Gateway Testing with DTM

Use Case

RTU's and gateways are commonly used to distribute controls and data across different parts of SCADA systems. These devices often are use to concentrate thousands of data points from hundreds of devices and convert messages across multiple protocols. Because of this large scale, testing RTU's and gateways can be time consuming and error prone. In addition, each protocol supports different capabilities for reporting data and communicating commands which can lead to unexpected behavior in the protocol converter. 

Today, many protocol mapping tests for RTU's and gateways are performed manually. Each point is tested, one by one, to ensure data is mapped correctly from each device across the system. This manual approach may be required in final site acceptance testing, but preliminary testing in the lab can be automated by simulating the field devices and SCADA system with valid protocol messages.

DTM Mapping Verification Use Case (Click image for larger view)
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Gateway Testing using DTM
(Click image for larger view)

This allows the real RTU or gateway to be tested within a simulated test system which can automatically run through all data points and document the results of the protocol mapping. This approach is faster and more reliable than manual testing. In addition, it can allow testing to be performed earlier rather than waiting for the final system to be installed and configured.

DTM Capabilities Used

  • Verify a Device Under Test in a simulated system without needing all components of the system
  • Automate testing with JavaScript engine in order to save time and have repeatable test results 
  • Test network or software application under load with hundreds of simulated devices across a real network
  • Generate messaging traffic with standard communication protocols found in SCADA systems 

Example:  IEC 61850 to DNP3 Mapping Verification 


This example demonstrates how to test the mapping of a SCADA gateway or RTU in an automated test environment.

The Distributed Test Manager (DTM) simulates multiple IEC 61850 IEDs and a DNP3 SCADA Master on either side of SCADA gateway. A script running in DTM automates the testing in order to determine the mapping of the gateway and document the results. In this example, the Triangle MicroWorks SCADA Data Gateway is the device under test.

This example illustrates how DTM can be used to test partial systems without needing all components in place and configured.  It also shows that this type of testing can be performed without expensive test equipment to generate signal changes.

This same test can be performed for standard SCADA protocols like ICCP/TASE.2, IEC 60870-5 (-101 or -104), DNP3, IEC 61850, and Modbus.

This video demonstrates using the Distributed Test Manager to validate mappings.




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