OmegaLand provides an Integrated Environment applicable to various situations of plant operation with dynamic simulators. There are a variety of them as described below.
A steady-state simulator has been used for process analysis and designing, whereas a dynamic simulator is being used for plant operation analysis and verification.
On a virtual plant configured in a dynamic simulator, it is possible to perform many kinds of examinations and verification of problems, which would be impossible at a real plant in operation due to the concerns for safety and external disturbance. It is also possible to predict problems which might occur in a new plant to be built.
The followings are available in the environment which is similar to real operation.
For processes analysis and verification, the Visual Modeler is useful, or the OmegaLand/Trainer in which the Visual Modeler connected with graphic or other functions is suitable.
In the OmegaLand, the interface for data exchange has been exported; therefore, you can get simulation data or put values only by coding a brief macro (VBA) by Excel. It is also easy to get simulation results in real-time to process them.
The educational simulator is a dynamic simulator applied to teaching chemical engineering. Students will have opportunities to understand the principles of today's complicated plants and train themselves to master unit operations through simulations on a virtual plant. Such experiences would be impossible to obtain from desk study. Eventually, they will be able to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary for analyzing and handling a variety of situations efficiently.
Taking the initiative in using simulators, the students can learn and expand skills and knowledge quickly, and will achieve the following objectives.
We offer various educational simulation application as our OmegaLand/Educator.
As an application of a virtual plant, we can mention the plant operator training system. Since the virtual plant is used for a trainee to practice operating a plant, the simulator is expected to reproduce the behavior of the plant in real-time with complete fidelity. The Visual Modeler is one of the few dynamic simulators that can satisfy all the requirements. The operator training simulator can be configured on the OmegaLand/Trainer which provides the operator training simulation environment.
In addition to the basic functions of a dynamic simulator such as execution control (run and freeze), snapshot save and load, and changing time scales, the operator training functions are required. They are, for example, functions for execution of malfunctions, automatic operation, simulation of field operation, logging and replay, and evaluation of trainee's performance
In addition to the execution control which runs and freezes the operation of the whole system including the direct connect DCS, there are various functions: the snapshot save function which temporarily stores a condition during the training, the snapshot load function to recover the stored condition to restart the training, and the time-scale-changing function which accelerates or delays the execution rate by two or four times.
Training starts from a steady-state of a plant that has been setup in advance. Such a condition can be kept beforehand in a file as an initial condition.
These functions are used to cause an abnormal state or an equipment failure deliberately. Operators are trained to be able to cope with such situations. To activate malfunctions, there are two methods. One of them is to select from the list of the execution control panel. Another is to prepare a panel dedicated to malfunctions on a graphic window and instruct the execution by a button.
The automatic operation module is useful for carrying out training based on a series of procedures having a story (a scenario function) or the procedures that take place intentionally excluding an operator's part (a 'karaoke' function). This automatic operation function is utilized even for the execution of malfunctions if plural operations are accompanied; variables are handled over a long period of time; or processing is selected depending on conditions.
The functions to reproduce the performance after a training session as it has taken place. This reproduction is used for the instructor to review the performance with the trainee and give guidance.
It is possible to store training performance and events in a log file to keep them as a record or to evaluate the performance. Events recorded with time stamp can be used for replay.
This function outputs logged data to Excel for the instructor to count the number of DCS operations and alarms and also makes graphs of trend data to evaluate trainee's performance.
For the DCS direct connect type, DCS must be connected. For the operator training system, however, it must be noted that FCS simulator takes the part of FCS (Field Control Station) of DCS. The FCS simulator does not require the hardware that is the same model used for actual plant control, but its function is the same as the actual FCS.
There are two methods to realize the operator training simulator: DCS direct connect type and DCS emulation type. The former requires a function to connect with DCS, whereas the latter requires a function to emulate DCS.
* This is an example of DCS CENTUM VP manufactured by Yokogawa Electric Corporation, used as the actual DCS.
In recent years, great technological progress has been made with plant operation and control. In addition to the control system of the conventional DCS, more advanced plant operation system connected with DCS host system has been demanded such as advanced control packages including multivariable model prediction control and neural prediction control, and operation assistant packages for automatic operation of startup, shutdown, and changing grades.
Prior to actual application of these control assistant packages to a real plant, preparatory verification and tuning are available by connecting them to the virtual plant, OmegaLand.
Since a dynamic simulation allows verification of the influence by the control logic and operation of these packages, the control assistant simulator will be particularly useful for changing the control logic accompanied with the process improvement and for preparing complicated operation procedures to improve operation efficiency.
* Exapilot manufactured by Yokogawa Electric Corporation is used as the control assistant package and CENTUM VP by the same as the DCS.
A control assistant package and a standard interface OPC (OLE for Process Control) are connected directly.
The OPC server is prepared on the OmegaLand side and the control assistant package is connected as the OPC client. In place of DCS, a control model is created on Visual Modeler to simulate.
The actual DCS is connected. The OPC server provided on DCS is connected with OmegaLand and a control assistant package as OPC client.
This type of simulator can be applied to the following operation support and optimization by synchronizing imported process data with a dynamic simulation model.
This simulator technology targeting the optimization of plant operation from now on is being watched with keen interest by many industries.
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