Plant Network Evaluation Application Story


PDA evaluated a facility’s industrial network to assess and give recommendations for a full network upgrade. The network utilized legacy equipment and was comprised of multiple revisions/additions throughout years. Documentation and a lack of standards/best practices for network scalability were not considered when revising the network architecture. The network, consisting of both wired and wireless telemetries, was documented – including implementation for Cybersecurity Protocols and specifications written for a complete upgrade with trade contractor solicitations for a turnkey estimate.


This network evaluation consisted of an investigation of plant network equipment to deliver a network architecture design which proposed the required upgrades, a scope document detailing the additional upgrades and recommendations, and a proposed cost to turnkey deliver the recommendations including installation. A wireless telemetry study was performed along with the network mapping of 7 network distribution sites. A cost analysis of new equipment, strategies of Cybersecurity implementations, and a deployment plan were developed as part of the documentation set. PDA built a bid specification for trade contractors and hosted bid walkthroughs for network media installation to provide the client with a complete turnkey solution.


The facility evaluated is one of three facilities that total 329,000 square feet and over 300 employees.


  • Constant network latency
  • Failing equipment due to age and environment
  • Difficult to maintain and administrate the growing network
  • The network was not installed to a standard/best practice and had minimal documentation
  • Cybersecurity concerns



  • Industrial network enclosures
  • Network Patch Panels
  • Industrial Wireless Access Points
  • Industrial Ethernet Switches


  • Project Scope and Bid Specification
  • Proposed network enclosure design
  • Cursory Plant Network Map
  • Existing/Proposed Plant Network Architecture Diagram
  • Existing Inventory of Network Distribution Sites
  • Existing/Proposed Plant Wireless Coverage Map


Network Evaluation:

  • Review of all existing network equipment
  • Consultation of proposed network architecture and recommended upgrades
  • Cursory overview diagram (switch IP’s, general location layout)
  • Wireless telemetry study with coverage maps
  • Detailed network mapping (point-to-point listing of device communications origin/destination)
  • Recommendations for:
    • Industrial Cybersecurity Strategy
    • Configuration
    • Deployment of network devices
  • Scope Development of recommendations and upgrades
  • Bid Specification and contractor solicitations
  • Turnkey cost estimate