Smart valve positioner boosts gas production
ABB digital positioner stabilizes flow, helps gas separation plant increase argon production by 10%.
A modern digital electro-pneumatic valve positioner from ABB minimizes flowrate swings of rich-liquid vapor at an air separation plant in Louisiana. The new positioner replaces one installed on the actuator of a 20-in. butterfly valve. Tighter control of the flowrate has helped to stabilize the sensitive cryogenic distillation process, increasing argon production by 10%. The plant employs cryogenic fractional distillation to separate air into its major components: nitrogen (78%), oxygen (21%), argon (0.96%).
The plant controls the amount of rich-liquid vapor coming off the argon column, which in turn controls the amount of crude argon flow coming into this column. A 20-in. Jamesbury butterfly valve regulates the flowrate of the rich-liquid vapor, which after installation of TZIDC digital electro-pneumatic positioner from ABB, is now flat and smooth.
The plant manager notes that flatter flowrates establish better system equilibrium, maximizing product purity. The plant can now run the air separation columns under tighter control, which results in production of more argon, estimated at about 10% more.
Visit the Control Engineering Process Control Channel.
Edited by Peter Welander, pwelander(at)cfemedia.com
|Search the online Automation Integrator Guide|
Case Study Database
Get more exposure for your case study by uploading it to the Control Engineering case study database, where end-users can identify relevant solutions and explore what the experts are doing to effectively implement a variety of technology and productivity related projects.
These case studies provide examples of how knowledgeable solution providers have used technology, processes and people to create effective and successful implementations in real-world situations. Case studies can be completed by filling out a simple online form where you can outline the project title, abstract, and full story in 1500 words or less; upload photos, videos and a logo.
Click here to visit the Case Study Database and upload your case study.