Real Time Mon­i­tor­ing Spurs En­ergy Sav­ings

Re­fin­ery gains sig­nif­i­cant ben­e­fits from util­i­ties op­ti­miza­tion soft­ware

Chemical Industry Digest - - What’s In? - Philippe Baudet, Fa­bien Joly Philippe Baudet is a process en­gi­neer for ProSim, Labège, France. Fa­bien Joly is project man­ager at To­tal’s Nor­mandy Re­fin­ery, Harfleur, France. E-mail them at [email protected] and fa­[email protected]­

Philippe Baudet, PRoSim; France Fa­bien Joly, To­tal’s Nor­mandy Re­fin­ery, France.

In this ar­ti­cle, the au­thor de­scribes how a re­fin­ery gains en­ergy ef­fi­ciency ben­e­fits by us­ing util­i­ties op­ti­miza­tion soft­ware.

In the dy­namic en­vi­ron­ment of a re­fin­ery, ex­e­cut­ing the ac­tions nec­es­sary for op­ti­mum util­i­ties-sys­tem man­age­ment re­quires the help of on­line op­ti­miza­tion soft­ware.

One of the world’s largest en­ergy com­pa­nies, To­tal, Paris, is com­mit­ted to im­prov­ing its re­finer­ies’ en­ergy ef­fi­ciency, not only to com­ply with new en­vi­ron­men­tal stan­dards but also to min­i­mize pro­duc­tion costs and en­hance com­pet­i­tive­ness. As part of this ef­fort, the Nor­mandy re­fin­ery, To­tal’s largest re­fin­ery com­plex in France and one of the largest in Europe, asked ProSim, Labège, France, to im­ple­ment its Ari­ane util­i­ties-man­age­ment and power-plant-op­ti­miza­tion soft­ware in the re­fin­ery’s pro­duc­tion sys­tem.

In the dy­namic en­vi­ron­ment of a re­fin­ery, ex­e­cut­ing the ac­tions nec­es­sary for op­ti­mum util­i­ties-sys­tem man­age­ment re­quires the help of on­line op­ti­miza­tion soft­ware. The main ob­jec­tive of im­ple­ment­ing Ari­ane was to pro­vide guid­ance and prac­ti­cal daily sugges­tions for op­ti­miz­ing the pro­duc­tion of steam, hot wa­ter and elec­tric­ity within the re­fin­ery.

Im­ple­men­ta­tion was di­vided into sev­eral es­sen­tial steps. The first con­sisted of gath­er­ing in­for­ma­tion on the Nor­mandy re­fin­ery and in­te­grat­ing it into the soft­ware to build a model. ProSim en­gi­neers, to­gether with op­er­a­tors, gath­ered all the nec­es­sary in­for­ma­tion to map out the site’s pro­cesses and to iden­tify the de­grees of free­dom of the plant op­ti­miza­tion. The sec-

ond step in­volved soft­ware in­te­gra­tion, i.e., in­sert­ing the Ari­ane model into a larger ap­pli­ca­tion that au­to­mates the in­puts/out­puts, and han­dles user pa­ram­e­ters and op­tions man­age­ment. These steps were com­pleted in late 2011.

The third step is on­go­ing. It uses the re­fin­ery’s cur­rent state (con­sump­tion as de­ter­mined by on­line cal­cu­la­tions that con­sol­i­date real-time raw data, as well as pre­dic­tive data pro­vided by the op­er­a­tors in the units) to plan the next day’s pro­duc­tion and an­tic­i­pate po­ten­tial prob­lems.

Over­all, Ari­ane ac­counts for the re­cov­ery of raw mea­sure­ments and their au­to­mated pro­cess­ing, the de­tec­tion of equip­ment fail­ures, and the cal­cu­la­tion op­tions (i.e., se­lec­tion of the op­ti­miza­tion de­grees of free­dom). Users sup­ply data not mea­sured (e.g., pa­ram­e­ters such as pur­chase and re­sale prices) needed by the model. Af­ter the cal­cu­la­tions, the ap­pli­ca­tion ar­chives its re­sults and pro­vides ed­itable re­ports for the op­er­a­tors. It’s easy to com­pile the re­sults into ta­bles and graphs via an ex­e­cutable file us­ing an Ex­cel model.

In the units, plant op­er­a­tors fill their pro­duc­tion pro­gram into data files that are an­a­lyzed by the plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion to trans­form the op­er­a­tions’ loads (ex­pressed in process through­put) into steam de­mand in the dif­fer­ent re­fin­ery head­ers. By com­pil­ing these re­sults and start­ing from the cur­rent op­er­at­ing point, the plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion can pre­dict plant pro­duc­tion pat­terns for pe­ri­ods as long as 72 hours.

The op­er­a­tors get real-time ad­vice on how to ad­just the pro­duc­tion plant, man­age the tur­bines’ set­tings, and or­der the open­ing/clos­ing of cer­tain valves lo­cated in the pro­cess­ing units. The daily re­port can be edited on de­mand to im­port op­ti­mal plant op­er­at­ing in­struc­tions.

The project has been a real suc­cess. The con­ver­gence rates are ex­cel­lent. The Nor­mandy re­fin­ery has achieved sub­stan­tial ben­e­fits be­cause of the on­line op­ti­miza­tion soft­ware — a min­i­mum es­ti­mated sav­ings of €930,000 ($1.24 mil­lion) for 2011 alone. The to­tal gains amount to more than 2.5% of the plant steam­pur­chase and elec­tric­ity bud­get. This doesn’t take into ac­count as­pects such as max­i­miz­ing elec­tric­ity pro­duc­tion or gains re­gard­ing fuel man­age­ment. In ad­di­tion, the re­fin­ery is re­al­iz­ing some global en­ergy-ef­fi­ciency im­prove­ment thanks to real-time fol­lowup of the elec­tric­ity and steam pro­duc­tion sys­tem.

More­over, the real-time fol­low-up pro­vides bet­ter knowl­edge of the re­fin­ery steam net­works and as­so­ci­ated eco­nomic is­sues. In prac­tice, this tool: Im­proves the real-time man­age­ment of the in­ter­nal net­works by in­te­grat­ing them into the re­fin­ery op­ti­miza­tion process; and

Helps iden­tify new en­ergy-op­ti­miza­tion projects thanks to bet­ter net­work bal­anc­ing.

Since its im­ple­men­ta­tion, the site op­er­a­tors are mak­ing more ef­fi­cient and re­al­is­tic de­ci­sions based on the sys­tem rec­om­men­da­tions.

The next step, which has just been com­pleted, is to go fur­ther with sim­u­la­tion, link­ing ProSim’s op­ti­miza­tion soft­ware to Bel­sim’s VALI data rec­on­cil­i­a­tion tool. The de­vel­oped soft­ware ar­chi­tec­ture al­ready pro­vides a com­mon plat­form for util­i­ties pro­duc­tion sites; the plat­form com­bines the data rec­on­cil­i­a­tion ben­e­fits with the on­line op­ti­miza­tion of util­i­ties pro­duc­tion cost. This col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween To­tal, ProSim and Bel­sim is lead­ing to a ro­bust and ef­fi­cient so­lu­tion for re­finer­ies and petro­chem­i­cal plants.

Orig­i­nally pub­lished in Chem­i­cal Pro­cess­ing. All rights re­served.

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