There are four main strategic decisions you should consider before upgrading your outdated Distributed Control System (DCS) to a new automation system. Download this paper to learn how to define your migration strategy and make the switch with as little risk as possible.10/23/2012
In this new paper, F. Greg Shinskey offers more than a dozen practical ways to reduce cost with process control. These are not theoretical examples, but specific cases from real plants. Learn from one of the masters in the field of process control and see how your plant can benefit today.08/27/2012
The thermal mass flow meter's ability to deliver a direct reading of mass flow rates of air, natural gas and other fuel gases provides a simple, reliable, and costeffective method for tracking and reporting fuel consumption.
Accurate, repeatable measurement of air and gas, at low and varying flow rates, is also a critical variable in combustion control. Conventional flow meters require pressure and temperature transmitters to compensate for density changes. The thermal mass flow meter, however, measures gas mass flow directly, with no need for additional hardware. The thermal meter also provides better rangeability and a lower pressure drop than orifices, venturis, or turbine meters.
Energy prices are subject to frequent and abrupt changes and fluctuations. When energy prices are high, daily accounting of natural gas usage should be made a priority for large industrial facilities with multiple processes and/or buildings. Fuel gas flow meters are used to analyze demand, improve operating efficiency, reduce waste and adjust for peak usage. Thermal mass flow meters are frequently used for these energy-accounting applications. In addition, thermal flow meters can help plant managers provide accurate usage reports for environmental compliance, as well as compare measured usage to billing reports from gas providers.08/13/2012
Most companies are accustomed to buying energy, however unpleasant the process may be. Organizations can now generate another product to add to their portfolio, the Negawatt. Very few corporations today are without energy and emission reduction initiatives, but few are taking advantage of the low-hanging energy efficiency opportunities that are not discussed in the investor conference calls. Is your mobile workforce equipped with the right toolset to help generate Negawatts today? Energy efficiency gains are not simply a one-time savings; they represent a recurring opportunity which can be realized monthly. Learn more in this white paper.08/13/2012
Pundits have been predicting the death of manufacturing in North America and western Europe for decades. It hasn't happened yet, and it probably won't happen at all. The markets and the manufacturing capacity are so large it seems certain that manufacturing in North America and western Europe will continue.
While it may be true that manufacturing in the First World is becoming more competitive, this isn't a passive phenomenon. Companies that offer innovative product development, manufacturing operations and business practices are more able to respond to changes in business conditions on a global basis than companies that believe they are world-class and thus don't have to change.
To stay competitive in the global market, all your systems must be integrated to produce the least possible friction as materials become products and move to distribution. Friction occurs when systems don't talk to one another easily or simply don't interface well at all - and it costs money. It's time to take a fresh look at your manufacturing operations, from supply chain to distribution channels, and make sure they are all integrated, both horizontally with each other as well as vertically to the business systems of the enterprise. And during that fresh look, you need to look at your existing manufacturing assets.
In the First World, it is simply not possible to knock down existing plants and build new ones from a green field. When you develop your strategic agility plan, a big part of it is going to be making all your existing assets work together in an integrated fashion.
Are you going to be "quick" or "dead"? Download this white paper to learn how you can take your manufacturing processes to the next level07/10/2012
Need to upgrade your DCS soon? You're not alone. A recent study shows that 68% of control engineers plan to upgrade within the next six months. And it's safe to say that most of them experience fear, uncertainty and doubt about how to move forward. That's why we've developed this list of what it takes to guarantee success for your DCS migration.07/02/2012
Kaizen, lean manufacturing, six-sigma, total quality management, continuous improvement - all of these terms refer to the efforts of companies as they strive to become more competitive in a global economy. While various strategies are implemented in order to improve productivity, they all have two things in common: the collection of key performance indicators (KPIs) and the communication of those KPIs to the people who can most affect improvement. This data however, doesn't do any good unless everyone can see it and that's where visual management comes into play. Download this white paper to learn how visual management techniques can be deployed very quickly, without a huge investment in software or changes to existing processes. Learn how visual management can increase your company's profitability.01/09/2012
Process industries are inherently hazardous, and maintaining safety in processes and operations has become increasingly complex and costly. With both safety and financial concerns being a high priority, those in the process industry sometimes struggle to reconcile them. This white paper shows you how you can.12/05/2011
In this 43-page eBook, Bela Liptak, control and safety consultant and editor of the Instrument Engineer's Handbook, describes the state of the art for controlling and optimizing the distillation process.09/02/2011
Continuous Improvement separates winners from losers. Your competition is making improvements every day, and you need to keep ahead of them to succeed. Unfortunately, if you are like most process manufacturers, you just don't have enough staffing. If only there was some way to automatically capture improvement opportunities.
New, automated methods are now driving continuous improvements at process manufacturing plants. These methods use process data, with automated analysis and automated diagnostics, that pinpoint improvements to process, equipment, and controls. These plants see significant results for operating cost, energy reduction, and quality improvement.
Continuous improvement requires a lot of data. A modern control system contains mountains of data describing the actual performance of a process operation. In fact, most control systems are automatically logging thousands of pieces of information, every second, and storing it in history.
But it is not being used! The bottleneck to continuous improvement has become the monitoring and analysis of these mountains of data. Most companies simply do not have enough highly skilled engineers to comb through the data, identify the best opportunities for improvement, diagnose, analyze, and prioritize the actions.08/22/2011
Users must understand how to optimize server performance regardless of using an OPC client or a native interface for connection. In this white paper, learn more about:
- Issues that affect performance, and suggestions for resolution.
- How communications occur between the server and device.
- How the project's configuration affects the way the device communicates.07/19/2011
Download this presentation to see a series of highlights from the Greenhouse Gas Mandatory Reporting Rule (GHG MRR).05/20/2011
Reducing the carbon footprint brought on by plant inefficiencies and population growth and over-consumption, with the goals of reducing plant costs, achieving energy efficiency and security, and abating greenhouse gases (GHGs) -- of which carbon dioxide (CO2) is the main culprit -- are the challenges faced by today's leading industrial producers. This paper will explore effective ways to produce energy more cost effectively, purchase energy more economically and reduce overall energy usage, contributing to significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.05/11/2011
Often referred to as electrical integration, integrated process and power automation is a new system integration architecture and power strategy that addresses the needs of the process and power generation industries. This paper discusses how a single integrated system can increase energy efficiency; improve plant uptime and lower life cycle costs.04/13/2011
In today's competitive pulp and paper industry, mills must find ways to reduce costs if they are to improve their business performance. As operating expenses are on the rise, service and support programs are becoming more scrutinized. Maintenance effectiveness is a key objective to reduce these costs--without the eventual impact on production that occurs by simply slashing budgets. In this white paper, learn how remote monitoring helps to lower maintenance costs.03/15/2011
This guide discusses how best to optimize combustion efficiency in any application using combustion plant.
Combustion optimization in some form or other has become an absolute necessity for all combustion processes. Optimization improves efficiency, reduces environmental impact, reduces maintenance requirements and increases the time between maintenance shutdowns. There are many types of application where combustion optimization will be a key requirement. These include:
- Process heaters - the driver here is to increase throughput of feedstock, not necessarily fuel efficiency
- Waste incinerators - waste throughput is the main driver but environmental impact also has to be considered
- Steam raising, for power generation or other processes, pulp and paper, food and beverage etc, where fuel efficiency is the main driver
In any of the above examples, poor control of the combustion process may ultimately lead to damage to the plant, with problems such as soot formation, hotspots and/or corrosion in the flue ducts, to name but a few. In each case, the incidence of such problems, especially if left unresolved, will result in increased maintenance expenditure and a reduction in the life cycle of the plant.03/01/2011
The global trends and challenges driving the need for industry to improve energy efficiency are well known. The growing population and economic development in many countries throughout the world has caused energy and transportation fuel consumption to increase.02/17/2011
There is an upside for forward-thinking manufacturers regarding EPA blueprint for the way state and local regulatory agencies use the Clean Air Act permitting process to regulate greenhouse gas emissions in the United States.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency blueprint for the way state and local regulatory agencies use the Clean Air Act permit process to regulate greenhouse gas emissions in the United States is defined in their November 17 document: PSD and Title V Permitting Guidance for Greenhouse Gases.
The greenhouse gases that will be regulated include carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, sulfur hexafluoride and a number of refrigerants.
The Agency believes that these compounds are responsible for changing the planet's climate and is thus taking steps to reduce emissions of the gases throughout the nation. In taking this action, EPA is breaking new ground, by not only defining a broad new class of air pollutants, but by changing the way that the Agency regulates emissions of those pollutants.
Traditionally, EPA has set definitive, measurable goals when seeking to reduce air pollutant emissions, both in terms of how much a compound a facility is allowed to emit and in terms of the maximum amount of the pollutant that can be in the air we breathe. The Agency will not take the same approach when it comes to greenhouse gases. Instead, they will be asking facilities to reduce emissions to the greatest extent possible and economically feasible.
And, yes, there is upside for forward-thinking manufacturers.01/21/2011
This initiative is the first step in filling a noticeable void in industry - the lack of independent competency training in the Operations Management (MES/MOM) arena. This lack of wide-scale competency is recognized as a major barrier to plant and supply chain optimization and global operations excellence.
With members in 85 countries globally, MESA is an independent, objective community of like-minded people and enterprises working to make Operations more reliable, capable and profitable. Some of the foremost experts across the Operations Management landscape are leading the knowledge sharing within the MESA community by offering programs across 4 continents by mid-2011.
MESA Certificate of Competency (CoC) for MES/MOM* Methodologies: A 4-day, comprehensive program of MES/MOM Methodologies courses aimed at Systems Analysts, Architects, Programmers, Project Managers and Consultants.
MESA Certificate of Awareness (CoA) for MES/MOM Business Awareness: A 2-day, high-level program of MES/MOM Business Functions courses geared for executives, manufacturing/operations and IT personnel and sales professionals. The CoA courses are higher level, short versions of the CoC program.
Biomass power-generating electricity from renewable feedstocks- offers a potential escape from the fossil-fuel trap. More sustainable sources of biomass and efficient conversion processes, as well as more flexible control technologies, together offer the potential to offset growing energy demands on a carbon-neutral basis.11/09/2010