Real-time Measurements Improve Energy Efficiency

Innovations-Process-ControlThe latest Innovations in Process Control publication by the Emerson team in Europe has an article on where additional measurements can help identify opportunities to reduce energy consumption and improve operations. For readers who have English as a second language, this publication is also available in German, Italian, Spanish and French.

Emerson's Irfan Khan


Emerson’s Irfan Khan shares where some of these energy optimization opportunities may exist in your process. Here are his thoughts from the page 6 article, A measured approach to energy consumption.

Wherever energy is used in a process plant there is the potential for waste. Every leak and loss is money down the drain. You cannot manage what you do not measure, so measurement instrumentation provides the key to finding hidden efficiency opportunities – but where do you start? Here to help you are five key measurement priorities:

Utility fluids – metering flow and managing use
Water, gas and steam are all crucial to your operations and it is estimated that 5 to 15% of a site’s energy is wasted or misused. Measuring of all utility fluids will help you understand the usage patterns throughout your plant. Combining Rosemount flowmeters with Emerson’s Energy Advisor gives you visibility and energy decision-making capability, providing the opportunity to recoup that 15% of wasted energy.

Compressed air – measuring flow and managing use
The compressed air system in your plant is a major energy user. More points of flow measurement allow tighter control of leaks and better management of the system’s health. Further savings can be made by replacing traditional orifice plate flowmeters with Rosemount Annubar Flowmeters. Permanent pressure loss is greatly reduced, therefore it becomes negligible in the calculation of energy consumed by the compressor.

Boilers – improving drum level measurement
In boilers, the water level in the steam drum must be precisely controlled to optimize steam production, maximize boiler efficiency and maintain safe operation. Traditionally, steam boiler water level has been difficult to measure due to variations in density caused by changes in temperature and pressure. Guided wave radar transmitters with Dynamic Vapor Compensation overcome this issue to provide highly accurate level measurements, which enable improved boiler efficiency and lower energy consumption.

Energy-Management-MeasurementsHeat exchangers – predicting and detecting fouling
Heat exchangers, which can foul over time, directly affect production capacity, maintenance costs and energy use. Emerson’s Heat Exchanger Monitoring Solution provides temperature and pressure measurements that are trended and analyzed to alert operators to potential fouling. This provides operators with calculated heat transfer, exchanger heat transfer coefficient, fouling factors and the cost of degradation; to help keep heat exchangers running at optimal performance.

Steam system – monitoring steam traps
When a steam trap fails it is either open or closed. An open steam trap will leak steam, wasting valuable energy. A closed steam trap will allow condensed water to build up, causing reliability issues and ‘water hammer’ events. The Rosemount 708 Wireless Acoustic Transmitter monitors steam traps continuously and identifies failed traps immediately.

You can find more detail on each of these areas by requesting an Engineer Insight Report: Top 5 Measurements in Energy Management.

You can also connect and interact with other energy management experts in the Industrial Energy group in the Emerson Exchange 365 community.

One comment so far

  1. Other good energy efficiency solutions include detecting and time-stamping relief valve releases (so you can troubleshoot the process), relief valve seat passing/leak detection, cooling tower and air cooled heat exchanger excess cooling detection, air cooled heat exchanger fouling detection.

    Learn more about the relief valves from this article:
    http://www.ceasiamag.com/2015/02/cut-your-losses-with-relief-valve-monitoring/11036/

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