24 MAY 2012
GEA Process Engineering Pty Ltd (GPAU) executes plant shutdown and re-automation upgrade of an alcohol bulkstore operations in Australia. The Bulkstore processes full strength spirits in bottles and drums as well as batching recipes for “Ready To Drink” (RTD’s) beverages in cans, bottles and bag-in-box.
The clients bulkstore operations, identified a need to upgrade their existing DCS control system which had reached the end of its generational lifetime. This coupled with the opportunity to optimise procedures and bring together several processing areas under one uniform control system led to the realisation of the Bulkstore Re-automation Project.
GPAU was appointed to deliver this project, which included the supply of the control system and engineering, upgrades to automatic valving, temperature and level monitoring systems, as well as the electrical installation in a hazardous area classified environment.
GPAU’s General Manager Operations, Andrew Fillery, said “the client and GEA have a Global working relationship, we identified the client required a partner who could provide process knowledge, automation excellence coupled with strong project management capabilities to deliver this project. Working at a global level allowed GPAU to utilise synergies and standardisation by partnering with GEA Process Technologies Ireland Ltd to deliver an automation solution”Control system
The control system is based on the Siemens PSC7 platform with SIMATIC Batch and an S88 approach to the software design provided the client with the flexibility and reporting requirements required for the batching of RTD syrups.
The GEA Process Engineering Automation team faced and overcame several design challenges including
Integrating the current paper recipe sheets into SIMATIC Batch and providing a recipe interface for The client operations
Developing a complex brand compatibility algorithm that could determine whether a CIP, Rinse or Purge was required and could differentiate between products in lines or tanks. Replacement of the current spirit movement reports with standard SIMATIC Batch reportsReplacement of existing DSC volume and temperature corrections on tank volume. Development of blending calculations that could account for the contraction and temperature fluctuation when mixing ethanol & water.
Strategic planning and scheduling early in the project between the client and GPAU allowed for a single shutdown approach to be considered. “With the correct planning and resourcing this approach can yield the following benefits; capital cost savings, minimised operational shutdowns and interruptions, reduced production risks through minimised intermediate operational procedural changes, consolidated training programs which are all important criteria for the client” Mr Fillery said.
Bulkstore, Sugar Processing and CIP Process areas all integrated under one automation platform
550 Devices re-wired to new control system for automation during shutdown
34 Raw spirits tanks upgraded with new level and temperature instrumentation
240 Valves upgraded from manual operations to automatic
Majority of the Bulkstore process area is Zone 2 hazardous area classified for gaseous environments, all new field equipment supplied was suitable and rated under IEC Ex ia IIC
White Spirits Linkplate