SCADA system improves petroleum distribution efficiency

When the Gulf War ended in 1991, the entire Kuwait oil industry including the Kuwait National Petroleum Company's (KNPC, Kuwait City) Sabhan Depot had suffered considerable damage and its partially completed Ahmadi Depot required rebuilding. Almost immediately after the war, KNPC began seeking solution providers with fuel depot expertise and the ability to design, procure, install, and commis...

05/01/2001


When the Gulf War ended in 1991, the entire Kuwait oil industry including the Kuwait National Petroleum Company's (KNPC, Kuwait City) Sabhan Depot had suffered considerable damage and its partially completed Ahmadi Depot required rebuilding.

Almost immediately after the war, KNPC began seeking solution providers with fuel depot expertise and the ability to design, procure, install, and commission all aspects of depot restoration and upgrade.

KNPC's objectives for the new supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system included real-time:

  • Collection of transaction and operations data to support better distribution analysis and inventory management;

  • Optimization of the tanker truck fleet to ensure adequate product supplies at retail filling stations; and

  • Support for secure, yet unattended truck loading operations.

Following proposal evaluations, KNPC awarded the prime restoration contract to OSMO Anlagenbau GmbH & Co. (Georgsmarienhütte, Germany) and the SCADA system portion to Control Systems International (CSI, Lenexa, Kan.). CSI offered fuel distribution and custody transfer hardware and software products in its Fuel-Facs+ system, and expertise to specify, procure, configure, test, install, and commission the entire system, including related instrumentation, such as valves, meters, tank gauging, etc.

Automation is key

In a country where security of key facilities remains critical, depot access is controlled using a proximity-type driver ID card in combination with a sophisticated truck ID system. Numerous security validations are performed on all driver/truck combinations; admittance is granted only after all security validations are met.

Once the system accepts and dispatches an order, no additional facility operator intervention is required. Fuel-Facs+automatically assigns a driver to a designated loading bay; provides directions to the loading spot via automatic messaging; verifies that grounding and overspill systems are properly connected; transfers the order specified quantity; and prints post-loading documentation. If a driver goes to a wrong bay or attempts to load improperly, the system issues corrective messages.

In a similar fashion, pipeline custody transfers of refined products to the depot and subsequent tank farm transfers use complex interlocks and highly accurate calorimeters to prevent product mixing. Historical archiving of operations data, such as equipment run times, aids trending and analysis.

To optimize the tanker truck fleet and ensure adequate product supplies at 100+ retail filling stations, CSI provided an inventory query and dispatch subsystem that automatically calls each filling station one to five times a day. A digitized voice requests current product inventories and accepts data entry via phone pad after entry of a valid PIN (personal identification number). The Fuel-Facs+ system validates the entered inventory data and updates a filling station product database. Using a "priority level/load and delivery time/tanker size" algorithm, the system automatically handles unexpected demand surges and sorts, generates, and dispatches KNPC's tanker fleet as they arrive at the depot.

The close of a dramatic decade has left KNPC well-equipped to meet the growing petroleum demands of Kuwait drivers with innovative use of control and automation technologies.

For more information on CSI, circle 498, visit www.controleng.com/freeinfo or visit www.fuelfacs.com

Dave Harrold, senior editor dharrold@cahners.com





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