Chemical factory

How to Smooth the Transition Between Batch and Continuous Operations

Processes often include a mixture of batch and continuous operations. For liquid products made in a batch operation, most of the time the batch flow is off because the drain valve is closed during the batch. When done, the batch is drained quickly. This discontinuous batch flow cannot directly feed continuous operations downstream. For traditional […]

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thermometer on white

Thermocouples vs RTDs: Choosing the Right Temperature Sensor

Thermocouples (TCs) and resistance temperature detectors (RTDs) are the most widely used temperature sensors in automation and process control. They are found embedded in motors, valves, turbines, bearings, and a host of other devices. Most smart instruments such as flowmeters, pressure transmitters, and level transmitters also have an embedded temperature sensor-used to correct the primary […]

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scanning of finger on a touch screen interface

How Often Should Instruments Be Calibrated?

Plants can improve their efficiency and reduce costs by performing calibration history trend analysis. By doing so, a plant is able to define which instruments can be calibrated less frequently and which should be calibrated more frequently. Calibration history trend analysis is only possible with calibration software that provides this functionality. Cost savings can be […]

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Qualified or unqualified.

Are you qualified?

This week hundreds of educators and professionals from government and public and private industry sectors converged on Washington, DC to attend the US News STEM Solutions National Conference. The sessions covered an array of topics related to STEM (science, technology, engineering and math); I had the honor of participating on a panel entitled “Customized Credentials […]

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Man presses button on electronic control panel, close-up

Webinar Recording: How Can Front-End Loading Streamline the Control System Migration Process?

    This post has been updated with the webinar recording. Your control system wasn’t designed for the plant you have today − it was created specifically for the plant that was built long ago. Think of all the changes that have been made in that time, all the improvements in quality, throughput and enterprise integration […]

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Scheduled vs Actual Control Valves

Webinar Recording: How to Implement Proactive Condition-Based Maintenance Strategies

    This post has been updated with the webinar recording. According to industry estimates, most installed measurement instruments are “smart.” Smart devices provide more than just the process variable measurement using the 4-20mA signal. In order to maximize your investment in smart measurement devices, better manage your operations, lower your operating costs and improve […]

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Nuclear power plant

Cascade Control of Superheated Steam Temperature with Neuro-PID controller

Abstract: Superheated steam temperature plays an important role in the security and economy of power plants. Control of superheated steam temperature is not only economically essential in terms of improving lifetime and efficiency, but also technically challenging because of the complex superheater process characterized by nonlinearity, uncertainty and load disturbance. In this paper, an improved […]

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Automation Project Justification: Just About the Math?

Clearly, any new automation project requires economic justification. Although this often involves hard “dollars and cents” quantification of cost savings from increased production, reduced raw material costs, or increased uptime, it is also about “soft” benefits, such as reducing risks and improving agility. All contribute to making your company more competitive. This article will focus […]

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