Virtualization is the Future

Virtualization is the Future

January 28, 2020

Advantages of new virtual technologies

Everything starts with a mission. BP, one of the biggest global oil and gas companies, had approached us last year with the request for a new control room in their refinery in Rotterdam (NL) using the virtualization technique. The aim was to continue to process the current 400,000 barrels of crude oil per day in the future. Part of the production process is monitored by this unit. As you must think of all possible scenarios in terms of security, the control room must also remain fully operational in the event of a disaster.

How we fulfilled our virtualization mission

So, with these requirements, what did we do?

For us, just to move everything from one place to another and not to improve something was not an option. The best thing about being an engineer is to create meaningful technology and to improve processes. I am always asking myself: How can I do things better, faster and more efficiently? The move to the new control room was a great opportunity to renew the IT equipment and to introduce Yokogawa’s latest virtualization technique. A solution that works smarter and will save BP CAPEX and OPEX costs.

We went from 25 individual computers, each with its own function, to 4 new, much more powerful computers. These contain all operational systems together. The technology has been around for a long time and has been developed to the level that it can be used safely even in the petroleum industry where the computers remain operational day and night 24/7 and many years long.

Cost reduction by virtualization

Virtualization is the process of creating a software-based or virtual representation of something, such as virtual applications, servers, storage, and networks. It is the single most effective way to reduce IT expenses while boosting efficiency and agility for all size businesses. In other words, this saves the customer computers and maintenance and therefore costs. It has a lot of potential; from engineering to implementation. You don’t have to install PCs anymore. Significantly less engineering hours are required because you can automate a lot. This is just one example out of a hundred. The project, from order and engineering to testing and commissioning, was completed in one year. This is a very short timeline for such a complex project, and I think it is amazing! I felt honored for being part of this project.

Co-Innovating tomorrow

I always enjoy working on new technologies. I have been doing multiple projects in recent years, and I enjoy working in the service department. Sometimes I come to customers where old systems are still in place based on Windows XP, sometimes even Unix. It’s been a great journey to work with the latest technology and I am always grateful to see the satisfaction on the costumer’s face.

Yes, we are specialists in automation technology, but we conduct excellent work in order to make life easier not for machines, but for humans- for a better tomorrow.


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