March 2004


Special Report: Instruments and Networks

How well do you know your valve?
Ginn, P. L., Consultant

Improve control through a better understanding of its operation

Cyber security: Are your computer control systems safe from attack?
Baybutt, P., Primatech, Inc.

Performing a CSVA identifies vulnerabilities and needed security measures

From fieldbus to .NET: an overview of today's network-based automation technologies
Piper, C., Invensys Foxboro Automation Sytems

Here's how they play together to improve plant and enterprise operations

Fieldbus: An enabling technology for today's competitive environment
Timoney, R. J., Fieldbus Foundation

Users report substantial operating, capital and maintenance costs savings

Engineering Case Histories

Case history: Revisit fundamentals for blending rules
Hartmann, J.C.M., Consultant

Refiners use models to optimize operations, but are these models totally accurate?

Process Technology

Consider revamping hydrotreaters to handle higher H2 partial pressures
Turner, J., Fluor; Reisdorf, M., Fluor Corp.

Most clean fuel programs will reuse existing equipment. A thorough review of pressure ratings can optimize design opportunities

Resources Management

Follow four steps to ensure optimized process plant design
Ducote, D., Process Systems Division, Energy & Chemical Group, Chart Industries

The right outside resource combines industry and application expertise, high-performance equipment, and engineering and fabrication know-how


HP Control: Benefits of plant testing for multivariable controllers
Hall, J., Department of Chemical Engineering

The hydrocarbon processing industry uses multivariable controllers extensively as the workhorses to push constraints and maximize returns from process units. One very time-consuming and expensive phas..

HP Reliability: A 'hundred-plus points' to improve pump reliability
Bloch, Heinz P., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

In the September 2003 issue of HP ("Letters to the Editor,") we had promised to provide reminders of "things being done" by users that consistently achieve high pump reliability. The point was made th..

HP Integration Strategies: Wireless connectivity attractive in the HPI
Chin, W., ARC Advisory Group

Although the benefits of wireless technologies are clear to everyone, there has been little consensus among users and suppliers on how to properly apply wireless technologies in the process industries..

HPIn Europe: Analysts reappraise oil company ratings
Pitt, R., European Refining & Marketing

The situation in the European energy industry continues to show some fluidity, with several companies having their financial ratings reappraised. The news comes as Shell faces international concern ov..

HP Innovations

Universal pipe gasket seals all process piping W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc., claims to have developed a breakthrough in gasketing products for chemical process piping. New GORE Universal Pipe Gaske..


Chelates joint venture Akzo Nobel and BASF are forming a 50/50 joint venture (JV) to produce chelates in North America. The agreement, subject to closing, is scheduled to be effective first-quarter ..

New Developments

Remote equipment-monitoring and control New remote equipment-monitoring and control application package, eCUBE, runs on STARDOM network-based control systems. STARDOM is claimed to offer reliability..

HP Construction: North America
Jackson, Kim M., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

ConocoPhillipslicensed its reduced volatility alkylation process (ReVAP) technology to Valero Energy Corp. It will be used at Valero's 140,000 bpd refinery in Wilmington, California. The license will ..

HP Construction: South America
Jackson, Kim M., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

SKFand Petróleo Brasileiro S/A (Petrobras) have a four-year contract by which SKF Reliability Systems will provide a predictive maintenance (PdM) program for keeping very deep oil wells on offsho..

HP Construction: Europe
Jackson, Kim M., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Aker Kvaerner Engineering and Technology(AK E&T) has a contract to perform engineering services for Gassco AS. The agreement's duration is three years with a possible extension of up to four additiona..

HP Construction: Middle East
Jackson, Kim M., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Uhde GmbH, Dortmund, Germany, has contracts for two fertilizer complexes located in Egypt. The agreements are with the Egyptian Fertilizer Co. (EFC) and Alexandria Fertilizer Co. (AlexFert) for turnke..

HP Construction: Asia-Pacific
Jackson, Kim M., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Fluor Corp., Aliso Viejo, California, has an agreement with Sinopec Ningbo Engineering Co. (SNEC), a China Petroleum and Chemical Corp. (Sinopec Corp.) subsidiary, to provide operations and maintenanc..

Free Literature

Valve automation solutions Metso Automation's new six-page, full-color brochure details Jamesbury valve automation solutions. By replacing manually actuated on/off valves wi..

HP In Brief: HPIn Brief
Weirauch, Wendy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

  LNG demand stirs market investments Liquefied natural g..

HP Impact: Owner/operators double their investments in plant design software
Weirauch, Wendy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Issues of data migration, operations and maintenance integration, and data hand-off continue to vex even the most forward-thinking corporations. To combat some of these problems, owner/ operators are ..

HP Impact: US pump prices rise, but 'real' costs to consumer have declined
Weirauch, Wendy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

The US average retail price of regular-grade gasoline increased by 3.5 cents/gal in mid-January. The nationwide average retail price (including taxes) for a gallon of regular-grade gasoline was $1.60,..

HP Impact: Many HPI firms post record 2003 earnings
Weirauch, Wendy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

For US-based refiners, 2003 is providing better than expected margins in the third and fourth quarters. Several factors have contributed to these healthy gains over 2002 numbers. A continuing robust r..

HP Impact: Japan diversifying its energy sources
Weirauch, Wendy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Japan's energy plan, announced in fourth quarter 2003, emphasizes that the nation will further diversify energy sources for greater supply security, while the core will continue to rely on nuclear ene..

HP Impact: Global ECCs adopt self-regulation to counter corruption
Weirauch, Wendy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

In a move to combat global corruption within their own industry, 19 leading international engineering and construction companies (ECCs) have developed a set of business principles for countering bribe..

HP Impact: China's process automation market to exceed 15% growth
Weirauch, Wendy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

China is witnessing massive investments in new projects and plant upgrades in almost all process industry segments. The country is emerging as a destination of choice for global manufacturers. The d..

HP Impact: Emissions rules pushing demand for flue gas desulfurization systems
Weirauch, Wendy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

The Interstate Air Quality rule just proposed by EPA will ensure a big market for flue gas desulfurization (FGD) systems. Demand for these systems will rise to $7 billion/yr in the US by 2007, predict..