Your current control system can probably do more than you think. Everybody can agree that diagnostics are a good thing they can identify problems early, and keep the plant running at peak performance. Learn how your existing control systems and analog instruments can deliver diagnostic capabilities, at a fraction of the cost of system or instrument replacements.
More attention to steam systems and trap monitoring provides big benefits. At most chemical plants, plant management and operators face increasing pressures to improve the energy efficiency of their processes, so they should see how they can save on steam.
To make the most of diagnostic equipment used in chemical processing, technicians must stretch their knowledge of control valves and related diagnostic equipment that keeps tabs on valve health and safety.
Design provides improved reliability in a polymer-precursor batch reactor. Sensors must respond quickly and survive a harsh environment. Poor probe reliability can make the difference between a process that makes money and one that doesnt.
Control's Béla Lipták continues his series on control of distillation processes, this time focusing on managing reboiler flow, temperature, feed rate, loading and reflux for economy, stability and safety.
Senior Editor Dirk Willard discusses Shigeo Shingo's take on mistake-proofing, or Poke Yoke, if you speak Japanese. The practice suggests the following devices: eliminate redesign, facilitate guide, mitigate lessen the damage caused by the error, or flag identify the error.
The New Sampling/Sensor Initiative or NeSSI that replaces tubing, fittings and other hardware in a sampling system with miniature modular components makes sense. Enhancements now in the works should assure its success.
Handling slurries (a mix of solids and liquids), should be based on experience and experiments, not theory. Much of the knowledge obtained from pneumatic conveyors and fluidization systems can be used in understanding slurries.
Author: Thomas R. Blackwood, Healthsite Associates