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Dynamic Simulations Create Value across Lifecycle

Emerson's Sean SullivanSimulations can add value across the lifecycle of a manufacturing or production process—from the upfront design work for the capital project portion of the lifecycle to the ongoing operations and maintenance.

Processing: Using Life Cycle Dynamic Simulation to Drive Projects And PerformanceIn a Processing magazine article, Using Life Cycle Dynamic Simulation to Drive Projects And Performance, Emerson’s Sean Sullivan teamed with a third-party consultant working at chemical manufacturing facility to write the article.

They open defining lifecycle dynamic simulation as:

…holistic, scalable simulation throughout the plant life cycle that can help chemical organizations make strategic project and operations decisions that drive toward top-quartile performance without sacrificing safety or uptime.

They also define a Digital Twin as:

…an operations reference system hosted in a private cloud environment or maintained locally on virtual servers…

This operations reference system simulates the control system and a dynamic simulation provides a virtual representation of the running process and its associated dynamics. These create virtual plant models that simulate the automation and plant technologies used in the physical world. Used together:

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Sensors for Single-Use Bioreactors

For pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical manufacturers, scaling up production has typically meant large, 5000+ liter stainless steel bioreactors for the process. These require cleaning and sterilization between batches. Market demands are driving the need for more flexibility with smaller batches. Single-use technologies (SUT) are being applied to bioreactors to address these demands and reduce the cost and time associated with cleaning and sterilization operations.

Pharmaceutical Manufacturing: Retrofitting batch with single-useIn a Pharmaceutical Manufacturing article, Retrofitting batch with single-use, Emerson’s Michael Francis describes the advantages if SUT and instrumentation considerations.

Michael opens highlighting the costs of traditional stainless-steel (SST) bioreactors.

Even ignoring the initial costs of SST equipment fabrication and installation, operating costs remain quite high since cleaning and sterilizing operations require significant support infrastructure. Equipment and fittings must be cleaned-in-place (CIP) or cleaned-out-of-place (COP) for each batch.

After cleaning, this equipment:

…must be sterilized-in-place (SIP) with steam, another energy-intensive operation.

From a flexibility standpoint:

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Turbine Flow Meters in Hydrocarbon Applications

Turbine flow meters have historically provided volumetric total flow and with advancements in electronics technology, flow rate measurements. They are commonly used in hydrocarbon liquid measurements where the fluid lubricates the turbine to help the rotor assembly move freely.

In a Processing Magazine article, Digital Transformation Strategies for Mechanical Flow Instrumentation, Emerson’s Tom Bass highlights their role as simple to operate and maintain, as well as a reliable, cost-effective method for achieving accurate flow measurement.

These devices originally were mechanical devices using gears and rotary counters to measure the turbine revolutions. Tom describes the shortcomings of these mechanical meters.

First, they cannot deliver real-time flow readings and, second, there is no capability to send data to an information-gathering or automation system.

Advancing beyond mechanical counting, electronic signal processing uses a proximity sensor:

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Role of Cloud and Edge in Automation Architectures

The Emerson acquisition of General Electric’s Intelligent Platform business closed on February 1, 2019. Emerson’s Rich Carpenter recorded a podcast with IoT Time’s Ken Briodagh the prior summer while serving as the General Manager of this business.

In the IoT Evolution podcast, IoT Time Podcast S.3 Ep.28 GE Automation & Controls, they discussed the Edge, Cloud, IIoT, and the changing architectures in Industrial Automation.

I’ll highlight a few of the points that Rich makes and invite to listen to 29-minute podcast. Continue Reading

Podcast: Digital Transformation for Walkdowns

We continue our FIRSTHAND: Operational Certainty in a Pod podcast series with a conversation with Emerson’s Jerry Chen.

As an Operational Certainty consultant, Jerry works with manufacturers and producers to improve the reliability of their processes. It starts with a complete understanding of the assets used in the production process and keeping these records current as an important component of an effective reliability strategy.

We hope you’ll enjoy this episode and will consider subscribing to the whole FIRSTHAND: Operational Certainty in Pod series on your iOS or Android mobile device.


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