Wireless technology helps Lion Oil check product inventory | Automation.com

Wireless technology helps Lion Oil check product inventory

May 6, 2010 - Emerson Process Management’s Smart Wireless technology, using the IEC-62591 WirelessHART standard, is helping Lion Oil cost-effectively check product inventory, prevent overfill and remediation costs, monitor UPS power for the radio tower, and monitor safety shower use in areas over 1,600 feet from the control room at its El Dorado, Ark., facility.

The nine Smart Wireless applications cost $165,000 less to install, set up, and commission than traditional wired networks and has saved the company $20,000 in operating costs.

“A wireless solution was required because of the long distances; a wired solution was not even considered,” said Wilson Borosvskis, Lion Oil instrumentation and control engineer. “Emerson’s Smart Wireless technology was the best solution for us.”

Lion Oil connected three of Emerson’s wireless Rosemount 648 temperature transmitters to radar level gauges on an asphalt storage tank, a sodium hydrosulfide tank, and a crude oil storage tank. The wireless temperature transmitters scale the gauges’ 4-20 milliamp signal to send a level measurement to the DeltaV control system. The information provides a redundant measurement of tank levels, to prevent overflow and provide a check for the custody transfer of asphalt. Two wireless temperature transmitters were also installed to measure temperature on a crude oil storage tank as well as a slop oil tank.

The company installed three wireless Rosemount 702 discrete switches on safety showers in three remote areas. The switches alert operators when a shower has been turned on so they can send help. Another wireless discrete switch was installed on the UPS (uninterruptible power supply) for the radio tower because of the great distance from the control room. Due to the large distances involved in all the measurements, two additional wireless Rosemount temperature transmitters were installed as signal repeaters. All fourteen devices form a self-organizing field network and transmit their signals to a Smart Wireless Gateway. The gateway sends the reliable data to the facility’s DeltaV digital automation control system.

“These tanks are isolated from process areas where we have available junction boxes for conventional I/O. The wiring and conduit required for a traditional network would easily have cost $135,000 for the three tanks,” said Borosvskis. “The discrete switches on the showers would easily have cost $10,000 each to wire.” The sodium hydrosulfide level information sent to the control room from the wireless transmitter has an additional benefit. “Sodium Hydrosulfide is a by-product that is sold to a local company, who sends trucks to this remote tank to be filled,” said Borosvskis. “The company that buys this by-product can remotely monitor the level, to prevent sending trucks out when the tank is empty”.

In another plant area, the company installed two wireless Rosemount temperature transmitters to monitor a crude oil tank and a slop oil tank. Temperature is critical to calculate the correct volume of oil. The company estimates it saved $150 per day in operations costs, nearly $20,000 total, by installing wireless on the slop oil tank. The temperature sensor on the existing transmitter, that measured both level and temperature, had failed. The temperature sensor could not be fixed until the tank was emptied during turnaround, four months later. The plant saved the operators two trips a day for four months to read and record the temperature, and calculate the volume.

Lion Oil implemented Smart Wireless by installing a Smart Wireless Field Starter Kit and easily expanded its wireless use from there.

“Installation-wise, it is so simple to set up. I think that’s the best part of it. It’s almost fool-proof,” Borosvskis said.

In addition to the Smart Wireless solutions already installed at Lion Oil, Emerson offers a wide range of wireless field instrumentation and plant operations equipment, including Fisher position monitors, Rosemount analytical and Machinery Health Management devices, and native wireless interfaces to AMS Suite predictive maintenance software, DeltaV digital automation systems, and SmartStart services.

About Emerson Process Management
Emerson Process Management, an Emerson business, is a leader in helping businesses automate their production, processing and distribution in the chemical, oil and gas, refining, pulp and paper, power, water and wastewater treatment, mining and metals, food and beverage, life sciences and other industries. The company combines superior products and technology with industry-specific engineering, consulting, project management and maintenance services. Its brands include PlantWeb, Syncade, DeltaV, Fisher, Micro Motion, Rosemount, Daniel, Ovation, and AMS Suite.

About Emerson
Emerson (NYSE:EMR), based in St. Louis, Missouri (USA), is a global leader in bringing technology and engineering together to provide innovative solutions for customers in industrial, commercial, and consumer markets through its network power, process management, industrial automation, climate technologies, and appliance and tools businesses. Sales in fiscal 2009 were $20.9 billion.
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