Instrumentation project boosts HDPE production at petrochemical plant

12/15/2005


Replacing old pneumatic instrumentation with a new automated control system has helped a Yugoslavian petrochemical company reach record production levels.

HIP-Petrohemija complex in the industrial zones northeast of Belgrade in Serbia Montenegro produces about a million metric tons of petrochemicals each year. Of this, some 75,000 tons/year is high-density polyethylene (HDPE). HDPE was being produced using pneumatic instrumentation that often required expensive, sometimes obsolete, spare parts. Maintenance had also become an issue.

In an effort to reduce maintenance costs and increase efficiency, plant operators turned to Invensys Process Systems for a solution. As a result, a Foxboro I/A Series automation system was installed. It included fieldbus (I/O) modules and FDT-based field device support tools. Critical control functions, such as the emergency shutdown system, use Triconex triple modular redundant (TMR) technology. HART-based intelligent transmitters were used throughout the HDPE production area. Invensys also custom-developed Historian Messages Viewer and Top Alarm programs for use by the company.

Operators easily mastered the new production controls, the company reported. "During the first 100 days of operation," said Paun Milovanovic, assistant manager in the plant's instrument department, "we had only to make one intervention on instrument equipment. And with the new flow measurement technology, we have also improved energy consumption." In October, the company set a new monthly production record of 7,000 tons of HDPE.

—Jeanine Katzel, senior editor, Control Engineering,
jkatzel@reedbusiness.com





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