(329e) Using Simulators to Teach Process Safety
This work describes our efforts to enhance process safety and unit operations education using simulator technology. Simulators provide an excellent opportunity for students to experiment with and learn about a process, something that is not feasible in an actual plant. The specific software tools that were used included simulations of various unit operations, including a heat exchanger, cooling tower, and distillation column. Students were presented with various scenarios in which they were asked to execute a cold start-up or to troubleshoot and repair a fault. As student expertise in the simulators increased, they were exposed to more complicated processes, including an FCC unit and an atmospheric crude unit. The more complicated processes were accompanied by a "virtual reality" outside operator view in which the students could locate and monitor the various control instruments in the process. This presentation will focus on our classroom methods and some of the preliminary feedback from the students.
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