The HART Communication Foundation (HCF, www.hartcomm.org) officially released its HART 7 Specification, which is designed to enable new capabilities for communication with intelligent field devices, including WirelessHART, an open wireless communication standard specifically designed for process measurement and control applications. The HCF membership approved the HART 7 Specifications in June 2007, following an extensive review and approval process. Now the HCF Board of Directors has authorized release of the new standard.

“With official release of the HART 7 Specifications, the WirelessHART standard is now publicly available and manufacturers can begin implementing this new capability into their products and process solutions,” said HCF Executive Director Ron Helson, in a prepared statement. “I expect that products complying with this new standard will be available from multiple manufacturers in early 2008.”

WirelessHART technology aims to provide simple, reliable, and secure wireless communication in the real-world industrial plant environment. The technology is fully backward compatible with existing HART-enabled devices, tools, training, applications and work procedures used today.

WirelessHART communication builds on established international standards including the HART protocol (IEC 61158), EDDL (IEC 61804-3), IEEE 802.15.4 radio and frequency hopping, spread spectrum, and mesh networking technologies. The new technology addresses the issues users face in the process plant environment and seamlessly integrates existing devices into HART-enabled systems.

WirelessHART technology was developed from user input through the combined, cooperative efforts of HCF member companies and wireless technology providers, including ABB, Adaptive Instruments, Crossbow Technology, Dust Networks, ELPRO Technologies, Emerson Process Management, Endress+Hauser, Flowserve, Honeywell, MACTek, MTL, Omnex Control Systems, Pepperl+Fuchs, Phoenix Contact, Siemens, Smar, Yamatake and Yokogawa.