Advanced Process Control

How Intelligent Technology Squeezes Maximum Profit from the Plant

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Many refineries and chemical companies struggle to improve their margins. Notwithstanding capital cost investments that may provide a medium to long-term return, executive decision-makers seek quicker return on investment and reduced cost investments. Even today many manufacturing facilities are still operated by unsophisticated or primitive control schemes. Fortunately, the process industries have witnessed significant technological changes in recent years, which have yielded tremendous business benefits. Adaptive Process Control, in particular, improves long-term profitability by reducing process variability and allows plants to be operated optimally. Refiners and chemical companies have seen great value returns in product yield improvement and minimised energy costs with financial pay-back within short time periods.

For key decision-makers across the enterprise, the software is becoming more accessible to non-experts as the inclusion of knowledge, best practices and workflow automation within the software enables smoother APC deployments in organisations where in previous years it was costly and a drain on specialist resources. Another important factor is that APC is now affordable for smaller plants.

Overall, APC software is intelligent technology that delivers sustainable, measurable benefits and allows companies to operate their facilities with greater autonomy, cost-effectiveness, reliability and compliance with environmental regulations. Adaptive Process Control has raised the game in production standards and is enabling manufacturers to compete far more effectively in a dynamic marketplace.

* The Author is Business Support Director, AspenTech