Fine Chemical Plant Automates All Operations and Reduces Production Losses with Yokogawa's Exapilot

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 Executive Summary

Samsung Fine Chemicals, Ulsan, South Korea
Samsung Fine Chemicals, Ulsan, South Korea

SAMSUNG Fine Chemicals (SFC) produces many kinds of fine chemicals that have been well received both in Korea and the global market. SFC's products include mecellose (methylcellulose), epichlorohydrin (ECH), dimethylformamide (DMF), methylamines, tetramethylammonium chloride (TMAC), barium titanate powder (BTP), and AnyCoat. SFC also produces a range of general chemical products such as ammonia, urea, melamine, methylene chloride, methyl chloride, formic acid, and caustic soda. One of SFC's primary next-generation strategic businesses is the production of electronic chemical materials (ECM) such as BTP.

SFC has four BTP plants in Ulsan that, altogether, produces 4,000 tons per year of this material. One of these plants, plant C, was built in 2010 and uses Yokogawa's CENTUM CS 3000 distributed control system to control all of its operations. In 2012, SFC introduced Yokogawa's Exapilot package solution to automate processes throughout this plant. As a result, SFC has been able to reduce operator workload, improve product quality, and reduce production losses.

Overview of processes at plant C

Overview of processes at plant C

The Challenges and the Solutions

(1) Improved productivity
The BTP production process employs three batch reactors that process materials in sequence. The overall process is a complex mix of batch and continuous operations that requires numerous manual interventions and the operation of many different valves. This was demanding work for the operators, each of whom had to specialize in carrying out different parts of the operation.

Based on a careful review of all operational procedures and the operator roles in this production process, SFC's production technology engineering team created new standard operation procedures (SOP) based on its existing SOPs. They then configured these SOPs in Exapilot to automate them. As a result, reaction times have been drastically reduced and nearly all unstable conditions have been eliminated. Less hot water is now required to heat the reactors, batch operation waiting time has been eliminated, and operator workload has been reduced.

Reactor 2: reaction time without Exapilot / Reactor 2:  reaction time with Exapilot

Reactor temperature control plays a very important role in determining the quality of the final product. With Exapilot, the reactor temperature always stays within the control limits. In addition to improving product quality and yield, this uses less hot water.

Reactor 2: temperature without Exapilot / Reactor 2: temperature with Exapilot

(2) Efficient scheduling
Each reactor processes several batches a day and requires the performance within a specified time period of procedures such as raw material feeding, agitation, heating, cool down, and discharge. To ensure the smooth operation of all these processes in the three reactors, it is very important to optimize their scheduling. With Exapilot, SFC was able to automate all of the SOPs for these complex processes. As a result, it has minimized idling and waiting time and eliminated production bottlenecks. The overall operation is much smoother now and operators are more productive, with a drastically reduced workload.

Reactor 2 operation time shorten

Reactor 2 operation time shorten

Customer Satisfaction

KyungChul Park, senior manager of the product technical team, said, "First of all, we carefully evaluated many software packages for the procedural automation and finally selected Yokogawa's Exapilot. We are very happy with Exapilot and have used it to fully automate all of the complicated procedures at this plant. Exapilot brings us many benefits such as increased productivity, shortened batch times, fewer operator errors, zero loss, a stable process, easy documentation of all procedures, improved operator training, reduced use of utilities, and consistently high product quality."

"We are striving to make further improvements by introducing a second Exapilot package and using this together with an advanced process control (APC) package and other software. In so doing, we hope to make our products more globally competitive. We will keep working with Yokogawa."

Central control room
Central control room


  • 특수화학 및 정밀화학

    Yokogawa는 오랫동안 특수 및 정밀 화학 시장에서 고객을 지원해왔습니다. Batch 솔루션 설계의 복잡한 요구 사항을 이해하는 업계 전문가는 물론 업계 최고 수준의 안정성과 유연성을 제공하는 시장 선도 일괄 처리 솔루션을 사용하면 Yokogawa와의 파트너십에서 안전 및 규정 준수를 유지하면서 고객의 요구 사항을 충족시키는 제품을 생산할 수 있습니다.

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  • 화학

    화학 플랜트는 연속 및 Batch 생산 공정에 의존하며, 각각은 제어 시스템에 대한 다양한 요구 사항을 제시합니다. 연속 공정은 실패하지 않고 생산 라인을 중단시키는 견고하고 안정적인 제어 시스템을 필요로하는 반면, Batch 공정의 중요성은 수식, 절차 및 공정을 조정하는 데 있어 큰 유연성을 허용하는 제어 시스템을 갖추는 데 있습니다. 두 종류의 시스템 모두 제품의 사용 가능한 품질 내역에서 관리되어야 하며 비일상적인 작업을 수행할 수 있어야 합니다. Yokogawa는 광범위한 제품 포트폴리오, 숙련된 시스템 엔지니어 및 글로벌 영업 및 서비스 네트워크를 통해 모든 공장 공정에 대한 솔루션을 제공합니다.

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Related Products & Solutions

  • Platform for Advanced Control and Estimation (Advanced Process Control)

    고급 제어 및 추정을 위한 포괄적인 플랫폼은 다중 변수 제어, 품질 평가, 복잡한 사용자 정의 계산 및 운전원 사용자 인터페이스 설계를 모두 하나의 응용 프로그램으로 제공합니다. 이를 통해 배포 시간을 대폭 단축하고 유지 관리를 간소화하여 강력한 성능을 보장합니다.

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  • Procedural Automation (Exapilot)

    Procedural Automation (Exapilot)는 공정 플랜트에서 절차 지식을 수집, 최적화 및 유지하면서 안정성, 유연성 및 라이프사이클 비용의 요구 사항을 충족하는 유연한 방법론을 제공합니다.

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  • 분산 제어 시스템 (DCS)

    Yokogawa는 프로세스 자동화를 위해서 중요한 운영 인프라를 제공합니다. 분산제어시스템(DCS)은 플랜트 또는 산업 공정의 자동화 된 제어 및 운영을 위한 플랫폼입니다. 10,000개 이상의 플랜트에서 고객의 생산 목표 달성하기 위해서 Yokogawa DCS가 적용되었습니다.

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