The HART Communication Foundation (HCF, www.hartcomm2.org) completed draft specifications for the WirelessHART Communication protocol and released them to HCF member companies for review and approval. WirelessHART is the first open and interoperable wireless communication standard designed to address the critical needs of the process industry for reliable, robust, and secure wireless communication in real-world industrial plant applications, according to HCF.

WirelessHART is backwards compatible with previous HART protocols and is designed to complement, not replace, wired HART. The WirelessHART specifications support the entire range of HART-enabled measurement, control, and automation systems products. Approved specifications will be available late summer with products expected early 2008, according to HCF.

WirelessHART Communication is designed to:
• facilitate easy installation and deployment of measurement and control devices in applications where traditional wired solutions were cost prohibitive;
• eliminate the “wire“ restriction for monitoring the performance of critical assets;
• provides a new connection path to the advanced features and diagnostics in HART-enabled devices – new or existing;
• incorporate powerful security features to ensure network integrity and meet the demands of process industry applications;
• preserve and protect the global installed investment of 20-million-plus HART-enabled devices.