Manufacturers and producers can take steps in their digital transformation journeys to improve energy efficiency and reduce unaccounted for losses. In a comment to an earlier post, Jonas Berge highlighted 7 ways:
- Steam trap failure detection
- Relief valve seat passing detection
- Relief valve release detection
- Heat Exchanger fouling detection
- Cooling Tower fan speed optimization
- Air-Cooled Heat Exchanger fouling detection and fan speed optimization
- ISO 50001 Energy Management
Let’s take them one at a time. Operators have traditionally manually monitored steam traps on a periodic basis. The time between, which could be months, when these steam traps start leaking and wasting energy until discovered and fixed is the opportunity for improved efficiency with wireless acoustic steam trap monitors and monitoring software.
A relief valve over time seat may not seat properly causing a loss of product to the flare system or to the atmosphere. Wireless acoustic sensors can monitor for when leaks begin to occur so that maintenance can be scheduled and performed before losses become significant.
Relief valves are designed to mitigate overpressure conditions. Wireless acoustic sensors and monitoring software can detect the time and duration of these releases to provide data to account for any losses and alert operations personnel that a release condition occurred.
As fouling occurs in heat exchangers they lose efficiency and increase energy consumption. With wireless differential pressure and temperature sensors combined with built-for-purpose monitoring software, together these help you to improve operational efficiency by enabling detection of accelerated fouling early and determining exactly which heat exchanger bundle needs to be cleaned.
Cooling tower issues can cause production constraints, unsuitable water quality, hydrocarbon leaks, as well the resulting costs and dangers. Continuous cooling tower monitoring and analysis improves performance over traditional infrequent manual readings. This approach helps you detect and address issues that could lead to lost cooling capacity, asset damage, and/or higher energy use.
ISO 50001 is an energy management global standard that provides a framework to continuously improve their energy usage. By adding sensors to monitor all the energy streams used in production—water, air, gas, electricity, and steam (W.A.G.E.S) helps to identify areas of overconsumption.
Read Jonas’ LinkedIn post, Saving Energy, One Bit at a Time, as well as his article in Control Engineering Asia, Plant Modernization for Energy Efficiency and Loss Control, for more on these seven ways to improve energy efficiency and reduce unaccounted for losses.
You can connect and interact with other digital transformation and Industrial Internet of Things experts in the IIoT & Digital Transformation group in the Emerson Exchange 365 community.