Automation Systems for Aromatic Network
Lanxess Completes Three-Year Investment Program
The roughly 500 employees of the aromatics network manufacture 300,000 metric tons of product a year. Apart from the close networking of material and energy flows, the highly advanced infrastructure in and around the Chempark sites is another key factor for the success of the aromatics network. Furthermore, decades of experience managing processes ensures that the plants can be operated highly flexibly and thus in line with market demands. Byproducts of one production stage frequently serve as starting materials for another, promoting high economic efficiency and minimizing waste volumes.
Safety with a capital “S”
Safety is of crucial importance in the chemical industry. “Every facility holds regular meetings with plant, process, occupational safety and environmental protection experts to continuously improve our safety concepts and measures,” explains Ansgar Eltner, head of Technology for the AII aromatics network. These discussions cover any technological advancements in the field and result in action plans that are implemented in investment projects. All changes naturally are in compliance with all relevant legal requirements and standards.
“Our regularly and well-trained employees, some of whom have decades of experience, are the foundation for the safe, day-to-day operation of our plants. Another contribution comes from the technical equipment we installed or modernized as part of the investment program. Such investments are by no means standard in all companies or in all parts of the world,” Hauschild points out.
Investments were made in the latest-generation process control systems, and in autonomous, fully-automated, safety-based control systems. The former manage the production processes in standard operating mode, while the latter ensure that even if the process deviates from target values, it is always returned to a safe operating state without manual intervention. “Independent auditors check the systems regularly to make sure they are all functioning reliably,” says Hauschild.
“Our commitment to our aromatics network is a good example of how Lanxess operates and improves its production facilities under the principles of sustainability. Safety is important for our employees, and it is the foundation for the trust put in us by neighbors, the general public and our customers. Safety and reliability – and that includes also supply safety – contribute directly to our economic success,” summarizes Waldi.