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AN INTRODUCTION TO IEC 60870-5-104, A STANDARD FOR THE TELECONTROL OF ELECTRIC POWER TRANSMISSION SYSTEMS, USING INTERNET COMMUNICATION SERVICES

1. FOREWORD IEC 60870-5-101 is an International Communications Protocol Standard for the Telecontrol of Electric Power transmission systems, which is being widely adopted in many countries throughout the world. The standard specifies the use of permanent directly connected Links between Telecontrol stations. Dedicated base band cables, Power Line Carrier or Radio may be used for Analogue channel communication or direct digital links may be used. There is now a growing desire to use the 60870 Standard to communicate between Telecontrol stations via Internet services. A new Companion Standard called IEC 60870-5-104 has been published by the IEC for this purpose. The present paper assumes that the reader is broadly familiar with IEC 60870-5-101 and explains the principal differences that are being introduced to enable 101 Application messages to be transported via Internet services. 2. SIGNIFICANT CHARACTERISTICS OF INTERNET COMMUNICATION WITH RESPECT TO ITS USE FOR TELECONTROL The time taken for a Telecontrol message to be transported by the Internet from one Telecontrol station to another is variable and is often significantly longer than the time taken for transportation using the directly connected Links defined in the 101 standard. The time taken depends on the amount of traffic (other messages) being carried by the interconnected networks at the time the Telecontrol message is sent. 3. THE INTRODUCTION OF AN INTERNET TRANSPORT INTERFACE Every Telecontrol station conforming to the IEC 60870-5-104 standard has an Internet Transport Interface between its Application layer and the layers below. The interface and the lower layers are defined by the appropriate Internet standards. These include the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP), according to RFC 793, for the Transport layer immediately below the Transport Interface. 4. THE ADDITION OF APCI TO THE APPLICATION LAYER Some Application Protocol Control Information (APCI) is added to each Application Service Data Unit (ASDU) so as to obtain an Application Protocol Data Unit (APDU) that is suitable for Internet transportation. The APCI includes a copy of some of the control information fields used by the GBC Report 053-6 page 1 of 5 2003 DEC 12

INTERNET APPLICATION APPLICATION INTERNET IP IP INTERNET TCP TCP TRANSPORT LAYER LAYER TRANSPORT INTERNET INTERNET INTERFACE TRANSMISSION CONTROL PROTOCOL PROTOCOL PROTOCOL INTERFACE AS DEFINED IN AS DEFINED IN TRANSMISSION IEC 60870-5-101 IEC 60870-5-101 Packet layer of the X25 protocol (accordingCONTROL PROTOCOL to ISO/IEC 8208). The associated control procedures are also copies of those used by X25. APCI APCI The purpose of the APCI and associated procedures is to ensure that Application messages, each consisting of an individual APDU, are not lost or duplicated. It also enables message transfers to be started/stopped and supervises Transport connections. The APCI starts with a fixed octet (value = 68 Hex) followed by an octet specifying the length of the rest of the APDU, including the ASDU when present. Some messages are used for control purposes only and do not include an ASDU. 5. BLOCK DIAGRAM OF TWO STATIONS USING IEC 60870-5-104 PROTOCOL

All items shown in blue are defined according to standard Internet Transport specifications. SEE PAGE 5 FOR A DETAILED PICTURE OF THE INTERNET ADDRESSING

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6. APPLICATION FUNCTIONS AND ASSOCIATED ASDUs SUPPORTED BY TCP SERVICES The following Application Functions and associated ASDUs are supported by the TCP services. Station Initialisation Read data Cyclic data transmission (see below) Acquisition of Events (see below) General Interrogation Clock Synchronisation (see below) Command transmission (see below) Transmission of Integrated Totals Parameter loading Test procedure File transfer

7. THE REMOVAL OF DATA ACQUISITION BY POLLING FROM THE APPLICATION FUNCTIONS Data Acquisition by Polling relies on the Request for User data class 1 & class 2 Link functions defined in IEC 60870-5-2. These functions are not available when using the 104 protocol, because all layers below the Transport Interface are defined by Internet standards, which do not provide them. 8. CYCLIC DATA TRANSMISSION This function should be used with care, taking due regard of the relatively long Transportation times likely to be encountered when using the Internet. Too many APDUs of this type per second may cause queues of Telecontrol data to form, potentially delaying more important Telecontrol messages. 9. ACQUISITION OF EVENTS Event ASDUs that are tagged with their time of occurrence use the long Time Tag (ms to years) as defined in the latest edition of IEC 60870-5-101. This ensures there can be no ambiguity about the time of occurrence (uncertainty as to the hour involved) due to any long transmission delays introduced by the Internet services. 10. CLOCK SYNCHRONISATION Accurate Clock Synchronisation in an outstation depends on knowing the time taken to transmit a Telecontrol message to it from the central Controlling station containing the master clock. This permits an allowance to be made for the transmission time during synchronisation. When using the Internet, there is a variable delay before a transmitted message arrives at an outstation. This GBC Report 053-6 page 3 of 5 2003 DEC 12

causes a time uncertainty that depends on the maximum transmission time offered by the Internet service provider. The resulting clock synchronisation setting is unlikely to be more accurate than within one second. Thus individual radio clocks, or other accurate clocks, will be required at each outstation when time tags having a better accuracy than this are required. 11. COMMAND TRANSMISSION When using the Internet, it is sometimes possible for a Command message to an outstation to be seriously delayed. The 104 protocol offers Time Tagged Command ASDUs so that the receiving outstation can check the time they were sent and potentially ignore any Commands that are dangerously late. 12. FOOTNOTE The picture on page 5 shows details of the Internet Addressing. All the stations in an IEC 60870-5-104 Installation are interconnected via a Local Area Network (LAN) shown in blue. This network is regarded as local to the Installation, even though it may be geographically distributed over a wide area. The LAN contains a Router for each station, to which it is connected via a LAN Port. The Routers are interconnected via a Wide Area Network (WAN) shown in green. Each access point (Router to WAN) has a unique IP Address. Virtual Connections (shown in red) may be set up between the Controlling stations Transmission Control Protocol (TCP), acting as a Client, and individual Controlled stations TCPs acting as Servers. The Address at each end of a Virtual Connection consists of a combination of the local stations IP Address and the Port Number. The Port Number for all Server stations in an IEC 60870-5-104 LAN is officially allocated as 2404. The Port Numbers for the Client station are allocated from a pool of reusable numbers held by the TCP of that station. There are typically a few thousand numbers in the pool, starting at 1024. A new Port Number from the pool is used for each new Connection as it is established. The Number is returned to the pool when the Connection is closed. G B COLE gbarrycole@supanet.com

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TCP ADDRESSES = example TRANSPORT INTERFACE VIRTUAL ROUTERPORT Nos = (1024) and (1025) for 1024 2404 CONNECTIONS TCP ADDRESSES(A),1025 (B2), (2404) = PORT No (A),1024 (B1), 2404 ROUTER PORT No = (2404) (B1),2404 ROUTER= (A), 1025 = TCP/IP WAN (B2),2404 (A), TCP/IP LAN

APPLICATION

IP ADDRESS =(B1) APPLICATION 101

IP ADDRESS = (A) CONTROLLING

101

STATION A (CLIENT)
APPLICATION 101

IP ADDRESS =(B2)

TCP/IP

IP

CONTROLLED STATION B1 (SERVER)

CONTROLLED STATION B2 (SERVER)

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