Last Updated S012020


Unit Code MOG503
Unit Duration 1 Term (online) or 1 Semester (on-campus)

Graduate Diploma of Engineering (Electrical and Instrumentation in Oil and Gas)

Duration: 1 year


Master of Engineering (Electrical and Instrumentation in Oil and Gas)

Duration: 2 years

Year Level One
Unit Coordinator Fraser Maywood
Core/Elective: Core
Pre/Co-requisites Nil
Credit Points



Grad Dip total course credit points = 24

(3 credits x 8 (units))


Masters total course credit points = 48

(12 credits (Thesis) + 3 credits x 12 (units))

Mode of Delivery Combination of modes: Online synchronous lectures; asynchronous discussion groups, videos, remote and cloud-based labs (simulations); web and video conferencing tutorials. High emphasis on personal and group self-study.  
Unit Workload

Student workload including “contact hours” = 10 hours per week:

Lecture 1 hour

Tutorial Lecture 1 hours

Practical / Lab 1 hour (where relevant)

Personal Study recommended - 7 hours

Unit Description and General Aims

This unit provides the students sufficient depth of practical understanding of the principles, design, configuration, testing, installation, commissioning and maintenance of process control systems in the context of the oil and gas industry.

The underlying principles of process control and system requirements (functional and technical arising from end user, process control, separation of process control from safety instrumented functions, system architecture, communication networks, power, earthing, and environmental) will provide the student with an understanding of how to systematically identify and apply these principles to control system design based on commercially available systems (Distributed Control Systems, Programmable Logic Controllers and SCADA Systems). Practical aspects of overall project development and the impact on process control system design development and integration will be addressed as will control system operation and maintenance.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this Unit, students are expected to be able to:

  1. Identify and analyse principles of Process Control System Engineering to onshore and offshore Oil & Gas facilities.
  2. Evaluate disciplined and practical engineering processes to enhance the lifecycle performance of process control systems.
  3. Analyse and Apply sound engineering practices, and demonstrate understanding of process control hardware and design.
  4. Evaluate and apply principles for interfacing packaged equipment control systems.
  5. Recommend and apply principles for incorporating design information into the system design development.

Student assessment

Assessment Type

(e.g. Assignment - 2000 word essay (specify topic)

Examination (specify length and format))

When assessed

(eg Week 5)


(% of total unit marks)

Learning Outcomes Assessed

Assessment 1

Type: Multi-choice test

Word length: n/a

Topic examples: Fundamental concepts of process control system design, installation and maintenance

After Topic 5


1, 2

Assessment 2

Type: Report (Midterm Project)

[This will include a progress report; literature review, hypothesis, and proposed solution with concept workings]

Word length: 1000

Topic examples: process control system design development considerations


After Topic 8


1, 2, 3

Assessment 3

Type: Report (Final Project)

[If a continuation of the midterm, this should complete the report by adding sections on: workings, implementation, results, verification/validation, conclusion/challenges and recommendations/future work. If this is a new report, all headings from the midterm and the final reports must be included.]

Word length: 4000

Topic examples: process control system specification for a long field life Floating Production Storage Offtake (FPSO) vessel or as specified by the lecturer

After Topic 12


1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Practical Participation

May be in the form of quizzes, class tests, practical assessments, remote labs, simulation software or case studies: E.g. Simulation of control system



3, 4, 5





Prescribed and recommended readings

Required textbook(s)

  • 2011. King, Process Control: A Practical Approach, Prentice Hall, UK, 2011.

Reference Materials

  • ISA-95 / IEC 62264
  • ISA-18 (alarms) and ISA-101 (HMI)
  • IEEE Introduction to Industrial Control Networks
  • SP 800-82 Rev. 2 (May 2015) Guide to Industrial Control Systems (ICS) Security
  • ISA-99 and IEC-62443 (cyber security)
  • IDC Practical Process Control for Engineers and Technicians
  • IDC Design of Industrial Automation Functional Specifications for PLCs, DCSs and SCADA systems
  • IDC Best Practice in Industrial Data Communications
  • IDC Practical Fieldbus, DeviceNet and Ethernet for Industry
  • IDC Practical Alarm Management for Engineers and Technicians
  • Number of peer-reviewed journals and websites (advised during lectures) [some examples below]:
    • Journal of Process Control
    • Control
    • EIT notes

Unit Content

One topic is delivered per contact week, with the exception of part-time 24-week units, where one topic is delivered every two weeks.


Topic 1

Introduction to Process Control Systems

  1. Introduction to the purposes of process control systems and their role in achieving business objectives
  2. History and development of process control systems
  3. Typical control system architectures and characteristic features used in the Oil & Gas industry
  4. Current state of technology and key challenges

Topics 2, 3 and 4

Process Control Engineering

  1. Principles of digital control and sampled data systems
  2. 1st and 2nd order processes, Laplace transforms, Nyquist plots
  3. Process unit operations, flowcharts and control system depiction
  4. Sensing and actuation using field instrumentation
  5. Process controller: process variables, manipulated variable, set points, loop tunning
  6. Control schemes (eg feedback, feed forward, cascade), characteristic responses of three term controllers, motor control interfacing, typical DCS controller configuration,
  7. Principles of control valves and their impact on controller performance
  8. Sequence control
  9. Introduction to multivariable systems and advanced process control
  10. Defining control requirements, use of forms such as natural language control narratives, cause & effect, functional logic diagrams, bubble diagrams and SAMA logic.

Topics 5 and 6

Industrial process control equipment

  1. Single loop digital controllers
  2. Programmable logic controllers
  3. Distributed control systems
  4. Plant wide communications networks, IT and network design (switches, network levels, security)
  5. Human Machine Interface key principles, display graphics development, use of international standards such as ISA-18 and ISA-101
  6. Design considerations: segregation (cable, cabinet, FieldBus segments, Independent Protection Layers, unit operation and equipment sparing for controller and I/O design),power, earthing, EMI, environmental control), system back-up and recovery, instrumentation failure modes

Topics 7 and 8

Process Control System Interfaces

  1. Fieldbus, DeviceNet, HART, Ethernet, Wireless, Asset Management Software
  2. Safety Instrumented Systems overview, interfacing, set-points, alarms, controller modes, operational overrides (MOS, OMO, SUO etc). Details of SIS are covered in MOG 506.
  3. Packaged controls, interfacing to and integrating with the plant control system
  4. Enterprise system and control system integration (ANSI/ISA-95)
  5. Process control system security and cyber security (SP 800-82, ISA-99 and IEC-62443)

Topics 9, 10 and 11

Process Control System Development

  1. V-model system development process
  2. Process control system procurement process
  3. Project lifecycle, contracting strategies, MIV concept, evolution of design information and third party vendor data
  4. Lifecycle requirements, user requirements, system functional specification (Clear, concise, unambiguous, defined fault/failure modes), project planning
  5. Hardware build
  6. System configuration: I/O and controller database, graphical interface, applications, alarm management (alarm objective analysis, masking etc), data historian, security
  7. System testing
  8. System installation
  9. System operations and maintenance
  10. Change management

Topic 12

Project and Revision

In the final weeks students will have an opportunity to review the contents covered so far.  Opportunity will be provided for a review of student work and to clarify any outstanding issues.  Instructors/facilitators may choose to cover a specialized topic if applicable to that cohort.

Professional Development

Completing this unit will add to students professional development/competencies by:

  1.  Fostering the personal and professional skills development of students to:
    • Be adaptable and capable 21st century citizens, who can communicate effectively, work collaboratively, think critically and innovatively solve complex problems.
    • Equipping individuals with an increased capacity for lifelong learning and professional development.
    • Planning and organising self and others
    • Instilling leadership qualities and a capacity for ethical and professional contextualization of knowledge
  2. Enhancing students’ investigatory and research capabilities through:
    • Solving complex and open-ended engineering problems
    • Accessing, evaluating and analysing information
    • Processes and procedures, cause – effect investigations
  3. Developing the engineering application abilities of students through:
    • Assignments
    • Labs / practical / case studies / self-study (where applicable)

Resource Requirements


Web & Video conferencing software

Students will be provided with Blackboard Collaborate (or similar) for video and web conferencing. This will allow them to attend lectures, interact with lecturers and fellow students, and use the Remote Lab facility. Students will be required to download the latest version of Java and .NET in order to use these packages.


For ease of communicating with peers and lecturers, installation of this package is recommended.

Word, PowerPoint and Excel

It is recommended that students install at least a 2007 version of the Microsoft Office. Older versions will work, but sometimes create issues with file compatibility. If individuals are reluctant to use these, they can also use Open Office (

Virus detection

As students are co-operating with people from throughout the world with a multitude of different PCs, it is recommended that they have good quality up-to-date virus detection software installed. The free version of AVG is sufficient. A thorough automated scan of computers at least once a week is recommended.

Learning Management System

EIT uses a state-of-the-art learning management system (Moodle) for lecturing and interacting with lecturers and fellow students. Students can chat, socialize, and collaborate on projects with similarly motivated and enthusiastic course participants.

Computing resource requirements


Students’ computers should have an Intel Core Duo CPU and 2 Gigabytes of RAM. Hard disk space available should be at least 2 Gigabytes free. If necessary the built-in hard drive can be augmented with an inexpensive USB drive. No particular special graphics card is required. The operating system should be Windows with Windows 7 Service Pack 1 as a minimum.


An ADSL Internet connection with a minimum speed of 128 kbps down and 64 kbps up is recommended. 

Good quality headset and low cost web cam

Students will require a good quality stereo headset with analogue or USB connectors.  In addition, a low-cost USB webcam is recommended. Students should budget in the order of $30 for a headset and $20 for a webcam. This will vary from country to country.

Technical Help

For difficulties with other online materials the lecturer should be contacted. Technical material will be accessible 24/7 through the online portal.