Taking a TOTEX approach to deliver a lifetime of value
EcoStruxure Power and Process solutions combine electrical and process information across the life of a plant (from design through operation) to deliver the optimum TOTEX.
White Paper Number 998-21159563
TOTEX – Elevate design and operational efficiency
As plants become more complex and more integrated, engineering firms and owner operators in energy intensive industries such as oil and gas, petrochemical and refining, are constantly looking for better ways to reduce the total cost of electrical and automation projects, reduce operating costs across the plant life (30+ years), and optimize the overall return on investment.
Taking a total expenditure approach (TOTEX) can improve how large capital projects are executed (CAPEX) while establishing a platform that also reduces the operating costs throughout the lifecycle of the plant (OPEX).
To do this, power and process automation technologies need to converge the right technology, information and methods of interaction to extend and enhance the life of an asset with asset performance management at the fore.
By taking a TOTEX approach, connecting power and process information technology (IT), Operational Technology (OT) and Engineering Technology (ET) now offers a potential way to:
CAPEX – Efficiently deliver capital projects that deliver lasting value
A key driver enforcing a TOTEX approach is the lack of accurate, timely engineering information between, electrical, mechanical and automation design teams during the capital expenditure (CAPEX) phase, that also serves as the feed for the operational expenditure cycle (OPEX).
This is important not just for the project engineering, commissioning and handover, but also for the owner-operator who requires project lifecycle information to use in the operation and maintenance of the facility.
During the engineering design, the use of modern digital engineering technologies (ET) such as immersive 3D engineering models1 (which become the digital twin2), integrated engineering and design3 data in one hub (process/mechanical/electrical/automation), simulation4 of the process, electrical and automation systems, and a “one team” approach has shown to:
Cut design iterations
Improve data flow, quality and accuracy
Accelerate the design process
Increase design efficiency
Using common design tools that cover mechanical, electrical, and automation activities fosters a one team approach driving better collaboration and decision making. This creates opportunities to optimize the design of the electrical and process automation systems. For example, the scope and size of the power system can be optimized, the use of prefabricated modular E-houses5 reduces cross site cabling, reduces the footprint and can be shipped early in the project.
Implementing a system architecture that brings together the Distributed Control System (DCS)6 with the Electrical Control Systems7 in the CAPEX phase is critical to unlock OPEX benefits such as enhanced operator performance and situational awareness to avoid unexpected outages, consolidated process and electrical trip reports that can reduce trip investigation time.
Improved design efficiency, a reduction in the time engineers spend looking for information, optimized footprint can reduce the overall electrical and instrumentation CAPEX by as much 20%.
OPEX - Combined power and process information delivers sustainable operational performance
Operating and maintaining a sustainable production facility for peak performance is complex, difficult, costly, and sometimes dangerous! With so many interrelated activities to balance, the need to make data usable (and secure) to produce better outcomes is a must have.
Engineering data is not the only potential for reducing TOTEX. Combining operational information for both power and process yields significant OPEX gains.
Providing operators both process data and electrical data (low and medium voltage8) at the operator console9 gives them clearer insight to what’s happening so that they can decide on the next best action.
If faced with an unexpected plant trip, providing a combined power and process trip report and a pre/post trip trend allows the investigating team to quickly and easily determine the first out (what happened), investigate the root cause (why it happened), determine how it happened, then decide on any corrective actions in order to restart production sooner – safely.
The same immersive simulation tools used during the CAPEX phase can also be used for operator training, the engineering teams for testing and validating modifications, the maintenance teams for preparing rounds and inspections, learning safe exit paths in case of emergency and more.
Balanced decision making for electrical and mechanical assets
Combing the CAPEX power and process design data together with 3D visualization10 and predictive analytics11 in one environment bridges the gaps between individual instrument asset management, electrical asset management, and asset maintenance systems.
Instead of making isolated decisions, maintenance teams can quickly understand how low / medium voltage equipment, mechanical assets and plant equipment are performing together. Balanced decisions can be made on maintenance priorities / deference potential areas of performance improvement identified, and costly failures prevented before they occur.
Drive operational profitability improvement
Combining real time power and process information in a real time accounting model12 coverts operational performance into financial performance. Energy and sustainability information across the enterprise can be aggregated into a single window13 to optimize energy procurement, track energy efficiency and streamline sustainability reporting.
Unified power and process information offers OPEX potential to:
Unified Engineering tools and Asset Information Management
Unifying engineering disciplines, having all engineering design data (process, mechanical, electrical, automation) in one 3D digital hub simplifies project workflow, improves accuracy and reduces engineering hours. As the design matures, all parties are fully aware of any change, the impact and the implications which cuts design iterations and avoids re-work.
Power and Process System Optimization
Approaching the low / medium voltage systems together with the process control system at the design stage allows the engineering teams to find the optimal design, specify the optimal equipment and reduce the overall footprint.
Unified Simulation and Learning through the Asset Life-Cycle
The use of immersive, high-fidelity simulation to explore design opportunities early, optimize the process, electrical system and process control system designs then validate performance simplifies detailed engineering and accelerates start-up. The same simulations can be used to train personnel, solve operational issues, increase operating efficiency, for debottlenecking, as well as fast trouble shooting.
Unified Automation and Electrical Project Execution
Employing a single Main Automation and Electrical Partner (MAEP) to unify the design, implementation and delivery of the low and medium voltage equipment with the process control and safety systems ensures that these are implemented efficiently (and securely) supported by the appropriate expertise. Using one unified team breaks down the silos, streamlines communications, reducing risk, schedule uncertainties.
OPEX - Here's How
Unified Power & Process Information
Providing operators both process data and electrical data at the operator console gives them clearer insight to what’s happening so that they can decide on the next best action to maintain production in the most profitable way. Combining power and process information into a trip report with a pre/post trip trend allows faster trip investigation and resolution, reducing trip downtime in the event of an unexpected outage.
Integrated Asset Performance Management
Equipment reliability is critical – mechanical underperformance can lead to decreased efficiencies, equipment failures can result in unplanned downtime and lost production, which impacts profitability. Combing the power and process design data into one integrated asset performance management system, together with 3D visualization and predictive analytics allows easier maintenance decisions on what to prioritize or defer, monitor equipment performance and identify areas of performance improvement and prevent costly failures before they occur.
Process Energy Optimization
Combing real time power and process information into a real time accounting model converts operational performance into financial performance. Empowering operators with power and process information directly correlates operational decisions to the energy usage, and thus financial performance. Energy and sustainability information across the enterprise can also be aggregated into a single window to optimize energy procurement, track energy efficiency and streamline sustainability reporting.
Value Chain Optimization and Agility
Value chain optimization unites real time operating information, predictive analytics with planning, scheduling, feedstock management and trading to derive optimal business and operating decisions, including feedstock selection, production rates and required operating conditions. A unified operations centre provides value chain visualization for better collaboration and business decision support.