New digital solutions lift performance at Lafarge Emirates Cement

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New digital solutions lift performance at Lafarge Emirates Cement



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The cement plant at Fujairah, UAE, needed to keep up with the rapid advances in industrial automation hardware and software. They decided to equip their team with the best digitalisation tools available in the industry – control and monitoring system upgrades from FLSmidth.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is currently experiencing one of the fastest growing and active construction markets worldwide, driven by a strong property market, thriving tourism sector and increasing investor interest.

Lafarge Emirates Cement plant (LEC), a member of the LafargeHolcim Group, is making a significant contribution to the building materials and construction sector in the UAE. The plant can  produce up to 3.2 million tonnes of cement per year. To keep up with the rapid advances in industrial automation hardware and software, LEC commissioned FLSmidth to upgrade its ageing version 7 (V7) Plant Control system (ECS™) and ECS/PlantGuide® reporting systems (PLG) to the latest version 8 (V8) product.

Keeping up with demand

LEC realised that the control and monitoring systems needed to meet the ever-growing demands of a wide range of users, from the control room operators to process engineers, the production team and management teams. All of these users interact with plant automation system data to make decisions that ultimately benefit the profitability of the plant operation.

LEC decided to equip its team with the best digitalisation tools available in the industry by investing in control system upgrades for its cement plant at Fujairah, UAE.

Our digital systems had successfully supported the plant site for over ten years, building a strong and effective relationship that reassured LEC we could be trusted to deliver the upgrade solutions.

A collaborative approach

FLSmidth offices came together to collaborate, plan, engineer and execute these upgrade solutions from Valby in Denmark, Brno in the Czech Republic, Chennai in India and Bethlehem in the USA.

Each of these offices played a significant role in shaping the upgrade by sharing their knowledge and resources. The project was initiated in the Denmark office. The hardware system was built in the Czech Republic. And the system engineering took place in America and India by the V8-Global Upgrade Team, who are experts in handling version 7 to version 8 upgrade projects.

The V8-Global Upgrade Team finished installation, configuration and commissioning of the ECS/ControlCenter™ V8 and ECS/Plant Data Management V8 at LEC in 2017.

“It was big challenge for us to deliver the upgrade project online without stopping or disturbing plant operation”, says Sherif Salah, Project Manager at LEC. ”

A successful transition

Mr. Hasmukh Patel (Manager – Process Applications, Systems & Technologies) from the FLSmidth USA office attributes the seamless transition to the new system to the meticulous planning and scheduling of engineering and site commissioning activities by the control systems teams of FLSmidth and LEC.

The V8 system explained

The ECS/ControlCenter system provides a process automation platform with dual redundant servers collecting I/O data from the PLC (motors, drives, field instruments, process values, etc.). It provides HMI/SCADA functionality for operator supervision and control of all departments in large production facilities at cement and mineral plants.

This system also includes machine control directly at the machine. Users connect to a portal workplace to view or operate specific departments or equipment using operator display screens, trends, alarms and reporting tools.

User access rights can be configured to control what information is made available.

The ECS/Plant Data Management (PDM) system provides a comprehensive management information system that makes critical plant data readily available to the users who need it most. This valuable data can be used for decision making on plant operation, performance optimisation, compliance monitoring, KPI benchmarking, equipment maintenance, inventory accounting and measuring profitability.
The PDM system provides long-term storage of all plant data (10+ years) with dashboard displays for visualisation of real-time data, historical values on screens, trends, pie charts and bar charts. It also includes flexible reporting tools to assist users to configure and generate any reports, schedule auto-generation of reports for printing or network folders for shared storage, and the ability to custom design report templates.
It can store and retrieve spot and historical values and events up to 10+ years and retrieve trends history with finer one-second resolution up to one year, as well as log signal values that are highly dynamic at a much faster rate than slowly varying signals.
The system can provide trend data of multiple tags in a trend package for long-term analysis (30, 60, 90, 180 and 365-day time horizons) with a zoom-in precision for any past periods. It is supported by seamless switching between ECS/ControlCenter V8 and PDM V8 data retrieval. This is a big advantage for better performance analysis and process optimisation.
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1 thought on “New digital solutions lift performance at Lafarge Emirates Cement”

  1. Strength capacity of the cement really matters for constructing a building. As this blog said UAE has becoming one of the top most popular country in construction field. Its happy to see the tallest building in the world. Love this!!

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