Solving Separation Anxiety with Systems Control

Separator with systems controls

One would expect a systems control integrator to understand equipment controls.  But what happens when your controls integrator also understands the process?    You get an improved production process, reduced maintenance, and more productivity!

separator systems controls

A beverage producer in SC uses a separator as part of a hot tea fill process.  The original separator program forced the bowl to spin down when flow was not detected after several minutes.  The customer deemed that the time to spin down and then speed back up to processing speed was too long. He was losing too much production time. 

The original integrator who installed the hot fill line changed the separator controls which allowed the separator to spin. Even when tea was not flowing, the separator would spin.  The continuous spin of the bowl created excessive heat; leading to a breakdown of the bowl gaskets. The gasket wear created a flow path around the seals to the solids discharge port on the separator. 

Separator with systems controls

The customer then contacted M.G. Newell for help.  Our Newell Automation engineer installed a flow switch and timer on the outlet of the pump feeding the separator.  He added a water circuit that allowed water to flow through the separator and to the drain.  He also programmed the system to allow automated butterfly valves to open when tea flow was not detected for the timer set point.  The water would flow to the separator inlet, through the separator and then dump to drain until the flow switch requirement was met.

After three months, the life of the bowl gaskets has increased 4-fold. The plant no longer has unplanned downtime due to gasket failure.  This has resulted in increased productivity and reduced maintenance costs.

Our Newell Automation team has a goal to understand the purpose behind the process.  They work alongside our process engineers to troubleshoot and streamline the process.  Contact one of our associates today to see how We Make It Work Better.

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