The past two years have been a real wakeup call for the industrial automation industry. For the first time ever it has been the target of sophisticated cyber attacks like Stuxnet, Night Dragon and Duqu.
In addition, an unprecedented number of security vulnerabilities have been exposed in industrial control products and regulatory agencies are demanding compliance to complex and confusing regulations. Cyber security has quickly become a serious issue for professionals in the process and critical infrastructure industries.
If you are a process control engineer, an IT professional in a company with an automation division, or a business manager responsible for safety or security, you may be wondering how your organization can get moving on more robust cyber security practices.
In order to provide you with guidance in this area, Tofino Security and exida Consulting LLC have condensed material from numerous industry standards and best practice documents. They also combined experience in assessing the security of dozens of industrial control systems.
David A. Moore, PE, CSP, president and CEO of AcuTech Consulting Group, testified at a June 2006 hearing on Inherently Safer Technology in the Context of Chemical Site Security at The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee
Capacitance-type magnetic flowmeters have traditionally offered the advantage of having non-wetted electrodes and the ability to measure low conductivity fluids. However, they suffered from a sensitivity to flow noise and zero instability. Innovative technology overcomes these limitations and drives magnetic flowmeters into new areas of application, while reducing installed costs.
During industrial manufacturing, many companies use a wide variety of chemicals from methanol, acetone and benzene to foodstuffs like wine and edible oils stored in large tanks at different points in the manufacturing process. In a technique called “chemical tank blanketing,” or “padding” nitrogen is commonly applied to protect chemicals stored in tanks against contamination, degradation or chemical change as well as to prevent fire or explosions. This white paper first discusses blanketing basics and benefits. It reviews considerations for tank blanketing systems and discusses a newer approach, which is typically more cost effective for most applications, is that of generating nitrogen on-demand in the plant itself.
As the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) moves forward with the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS), the program continues to evolve. This white paper describes the ongoing CFATS compliance process (which is a combination of technical, procedural, and personnel security) and also provides insight regarding how to develop or revise a comprehensive Site Security Plan (SSP) and prepare for a CFATS Authorization Inspection (AI). Recommendations are relevant to SSPs for all tier levels and should be considered for a facility's initial SSP submission and/or any required SSP resubmission. Download this white paper now: Tips for Inspection and Resubmission.
Automation systems today have become warehouses of knowledge and information. Beyond system configuration, years of effort is inevitably invested in them. This paper will discuss a few factors contributing to the automation knowledge crisis, present industry examples, and provide an optimal solution
Sure, the process engineer is proud of his HMI (human machine interface) and the operations manager is pleased with his KPI (key performance indicators) dashboard and how effectively the system is running with the implementation of his new MES/MIS solution. The historian and analytic solution get all the credit when a field equipment crisis is averted. Does anyone ever think to thank the lowly driver? Without data, the HMI is just a pretty picture, and the best analytics in the world are only ideas without any basis in fact. Plus, tens or hundreds of thousand dollars are spent on that, while the driver budget isn't even a line item on the spec sheet. The communication arteries and veins reach out to all areas of the field equipment, sending and receiving data, efficiently and tirelessly ensuring the ability to acquire, analyze and adapt to the situations at hand.
This paper reviews the basic techniques for dynamic modeling of these two key operations. It covers considerations related to heat transfer, reaction chemistry, mass balances and the control system. It also discusses equipment configurations, performance characteristics and operational constraints.
Today's control system make it easy to add alarms. The result has been a proliferation of alarms that can overwhelm an operator and actually obscure situations that really require immediate attention. This paper provides practical guidance on effective procedures that can significantly reduce nuisance alarms and improve operator effectiveness.
Operating and maintaining a reliable steam system is vital to chemical processing plants and can have significant cost impact on a plant's annual budget. Typical profit drainers in operating and maintaining a steam system include excessive fuel cost, inefficient steam generation, less-than-optimal steam utlization and poor condensate recovery. Ensuring adequate supply of steam often results in excessive capacity usage, expensive fuel choices or condensate draining to grade, leading to compromised efficiency levels and higher steam cost. Because steam systems dependency is unavoidalbe, addressing those three issues is crucial to minimizing steam costs. This Chemical Processing Steam eHandbook presents an overview, steam technologies and strategies for reducing cost associated with using and generating steam including:
Controlling steam system energy costs
Real-time monitoring - how wireless devices help cut energy losses by detecting failed steam traps
Learn how to generate savings through steam use and generation. Download your copy of this Chemical Processing Steam eHandbook now.
Positioned at the core of most supply chains, chemical firms must deal with many challenges to growing profitably -- flat demand, deflationary prices, and emerging competitors to name a few. Both chemicals firms large and small must develop the insight to change and win in today's ever-morphing competitive landscape. This white paper identifies and discusses how chemicals companies can combine data from many sources -- multiple ERP systems, multiple divisions and multiple applications -- maintenance, human capital, CRM, and supply chain to name just a few -- to create a complete or holistic view for critical decisions. Download now.
The use of spray nozzles to rapidly cool or quench gas streams is an essential application in many industrial processes, such as chemical reaction vessels, incineration, and power plant absorber gas inlet. An optimized spray quench design requires engineering analysis of the operating environment, spray nozzle performance and process reliability.
This technical paper describes the design considerations for spray gas quench systems such as nozzle selection, process control, system configuration and reliability. Application of this knowledge can result in a gas quench system that operates efficiently and reliably with reduced vessel size, reduced atomization energy consumption, and minimized downtime, to achieve capital and operational cost savings for your process.
Automation designers face many challenges and tradeoffs in the development of a successful network solution. This white paper discusses the necessary choices in selecting a network technology appropriate for various specific applications.
In the decade before Stuxnet attacked process control systems in Iran, there were just five known supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) vulnerabilities for all control systems in the world, according to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Industrial Control Systems Cyber Emergency Response Team (ICS-CERT). In 2011, the year after Stuxnet, that vulnerability count jumped to more than 215. Last year, it reached 248. No surprise then that Chemical makers are increasingly focusing on protecting their process control systems from intrusion both from the inside and outside. In this Chemical Processing Special Report: Protect Process Control Systems, we take a look at:
How to better protect your control system - "Defense in depth" is crucial, and new and maturing technologies may help
Cyber Security Challenges - learn about countermeasures to protect control systems
Case Study: A vulnerability assessment reveals critical gaps in the security of a natural gas pipeline
How to mitigate security risks in legacy process control systems - several steps can help protect against threats and extend the life of legacy equipment
Learn how to secure your process control systems - and your plant. Download your copy of this Chemical Processing Special Report: Protect Process Control Systems now.
Whether we are headed toward an economic rebound or continuing with the current economic downturn, specialty chemicals manufacturers should take steps now in order to get or keep a competitive edge. But what steps should specialty chemicals manufacturers take? This Special Report will discuss actionable strategies including: Reducing costs while maintaining quality and compliance; Committing not just to "lean manufacturing" but to "lean supply chain" strategies; Implementing "agile manufacturing" practices.
Economic growth, industrialization and population growth are driving the increasing demand for water, while factors such as climate change, pollution and regulation are affecting the supply and costs related to water.” The chemical industry, being highly water intensive, certainly is exposed to water-related risks. Any efforts to manage these risks and capitalize on opportunities begin with the measurement and appreciation of how water may impact business, followed by the development of strategies to protect the business both now and in the future. In this Chemical Processing Special Report we take a look at water challenges and potential solutions for chemical processors including:
Water-related risks and opportunities
How chemical makers strive to cut water consumption and improve treatment
Perhaps the most critical challenge facing the automation industry is that of aging control systems at or near the end of their product lifecycles. A legacy control system can suffer from technical, functional or supply obsolescence. With a well-planned and executed control system migration, however, plants can improve availability and reliability, while increasing production flexibility. In this Chemical Processing Special Report: Making the Most of Migration, we take a look at: Obsolescence planning – addressing concerns and planning for a successful evolution strategy; Restoration Possibilities – how new tools and innovative methods support and breath new life into aging distributed control systems; DCS Migration; More!
Download your copy of this Chemical Processing Special Report: Making the Most of Migration now!