Making the choice
In the process of the plan designing, the bidding, and the decision making, as the user, we had the following primary considerations:The safety performance of the system:
The Fatty Alcohol Project involved hydrogen and methyl alcohol medium, and some of the equipment was installed in the explosion prevention area, a Division 2 area. Therefore reliable isolation is most important. The Matrix system has the ability to be used in the Division 2 area. It can be mounted directly to the intrinsic safety instrument. Without doubt, it conformed to the requirement. The reliability of the system:
Compared to traditional instruments, although the DCS system is a control station, it essentially is a large digital instrument. It centralizes the loop circuits, but also concentrates the risk. However, the rapid development of the semiconductor and computer technology makes digital instruments very reliable - even more reliable than analog instruments. The hardware quality between various big companies tends to be “homogenous.” MTL is a worldwide large corporation with a high reputation in the safety barrier field. We regarded MTL’s other products as the first-class in the world. It is a concern of psychological cognition. The cost-efficiency of the system:
Currently, there are no absolutely advanced monopoly products in the world. Many companies have systems with the same performance. In the market competition, price is a major attribute. In the process of the DCS system bidding, Most’s Matrix system had a relatively lower price. After the thorough analysis, we believed that this low price did not sacrifice the quality of the product. MTL also wished to expand into the Chinese market, and offer new services. We welcomed this cost-effective plan.The maintenance and service of the system:
The post-sale service of the system was one of our considerations. We desired the high quality hardware with low system maintenance of the Matrix system. On the other hand, the Matrix system hardware is produced overseas, and all hardware maintenance must be pursued overseas. This was one of our concerns. No matter how good the hardware is, it will have problems some day. It is a post-sale service issue whether the problem can be solved and the system can be restored in the shortest time when the breakdown occurs. Concerning this issue, we analyzed the situations of the bidding companies. Most of them were the same - only Honeywell has a factory in China. At last, we chose the rugged, redundant controllers and I/O modules plan. We hope after changing a hardware backup part, the crashed part will be fixed or replaced in a timely manner. We feel MTL China will pay attention to our needs to avoid or minimize any plant down situation.The upgrade service of the system:
A system will not be perfect at the beginning. Users would like to continuously optimize their program while they are using the system. Therefore, if the system supplier can continuously help the user upgrade and optimize the system after the sale, it is welcomed without doubt. There is a “sentiment” factor between the user and the software. Users will not change, or give up software they are familiar with, especially for integrators. MTL commits to help users upgrade the software when supplying products. It helps promote the system application widely.