Author: Fernandez-Carreiras, D.
Paper Title Page
MOD3O04 Introducing the SCRUM Framework as Part of the Product Development Strategy for the ALBA Control System 1
  • G. Cuní, F. Becheri, D. Fernandez-Carreiras, Z. Reszela, S. Rubio-Manrique
    ALBA-CELLS Synchrotron, Cerdanyola del Vallès, Spain
  At Alba, the Controls Section provides the software that is needed to operate the accelerators, the beamlines and the peripheral laboratories. It covers a wide range of areas or subsystems like vacuum, motion, data acquisition and analysis, graphical interfaces, or archiving. Since the installation and commissioning phases, we have been producing the software solutions mostly in single-developer projects based on the personal criteria. This organization scheme allowed each control engineer to gain the expertise in particular areas by being the unit contact responsible to develop and deliver products. In order to enrich the designs and improve the quality of solutions we have grouped the engineers in teams. The hierarchy of the product backlogs, represents the desired features and the known defects in a transparent way. Instead of planning the whole project upfront, we try to design the products incrementally and develop them in short iterations mitigating the risk of not satisfying the emerging user requirements. This paper describes the introduction of the Scrum framework as the product development strategy in a service oriented organization like the Computing Division at Alba*.
*D. Fernández-Carreiras et al., 'Using Prince2 and ITIL Practices for Computing Project and Service Management in a Scientific Installation', TUMIB01, Proc. of ICALEPCS'13, San Francisco, CA.
slides icon Slides MOD3O04 [2.251 MB]  
MOPGF140 Integration of PLC's in Tango Control Systems Using PyPLC 1
  • S. Rubio-Manrique, M. Broseta, G. Cuní, D. Fernandez-Carreiras, A. Rubio, J. Villanueva
    ALBA-CELLS Synchrotron, Cerdanyola del Vallès, Spain
  The Equipment Protection Systems and Personnel Safety Systems of the ALBA Synchrotron are complex and highly distributed control systems based on PLC's from different vendors. EPS and PSS not only regulate the interlocks of the whole ALBA facility but provide an extense network of analog and digital sensors that collect information from all subsystems; as well as its logical states. TANGO is the Control System framework used at ALBA, providing several tools and services (GUI's, Archiving, Alarms) in which EPS and PSS systems must be integrated. PyPLC, a dynamic Tango device, have been developed in python to provide a flexible interface and enable PLC developers to automatically update it. This paper describes how protection systems and the PLC code generation cycle have been fully integrated within TANGO Control System at ALBA.  
poster icon Poster MOPGF140 [2.242 MB]  
MOPGF172 Bringing Quality in the Controls Software Delivery Process 1
  • Z. Reszela, G. Cuní, C.M. Falcón Torres, D. Fernandez-Carreiras, G. Jover-Mañas, C. Pascual-Izarra, R. Pastor Ortiz, M. Rosanes Siscart, S. Rubio-Manrique
    ALBA-CELLS Synchrotron, Cerdanyola del Vallès, Spain
  The Alba Controls Group develops and operates a diverse variety of controls software which is shared within international communities of users and developers. This includes: generic frameworks like Sardana* and Taurus**, numerous Tango*** device servers and applications where, among others, we can find PyAlarm and Panic****, and specific experiment procedures and hardware controllers. A study has commenced on how to improve the delivery process of our software from the hands of developers to laboratories, by making this process more reliable, predictable and risk-controlled. Automated unit and acceptance tests combined with the continuous integration, have been introduced, providing valuable and fast feedback to the developers. In order to renew and automate our legacy packaging and deployment system we have evaluated modern alternatives. The above practices were brought together into a design of the continuous delivery pipelines which were validated on a set of diverse software. This paper presents this study, its results and a proposal of the cost-effective implementation.
**********S. Rubio-Manrique, 'PANIC a Suite for Visualization, Logging and Notification of Incidents', Proc. of PCaPAC(2014).
poster icon Poster MOPGF172 [1.243 MB]  
TUB3O02 Iterative Development of the Generic Continuous Scans in Sardana 1
  • Z. Reszela, G. Cuní, C.M. Falcón Torres, D. Fernandez-Carreiras, C. Pascual-Izarra, M. Rosanes Siscart
    ALBA-CELLS Synchrotron, Cerdanyola del Vallès, Spain
  Sardana* is a software suite for Supervision, Control and Data Acquisition in scientific installations. It aims to reduce cost and time of design, development and support of the control and data acquisition systems. Sardana is used in several synchrotrons where continuous scans are the desired way of executing experiments**. Most experiments require an extensive and coordinated control of many aspects like positioning, data acquisition, synchronization and storage. Many successful ad-hoc solutions have already been developed, however they lack generalization and are hard to maintain or reuse. Sardana, thanks to the Taurus*** based applications, allows the users to configure and control the scan experiments. The MacroServer, a flexible python based sequencer, provides parametrizable turn-key scan procedures. Thanks to the Device Pool controllers interfaces, heterogeneous hardware can be easily plug into Sardana and their elements used during scans and data acquisitions. Development of the continuous scans is an ongoing iterative process and its current status is described in this paper.
*** D. Fernandez-Carreiras, Synchronization of Motion and Detectors and Cont. Scans as the Standard Data Acquisition Technique, ICALEPCS2015***
slides icon Slides TUB3O02 [3.169 MB]  
WEPGF081 Em# Platform: Towards a Hardware Interface Standardization Scheme 1
  • O. Matilla, J.A. Avila-Abellan, M. Broseta, G. Cuní, D. Fernandez-Carreiras, A. Ruz, J. Salabert, X. Serra-Gallifa
    ALBA-CELLS Synchrotron, Cerdanyola del Vallès, Spain
  Low current measurements developments have been pointed out as strategic for ALBA synchrotron. From the first day of operation of the seven Beamlines currently in operation ALBA Em electrometer this has been successfully used. Today, the two new beamlines of Phase 2 that are being constructed and the new end stations have required specification changes in terms of increased accuracy, capability of synchronization, timestamping, management of large buffers and high performance closed-loop implementation. The scheme of full custom hardware design has been abandoned. ALBA Em# project approach has been based in the selection of industry standard interfaces: FMC boards design for custom needs, FMC carrier over PCIe using SPEC board from CERN under OHWR license, and Single Board Computer using PCIe to implement interfaces with the control system. This Paper describes the new design of the Electrometers at Alba, suited for the newer requirements, more flexible, performing and maintainable, which profits from the know-how acquired with previous versions and suits the new data acquisition paradigm emerged with the standardization of quick continuous scans and data acquisition.  
poster icon Poster WEPGF081 [0.230 MB]  
WEPGF148 Unifying All TANGO Control Services in a Customizable Graphical User Interface 1
  • S. Rubio-Manrique, G. Cuní, D. Fernandez-Carreiras, C. Pascual-Izarra, D. Roldan
    ALBA-CELLS Synchrotron, Cerdanyola del Vallès, Spain
  • E. Al-Dmour
    MAX-lab, Lund, Sweden
  TANGO is a distributed Control System with an active community of developers. The community features multiple services like Archiving or Alarms with an heterogeneous mix of technologies and look-and-feels that must be integrated in the final user workflow. The Viewer and Commander Control Application (VACCA) was developed on top of Taurus to provide TANGO with the user experience of a commercial SCADA, keeping the advantages of open source. The Taurus GUI application enables scientists to design their own live applications using drag-and-drop from the widget catalog. The VACCA User Interface provides a template mechanism for synoptic-driven applications and extends the widget catalog to interact with all the components of the control system (Alarms, Archiving, Databases, Hosts Administration). The elements of VACCA are described in this paper, as well as its mechanisms to encapsulate all services in a GUI for an specific subsystem (e.g. Vacuum).  
poster icon Poster WEPGF148 [1.590 MB]  
THHC3O03 Effortless Creation of Control & Data Acquisition Graphical User Interfaces with Taurus 1
  • C. Pascual-Izarra, G. Cuní, C.M. Falcón Torres, D. Fernandez-Carreiras, Z. Reszela, M. Rosanes Siscart
    ALBA-CELLS Synchrotron, Cerdanyola del Vallès, Spain
  • T.M. Coutinho
    ESRF, Grenoble, France
  Creating and supporting Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs) for experiment control and data acquisition has traditionally been a major drain of time and resources for laboratories. GUIs often need to be adapted to new equipment or methods, but typical users lack the technical skills to perform the required modifications, let alone to create new GUIs. Here we present the Taurus* framework which allows a non-programmer to create a fully-featured GUI (with forms, plots, synoptics, etc) from scratch in a few minutes using a "wizard" as well as to customize and expand it by drag-and-dropping elements around at execution time. Moreover, Taurus also gives full control to more advanced users to access, create and customize a GUI programmatically using Python. Taurus is a free, open source, multi-platform pure Python module (it uses PyQt for the GUI). Its support and development are driven by an active and welcoming community participated by several major laboratories and companies which use it for their developments. While Taurus was originally designed within the Sardana** suite for the Tango*** control system, now it can also support other control systems (even simultaneously) via plug-ins.
* Taurus Home Page:** Sardana Home Page:*** Tango Home Page:
slides icon Slides THHC3O03 [23.180 MB]  
  • D. Fernandez-Carreiras
    ALBA-CELLS Synchrotron, Cerdanyola del Vallès, Spain
  The next ICALEPCS conference will take place in October 2017 in Barcelona, Spain. Barcelona is one of the largest European metropolis on the Mediterranean Sea. It was founded over 2000 years ago and since then it has been the traditional gateway to Spain. In Barcelona, diverse cultures (Greek, Phoenician, Iberian, Roman, Jewish, Arab, Christian) flourished and came to enrich its heritage. Barcelona is the capital of Catalonia and the second largest city in Spain. In just over two decades since it hosted the 1992 Olympic Games, Barcelona has completely transformed its range of facilities and attractions. It has done so by displaying a dynamic character and pioneering spirit, which are palpable in its new urban and architectural layout. The city enjoys mild climatic conditions, and offers the visitor its own unique lifestyle, which is particularly evocative and appealing. ICALEPCS'17 will be organized by the ALBA Synchrotron, the largest scientific infrastructure in Spain, located next to the Autonomous University of Barcelona. ALBA started the operation in 2012 with seven Beamlines and today it has another two in construction and a project for up to six more in the following years. The installation is funded on a 50-50% basis by the Spanish and the Catalan governments.