What is BPCS? - Basic Process Control System

The objective of the Basic Process Control System (BPCS) is to respond to signals from the process and generate output signals which ensure that the operation continues in safe state providing continuous information of the process to the operator.

It also alerts operators regarding abnormalities in the process which require operator’s attention During design and operational phases, the examination scheme for Basic Process Control System would include following questions.

  • The DCS (BPCS) is not essential for safety and equipment protection. However, does the system provide the operator with a perspective of operation and appropriate process response to ensure that the desired state of operation is maintained therefore reducing safety demands on safety instrumented systems?

  • Are all components (with specific exceptions) used in SIL 1, 2 or 3 functions independent of components used for process monitoring and control?

  • Does the SIL Assessment report cover inherent process stability, the DCS (BPCS), pre-alarms, instruments installed for equipment protection and mechanical devices? HSE criticality for each of these can be determined only if they have been covered during SIL Assessment and assigned with risk reduction credits.

  • During ergonomic design of the control room and operator displays, has the human / machine interface been considered as a critical factor leading to possible safety issues?

  • Are HSE critical issues such as Alarm Management and operator overload (physical and cerebral) being addressed in HSECES Performance Standards?

  • Are redundant I/O checked periodically as per the maintenance program?