This standard specifies general principles and processes for the management of alarm systems based on controls system and human-machine interfaces (HMI) for facilities in the process industries. It covers all alarms to be presented to the operator through the control system, which includes alarms from basic process control systems, annunciators, packaged systems (for example refrigeration machines), and safety instrumented systems.
The practices in this standard are applicable to continuous, batch, and discrete processes. There can be differences in implementation to meet the specific needs based on those process types.
In jurisdictions where the governing authorities (for example national, federal, state, province, county, city) have established process safety design, process safety management, or other requirements, in addition to the requirements of this standard, these should be taken into consideration.
The primary function within the alarm system is to notify operators of abnormal process conditions or equipment malfunctions and support the response. The alarm systems can include both the basic process control system (BPCS) and the safety instrumented system (SIS), each of which uses measurements of process conditions and logic to generate alarms. Figure 1 illustrates the concepts of alarm and response dataflow through the alarm system. The alarm system also includes a mechanism for communicating the alarm information to the operator via an HMI, usually a computer screen or an annunciator. Additional functions of the alarm system are an alarm and event log, an alarm historian, and the generation of performance metrics for the alarm system. There are external systems that can use the data from the alarm system.