Advances in Automation: Wireless the Enabler

Southwest Process Technology Conference
October 4, 2013 - 8:30am-11:30am

Older refineries and petrochemical facilities were built with the minimum amount of instrumentation, only that which was necessary to safely operate the plant – not necessarily the ability to operate optimally and reliably.  Critical assets typically have asset protection and many have online monitoring as well.  However, most second tier “essential” assets typically are monitored manually with spot-checks from the field or preventive time-based maintenance, whether needed or not.  In addition, some process measurements like temperatures in-between tube bundles on a crude unit are either missing, or have local measurement in the field – these missing online measurements make it challenging to monitor fouling and accelerated fouling.

The introduction of WirelessHART® technologies has given refiners and petrochemical facilities the opportunity to add additional process and asset health measurements without the cost and concerns of pulling new cable through an operating process unit.  These new measurements enable the facility to see added process parameters to improve efficiency, and asset health measurements to manage the health of assets in ways that were not feasible before.

This presentation will show examples how wireless automation technology has changed the work culture to be more informed about the process and asset health, thus able to make better decisions that affect operating performance, reliability, safety, and turnaround planning.

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