The so called GAFA companies (that is, Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon), together with Microsoft, have chased some large bricks-and-mortar companies from the top-5 positions, which used to include some petrochemical companies. Click here for more information. Copyright © AspenTech, a software company born out of MIT, is now playing an important role in helping chemical and petrochemical companies in their digitalization efforts – … The “number one priority” should go to attracting and developing digital talent, although it is fair to say that effort is also needed on all other aspects – digital strategy, governance, processes, culture and technology – of capabilities for digital transformation. Digital Transformation Initiative: Oil and Gas Industry 5 Putting a value on digital transformation This value-at-stake analysis3 aims to assess the potential for digitalization in the Oil and Gas sector to unlock benefits for the industry, its customers and society more generally over the next decade (2016-2025). This platform implements and leverages (if not already implemented) multiple independent applications in the plant on one platform to provide an optimised solution. The petrochemical industry has ridden high on emerging-market demand growth since the start of the century, just like producers of metals and other commodities. They may be considered as a threat for some, yet as an opportunity for other companies. As such, they act as the catalyst of digital innovations in the petrochemical supply chain. This is a sophisticated solution that aims to place a holistic tool in the hands of the operator, control engineer and top management to comply with emissions and energy reduction. They change the way companies run their factories and their supply chain. This website uses cookies to optimise your user experience. This report focuses on the current state of automation in the petroleum/chemical industry… Proven and new technologies are introduced on the shop floor, in the warehouse, in transportation and in many other logistic activities. A value focused approach is taken to leverage IIoT implementation and make refiners more profitable. What does digital transformation mean for the Petrochemical Industry? It provides an environment for an integrated sulphur management system using a ‘sulphur rich’ dashboard with refinery and petrochemical specific KPIs, and a high speed integration platform aligned with high frequency data from DCS, APC and other automation technologies. In light of increased emissions regulations, changing the crude slates to process lighter, sweeter crude is a potential solution, but this depends on the availability of sweet crude. •    Decision making support and improved operation through continuous monitoring and by providing instant access to information A process simulation model was also developed for the sulphur system. The solution enhances the refinery’s economic and environmental performance through a unified approach to the entire business process, encompassing monitoring to control of multiple process operations using multiple software applications on one platform. The smart factory in petrochemical industry is operational excellence as the goal, through the operational management of the whole process, with a high degree of automation, digitization, visualization, modeling and integrated refining chemical factory, which is the future development direction of the petrochemical enterprises. Digitization isn't the end of the story of digital transformation as we move to industry 4.0. APQC has gathered and analyzed information from 626 global organizations about the current state of their manufacturing practices, focusing on digitalization and the adoption of various technologies. The customers are actually an important driver of digitization (cf. There is a need for investment in developing these capabilities. Once processes are digitized, then additional technologies like machine learning, AI, IIoT, digital twins, and a comprehensive, complete product lifecycle can emerge. About half of the participants admit being still in the starting mode. Crambeth Allen Publishing Ltd, Multi-element and total S process analyzers, Hydrotreating and hydrocracking catalysts, Advanced sulphur analysis in hydrocarbons, Instrumentation, Automation and Process Control. Learn more about TruQC’s success in the petrochemical industry. Users access data from the local area network and make recommendations for appropriate operational actions through a system that integrates advanced process control, soft sensors, simulation, linear programming and dashboarding technology to deliver real time benefits. Most companies have one or more digitalization initiatives underway as demonstrated in this survey conducted at the 2019 Emerson Exchange during the Chemical Industry Forum session. •    Reducing unplanned downtime with increased rate of asset utilisation The refinery in question decided to implement Helium Consulting’s sulphur specific IIoT offering, Mboss, to help plan and execute optimisation, followed by monitoring and control through detailed analysis, expedited corrective actions and use of automated algorithms in real time. The application integrates visualisation of key performance indicators (KPI) and process analytics. The primary objective of the solution is to optimise the sulphur recovery circuit and find the best operating parameters to enhance performance while minimising cost and bottlenecks. A special focus was put on the following questions: How digital is the petrochemical supply chain? The benefits of such IIoT enabled tools include: With modern digital tools, an operator will be able to understand deeply how a facility is operating, within few seconds. Automation and augmented reality are changing the processes in warehouses and transportation. So, the overall picture the study draws is one of a sector that is well aware of the importance and potential impact of digitization that got off the starting blocks and is running. READ MORE. And how can digitization create value in the supply chain of the petrochemical sector, from the upstream refineries, to the downstream traders, distributors and customers of the chemical companies? In a recent AFPM webinar Bruce Taylor, director of digital transformation at Sinclair Oil and Chair of AFPM’s OPCAT Committee, described digital transformation … So, every industry is either at or near an inflection point for digital transformation. Core refinery challenge The hydrogen sulphide fumes that characterise many gas processing, refinery operations and petroleum production sites represent a genuine threat to safety and the environment. At present, it is almost impossible to find a refining or petrochemical company that has not announced its plans to introduce digital solutions at its plants. Helium Consulting. Since many of these logistics service providers are active in different sectors, they gain experience with more advanced practices that they can transfer to the petrochemical supply chain. Petrochemical Update and Autodesk brought together a group of science, technology, engineering and project management experts to discuss and debate the role of technology in helping the construction and engineering industry rethink the future of capital projects. The solution combines ‘deep domain’ knowledge from operations technology and information technology for online analysis. Investments are planned mainly in proven technologies. The EPCA report provides some illustrations of innovative digital projects in the petrochemical supply chain through eleven cases from manufacturers and logistics service providers. Asset challenges The solution provides a seamless stream of actionable insights, which enables sulphur operations in the refinery to inspect their process analyses for optimisation and early diagnosis of issues to prevent costly hidden upsets. We keep you posted - Subscribe to the CHEManager International newsletter here! But we have to take the first step and put down our pens. Factories are becoming smart by introducing new process technologies, often referred to as Industry 4.0 or Internet of Things (IoT). Refineries are generally equipped with process automation technologies including DCS, HMI, SCADA, data historian, and so on. Digital technologies have a huge impact on the structure of supply chains. Streaming data from sensors and instruments enables plants to quickly assess current conditions and identify warning signs for abnormal operations. Much of this sulphur content is converted through hydrotreating into hydrogen sulphide in refining and other conversion facilities. Manufacturing operations present one of the biggest and mo… document.write(CurrentYear) They show the implementation of a wide range of technologies and systems, offering more transparency, creating platforms for intensive collaboration, and improving supply chain performance. However, the increased visibility of assets and goods throughout the supply chain and the improved coordination and alignment across the chain has not (yet) led to lower inventory levels and improved asset utilization for many of the participating companies (cf. Secondly, the more we use information and communication technologies in the supply chain, the more we rely on these systems for our day-to-day operations, and the more we must manage the risk of hacking, system failures and temporary black-outs. In this article, we discuss two case studies from the refining and petrochemicals industry. Finally, the overall interest in 3D-printing, unmanned aerial vehicles and bionic enhancement is low in the petrochemical supply chain. That said, digitization does pay off. The software integrates data with multiple applications and layers of data validation and intelligent data analysis, and KPIs are generated and visualised in the dashboard. The sector may be lagging… yet, there is a lot of ambition. However, there is still a long way to go. Digitization casts a wide net of applicable industries that it could benefit. Digitalization is the hype. Big data and advanced analytics, cloud computing, digital identifiers and low-cost sensor technologies will find their way into the petrochemical supply chain soon, if not now already. Refiners are increasingly exploring digital tools that take advantage of the emerging Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), as well as advanced software for data analysis that can optimise process operations and reduce downtime. Digitalization issues were discussed at Asia Downstream Week 2018, which was organized by Euro Petroleum Consultants (EPC) and held in Bangkok 9-11 October. They almost unanimously report that digitization will have a significant impact on their internal processes and their supply chain. Could it be a matter of time before these longer-term benefits materialize? Petrochemical Update: Gauging industry digitization – capital projects turn to innovation, recruitment teams Posted by Alex Donatelli on Jul 13, 2018 By: Heather Doyle. These form the backbone of automated data collection systems, process simulation modelling and scheduling. As with any major initiative, digital transformation in chemicals is likely to be challenging. The Pharma industry is facing the biggest transformation since the rise of the modern medicines in the nineteenth century and the introduction of the manufacturing automation in 1980s. Digital provides the means to unlock a new level of productivity enhancement. Nearly 240 managers and experts in the petrochemical supply chain participated. Proven and new technologies are introduced on the shop floor, in the warehouse, in transportation and in many other logistic activities. Improved collaboration with suppliers is an often-mentioned benefit. Half of the participants in the research report that it will even change the way they do business. Back in 2006, Clive Humby at Tesco said the almost prophetic words “data is the new oil.” Time proved him right. In particular, they expect that it will have an important impact on the information flow (ordering, planning and control) and the financial flow (accounting, invoicing, payment), less so on the physical flow of products (cf. About half of the participants aim to be an early adopter of digitization or even an innovator (cf. As in many other sectors, digitization is taking place at a fast pace in the petrochemical sector. Now, 12 years later, the top 5 companies in the world in terms of market capitalization are data-intensive enterprises. To strengthen the chances of success, refinery and petrochemicals companies are using digital tools that enable plants to access the benefits of the IIoT and cloud computing. When you optimize your refinery shutdown utilizing technology solutions, you make every facet of your turnaround planning more efficient. The pressure to digitize is mainly coming from the market and from outside the petrochemical industry. Digital transformation in the chemical industry (in German) Digital transformation in the chemical industry KPMG in Germany recently launched a ground-breaking study on digital transformation within the chemical industry, together with the market research institute, TNS Emnid where they interviewed 75 senior chemical industry executives. The project faced several key challenges. Functional excellence has generated significant productivity improvements over the past two decades. figure 3). Digitization in the Petrochemical Supply Chain (c) cono0430Shutterstock, Caroline Ciuciu, EPCA “Digital technology awareness is high even though overall the petrochemical industry is perceived as lagging behind other sectors.”, Ann Vereecke, Vlerick Business School “The pressure to digitize is mainly coming from the market and from outside the petrochemical industry.”, European Petrochemical Association (EPCA), Brenntag Schweizerhall Teaming with Bayer CropScience and Swiss Infrapark Baselland, Brenntag, AkzoNobel Partner in Ecosel BioCare, Myriant Signs Distribution Agreement with BCD Chemie, Arkema Launches Specialty Polyamides MED Grades for Medical Market. What does digitization mean for the petrochemical supply chain? In a diversified industry that delivers products to virtually every other sector, customer service has a large impact on growth and operations. Improving on-time, in-full deliveries at lower working-capital costs and with higher customer satisfaction is paramount. A plant enabled by IIoT is equipped with a combination of sensors, automation systems and cloud based technologies that are integrated with its current systems and data analytics capabilities. It has changed entire sectors, such as telecommunications, retail, and media and entertainment. These developments provided the entry point and backdrop for a supply chain & logistics research study, commissioned by the European Petrochemical Association (EPCA) and conducted over the course of 2017 by a team at Vlerick Business School. Request a consultation with TruQC. The acid gas removal unit is used to separate and concentrate H2S and other acid gases produced in hydrotreatment. Advanced process control was carried out for the sulphur recovery, tail gas and sour water units. The future of work is increasing digital, and nowhere is that more evident than in manufacturing. •    Lowering overall process risk, thus improving safety What are the challenges that can impact a successful transformational journey? •    Maintaining the effectiveness of control loops, controllers and models over time, so that the benefits of advanced process control are sustained RFP’s design incorporated fire pumps and a custom In Line Balance Proportioning Foam Skid to deliver foam throughout the facility. Investments in technologies bring along some challenges that need to be managed. Indian Chemical News is an important online resource for news, views, analysis, trends, technology updates and interviews with prominent leaders in the chemical and petrochemical space. Phased implementation of the system was planned for the refinery. Digital Transformation is a buzz word that seems to be on everyone's mind and lips these days. industries and sectors embrace digitization in areas ranging from business processes to customer relationship management, digital transformation is becoming a smart business objective beyond just improving the core of the business. New business models will arise, in manufacturing as well as logistics. A single window gives real time, actionable insights to optimise the process. Not only is there awareness of the importance and impact of digitization, there is also a sense of urgency. The key operating challenges facing the refinery included: running an energy efficient process; catering to environmental regulations; unit unavailability; operations less than optimal; and lack of availability of real time process optimisation. Mboss is a proprietary software platform written especially for sulphur systems in the refining, petrochemicals and gas industries. 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