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Alarm Management

“We have far too many alarms, our operators cannot handle it anymore”.
Well, does this sound familiar?
Do you have a view on the alarms in your process control system?
Have you encountered some near misses, simply because the operators are not able to process the enormous amount of alarms generated every day or maybe the operators are not aware of problems in your plant, because the alarms which should indicate this, have been disabled or suppressed?

  • How often does the alarm horn sound when you are in the control room? Once every 10 minutes is the Alarm Management best practice value.
  • Are your DCS Alarms configured properly?
  • Are they set as the plant was commisioned 20 years ago?
  • Have you done modifications to your plant / processing Units?
  • Have you reconfigured your DCS Alarms to match the new settings in your plant. 

One way to find out how your DCS Alarms, your Process Alarms are doing is by performing an Alarm Management Site Survey. A quick scan of your Process Control systems, will give you the necessary insights. 

 

Alarm Management has been identified as one of the best practices to improve the running of your plant. By reviewing the existing alarms in your plant, we can identify the problem areas. By working the problem areas, we can reduce the alarm load in your plant. Reduction of the alarm load will enable your operators to focus on their main job “controlling your plant”.

Turning your "Alarm Operator" into a "Process Operator" again.

 

Reviewing the existing alarms in your plant and presenting the results as per EEMUA 191 and ISA-18.2 Guideline, you can benchmark your alarm system performance against the accepted best practice values.

Alarm Management is about the alarms in your Process Control System. Having Alarms less activated, means you are running your plant / process Unit within the defined limits. ( aka:  Best Operating Zone / Best Operating Window). Meaning less excursions into trouble, less equipment failures, less process unit trips. How about your Integrity Operating Windows, has this been considered when defining your alarm configuration?

 

So Alarm Management is a lot more than just reducing Alarms. It is about running within the limits. Making sure your limits are well defined. Running within the limits means less wear and tear on your equipment. Less trips.

There are actually substantial financial benefits to be gained by implementing an Alarm Management system.

Visschers-Consulting can help with Alarm Management at your plant. From the basic introduction to Alarm Management to the full implementation and actively working to improve your Alarm Rates.

Please contact Visschers-Consulting to discuss your questions on Alarm Management

 

 

 

Operations Management

Running within the limits (alarm limits) does not guarantee that a good, quality product will be produced. The specific product quality and specification are defined as limits, are you outside the limit, you product will be out of spec, hence you are producing waste. You customer will only be interested in the top quality product, you have agreed upon.
How do you manage and monitor the production of your products, such that your products are always top quality.

It goes without saying that good Operations Management builds on the foundation of Alarm Management.

If you run your plants with normal Alarm Rates, you can focus on running your plant within the limits of your productspecifications to produce the top quality products your customers are demanding.

Improve your plant operations, by running within the limits. Operations Management provides the tools to help here.

Interested in the benefits of Operations Management, please contact Visschers-Consulting for an open introduction to Operations Management.