Author Archive | guest blogging for ISA


Managing Infrequent Operational Procedures Is Critical to Safe Process Manufacturing

For all the sophisticated automation in process manufacturing environments, there is one area where operators still take manual control in many facilities: procedures for infrequent operations. When it is time to start up a unit, make a grade change, adjust to a new feedstock, or make any number of specific adjustments to the process—operators often […]

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How to Achieve Optimal Web Tension Control

Tension controls are crucially important, both for the runnability of the machine and for the overall quality of the product. However, this control is quite often executed imperfectly or even incorrectly because of poor design or engineering. Many times the selected components themselves are good, but they are still incorrect for the specific application, or […]

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Six Key Steps for an Effective Industrial Business Process Change

You probably use dozens of business processes every day. When processes work well, they can significantly improve efficiency, productivity, and customer satisfaction. You have also likely realized the results of inefficient processes that cause frustration, delays, and financial loss. That is why it is so important to improve processes that are not working well. Processes […]

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Where Do Humans Fit in the Factory of the Future?

Much has been written and forecasted about the various impacts of technologies on humans: work, pleasure, productivity, and behaviors. The exponential growth of technical tools and their explosive applications to our lives have been nothing short of astounding. These have created an equally dramatic increase in new jobs with required skills. Organizations seek to fill […]

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Gateway physical segmentation example: two NICs for network segmentation.

How to Integrate Industrial and Information Networks

The benefits of converging industrial and information networks with a validated secure architecture based on standard Internet Protocol (IP) technologies are well established. The benefits include greater connectivity and integration across plants, easier data sharing across the enterprise, and better visibility into real-time operations. Bringing together information technology (IT) and operations technology (OT) networks is […]

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How Does Low Flow Affect Differential Pressure Flowmeter Calibration?

For flowmeter calibration, the phenomenon of “low flow cut-off” is only associated with differential pressure transmitters with square root extraction — if the square root (flow) calculation is done in the control system (DCS/PLC), then this test approach does not apply. The graphic below illustrates the issue. Some may ask why we are testing the […]

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Steps You Can Take to Help Close the Industrial Skills Gap

If you’re like most manufacturers, your most experienced employees are also those closest to retirement. Replacing them without creating quality gaps won’t be easy or cheap – studies show that without a proper knowledge transfer plan, the cost to replace a senior engineer is between 300 percent and 500 percent of the senior employee’s salary. […]

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Increasing Diversity in the Automation Profession

There have been many articles written on how and why we should increase the number of individuals from minority groups in the field of automation. Most reflect the opinions of diversity experts or human resources professionals, and some are politically motivated. This article is different because it gives the opinions of minority participants actively working […]

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