Data analysis for diagnosing production problems
Fortress Specialty Cellulose (FSC), 2018
Kraft’s dissolved pulp factory FSC in Thurso produces specialized cellulose for the textile industry. The dough is produced in reactors from wood chips transported by conveyors. For some time, a problem had been observed when filling chips: the pressure in one of the reactors suddenly increased, causing gas and chips to be pushed outwards. During these events, operators had to stop filling for a while, resulting in significant time losses.
3E Eng. has been mandated to provide data analysis services to assist the plant’s technical experts in diagnosing the problem. The study of data from multiple sensors confirmed one of the hypotheses of the technical managers of the department. There were two defective valves (in series) that let a high-temperature cooking liquor pass through the reactor. When the liquor arrived at the atmospheric pressure reactor, it vaporized, causing the pressure spikes. This confirmation of the problem allowed targeted maintenance work to be carried out quickly to correct the problem.
About data analysis for the diagnosis of production problems
Data analysis is a powerful tool for diagnosing production problems. In a context where processes are complex and data to monitor is numerous, it can quickly become difficult to properly track all important indicators. Data analysis identifies important parameters and ensures that these parameters are normal. This allows you to react quickly in the event of a drift or to avoid reacting unnecessarily when you are in normal. Advanced analytical tools can also identify and correct inefficiencies in existing systems with very little investment.