PCS7 Control System Upgrade alongside Mechatherm

CLIENT Mechatherm

About the client

Mechatherm International Limited have been designing and supplying turnkey solutions, predominantly for the Aluminium industry since their formation in 1973.

They specialise in equipment for casthouse technology including all types of melting furnaces, casting equipment and ancillary equipment to complete a turnkey aluminium process line. They also provide air recirculation heat treatment and reheating furnaces for flat, rolled, forged, extruded and cast products for the Aluminium market.

Project Background

Mechatherm’s end-user was looking to upgrade their PCS7 control system for their two combined heat and power plants and associated gas compressors.
The project involved; – Integrating a new redundant server pair to support site risk management. – Replacing the obsolete control system CPU with a new S7 – 410H – Safety functions to be implemented using standard I/O and PCS7 safety matrix – Control functions to incorporate advanced process logic (APL) software libraries – Profibus interface to Honeywell Kromschroder burner management systems

The addition of a new safety matrix and APL libraries functionalities was made possible by rewriting the software rather than a straightforward migration.

Project Solution


Mechatherm were contracted by their customer to lead the overall project as well as delivery of all electrical design, assembly and installation works. They also managed the co-ordination of installation and commissioning between site and contractors including Kigtek.


Beating multiple rival companies, Kigtek were awarded a contract by Mechatherm, undertaking all control system software aspects of the project.
The software requirements were captured in a comprehensive FDS using a combination of reverse engineering from the existing legacy systems and incorporating the customer specified safety requirements. The software included full plant response simulation to aid testing and customer operator training.

Project Outcomes

Following successful factory acceptance testing at Kigtek offices, the CHP systems were integrated and commissioned during two planned shutdown periods. The successful completion of the project meant the customer had an upgraded, more robust system specific to their safety requirements on a more modern software platform.

Project Highlights

Some project highlights for Kigtek included successful, on time delivery of complex, critical CHP controls. Additionally, we enjoyed the opportunity to continue strengthening our positive relationship with Mechatherm and hope to work alongside them again in the future.