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Cement Manufacturing Process Analytics


Project Summary

A cement manufacturing facility worked with us to implement a process historian and data visualization tools for its R&D plant.

We completed the work on-site, working directly with the facility personnel to specify the data to be stored in the process historian.

Project Details


Industry
Location
Aggregrates
Gilroy, CA

Services
Process Historian, Process Analytics, Data Visualization


  • To improve usefulness of R&D testing processes
  • To collect process data in a centralized location
  • Make process data easily accessbile to plant personnel
  • Configure hardware and software
  • Establish expectations for data collection and analysis
  • Train staff on optimal use of the systems
  • Decreased overhead for managing test data
  • Increased productivity of R&D process
  • Increased knowledge and awareness of R&D projects


Solution


We met with the client to discuss their existing system and how both the PLC and operator interface were failing due to age and general wear and tear. The mixer had been installed when the plant was first opened in the early 90's and no software was available for the Cutler Hammer PLC or operator interface 20 years after installation.

We worked with the plant operators to understand and develop a control philosophy for the mixer. One major issue with the existing hardware was that some of the inputs to the PLC from safety devices had failed. These issues were resolved with the upgraded PLC.

The operators also requested recipe management functionality, allowing them to easily configure various mixing steps depending on the product being produced. We implemented a screen in the HMI allowing them to configure a handful of steps with various mixing speeds and times which allowed them to reduce a large amount of over and under-mixing caused by manually timing steps using the old system.

The new system was commissioned, operators were trained and the process was back up and running by lunchtime. The client now has updated copies of all documentation putting them in a better position for the future.

Technology


  • FactoryTalk Historian
  • FactoryTalk VantagePoint
  • Allen Bradley ControlLogix PLC
  • SQL Server


Benefits

Process data stored in a centralized database

Data accessible from outside of the HMI application, including access to corporate staff upgrade

Automated reporting capability

Reduced overhead to collect data required for periodic reporting


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