Engineering & Mining Journal

JUN 2018

Engineering and Mining Journal - Whether the market is copper, gold, nickel, iron ore, lead/zinc, PGM, diamonds or other commodities, E&MJ takes the lead in projecting trends, following development and reporting on the most efficient operating pr

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98 E&MJ • JUNE 2018 www.e-mj.com PROCESSING SOLUTIONS Metso has announced a new version of its Expertune PlantTriage control-loop mon- itoring software. This version, according to the company, further improves process- plant operational effi ciency and reduces cybersecurity risks, as well as assists in achieving higher profi tability. The software, said Metso, provides a clearer view of PID (Proportional-Inte- gral-Derivative) tuning benefi ts via a new Performance Evaluation dashboard and a Performance Summary panel. These features show the effect new tuning pa- rameters will have on valve duty, relative response time, robustness and perfor- mance. The PlantTriage Level Wizard is an advanced tool that tunes level control- lers for surge tanks. Senior Product Manager Steve Ober- mann said, "Expertune PlantTriage is well-known for identifying the root caus- es of control system performance issues. Version 18 offers interaction analysis with greater resolution. Two analysis tools, Process Interaction Map and Interaction Hot Spots, are used to fi nd the underlying root cause of an upset or event. "Our clients can now fi nd both short- term and long-term interactions, ranging from one minute to as long as 14 days. These tools can pinpoint the root cause of a specifi c incident. This will help great- ly in analyzing short-duration or sporadic events." The latest version also includes advanc- es in cybersecurity. Users may now choose encryption on communications with Plant- Triage servers. Other improvements make the browser interface more secure, robust and less vulnerable to attack. Expertune PlantTriage, according to Metso, connects to any DCS that supports OPC connectivity and it can also be inte- grated with a plant historian for access to process data. With PlantTriage monitoring hundreds or even thousands of control loops, said the company, plant personnel can focus on the recommended improve- ments to deliver more results in less time. Metso acquired U.S.-based soft- ware company Expertune in early 2013. Founded in 1986, at the time, a Metso spokesman said, "With ExperTune, we can provide more versatile and more cost- effective customer value solutions to our customers so that they can meet their most-pressing business challenges, such as reducing raw material consumption, energy usage, product variability and en- vironmental impact." Slurry Pump Maintenance: What To Do In-house, When to Call an Expert Like so many other machines, slurry pumps require regular maintenance to function optimally and reliably. Without proper care, pumps can suffer catastrophic failures, which can result in unscheduled repairs, potential injury and facility down- time. Even if they don't fail, poorly main- tained pumps can lose a full 15% of their effi ciency, costing pump owners reduced output and hurting their bottom lines. And, while pump owners and operators can perform some of this maintenance on their own, some situations require calls to the professionals. Don't wait until a pump becomes problematic: A recent blog post from pump maker GIW suggests miners customize this slurry pump maintenance guide to fi t their business needs, then fol- low it to keep pumps running at their best. Daily – While this maintenance list appears long at fi rst glance, its individual items tend to be quick and easy to com- plete. Although they may seem minor, however, these everyday steps are key to maintaining pump effi ciency. • Check the oil, but only when the pump is not in operation. • Inspect the bearings in case of sudden spikes or drops in temperature. • Examine the stuffi ng box and adjust as necessary. • Monitor all gauges and instruments consistently. • Look for leakage. Replace liners if the pump casing's weep holes are leaking. • Track gland service pressure as changes can indicate further issues. • Blocked pipes or a poorly functioning stuffi ng box could change the gland ser- vice pressure. • Check the V-belt drive, especially if in- stalled in the last few days. • New V-belts stretch and need re-ten- sioning early on. Weekly – Don't forget about weekly maintenance. While these two tasks add to the daily maintenance requirements once a week, they are essential for track- ing and ensuring pump effi ciency. Metso Updates Plant Control Monitoring Software Metso says process engineers often guess at PID tuning numbers, resulting in increased valve wear and inconsistent results. Proper tuning achieved by using its Expertune software can stabilize a plant and improve reliability.

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