Wide Area networks for SCADA system communications is also covered. A detailed explanation of the DNP3 protocol is given, where the features, message structure, practical benefits and applications are discussed. The course is intended to be product independent but examples will be taken from existing products to ensure that all aspects of the DNP3 protocols are covered.

Examples are given of the configuration issues for DNP3 operation over both low speed serial (eg Radio links) and high speed LAN and WAN networks. An overview of the IEC 60870.5 and IEC 61850 protocols and their areas of application is given as well as new developments in this area. The application of Fieldbus protocols in SCADA systems is also covered. This course provides you with the tools to design your next SCADA system more effectively using DNP3 to draw on the latest technologies.


  • The fundamentals of SCADA systems
  • SCADA protocols and how they should be structured and applied
  • "Best practice" decisions on the best and most cost effective use of SCADA open protocols for your company
  • The best current practice for data communications for SCADA systems, including LAN and WAN based systems
  • DNP3 protocol
  • DNP3 protocol to your next SCADA project
  • DNP3 interoperability issues
  • The "nuts and bolts" about selecting DNP3 based systems
  • Troubleshooting simple problems with the DNP3 protocol
  • The fundamentals of IEC 60870-5 protocols
  • How IEC 61850 is structured

Next intake is scheduled for September 14, 2015 - contact us to apply.

Course Outline


  • Overview
  • SCADA systems
  • Open systems and communications standards
  • MODBUS and DNP3
  • Local Area Networks, Ethernet and TCP/IP
  • IEC 60870-5
  • IEC 61850 protocol
  • Open SCADA Protocols
  • Interoperability and open standards
  • Development of standards

MODULE 2: Fundamentals of SCADA Systems

  • SCADA systems
  • Remote terminal units
  • PLCs used as R TUs
  • The master station
  • Communication architectures
  • Communication philosophies
  • MODULE 3: Advanced consideration of DNP

  • Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model
  • Basic interface standards: R S-232 and R S-485
  • MO DBUS protocol
  • Preview of DNP3
  • What is DNP3?
  • Interoperability and open standard
  • Benefits of DNP3
  • Features of DNP3
  • System topology
  • Background and development
  • Why use DNP3?

MODULE 4: Fundamentals of Distributed Network Protocol (DNP3)

  • Fundamental concepts
  • Understanding DNP message structure
  • Physical layer
  • Datalink layer
  • Transport layer (Pseudo- transport)

MODULE 5: Wide area SCADA networks and overview of IEC60870-5 protocols

  • Application layer message handling
  • Application layer message functions
  • Data object library
  • DNP message decoding

MODULE 6: Advanced Considerations of DNP

  • DNP subset definitions
  • Interoperability between DNP devices
  • Implementation rules and recommendations
  • Conformance testing
  • DNP polling and communications options
  • Time synchronisation

MODULE 7: Configuration of DNP Over Serial Links

  • Configuration issues
  • Water industry example

MODULE 8: Review of Ethernet and TCP/ IP Protocols

  • IEEE 802.3 CSMA/CD ("Ethernet")
  • Physical layers
  • Medium access control
  • Half-duplex
  • Full duplex
  • Switched Ethernet
  • Internet Protocol (IP)
  • Transmission Control Protocol (TCP)
  • User Datagram Protocol (UDP)

MODULE 9: Wide Area SCADA Networks

  • Routers
  • WAN technologies
  • DNP3 over TCP/IP and U DP/IP
  • Configuration of DNP over WAN
  • Power industry example

MODULE 10: Overview of IEC 60870-5 Protocols

  • Overview of IEC 60870-5 Protocols
  • Standards
  • System topology
  • Message structure
  • Addressing
  • Networked version
  • Application data objects
  • Interoperability
  • Network operation
  • Differences between DNP3 and
  • IEC 60870 Protocols

MODULE 11: Intelligent Electronic Devices (IEDs) AND IEC 61850

  • IEDs definition
  • IEDs functions
  • IEC 61850 Protocol Overview
  • IEC 61850 technology
  • Substation automation example

MODULE 12: Fieldbus and SCADA Communications Systems

  • Introduction
  • Profibus
  • Foundation fieldbus
  • Latest Developments in Technology

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