How is it possible to implement the innovations necessary to maintain competitiveness while at the same time complying with strict regulations? In the chemical industry, plant operators are subject to particularly high standards for safety and sustainability, while at the same time facing high cost pressure in global competition. With IIoT-capable measurement technology, it is possible to significantly increase the efficiency of processes. Endress+Hauser possesses the necessary technology and expertise for the chemical industry.
The challenge: Meeting the pressure for innovation and security requirements simultaneously
The chemical industry is particularly characterized by high demands on plant safety and reliability. Additionally, strict regulations regarding environmental protection and sustainability must be adhered to. Crucial innovations can only be implemented if reliability is assured. In this challenging environment, modernizing a plant becomes a complex project. Many of the measuring devices used in the field already provide large amounts of data, but these are usually decentralized, not networked and thus not transparent. Data only shows its full value when it is properly stored in the right place and meaningful insights are drawn from the information. There is still a lot of potential here for companies to drive digitization with connectivity. Each facility is a complex structure that has evolved over time. Only those who have an overview here can also recognize when elements become dated and are due for maintenance or replacement. It is estimated that up to 30% of assets are outdated in most facilities.
A networked infrastructure of devices combined with seamless access to all data forms the basis for increasing plant efficiency and ensuring productivity – while complying with all safety requirements. There is still a lot of unexploited potential here that could provide clear competitive advantages in the chemical industry. Intelligent instrumentation provides support here with the appropriate digital services.
The solution: Data transparency and the proper connectivity coupled with industry expertise
An enabler of this kind is the family-owned company, Endress+Hauser. Founded in 1953, the company has since steadily driven innovation in the field of measurement and automation technology. Today, the company is a global leader and active driver of digital transformation in the industry.
To best evaluate the information from smart components and use it to improve plant performance, Endress+Hauser offers the Netilion IIoT ecosystem. Netilion helps to make the data transparent, which can also further increase the safety of the plant. Troubleshooting and planned replacement of critical products are significantly simplified. In the Ex area, analysis is possible from a distance.
Detailed information on all assets of a plant allows for a precise overview in the first step in order to identify obsolete and outdated elements. The efficiency of the plant can be increased by this alone. Data-driven maintenance planning streamlines operations and reduces parts management costs.
As part of the safety precautions, the connection of the field devices to the cloud is a complex issue. This is where Endress+Hauser’s industry expertise is a major advantage, as all its instrumentation and associated digital services are designed to meet the requirements of the chemical industry. Whether it’s wired devices or mobile solutions with SIM cards, there is suitable hardware available for every use case.
Endress+Hauser ensures the data security required in the industry from the edge device to the customer data in the cloud with various mechanisms and encryptions. All measures for the security of information and products as well as the cloud comply with current ISO standards. Endress+Hauser is also an active member of numerous associations and organizations concerned with the safety and certification of information, quality and automation systems.
The result: Significant improvement in efficiency and productivity
Automation experts expect improvements in efficiency and productivity from the introduction and use of the IIoT. At 47%, almost half state these two factors as decisive for IIoT measures. (https://www.morganstanley.com/ideas/industrial-internet-of-things-and-automation-robotics)
With its Netilion digital services, Endress+Hauser supports plant operators in digitalization and connectivity in all functional areas – including Salzgitter Flachstahl, for example. Many flat steel production plants operate 24/7. Salzgitter uses Netilion from Endress+Hauser to monitor the measurement technology in its continuous pickling line and optimize maintenance processes.
Service technicians need up-to-date information about assets in the field, and this is where device acquisition supports inventory management. Condition monitoring is an important basis for planning maintenance and spare parts. Document management is used to optimize processes, and measured value monitoring provides important additional process information.
At the management level, the various KPI’s are used to plan for the long term, develop strategies and thus ensure productivity. Netilion provides the right information for each level, supporting asset management. In this way, the entire process chain of the chemical industry is digitally mapped, from raw materials to energy supply and the product cycle to waste management.