News & Events
WISA Special Service Award
On June 24, 2014 ACE hosted the International Society of Automation (ISA) Wilmington Section’s Annual Picnic at our Delaware Valley office. In addition to food hot off the grill, the event featured volleyball, horseshoes, the Ralph L. Moore Scholarship announcement, and the ISA Member Awards. This year, ACE received a Special Service Award recognizing our enduring support of the section. ACE is truly grateful for the opportunity to support the WISA in their mission to set the standard for automation - be it through sponsoring, hosting, speaking at, and attending various WISA events or committee membership. Our thanks to the WISA for this honor; we can’t wait to see what they have in store for next year.
AspenTech Technical Training
As an Aspen Technology (AspenTech) Systems Integrator Partner, ACE has the product and industry knowledge to deliver complete solution offerings to our customers. ACE also has access to software and technical training that help ensure our engineers are up to date with the latest AspenTech product releases and enhancements.
Recently, ACE’s George Ikonomou and Tim Cole attended a Technical and Innovation Forum (TIF), where AspenTech previewed new products and solutions. The goal of these TIFs is to keep AspenTech customers and partners up to date between AspenTech’s biennial user group meetings.
In addition, Andrew Edmondson and Andrei Botu completed Aspen DMCplus and Aspen Plus training. Using Aspen DMCplus - a multivariable model-predictive controller - Andrew developed the skills necessary to carry out Aspen DMCplus control projects and to troubleshoot and maintain Aspen DMCplus controllers. Andrei developed the skills for using Aspen Plus - a chemical process modeling system used to design and improve process plants - for process design, debottlenecking, and optimization.
ACE Presentation: Control System Retrofits
Timothy L. Cole, P.E. and Ian P. Burns, P.E., CFSP presented their paper on Control System Retrofits at the 69th Annual Instrumentation Symposium for the Process Industries on January 23, 2014. An event organized and hosted by Texas A&M University.
Tim addressed the audience regarding a looming problem in the process industries. ARC estimates that $65 billion worth of control systems are nearing obsolesce; some $12 billion are original distributed control systems installed in the late 1970s. Combine that amount of work with an average age of skilled labor of 56 (Bloomberg BusinessWeek), and you can foresee the problem. The system upgrades could be better handled with the experienced engineers, but there is just too much work to be done.
Ian followed up with practical advice regarding control system upgrade project execution. There are many tools and tricks available; you must apply good engineering judgment and proceed. New control systems are a commodity, with each offering basically the same functionality. Each upgrade / installation must be reviewed, a direction set, tools chosen, and then the project executed methodically. One important consideration is fully understanding the functions which must exist in the new control system.
Click here to view the presentation in its entirety. In addition, please feel free to contact either Tim (302.738.8800) or Ian (281.821.0201) if you have a project need or desire discussion on the topic.