Simply put, process control deals with the science of maintaining the output of a specific process within a desired range. The proportion of one ingredient to another, the temperature of materials, how well ingredients are mixed and the pressure under which materials are held can significantly impact the quality of an end product. That’s why process control solutions are so important.
Process control technology allows manufacturers to keep their operations running within specified limits and to set more precise limits to maximize profitability, ensure quality and prioritize safety.
To help manufacturers better understand the industry, we broke down five important things you need to know about process control.
1. Process control enables automation.
Process control is commonly used for mass production. Due to its precise nature, it enables the automation of industrial processes. With the proper information and equipment, a small staff of operation personnel can operate even the most complex processes from a central control room.
It’s important to note, however, that process control is not automation. Instead, the two work together to perform efficiently. Without automation, plant operators have to physically monitor outputs to determine the best settings to use with production equipment. By using automated sensors, data can be collected and stores to make more effective decisions.
2. It’s a common process.
Since so many tools fall under the umbrella of process control, it’s a very common system practiced across a variety of disciples. Process control applications can cover anything that measures or controls the following variables
3. When used properly, process control ensures safety.
Manipulating substances to produce a product is a very demanding (and potentially hazardous) process. Even the smallest of changes can yield drastic differences in the end results. Improper boiler pressure, for example, could affect the inflow of air and the outflow of exhaust gases — threatening the safety of workers.
Proportions, temperature, flow, turbulence and many other factors must be carefully and consistently controlled to produce the desired end product with a minimum of raw materials and energy.
4. Process control is energy efficient.
Energy consumption in the industrial sector grows faster than in other sectors in the U.S. When it comes to manufacturing, factory managers want their equipment to deliver the highest output with as little production cost as possible.
With process control, factory leaders can oversee production, measure how a plant is working and make educated decisions based on that data. By adapting in response to this information, a strategy can be put into place so equipment can be used at optimum levels. This ensures consistency of quality — meaning less energy is wasted producing defective products.
5. It’s used across a variety of industries.
No matter its use, process control ensures effective systems. For that reason, it’s used across a variety of different industrial processes. Some of the most popular industries that use process control include:
- Food and diary
- Heat treaters
- Oil and gas
- Petro chem
- Power generation
- Pulp and paper
The right process control solution.
Want to learn more about process control? Here at ACI, we offer a full range of consulting services for process control equipment, instrumentation, sub-assembly, design and fabrication, engineering, calibration and certification.
To find which product is right for you, give us a call at 1.800.333.7519 or contact us online.