Turning Landfill Gas Into Clean Energy With Ignition Perspective

7 min video  /  2 minute read

Project Scope

  • Tags: 500
  • Screens: 25
  • Clients: 2 Vision and 2 Perspective Mobile
  • Alarms: 100
  • Devices used: ABB PLC w/Modbus TCP
  • Architectures used: Standard
  • Databases used: MariaDB
  • Historical data logged: 25 tags

Project Overview

ReNew Petra’s landfill gas-to-energy facility for the City of Greensboro, North Carolina, converts methane gas into energy, making landfills work overtime to provide clean energy. ReNew Petra contracted Piedmont Automation to build a monitoring and control system that would enable its facility personnel to control operations locally during regular operating hours, and still keep the gas-to-energy processes running after hours and on weekends through remote-access monitoring and control.


Operations run 24/7/365. This requires around-the-clock monitoring, control, security, and notification, in addition to the ability to interact with the system at any given time.


Piedmont Automation developed a control system that gave personnel both local and remote access to facility operations. The centerpiece of this system is local HMI visualization in the control room, and remote visualization using mobile devices. The system provides oversight, and controlled operations and equipment interfaces. It also has notification to reacting personnel and logged and trended critical process variables.

To fulfill these functional requirements, Piedmont Automation chose Ignition 8 for HMI visualization with high-performance graphics and the new Ignition Perspective Module for mobile visualization. Ignition 8 provides all the necessary tools for local control and oversight of this dynamic gas-to-energy process. The Ignition Perspective Module put the power of the system in the palm of operators’ hands with a mobile-responsive industrial application that runs natively on any of the company’s mobile devices and web browsers. The system also uses a cross-platform solution with a Linux Ignition server and Windows OS on the control room clients, IP camera security monitoring system integrated with Ignition components, and an OPC interface to the Caterpillar generator for energy generation performance metrics.


This interactive control system gave operators the ability to monitor and control facility operations while onsite, and a virtual window into processes while they were offsite.

The Ignition Perspective Module not only gave personnel a mobile view of their operations, but it also gave them full control. With Ignition Perspective, a full HMI and alarm system application was developed that allowed ReNew Petra to fully control its processes from phones.

With older systems, personnel are not able to access the system with such a variety of devices and they were often limited to using their laptops for remote access. Ignition Perspective is totally mobile-responsive, so it automatically adapts to fit screens of any size, on any mobile device, giving ReNew Petra a personalized view into its processes on whatever mobile device operators choose.

Project Information

Created By:   Piedmont Automation, Inc.

Piedmont Automation was established in 1999 and is celebrating its 20th year in business as a systems integration company serving process manufacturing, discrete manufacturing, food, tobacco, water & wastewater, and many other industries. Piedmont has provided world-class automation solutions in process control, material handling, SCADA & OEE productivity tools, Andon systems, KPI dashboards, data collection & reporting, remote telemetry systems, instrumentation & controls, and UL panel building. Piedmont began using Inductive Automation products in 2010 and became a Premier Integrator deploying Ignition SCADA & OEE solutions in many of these industries.

Website: www.teampiedmont.com

Project For:   ReNew Petra

ReNew Petra is a renewable energy investment, development, and construction company based in North Carolina. ReNew Petra manages nearly 70MW of projects in solar, landfill gas-to-energy, and bioenergy. As a licensed general contracting company with more than 100 years of combined industry experience among the leadership team, ReNew Petra provides engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC), and operations and maintenance (O&M). ReNew Petra also has the technical expertise to provide its own asset management, as well as provide these services to partners and other third parties.

Posted on September 30, 2019