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Predictive Material Delivery to A Batch System
Creating an inexpensive material delivery system to provide high accuracy and to do so at high speeds would seem to be an impossible task. Procter & Gamble's "Adaptive Predictive Control" (APC) makes this seemingly impossible task both possible and practical. Using this technology, P&G has demonstrated improvements in automated material delivery accuracies by a factor of more than 10! APC allows the control system to "predict-the-future" and then use this information to accurately add the formulated amount of material. APC allows for the use of simple and inexpensive ON-OFF flow control devices, reducing not only the installed cost of a system but also its long-term maintenance costs. Since APC controls at the full flow rate of a delivery system rather than reducing the flow at the end of a delivery, batch cycle time is improved. APC is self-tuning and will not only "learn" the characteristics of a delivery system, but also will track and adapt to the normal variations that occur over time. With APC overseeing the automated material delivery systems, the attention required by normal operations becomes almost nonexistent. P&G's APC technology has been licensed to an instrument vendor and has been incorporated into their factory floor devices. Several control companies are developing easy to use function blocks that will seamlessly integrate these Instrument Devices with APC into the controller architectures.
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