Permission to change and develop in the Life Sciences!

20/06/2017
• Enjoy a unique environment to meet and gain input from all stake holders on industry direction, challenges and solutions.
• Shape your strategy on the way solutions should be developed and applied in your facility
• Understand how partnering can take you further, faster and with reduced risk
• Experience hands on demonstrations of automation equipment and packages.

The invitation was interesting, and challenging. “Future.Now – Developing the Life Sciences Landscape Together” was an arresting title. It was a co-operative event between National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT) and Emerson. We were invited to “Boost your knowledge, gain from the experience of others and increase your professional network at NIBRT state of the art facility in Dublin!”

Mike Train, Executive President with Emerson explains their focus under the attentive eye of European President Roel Van Doren.

This correspondent was aware of the NIBRT facility but had very little idea of what it was real function or its relevance to Irish industry. This was an opportunity find out. Further looking through the programme two things became apparent. One was the calibre of personnel speaking from the Emerson organisation and then the application rather than product orientation of the various sessions.

It proved to be a very interesting two days.

Day 1: Working together towards a common future.
Presentations from NIBRT, Industrial Development Authority (IDA), GSK, Alexion, Zeton, Novo Nordisk and Emerson Automation Solutions.

Pharma v Biopharma

After a short welcome fro Emerson Europe President, Roel Van Doren, the CEO of NIBRT, Dominic Carolan, outlined the foundation and raison d’etre of the organisation. It is a training and research in the area of bioprocessing. It is located in a new, world class facility in Dublin (IRL). As medical science advances “simple” chemistry, while still essential, is not fully capable of solving all health issues – Pharma versus Biopharma. Bioprocessing is a specific process that uses complete living cells or their components (e.g., bacteria, enzymes, chloroplasts) to obtain desired products.

Thus this facility exists to support the growth and development of all aspects of the biopharmaceutical industry in Ireland. It is purpose built to closely replicate a modern bioprocessing plant with state of the art equipment.

Making Ireland ready – a good news story.
Dr Chantelle Keirnan, Scientific Advisor with the Industrial Development Authority (IDA), described the far-seeing intuitive initiative to look at bioprocessing “before it was profitable or popular!” This state body is responsible for the attraction and development of foreign investment in Ireland and had been extraordinarily successful in attracting nine of the top ten pharma companies to set up manufacturing processing plants in Ireland. They considered at the turn of the century that bioprocessing was the way that life science was going and took steps to ensure that Ireland was ready. One of those steps was the provision of Government funding of NIBRT.

Togged out for the tour

Many of the delegates – in excess of one hundred attended some from other countries – donned white coats and took the opportunity to tour the impressive facility during the event. It includes a purpose-built, multi-functional building which replicates the most modern industrial bioprocessing facility. Some idea of this facility may be gleaned from their website here.

This is a good news story. How often are decisions of state organisations regarded, not entirely without justification, with a jaundiced eye? Those that are good are “oft interréd with their bones!” The vision that saw this development in industry and the individuals who having caught the ball ran with it and brought it so successfully to fruition is worthy of equal attention and praise.

The rest of the day was an examination of the industry, processes and looking into the future. Mike Train, Executive President of Emerson spoke on the changes that are influencing industry and his company’s focus. We are facing “an evolution not a revolution” he stated, a point emphasised by other speakers throughout the day. He also stressed the importance for giving permission to change. (See full list of speakers at below.)

Pictures from the event!

We then had a series of speakers from the industry, people who get their hands dirty so to speak in actual processing speaking of their experiences and challenges. Speakers from GSK and Novo Nordisk explored areas like partnership, legacy issues, building on or expanding existing plants, saving energy, wireless. There was some discussion on the cloud and its advantages and just how vulnerable it might be to security breaches.

The discussion on handling all this data and identifying and retrieving those pieces of data which are really useful to the process brought to mind the prophetic words of the American media theorist, Neil Postman years ago, “…a central thesis of computer technology – that the principal difficulty we have in solving problems stems from insufficient data – will go unexamined. Until, years from now, when it will be noticed that the massive collection and speed of light retrieval of data have been of great value to large scale organisations but have solved very little of importance to most people and have created at least as many problems for them as they have solved…” (Neil Postman: “Amusing ourselves to death:” 1985)

Peter Zornio, Chief Technology Officer with Emerson gave their philosophy in meeting the demands of “Life Science Visions.” He lauded the various discussion groups such as the Biopharma Operations Group in helping how to keep up to date with technology and fostering new ideas.

We are on a digitizing journey. Moving from manual and paper to digital recording and control.

Day 2: “New Technology, New Processes, New solutions!”
Presentations from BioPharmaChem, GSK, Infinity Automation and Emerson.

The day started with a presentation on modular flexible manufacturing – introducing the PK Controller and a little later in the day there was an exposition on DeltaV Discovery/DeltaV 14 in maintaining data and transferning and easing technology transfer through the life cycle of drug development.

In his second presentation Peter Zornio gave the business case behing IIoT. IoT is usually referring to domestic, building environment and other civil applications. But it is also useful in the industrial environment where it is referred to as IIoT. Initially it was a link up at the instrument and control area but of late it is spreading to the portfolio of sensors. Their emphasis is on “the first mile!” (This is a backward reference to the perennial problem in many, especially rural, areas of “the last mile” – the internet connection directly into the home! – a heart felt sigh from your correspondent!)

The Real Challenges!

Ian Allen of Infinity Automation spoke on challenges to the life science automation world. “Don’t go backward to go forward” he said. We must use things like data integrity, cyber security, Microsoft dependencies and Industrie 4.0 as “gifts to leverage the opportunity and change!” The real challenge is not so much the technology but our use of it. We were coming back to “permission for change!”

We might perhaps use the words of the Bard of Avon, “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars. But in ourselves….”  The “gifts” are there. The Technology is there or on the way.

Let’s own these gifts and make them our own.

 

Pic: Travis Hesketh


The Speakers:

Day 1
Dominic Carolan
CEO – NIBRT
Dominic Carolan was appointed CEO of NIBRT in April 2015. Mr. Carolan previously held senior roles in Mallinckrodt (Dublin), Genzyme (Waterford), also Genzyme (Corporate) where he was Senior Vice President of Manufacturing, and in Sanofi, where he headed their global network of Sterile Injectable Lyophilisation sites. He has successfully lead the startup of two significant Pharma & BioPharma facilities in Ireland and has a proven track record in operations leadership and in attracting and developing the talent required to deliver long term success. A graduate of UCD in Chemical Engineering, Mr. Carolan was Chairman of BioPharmaChemical Ireland from 2008-2010.
Dr Chantelle Kiernan
Scientific Advisor – IDA

Dr. Chantelle Kiernan joined IDA in September of 2009 and is responsible for attracting research related foreign direct investment for Ireland. Chantelle has responsibility for the Multinational research portfolio – spanning Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology, Medical Device, Engineering Food services industries. Chantelle has spent her career equally dispersed between academia and industry. She holds a PhD in Immunology from Trinity College Dublin in the area of immunomodulation and continued her academic career with a Post-Doctoral fellowship in Harvard University, Boston. Chantelle is currently undertaking an MSc in International Business law. She has spent almost fifteen years in industry. In her current role as Scientific Advisor for the IDA, she has been integrally involved in attracting and securing large scale R&D foreign direct investments for Ireland.

Mike Train
Executive President – Emerson Automation Solutions
Michael H. Train leads the Automation Solutions business of Emerson, which posted sales of $10.2 billion in fiscal 2015. Train began his career with Emerson in 1991 as an international planner, then took on additional responsibilities in a number of executive posts that included serving as President of Emerson Japan and Korea, VP of Corporate Planning, President of Emerson Process Management Asia Pacific, and President of Emerson’s Rosemount business. He was most recently President of Global Sales for Emerson Process Management, responsible for sales, service, support, and customer satisfaction for all products and services across five world-area organizations. In that role he was also part of the leadership team that drove strategic initiatives and investments for the entire business group. Train earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from General Motors Institute and an MBA from the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University. He currently serves on the management school’s advisory council and was a 2008 Eisenhower Fellowship recipient.
Dave Tudor
Vice President, Head of GMS Strategy – GSK
Dave joined GSK in 1992 at Worthing as a PhD Chemist from Glasgow University. He has over 20 years’ experience with the company carrying out a number of Technical, Compliance and Manufacturing leadership roles. In 1997 he moved to Irvine to take up a lead chemist role before coming Quality Control Manager in 1998. He joined the site leadership team in 2001 to run Technical Development before moving to manufacturing as Actives Production Director in 2005. During this time he completed a Masters degree in Manufacturing Leadership at Cambridge University. In 2007 he moved to GSK House to work on a central network re-structuring project before becoming Site Director at Montrose in October 2008. At Montrose, he led the transformation of the site to manufacture over 12 products for GSK including a major investment programme. In 2011 he was appointed VP Primary Supply Chain with responsibility for global Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) manufacture and supply, a network of GMS sites across the world including facilities in Asia and Europe. In 2017 he was appointed VP Head of GMS Strategy with responsibility for manufacturing strategy, deployment of strategic programmes, performance management and advocacy. He plays an active role with a number of Governments and is currently co-chair of the Life Sciences Scotland Industry Leadership Group. Dave is also a member of UK Chemicals Industry Association Council and Board. Dave is married with 4 children and lives in Troon, Ayrshire. He enjoys all sports, particularly football, is a keen reader of Scottish history and does cooking to relax.
Peter Zornio
Chief Strategic Officer – Emerson Automation Solutions
As Chief Strategic Officer for Emerson Automation Solutions, Peter has responsibility for overall coordination of technology programs, product and portfolio direction, and industry standards across the Automation Solutions group. He has direct responsibility for the product definition and development organizations for control systems and software products. He has been at Emerson for 10 years. Prior to Emerson, he spent over 20 years at Honeywell in a variety of technology and marking roles, most recently as overall product management leader. Peter holds a degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of New Hampshire.
Herman Bottenberg
Marketing Director,, Zeton

PDEng. Ir. Herman Bottenberg is a chemical engineer with 15+ years of industrial experience, along with two years of Post academic work on Plant Design. He worked for 17 years at Zeton B.V. in The Netherlands, with five years of experience in project engineering and project management. The last 12 years he has been active in business development, sales and marketing. Since 2016 Herman is also responsible for the Marketing and Sales group at Zeton B.V. Herman has specialised in transformation of processes from batch to continuous, process intensification and modular processing plants for pharma and chemical industry.

Day 2
 Matt Moran
Director – BioPharmaChem Ireland
Matthew Moran is Director of BioPharmaChem Ireland. He graduated in Chemistry at Trinity College Dublin in 1980 and in Chemical Engineering at University College Dublin in 1981; he holds an MBA also from University College Dublin (Smurfit School of Business). He worked for over ten years in the pharmaceutical industry where he held a number of management positions both in active ingredient and dosage form manufacture. He is a member the European Chemical Industry Council (CEFIC). Matthew Moran is a Board member of the Active Pharmaceuticals Ingredients (API) Committee of CEFIC (CEFIC/APIC) and The European Association for Bioindustries (Europabio) BioPharmaChem Ireland represents the interests of the biopharmachem sector in Ireland. CEFIC/APIC represents the European API Industry. Europabio represents the European Biotech Sector.
Ian Allan
Automation Consultant – Infinity Automation
Currently the Managing Director of Infinity Automation, a relatively new company carrying out Automation & MES Consultancy, Strategic Planning and Major Program/Project Health checks, with blue chip Global Life Science companies and Strategic vendors that support that Industry. Formerly Ian was the Global Head of Automation & MES with Novartis, where he was responsible for the Manufacturing Automation Strategy and MES Program within Technical Operations in the Vaccines division.  Prior to that he worked for GSK as Global Automation Director responsible for Automation, Process Control and MES across 73 sites worldwide. There he led a team that developed a library of Emerson DeltaV modules to be deployed in multiple Bulk API sites across the world, as well as developing a blueprint for MES integration and Network delivery of Electronic Batch Records. Prior to that he held several roles in GSK within the Engineering and Automation departments. Ian started his career with IBM as a junior engineer when computers were a little bigger than they are today and holds a BSc in Electrical & Control Engineering from Strathclyde University. He is currently facilitating GSK’s Global Automation Steering Team and is leading the Digital Factory Automation workstream for a new Hybrid Manufacturing platform with the first instance being delivered in GSK Singapore Jurong site.
Colin Chapman
Director of Manufacturing IT – GSK
Colin Chapman is a Chemical Engineer with nearly 20 years experience in Life Sciences with GSK. Colin’s career has spanned across process engineering & automation, operations and new product introduction in both commercial manufacturing and clinical supply chains. In his current role as Director of Manufacturing IT Colin has successfully led the introduction of Manufacturing Operations Management across the clinical supply chain driving business process re-engineering and global workflow automation using technologies such as Syncade. GSK’s continuing program focuses on three value drivers, Compliance, Business Intelligence and Productivity.
Klaus Erni
Product Manager & Namur 148 Board Member – Emerson Automation Solutions
Klaus started his Emerson career in 2003 in Germany, where he was working as a Technical Manager for Key Accounts before he transferred to Austin, TX to become the DeltaV Hardware Product Marketing Manager. In 2015, he went back to Europe and took over another Global Role, being now the Technical Consultant to some major Strategic Accounts. While in Germany with Emerson, he was responsible for the technical aspects of the DeltaV Systems during the Sales and Implementation Phase, as well utilizing the latest Hardware and Software features while upgrading and expanding Systems on Key Customer sites. Prior to Emerson, Klaus was with the Hoechst AG, he did several Engineering projects with various PLC and DCS and SIS Systems and was as well a RS3 System User.
Danny Vandeput
Director Pervasive Sensing Strategies – Emerson Automation Solutions
The (Industrial) Internet of Things (IIoT) is revolutionizing the way we live but it also provides many new challenges to the industry. This can create confusion, uncertainty – combined with fuzzy statements – and different opinions. My great passion is to bring clarity in the Industrial Internet of Things and what benefits it can bring for you. I help industries to find the right perception of IIoT, how sensors can maximize profit, reduce downtime and bring the ROI into the IoT. Being already 23 years with Emerson I have assisted many types of industries on their way to Top Quartile Performance. This includes amongst other trainings, workshops, audits and implementing solutions.
#PAuto @EMR_Automation @NIBRT_ #IIoT @HHC_Lewis

#EmrEX: All change at Brussell Centraal.

18/04/2016
Emerson User Group EMEA in Brussels, Belgium – 12th – 14th April 2016

“Seems to me that #EMrex is focusing not so much on new technologies, though important, but looking closer at how we do things.”  our tweet on day one.
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Brussels looked lovely on the morning that the Emerson User Group meeting opened. There was little to suggest the trauma that the city had faced just a few short weeks previously as delegates strolled through the sun-lit streets to the conference centre. The security however was markedly tighter as we entered the building however with strict adherence to the best security practices. However once inside the building things were as normal.

 Emerson Exchange Brussels – The Videos!

Other Reports (as they appear)
• Operational Excellence at Emerson Exchange Brussels (Emerson’s Stuart Turner – 20/4/2016).
• Nick Denbow ‘s travel travails: My worst week as an air traveller!  (30/4/2016)

Speaking with the organisers it promised to be a bumper event, stretched as it was over three days examining all aspects of automation, experiences, applications and of course exciting new products and concepts. The attendance was slightly down on the last time in Stuttgart, some were reluctant to travel, others were unable to make it due to the inability of the severely damaged to adhere to a normal service. Those who attended were in part in broad agreement with the message penned by Emerson’s Travis Hesketh – Standing up for Brussels. Indeed the User Group very quickly confirmed after these terrible events that they were going ahead with #EMrex. At several of the social events at the periphery, like the evening reception for publishers and journalists the people who suffered were remembered.

The venue was a modern conference and the one hundred or so presentations and industry forums were stretched over about six floors including an exhibition floor and at the very top of the building was a cyber café and a wonderful panoramic hall with the breathtaking view (featured at the top of this page from a tweet by Emerson’s social media guru – Jim Cahill)

But on to the the meeting!

Peter Iles-Smith of GlaxoSmithKline opened proceedings as chair of the Users Exchange Board. He welcomed the over two thousand delegates from so many countries through out the EMEA who travelled for the event.

Steve_SonnenbergSteve Sonnenberg, President Emerson Process Management (pictured right) and Roel VanDoren, their President in Europe, in a joint presentation entitled “New Reality, New Opportunity” addressed the changes and challenges facing companies in the 21st Century. They did not talk about products or applications but on ways of doing things. Indeed during the presentation we tweeted: “Emerson’s approach – yes equipment, but more importantly perhaps is attitude or culture.”

Nobody does business the way they it was done even twenty years ago, when the internet was a baby and nobody imagined never mind thought possible social media platforms like twitter,  yet in many cases industry is way behind in adapting to change. Possibilities are there which were inconceivable a short time ago and these need to be harnessed for the good of humanity.

Research into these possibilities, new technologies are leading to changes especially the importance of planning including all stakeholders at the earliest opportunity. This thinking is leading to an innovative technology and engineering-based approach for improved capital efficiency such as their Project Certainty approach  which aims to tackle complexity by decoupling the dependencies suppliers have on each other, eliminating bottlenecks and allowing concurrent work streams. In a word it aims to transform capital investment and releasing the frightening amounts of money currently being lost in big and not so big projects.

And these figures are frightening. If the type of approach spoken of here is adopted savings of up to €400 Billion (yes BILLION) would be released to invest in, for instance,  production, reliability, safety, energy, training, security and innovation.

So what is involved?

Xavier_MarchantXavier Marchant, (right), Emerson’s Vice President Process Systems and Solutions in Europe, gave dramatic examples of the possible savings in labour and materials. For instance the decision to use smart junction boxes in a large project could save both money and space (95% in control room space). Spare parts are another area where there is phenomenal waste. He quoted a spokesman from a International Energy and Chemical Company, “On our last construction project we overspent on maintenance spares to the tune of €50,000,000…we just wrote it off….because we did not have a robust spares analysis process.” Reduce the complexity by the involvement of stake holders at the start of planning for a project and allowing them to develop it side by side. One simple idea is to separate software from hardware in the development. The “old way” is to tie them together from the start whereas this way the software can be developed using virtual systems and then later on when the actual operation is seen to work in the virtual world (he called it virtual FAT – Factory Acceptance Test) it may be introduced to the real or concrete world – or “late binding” as he called it.

vFAT
Virtual FAT has far less chance of harming one than the real thing?

He quoted  François Davin of Sanofi “Emerson’s Remote Virtual Office allowed us to collaborate with experts and resources from multiple sites to conduct our Factory Acceptance Test (FAT). The result was less travel and site disturbance to our operations. Also, more operators could participate remotely which improved the new automation system adoption.”

We were introduced to the concept of  quartile performance and their site Top Quartile Performance is a exposé of how they view this as a concept and how it is influencing their thinking as a group.

Peter_Zornio

Of course all these changes would be impossible without the availability and enthusiastic embracing of the so-called “new” technologies. Peter Zornio (right), Emerson’s irrepressible Chief Strategic Officer, gave us an insight into these and how the company is using these and its co-operative involvement with the pioneers in these , the Internet of Everything(CISCO),  Industrial Internet (GE), Smart Planet (IBM) and The Internet of Things (Microsoft). These technologies, and others embryonic or not even conceived of are guiding  the current and future development of technology used in the manufacturing and processing sectors.

Keynotes: The Emerson User Exchanges whether in the USA or EMEA always have exciting and inspirational keynote speakers each day. This event was no exception. Jack Uldrich, a futurist spoke about future-proofing business. The majority of businesses are not ready for what is happening in the real world or for the speed at which it is happening.

Another of these speakers Prof Jan Rotmans who spoke about change. He maintains that we are not living through an “era of change” as a “change of era!” Many of us are in the old era, our mobile phone is just that, we read newspapers, buy books in bookshops. Our kids live on their mobile phones, they are their liveline. We are “old-fashioned” our kids are “cool!” Change is disruptive and the old ways are totally unable to cope. The old top-down certainties are dissolving and the “common man” is taking charge, sometimes violently. Chaos is the name of the game.

Finally a veteran at EmrEX, David Beckman, brought all the thoughts and ideas of New Reality, New Opportunity together. In view of Rotmans’ talk earlier the title he chose was more than relevant as he introduced delegates to the “Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook.” Although he prepared us for worst case scenarios he described real opportunities for industrial automation.

Presentations. The various threads were divided into five headings or sectors, Business & Projects; Operate Safely, Securely and Legally; Process Optimisation; Maintenance & Reliabilitym and, Control System Applications & Migrations and were held through each of the days.

Forums: There were also Industry Forums with panels and general discussions on the various specialities e.g. Life Sciences or Refining & Petrochemicals. These were opportunities for participants to learn and exchange information and experiences with each other.

Training: There were also training  sessions and other sessions (called Roadmaps) on Emerson products and possible future developments.

projcertExpo

ExpoEmrEx16274Solutions EXPO: Of course no event is complete without actually seeing product and EmrEX is no exception. The floor was divided under the same zone headings as the threads of presentations above. (See sketch on left).

There were several unique exhibits. One was the Operations Centre of the Future. This was an imaginative presentation of a plant with a H.A.L. like computer responding (or not) to commands or requests from the operatives. It featured a drone delivery of spare parts and a really effective alarm situation which featured a realistic vibration of the floor. Of course the real message is that though it is the future most of the technology used is possible today.

Of course the Project Certainty concept featured prominently in the Business & Projects area and we were show possible scenarios. They had also rather bravely set up a wall where delegates could post what they consider are the features that should be addressed in projects. This should help “to focus ruthlessly on what’s directly relevent to a company strategy.”

Of course there were actual instruments on display to examine and handle.

Ind1stNotable was this industry first, the Rosemount X-well system, a wireless transmitter, accurately measuring process temperature without need for thermowell. Accurate process temperature measurement is possible without requiring any intrusions or penetrations into the process, allowing for quicker and easier installation along with simplified long-term maintenance. Users do not have to design, size or maintain thermowells. Wake Frequency Calculations are eliminated, as well as time spent determining material compatibility, the right insertion length and the necessary profile.

pressure_gaugeAlso the new Emerson Wireless Pressure Gauge created quite buzz among delgates. Th“This new gauge design fundamentally will change how customers use pressure gauges by helping them make better business decisions!”  It is another industry first. Does this signal the end of the Bourdon Tube?

Energy management is of course critical in all processes. It is effected not only by cost factors but also by legislation driven by concerns on pollution and global warming. Here Emerson demonstrated some prototypes of monitoring and control equipment not yet available. They emphasised savings on space occupied and of course ease of use by operatives.

Jim_CahillAnother very popular item was on the Maintenance & Reliability Zone. Here was an opportunity to experience the immersive training simulator. A goggle like apparatus was placed on the head and using a game-like hand piece the engineer is able to travel through a plant and see where various problems may be without any danger to him or her. It is a fascinating experience and one really feels that one is travelling through the plant rather than sitting or standing in a control room or office.  In this picture we see Emerson’s Chief Blogger, Surface Dweller, Head of Social Media enter the virtual world for real! We can confirm that he returned to real reality afterwards.

Around the periphery of the EXPO were the booths of companies which compliment the Emerson offering – what they call their complementary and strategic partners.

history-passageThere was also a section dedicated to history featuring milestones in science and automation over the years. It was a demonstration of change in the past. What will feature in future shows? The new opportunities taking advantage of the new realities of the past.

Always a major highlight of the Emerson User Group events is waht the call the “Networking Event.” This year was rather unique in that it was a visit to the Museum of Fine Arts and the Magritte Museum. This was an unique opportunity to see the best of Belgian painters – creativity of a different type than that extolled during the day sessions. Artists such as the Brueghels, Rubens, Jordaens and Magritte were enjoyed during this evening. Food and beverages were served – Belgium is famous for its beers of course but it also has its own cuisine and of course it’s chocolate is to die for.

This years event, despite the unexpected difficulties, was on a par, indeed because of these difficulties had perhaps more user participation than previous ones. There were many exciting things to see, concepts to understands and friends with which to share experiences.  And of course fun with a capital F.

Look at this and tell me people weren’t enjoying themselves! (Twitter pic ‏@Julian_Annison)

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Emerson’s Travis Hesketh and Nick Taylor appreciating (?) art.


Our unedited photos from the conferenceon the Read-out Facebook page.

Follow on twitter #EmrEX

The videos here give an impression of each day:
Day One


Day Two


Day Three

• We have written about our travelling experiences to and from Brussels in our personnel blog (Sa Bhaile: (“Home” in Irish). These were relatively smooth if labourious but there is indeed no comparison to the experiences of Nick Denbow of ProcessingTalk which he outlines on their blog: My worst week as an air traveller! 


Previous EmrEX EMEA Events.
2014: Stuttgart: Revving up in Stuttgart!
2012: Duesseldorf: Automation returns to Düsseldorf!

All our reports on EmrEX Events (including North America).


#EMrex #PAuto @EmersonExchange @EmersonProcess #PAuto #IoT

#EMrex On top of the world!

19/10/2015
Pic tweeted by @NewEngControls

Pic tweeted by @NewEngControls

Unfortunately we were unable, in any detail, to follow this years Emerson User Group love in. It took place high up in the Rocky mountain city of Denver (CO USA) and certainly looked like a very full programme with the usual enthusiastic plethora of tweets submerging our twitter feed, such as “Great venue, great presentations, great networking, great week – I’m #Elevated!” from @ChristopAmstutz. And obviously singing from the same hymn sheet @MCChow_88 with “I truly had my experience elevated this past week @EmersonExchange!”  Obviously all were on a higher plane – or altitude than us mere mortals at sea level!

A new item (as far as I can remember) was a feature which included those who were unable to be in Denver who were invited to participate in the final “Ask the Experts” – seven gurus with all information and knowledge on the topics featured in the four packed days of information sharing. The @EmersonExchange twitter constantly referred to the various forum posts questions and solutions of interest to users.

As always the Jim Cahill, Mr Emerson On-Line, was ever present guiding, pointing and highlighting interesting happenings, speakers and events.

There were news letters and videos published on a daily basis which helped inform people not present what was happening.   This was also useful for those attending but who had to make choices as to which presentation to attend.

A very comprehensive account of highlights has been written by Gary Mintchell, “Wireless, Enhanced Sensing Lead Emerson Product Announcements,” which is “a summary—running through many of the new products introduced to the press and analysts during Emerson Exchange 2015.”  He also made an video of his experience:

During the week although we were unable to follow events we did have a link on our home page, which allowed visitor to follow things.

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Daily Reports
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3

Videos from Major Sessions

FieldCommtechnologies at #EMrex (report Control-online 25 Nov’15)

Our Reports for earlier EMrex Events

The next User Group Meeting is scheduled for Europe in Brussels (B) in April 2016. Emrex Americas is planned for later next year in the Capital of Texas, Austin – 24-28th October 2016. And if you wish to plan even further ahead the 2017 event is to be held in Minneapolis.


#EMrex Revving up in Stuttgart!

07/04/2014
The Emerson  Global Users Exchange in Europe was a three-day event for existing and potential users of Emerson Process Management products and services. The event was held from 1-3rd April 2014 in Stuttgart, the capital of the German Land (State) of Baden-Wurtemburg (D).

FSTStuttgartMany memories sprang to mind as the Aer Lingus flight from Dublin touched down gently at Stuttgart Airport. It was over forty years since I had been there on a training course – in pneumatic instrumentation – in a local company which has long since been swallowed up , much like pneumatic controls,  in the advances and takeovers since that time! There on the surrounding hills was the emblematic fernsehturm, the very first television tower in the world and a symbol of a resurgent city recovering from the ravages of total war.

I was travelling to the Emerson Exchange User Group meeting (Tagged #EMrex on twitter) of the European, Middle East & African region along with over 1,200 others anxious to learn of the experience of others as well as learning of any new “goodies” Emerson themselves might have to unveil! This was the second such event in Europe, the last was also in Germany in the city of Duesseldorf, two years ago – see Automation returns to Duesseldorf. Of course the User Conference for the Americas has been held annually for a number of years (see our Reports here!)

The event started with a plenary session where everybody gathered in the main hall to hear the schedule for the three days, a business update on Emerson and a technology update.

Francisco Diaz-Andreu opens the Emerson Global Users Exchange, Stuttgart, April 2014

Francisco Diaz-Andreu opens the Emerson Global Users Exchange, Stuttgart, April 2014

Delegates were welcomed by Francisco Diaz-Andriu, of Repsol, Spain and member of the Board of The Emerson Users Group. He has been active in automation in Spain for many years and was the founding president of the vibrant International Society of Automation (ISA) Spain Section, in which he is still active. He gave a preview of what attendees could expect during the three days. He outlined the work of the user group in the organising of the conference and the composition of the board. Needless to say they are always looking for new members to broaden the application expertese available to future events.

The Porsche factor!

Roel van Doren

Roel van Doren

Emerson’s European President, Roel van Doren, started with the first presentation talking about the company’s philosophy.  A great company is a company that asks the right questions. Instead of, “What can we sell you?” or “What do you want to buy from us?” a great company asks its customers questions like, “What is your vision for the way your plant should operate?” or “How can we work together to solve your problems?”

This kind of collaborative approach to the customer relationship is the essential idea behind the strategic direction Emerson is taking. Taking his cue (excuse the mixed metaphor!) from one of the companies for which Stuttgart is famed far and wide, Porsche, he drew a comparison, “Like the pilot of a high performance race car you face many challenges that come in your direction at an ever increasing speed. And like a pilot, you must be able to react quickly to those challenges. You need to be able to fully trust the team that’s behind you. Our hope is that you will trust us to be the business partner that you can rely on, and that you will trust us to be part of your team. Because when the right people with the right technology come together, magic happens.”

The Plenary Session

The Plenary Session

Pervasive Sensing
The Chief Strategic Officer of Emerson, Peter Zornio, can always be relied upon to give an interesting presentation and this year proved no different. He spoke about the expansion of the Emerson offering from being merely process control towards an all-embracing monitoring of the entire operation, whether in the process area or in the peripheral areas within and without the premises. He introduced us to the iOps concept – Integrated Operations. As technology has developed so has it been possible to see what is happening in all areas of the plant – in real time. It calls for a clear, up-to-date view of what’s happening in all aspects of an operation. This assists in more efficiency, increased staff effectiveness and therefore more productivity. By using what they have named Pervasive Sensing they have adopted a policy based on the axiom “You can’t improve what you don’t know!” With this philosophy it is possible to prevent problems rather than react to them.

The iOps centre during a demonstration.

The iOps centre during a demonstration.

Later we had the opportunity to visit the iOPs facility set up on the Exchange exhibition floor where demonstrations were a big attraction.

Think for change
An entertaining keynote was given by Dave Beckman, a former marketing executive with Emerson and who now spends his “retirement” as a speaker to the process industry. He advocated thinking outside the box,not to be afraid to be on the edge. He also was optimistic for the future as countries suddenly realised that they ought to rely on their own resources.

Emerson Exchange Daily

31 Mar {+} 1 Apl {+} 2 Apl {+} 3 AplReleases at the event!

+ Asset management software update reduces fieldbus device commissioning time by up to 80%

+ Pervasive Sensing will more than double the existing measuring market!

+ Wireless condition monitoring and prediction system reduces plant downtime and maintenance costs on Teeside!

+ Wireless improves leak detection maintaining regulatory compliance & enhance safety

+ Air cooled heat exchanger monitoring solution!

+ Cooling tower monitoring ensures cooling water availability, quality reducing chemical costs!

+ Dealing with dull, distant, dirty and dangerous locations!(iOps)


This is a nice 3min video from Nicolas Menet from the event entitled, “Final Control Valve Solution”

He cited the example of the United States which has changed almost beyond recognition. This has largely been the result of the technology which allows the extraction of shale gas. It has changed everything! Suddenly this huge country is again self sufficient in fuel. This is going to happen elsewhere too as the political situation changes due to economic circumstances. And things are changing to make previously unthinkable policies suddenly acceptable. Witness the effect of the Fukashima disaster! All nuclear power stationa are now being closed down in Japan and in Germany. What are these great countries to do for energy?

Keeping up!
In some way it may be said that a person who attends one of these multi-thread conferences has a disadvantage over the person who is sitting at his desk following things on twitter. I did attend one or two of the sessions as well as the afternoon press conference at which details of new products and applications were given. Links to these may be found in the box.

The Exchange daily news was emailed to all who requested it on each evening and these gave an excellent resume of events.

But of course nothing can compare with the networking at these events. Now in the age of social-media, one knows a lot of people without ever meeting them. Conferences like this are an opportunity of meeting people whose tweets or contributions other social networking platforms you have been followed. This was no exception and besides meeting many European and American press people like Keith Larson of Control, Nick Denbow of Industrial Automation Insider and John McKenna of Process Engineering. We also had the chance to meet the very active, possibly the most active in automation, Emerson Twitter cluster including Jim Cahill, Chris Amstutz, Nick Taylor and, for the first time, Mike Boudreaux.

Social aspect
There was a social aspect to this as well and many hostelries in the city benefitted from delegates sampling Schwaebish cuisine. This correspondent and his companions for the evening couldn’t have had more praise for the Stuttgarter Staeffele – (Your restaurant for Swabian specialties!). German food has an ill-deserved reputation for being somewhat stodgy but a visit to this 40 year old restaurant will, without doubt, change any such preconceptions.

There was also a group event which was a visit to the Porsche museum to tittalate the little boy in many as they drooled enviously over these glorious machines made with such precision and care. There are over eighty vehicles on display. We are not sure how many orders were placed as a result of this visit!

• The next Emerson Exchange Users Exchange is scheduled for the Americas. It will be held in Orlando, (FL USA) from 6th to the 10th of October 2014. Maybe you’ll be there.


#EMrex We heard it on the Grapevine!

07/10/2013

Combining the Elements of Success

“Looking forward to a great week. #EMRex or Bust!”
This was one of the tweets the last weekend of September which reminded us that the annual #EMrex Fest was about to be launched this time in a place called Grapevine. (Hence our crazy headline!). Last year’s EMREX was in Anaheim California and it’s

emrexboard

The Emrex Board!

Emerson Global Users Exchange, said the Chairman the Emerson’s User Group, Savannah River Nuclear Solutions’ Tracy Waller, presents an “opportunity for “Combining the Elements” of success to impact your company’s bottom line.” He did add that “the value you gain from Exchange is limited only by the amount of knowledge you can absorb while attending.” And that is true without a shadow of doubt. That tweet about a great week reminded us poor twitter watchers that an avalanche of tweets was about to descend bearing the hashtag #EMRex.

America is a big and far-away place and Grapevine, Texas is about six or seven hours behind Europe so the #EMrex tweets usually start coming in at about 11.00 Irish time. However on the first day it looked as if some of the afficianados didn’t go to bed at all as tweets were waiting to be read as we opened our laptops on this side of the mighty Atlantic. As one tweet said “Should be interesting to watch Emerson Exchange through Social this week!”

failteemrexTracy Waller opened @EmersonExchange welcoming attendees from 50+ countries. We learned that there were 2834 in for the opening of which 500 were from countries outside of the US. As we are using tweets to compile this report one statistic given was EmersonExchange 365 (the Emerson User Community!) has grown to over 9000 members! “What a great way to connect to other like minded professionals!” Another stat reported “350 workshops and exhibits this week,” and another confirmed Waller’s comment above, “Over 350 workshops, forums, keynotes- more content than any single person can attend.”

Let’s go!

So what happened? Steve Sonnenberg, Emerson Process Management leader, welcomed attendees noting that a third of attendees were first-timers. It is primarily “an unmatched opportunity to learn what others are doing,” he said. “You invest your trust in us…I want Emerson to be a listening organisation!” Another tweet reported “Emerson Process grows, expects inflection in last half of 2014. Emerson continues to invest in the business..” The term “inflection” in this context is new to this writer however we assume that it means that the speaker foresees a measurable upswing towards the end of that year. Perhaps one of the reasons is the feasibility of pervasive sensing as it becomes cheaper and easier to deploy due to wireless technology and this will neccessatate the implementation of a policy that ensures that they can serve. The message strongly coming through was “When you run into obstacles or need a hand or just some advice, you’ll trust us to be part of your team.”

Shiny stuff time!

Peter Zornio in full flow!

Peter Zornio in full flow!

“Nice to get the biz update – But show me the technology!” is a nice introduction to the presentation of the irrepressible Peter Zornio, Emerson Process Management’s Chief Technical Officer. “Peter Zornio warned us to fasten our seat belts, before he goes through the shiny new things.” He highlighted “12 products going through human centered design process” at Emerson. Our tweeters were hard put to keep up with this roller-coaster ride. “New technologies in Coriolis, DP level, DP flow, Vortex flow, Temperature, Analyzers… lots!” were unveiled. We have taken some tweets at random! Make sure you have a reviving cup of coffee at hand!

Shopping for diamonds!:

“Worlds first total wireless radar now available!”

“Emerson extends lighter weight and technology of Micro Motion Coriolis meters to its density and viscosity meters as well!”

“D-RTU Distributed RTU automatically join to RTU network!”

“Incus ultrasonic gas leak detector senses gas leaks by listening, therefore not affected by weather or dilution!”

“DeltaV SIS with Electronic Marshalling is a modern safety system. Can be used integrated or standalone!”

“New functionality introduced for shift change automation and documentation in Syncade; Operator logbooks!”

“CSI 2140 4-channel machinery health analyzer w/ Bluetooth and wireless communications is up to 50% faster than CSI 2130!”

“Look for the official retirement party here this week for Provox and RS3 systems.”

“Pervasive sensing will more than double the number of sensors in a process facility!” and “Site safety, reliability and energy efficiency will benefit from pervasive sensing!”

“New combined WirelessHART and WiFi gateway!”

“iOPs is where it all comes together to connect the business to the process loop!”

“We are building the future of operations.”

“I feel like I’m shopping for diamonds!”

And finally “Hard to keep up with P. Zornio #EMRex #ToMuchShinyStuff!”

Under promise and over deliver

Mark Thompson co-founder of Virgin Unite Mentors, Sir Richard Branson’s network for executive coaching and entrepreneurial innovation delivered a keynote. He spoke about how to inspire building leadership skills to inspire 10x performance, learn more. Risk is a very hard thing to take on, and we need to support our teams to take on that risk.The importance of trust, “Trust– exceed expectations… Under promise and over deliver.”

It was interesting how all three opening speakers reflected this philosophy, each in his own way.

Associated exhibition area

emrex13expoAlways at these meetings there is an exhibition area where delegates may get their hands on product or learn in more detail about actual applications. There are exhibits from Emerson companies and from supportive companies and this is usually a very busy networking area.

ISA Bookstore up and running. Stop on by & see #PAuto titles.

ISA Bookstore up and running. Stop on by & see #PAuto titles.

On twitter this usually translates to “Come see us at booth XYZ!” or “Our awsome display at #EMrex, with a picture of an empty stand (or booth as they are called in the US), with 3 or four eager company representatives or (if they are lucky) a set scrummage of backs heaving to get at the goodies! Maybe not too exciting but twitterati at the event are sometimes made aware of something that they might miss otherwise. However those who post short videos on what they are doing can be enlightening. For those actually attending of course the experience is…well here’s a tweet, “Two hours into the exhibits at #EmrEx and it is still humming..” Nuff said!

Talking about videos, the collection of videos being published about the show are another way of getting the atmosphere and sometimes information. Look at Emerson Daily Exchange where there is a series of short videos to whet virtual appetites! Another useful resource during the week was Live at the Exchange, a review of happenings on a day by day basis with photos shared on-line, some of which we are using in this report. (tweet: “The Control Global team is here & publishing to Emerson Exchange365!)

Break-outs
When attending this event it is always difficult to select which room to go to in which thread of automation. Following on twitter sometimes one is assailed by tweets from the various talks or presentations which can be confusing but also instructive as it can lead to exploration elsewhere for more information on the topic. This is especially fruitful where the presenter provides his power point presentation and/or notes on-line. We will just give a few tweet examples here.
“Great discussion and thanks to our industry panelist’s – Monetization of #NatGas – O&G Industry Forum”
“Life Science team at the ready for Continuos Process Verification solutions!”
“Fort Worth 2: workshop by Madhav on how Emerson delivered Containerized DCS and OTS on time for fast track Project!”
“Dallas3: Mr Nishimaki from KNGPG explains how #EMR #wireless solution benefited to achive high reliability”
Bob Huba highlights the importance of people and processes in #PAuto cybersecurity.”
“Marlin Midstream changing the game – controlling valves wirelessly on a natural gas cryo plant!”
“Killer talk on SynTQ PAT application by BMS on a Fluidized Bed Drying process and a Blending process!”
“Cool! I just saw my safety dashboard video from the iOps Center at Emerson Exchange 2012.” (this from Mike Boudreaux!)
“Kaleb Pergande provides a look at enhancements of the Fisher GX control valve over its 10-year lifespan.”
“Aaron Crews outlines dashboards for risk mitigation to increase safety in our process facilities.”
Wow ! Come and see Australia’s biggest iPad @ #emrex in workshop -SANTOS Brisbane Collabrative Control Center by Mike and Patrick!”
“Be sure to get to the DeltaV roadmap sessions: Come and Meet Claudio the new DeltaV marketing Dir..”
“This is cool: Session ID 8-5039- High Fidelity Modeling with MiMiC Simulation Software…”
“Bring your laptop to the fire and gas workshop at #emrex we’re going to be working…”
“Just watched @LouHeavner making APC theory look easy. Very impressive!”
“Great presentation of how integrated operations powers you business potential at exchange by Mike Boudreaux and Suchit Rout.”
“I saw a real LouLou of a presentation on VRU’s, 8-4939. Last chance tomorrow at 3:15!” (not sure what a LouLou presentation is but we assume it’s a compliment!)
“Got out to see the Fisher Regulator Technologies HQ in McKinney this afternoon. Shiny and new, indeed!”
“Three attributes of Pervasive Sensing, Jonas Berge tells me: wireless; non-intrusive installation; good enough measurement accuracy!”
“So did you take Steve’s advice and meet 5 new people every day? Well, check out the Networking session today – 2.15, Dallas 6.”
“yes , in fact meeting more than 5 people #emrex from different countries , having fun !”
“Nice synergies presented at #EmrEx; Wireless leak detection on pipe-lines and tank gauging in refinery tank farm. #WiHART is the enabler.”
“Cindy Scott presents the new DeltaV Executive Portal – view process graphics and create dashboards in IE for use in your enterprise!”
“Want to be a rocket scientist too? http://ow.ly/24qdDU!”
“Emerson research leader exits each meeting wondering, “How can a 58 year old have so much fun at work?” Easy: Fun problems/great people.”
…and so on! Can you feel the enthusiasm?

More fun
Can you take any more well of course there is the evening time when the sessions are over and what we in Ireland call “seissiúns” begin. This is party time and no Emerson Exchange is complete with out this kind of fun – or the real craic! And our tweeters are not idle here. “Knock Knock Knocking on Heaven ‘s Door #EmrEx. Emerson , LBP’s, and Exhibitors jammin’ it tonight on stage!..” “Dancing with @Merry120 and @DeannaDaisy. It’s an #EMRex tradition! As always, the band was awesome tonight!!” Maybe we should draw a veil over the rest of the evening.

“Best exchange ever this year. Truly lives up to expectations. Real connections and great interaction with and between customers!”
“We had another good exhibition at #EMRex. Thanks for the great conversations! The Final Control booth is all packed up until next year!”

A great quiet has now descended on our tweet-feed as the participants return to their homes and mull and digest over the information they have received! And to a well earned rest!

And so to Stuttgart!
The last word I’ll leave with Nick Taylor: “Germany is beautiful in the Spring. Join us for #EMRex Stuttgart, April 20014!” And it looks like it will be as outstanding as the previous time this was held in Europe with a Record number of abstracts from users. Click here for more information on Emerson Users Exchange EMEA. Last year this was in Duesseldorf (D) and you can see what we thought in our article, Automation returns to Düsseldorf! (Oct 2012)

BTW The Americans will do it all over again in Orlando, (Fl USA) next October: 6-10 October 2014.


Reports
As we come accross other reports in other locations we’ll link here!

Emrex Video Daily! {}Day 1{}Day 2{}Day 3{}Day 4{}Day 5{}

Day One {}Day Two {}Day Three {}Day Four (ControlGlobal)
• Control Global also have a page which they alarmingly call “Emerson Exchange News all in one place!” We didn’t think that was possible but this team are remarkable!

Emerson: A Problem Solver (Gregory Hale, ISS Source, 1/10/2013)

Emerson: Pervasive Sensing for Safety (Gregory Hale, ISS Source, 1/10/2010)

Process Systems User Group Sees Large Crowd (Gary Mintchell, Manufacturing Connection, 1/10/2013)

“Pervasive Sensing” Is the Future (ARC Advisory Group, 11/10/2013)

Emerson dishes a feast at Dallas Exchange (South African I&C, November 2013)

Pervasive or Persuasive Sensing? (Kiran Patel, IMS Research, 4/11/2013)

Pervasive sensing highlighted ar Emerson Exchange 2013 (Bill Lydon, Automation.com, 25/11/2013)


• Anything we’ve missed is sure to appear on Jim Cahill’s (Watch how you pronounce that name folks), Emerson Process Experts. He was there in the flesh with his eyes wide open!


New European HQ for Emerson & a move to promote support services and work ever closer to customers

12/07/2013

This is Nick Denbow’s report on the Emerson Press Event held in Switzerland in mid-June 2013. It appeared in the July 2013 issue of his publication Industrial Automation and Process Control Insider.

Nick Denbow

Nick Denbow

See our own report Emerson raises the bar at Baar.

Headquarters staff at Emerson Process Management in Europe moved into a new purpose-built office block in Baar, Switzerland, last month – and the very next week hosted around 24 European editors for a press conference and review of their latest business activity. This also enabled them to show off the new conference suite and training / demonstration facilities: a notable achievement when they were only just settling in.

The Press Kit was entitled as another in the Emerson “Conquering Complexity” series, starting in Brussels in November 2011 with their Smart Energy Initiative (INSIDER December 2011, page 1). This 2013 event, subtitled  “Smart Connections”, was introduced by Roel van Doren, president for Emerson Process in Europe, who explained that the Emerson strategy is to bridge the gaps that create the major challenges to the process industry currently, where there is a lack of in-house expertise and resource to link the performance demands – and geographic business expansion plans – with the operational complexity of a modern plant. Emerson say they can offer their people and expertise to supply resources and knowledge, to link the plant operations with these requirements, satisfying demand, uptime and performance criteria.

Terminal automation – with business logistics
A further theme of the Emerson 2013 European press event showed the result of a recent collaborative development between Emerson and Vopak, the world’s largest independent tank storage provider. Vopak operates 84 terminals with a combined storage capacity of nearly 30 million cubic meters in 31 countries, and specializes in the storage and handling of liquid chemicals, gases and oil products. Ton van Dijk from Vopak, their global IT Manager – who said he felt rather out of place amongst all the process engineers assembled as the main presenters – explained that Vopak have a continuous search for leading technology and new solutions, to realize their ambitions and innovate or improve their services. The Vopak objective is aimed at providing their customers with better supply chain data. The logic was that all equipment attached to a PC generates data, and this data could be harnessed not only to improve efficiency, but also to provide better quality records and product history.

Vopak supplier review
In terms of the ISA95 defined operational levels in their business, Emerson was an established supplier of Level 1 field instrumentation, and with DeltaV supplied process control systems at Level 2: as required by the Vopak dual strategy approach at this level, Yokogawa is also a supplier of Level 2 systems. The next step up, defined as Production Execution, on Level 3, involves despatching and route planning for chemicals on site, scheduling and reliability assurance – at this level Vopak considered offers from suppliers such as SAP and Oracle, had the option to build the software themselves, and also considered sourcing from other industrial parties such as Emerson. The discussions with Emerson back in 2011 showed that there was immediate interest for co-creation, ie a joint development with Vopak investing time and effort and with Emerson investing in the software development. Vopak was attracted by the obvious industry knowledge, the safety and QA standards evident, and the Emerson willingness and ability to invest. The project was started, and in fact won a joint prize for the innovative approach in Holland. To date two tank farms have been implemented, with the first successful execution in the Netherlands at Amsterdam Westpoort, m a i n l y achieved by the shared mind-set in the team driving to s u c c e e d , even though the software was on the critical path in the t e r m i n a l construction!

The new Vopak tank terminal at Amsterdam Westpoort

The new Vopak tank terminal at Amsterdam Westpoort

The application developed, within Syncade Logistics, comprises advanced planning and integrated stock management tools, order handling and auto-routing. The software is aligned with the liquids handling application within the Emerson DeltaV digital automation system. Through links with the DeltaV, and to Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, Syncade Logistics was able to provide savings at the administrative level, according to the release issued a year ago about the Westpoort terminal. Comments this year were that the Syncade capabilities, normally applied to pharmaceutical batch processing and quality records, provided a valuable transfer into the terminal record data, allowing far more supply chain traceability, even with recorded knowledge of the history of the pipes and tanks used.

Emerson commercialization
While the system will be applied at other Vopak terminals, Emerson is free to offer the solution to any terminal operator. As commented by Guido Wink, general manager – sales and marketing for Emerson in the Netherlands: “We developed this new software application to meet the 4 requirements of Vopak and have now made it available to other terminal companies. Vopak provided the terminal technology and logistics know-how, and we have converted this into a specific application for managing bulk liquid terminals.”

Newly defined business area
Emerson have introduced the idea of this new business area as a “Solve and Support” function, on top of their three base business pillars. The main pillar is ‘measure and analyze’ (Rosemount, Micro Motion, Daniel, Analytical etc), 50% of the European business in 2012; ‘final control and regulate’ (Fisher), 22% of the business; ‘operate and manage’ (DeltaV and software 28% of the business. So literally in the middle of this pie (since the above three already adds up to 100%) there is another 15% of the business which has evolved over the years, and is now to be labelled as ‘Solve and Support’.

The total European business of Emerson Process had sales of $1.6Bn in 2012, which includes between $300- 400m of exports out of the area, interestingly quoted as from Italy, France and the UK (with no mention of Germany). So this newly defined solve and support business in Europe is worth $240m.

“Solve and Support” Business Definition
What is it? The short answer for “Solve” is that the business provides people who are knowledgeable and able to apply the capabilities of the product and system innovations that Emerson have created. They are the best people to get the most out of these specialist innovations, a fact recognized by the customers and the EPCs. While it might look like Emerson is taking the rôle of an EPC, which would be competing with its own customers, van Doren explained that they partner with EPCs, and have strong relationships with them, but do not wish to take on the full rôle. This is explained further, below.

The next half of the business definition covers “Support”, and is the provision of people to provide lifecycle services throughout the many years of operation of the plants, in terms of providing asset monitoring, predictive maintenance, improved plant uptime, and faster turnarounds or upgrades. Erik Lapré, vp for lifecycle service in Europe – a rôle he has held since 2007, charged with driving the service growth programme – explained that globally Emerson has added 4000 service personnel since 2005, doubling the size of this sector. Many of their service centres – and there are 97 spread across Europe – are either close to customer concentrations, or within customer’s plants, with staff dedicated to servicing the one site. Others are based around the Emerson factory locations that are defined as centres of excellence: in Europe these are for flow at Ede in The Netherlands, valves at Cernay in France (as well as the Quick-ship centre in Hungary for valve and actuator parts), Ovation at Chelyabinsk and St Petersburg in Russia, and Warsaw in Poland. Support for the Syncade Suite operations management software users in Europe is from the training centre in Herlev, Denmark.

A change of emphasis
The real message is not that Emerson are starting to do these things, it has been happening for over 10 years: the message is that they are more actively promoting these activities and pouring resources into these areas. The press releases give an interesting mixture of policy and data: relevant to “Solve” we have – “Emerson has expanded plans to expand its project engineering staff to meet the demands of major project activity”. “Emerson has added over 2500 engineers to project execution staff since 2005. In 2012 staffing levels….topped 4600”. “The number of mega-projects (over $5m) has tripled in less than two years”. “Emerson managed one multi-project programme [ie multiple projects for one customer] that started in 2001 [probably with the Danish Novo Nordisk modular pharma plant] – and is currently managing thirteen”.

Rolf Hemminga, sales director of process systems and solutions in Europe, presented several examples of their recent projects, such as Clair Ridge and Visund in the North Sea, and was supported by customers from INA, MOL and Vopak, who were present to explain their projects further.

Jim Nyquist, president of the PlantWeb solutions group was quoted as saying “We’re not just adding staff, we’re making them more efficient and effective. We’ve invested for years in standard practices and tools for project engineering, and taking advantage of global telecommunications technology”. Hemminga illustrated this quoting a current pharma project, led from Switzerland but designed by teams in the US and Europe, to be configured and skid built in the USA, UK, France and Germany to comply with FDA requirements, and to be erected in Singapore – the site only chosen two years after the project start.

Similarly customers choose Emerson for North Sea platform upgrades, where shutdown time is critical, and they look for the experience and knowledge brought by Emerson, because their own engineering staff and knowledge has been run down, or it is a new owner. Significant project work on DeltaV SIS safety and control systems also has been undertaken by this Solve business, and Hemminga suggested that as a result of this involvement Emerson now had more certified safety engineers on staff than any of the other five top DCS vendors in the World.

So what about Support?
To quote the press kit: Steve Sonnenberg, president of Emerson Process Management, said “The number of large automation projects for which we’ve been chosen – increasingly as Main Automation Contractor – has dramatically increased in the past two years”… “Once these projects are up and running they need prompt, dependable support services to stay at peak efficiency”… “Emerson can help them bridge the gap [in technology awareness] by providing contract personnel to do initial set-up of new technology approaches and assist with on-going support programmes”…. “It’s our goal to address the gaps in our customer’s in-house capabilities with our quality services. The aggressive investment programme we’ve put in place will help us meet those needs”.

Lapré used the example of the recent upgrade of the INA refinery in Croatia to illustrate the Support service function within the continuing operations. New process units had been added to meet EU fuel specifications: operators were trained on these new process units using DeltaV dynamic simulators, illustrating the plant control system. On-going support is provided by an Emerson resident site engineer, who also handles spare parts management and calls up service engineers as needed, based on analysis of predictive diagnostics within the AMS system. In this the on-site engineer is helped by remote services interrogating the plant systems to identify areas that need attention – such services are also used to remotely monitor installations on offshore platforms, and to identify the expertise needed, or assist the local operations personnel in sorting the problem. These remote services can also be extended into process optimization and loop tuning.

While this type of on-site engineer service has been available from Emerson for many years – one of the first examples was in the Ineos Chlor plant in the UK over 10 years ago – the retirement of engineering expertise, the continuing lack of new entrants to this industry (partly caused by the reduction of on plant staffing levels) and the complexity of modern systems is fuelling a significant growth in demand for such services, primarily in Europe and the USA.

Developments in the rôle of the MAC
Roel van Doren led the recent press presentation, and helpfully provides this clarification about the current relationship between Emerson, when operating as a Main Automation Contractor (MAC) and an Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) contractor. Roel writes: “The rôle of the MAC is very much to coordinate the automation aspects of the project, whilst the role of the EPC contractor is to oversee the construction, mechanical and process parts of the project. This includes overseeing the automation element, but this is typically less than 5% of their scope.

Roel van Doren, president of Emerson Process in Europe

“Emerson is not looking to fulfil the EPC rôle in projects. We are very much focused on providing automation solutions to our customers. Indeed, we have vast experience of being the MAC on very large and complex projects globally, including many multiple and mega-size projects. Because of our expanded services capability we will be able to provide even greater support as a MAC to both existing and new customers.

“This is important because process automation touches every part of the process, making it a critical component of a successful project. So much so that major end users now tend to choose the automation supplier as early as possible. By doing so, customers are moving away from the traditional EPC model and moving towards a “PEpC” approach, where:

P= Procure critical packages and frontend loading services

E= Engineer

p= Procure the balance (non-critical items)

C= Construct

“Emerson supports the PEpC approach, in which procurement of critical packages and front end loading services (FEL) occurs much earlier in the project lifecycle, prior to project sanction. PEpC also utilises a MAC. This greatly influences key project design philosophies, which affect plant operation and maintenance. It also ensures that the MAC is brought into a `circle of influence’ with the plant owner and the EPC. PEpC is supported by the Construction Industry Institute and studies have shown that it creates an average opportunity for a 10% saving in cost and time.

“For very large projects or train of plants that may have multiple EPCs, such as the one quoted at our press conference, at the INA Refinery, consistency is provided by the MAC, especially when they have the ability to provide more than 90% of the scope from within their own portfolio, as we can at Emerson.

“Emerson is working directly with many end users to provide them with automation technology and services. If required we do sometimes also take responsibility for other scope to support the projects.”


Emerson raises the bar in Baar!

25/06/2013
Services are at the core!

Among the highlights of the automation journalist’s year are User Group Meetings and press events organised by the leading vendors in the sector. Read-out has covered many of these and the leading and longest “on-the-go” are those organised by Emerson Process Management in Europe.

The incomparable beauty of Switzerland - Lake Lucerne a few miles from the new Emerson HQ.

The incomparable beauty of Switzerland – Lake Lucerne a few miles from the new Emerson HQ.

This year the journalists headed for the beautiful country of Switzerland, basking in glorious sunshine while the white-topped Alps smiled down on us. As usual in these events the organisation was faultless and journalists and some users from throughout the European region were made feel at home in the short time they were there.

There was a sense of sadness too as the H H C Lewis organisation, the public relations firm who did a lot of the planning for this (and for all such events for Emerson Europe), had suffered the sudden loss of Charles Lewis about six months ago. Charles was always in the thick of things at these events making sure that everyone was happy and on-time. His presence among us was sadly missed. May he rest in peace. Adrian Chesney’s open and friendly personality was there this time to ensure that everything went swimmingly.

Emerson European HQ

Emerson European HQ

This correspondent travelled from the scenic, and also sunny, fastnesses of Conamara, on the west coast of Ireland, into the great alpine fastnesses of that beacon of freedom and democracy in the heart of Europe, the Cantons of Helvetia. The destination was the scenic town of Zug, close to the new state-of-the-art headquarters of Emerson Process Management at the nearby settlement of Baar. A get together was organised for the first evening on a cruise on nearby Lake Lucerne and old friendships were renewed and new ones created.

European automation journalists at Emerson Press Conference in Baar (CH)

European automation journalists at Emerson Press Conference in Baar (CH)

The press conference.
The press conference itself was a focus on Emerson’s global support service initiative, with a number of Emerson customers describing their experiences. It was also an opportunity to see their new headquarters up close and personal and the conference and presentations were given there.

baarthemaThe conference was started by newly appointed Emerson Process Management Europe President, Roel Van Doren, who after welcoming the delegates to the new building  made a brief presentation. He outlined Emerson’s strategy philosophy which is based on “solving our customer’s toughest problems!” I suppose it could be summed-up by the image they used throughout the presentations. This emphasised closeness to the customer, knowledge of the industry being served and ease in dealing with each other. He also gave an outline of Emerson’s worldwide presence.

Project support
The importance of smart connections for project services was the theme of a presentation by Rolf Hemminga, Director PSS Europe, Plantweb Solutions Group. In a way he said, Products are not important so much as the service we bring!” He was talking about the lifespan of a process plant. It takes one to three years to analyse and plan; a further one to two years to design and engineer; one to three years to execute the project and then a further twenty to sixty years to maintain and optimise. One also has to realise that project needs themselves have changed (and will continue to do so) over the past ten years.  Emerson has added over 2,500 project engineers worldwide since 2005 and many of the services they provide did not exist ten years ago (visioning, comprehensive safety, wireless, security etc). Indeed he claimed that Emerson had now more safety personnel than equivalent companies. More about Emerson procect services. More on Emerson’s project support programme!

candetweet

One of the nice things about events like this is the possibility of meeting Social Media friends. At this event fellow tweeter Emerson’s Chris Amstutz,  who is involved in the hydrocarbon terminal and storage area, sought me out and as Jim Cahill, another Emerson tweeter might say, “It hasn’t happened unless there’s a picture!”


Releases issued at this press event

Other reports

• Invensys and Emerson Process In • Process Manufacturing News (Gary Mintchell, 8/7/2013)
• New European HQ for Emerson & a move to promote support services and work ever closer to customers (Nick Denbow, IAI, 8/7/2012)

Practicalities
There were then four presentations on complex installations in various locations throughout Europe, from Russia in the east to the Netherlands in the west. The first, given jointly by Károly Oláh of MOL, and Emerson’s Glyn Westlake described how they worked togethor to optimise distillation columns at MOL’s Algyõ plant in Hungary. Not only is MOL, “Hungary’s Oil Company,” but is also one of the largest corporations in central Europe. The point made strongly during this presentation was “This is not Emerson coming, doing a project and leaving, but a series of on-going joint engagements. The results have only been possible by combining the best of both organisations: a)MOL’s Deep process knowledge and continuing focus on getting the best from the process b)Emerson’s experience, knowledge of techniques and appropriate tools.” More details of this project.

We are used to experiencing simultaneous translation in Europe though this correspondent usually does not have to use the facilities since he usually understands both languages (Irish & English) being used in such events in Ireland. However on this occasion Denis Ordenov, Lead Engineer in te IT and Communications Department in LUKOIL-Nizhnevolzhskneft, LLC  in Astrakhan (Russia) found it easier to present in Russian and a very efficient technical translator  helped those of us who had little or no knowledge of that language. This was a different application though also dealing with hydrocarbons but from the point of view of operator training rather than production per sé. Again the emphasis was on the co-operation and sharing of experience and knowledge between the user and the vendor! More details on this project.

"services are at the core of who Emerson is.." Erik Lapré

“..services are at the core of who Emerson is..” Erik Lapré

The core of Emerson!
One of the main themes that came across is the shortage of skilled expertese in the chemical sector. This is true of the automation sector as a whole and indeed we in Read-out are often approached by both users and vendors asking if we know of anybody with appropriate skills to fill vacancies in various enterprises. Erik Lapré, Vice President, Service Europe for Emerson, made a short but telling presentation here.  There is an urgent need of this expertese, not only in Europe but throughout the world.  Emerson are therefore addressing this problem on a worldwide basis. In Europe alone this expanding service is available from 97 locations with nearly 600 personnel – and growing. They try to have these locations close to customer clusters (say the Cork area in Ireland which is an important centre for pharma and food industries) and also provide field support on customer sites. “Services are no longer a fix and repair function!” stated Lapré. Education is important too to leverage the user company’s investment in technology and the bulk of this education is application related.

Indeed perhaps this is the key message that Emerson wished to propagate at this event, “..services are at the core of who Emerson is, bringing to bear the best of people and technology, and making smart connections to help customers bridge the gaps.”  More on this Service Offering from Emerson.

Supplementing resources
The Croatian company INA needed to upgrade its refineries to meet European fuel standards but found itself lacking in resources. Igor Šepić, Refinery Director Rijeka, stated that their resources, not surprisingly are focussed on maintenance, operations and the occasional small projects. But for the six big projects needed they needed external resources. They evaluated evaluated the major process automation suppliers and felt that Emerson’s DeltaV fitted their circumstances. It was thus preselected for Control & Safety Systems (BPCS & SIS) for all 6 projects. He particularly pointed out the advantages they found. They had a resident Emerson site engineer. For preventive maintenance Emerson’s AMS Asset Management Solutions provides Predictive Diagnostics. “Having installed the most advanced equipment and systems, Emerson technical experts are now helping us maximise performance to ensure the plant becomes established as one of the most efficient facilities of its type.”  More on this project.

Terminal ability and co-creation
Another area in the oil/gas sector is the storage and terminal area, often overlooked as an automation growth sector. Ton van Dijk, of Vopak made this presentation. The fact that this sector was often overlooked was highlighted when one of the delegates interupted to ask what exactly Vopak did. In fact it is a huge company with 84 terminals in 31 countries. Their co-operation with Emerson, a process he described as “co-creation,” allows them to concentrate on what they are interested in, viz: automation system availability and issue resolution time. They are not interested in hours spent on site or detail. This is the way their partnering is divided allowing them to concentrate on their terminal expertese and opeartional execution while Emerson concentrates on the other aspects essential to the smooth running of the terminal – product availability, implementation capability, QA & testing standards & expertise, engineering know how and ability to execute.

The speakers assembled for the final Q&A session

The speakers assembled for the final Q&A session

Security
The event terminated with a lively question and answer session. A subject that had hardly been touched on during the presentation except in the most general way was cybersecurity. “This is one of those rolling problems which Emerson as an organisation is constantly keeping under review.” To date the malware has been directed originally at specific processes – eg Stuxnet – and then through ignorance or indeed carelessness has spread elsewhere. As access to process control systems, primarily through data acquisition systems, has spread  into non-process areas such as IT and/or higher management, care has not always been taken to protect the control systems. Common sense has sometimes been lacking. It is important that strict rules are applied and implemented on who has access, the type of access and the strict control (for instance) of the use of thumb memory sticks.

Previous Emerson European Events
Emerson Europe User Exchange 2012
Press Event – Brussels 2011 see also Nick Denbow’s report!
Press Event – Berlin 2010
Press Event – Rijswijk 2009