PiControl Solutions

Textbook APC (Advanced Process Control) for Urea Plant

Est. Reading: 2 minutes

Typically, urea is manufactured by reacting liquid ammonia and carbon in an autoclave, where ammonium carbamate is formed.  Ammonium carbamate is dehydrated in the synthesis reactor to molten urea.  The product is fed to vacuum evaporator for concentrating the slurry.  Slurry is dried in a prilling tower and passed from the top of the tower into a bucket as granules, which are sent by conveyor to the bagging section.

About 85% of the urea produced by industry is used as raw material in the manufacturing process of many chemicals, such as: various plastics, urea-formaldehyde resins and adhesives. Urea is also essential for making feedstock, glue, fertilizer, commercial products, and in some resin production.

In order to extract the most, i.e., to get significant economic benefits from the urea plant, tight control of several key important variables need to be maintained, such as:

  1. Conversion of Ammonium Carbamate and Urea
  2. Efficient Evaporator and Prilling operation
  3. Percentage (%) of biuret and moisture
  4. Efficient Scrubber and Adsorber operation
  5. Efficient Desorption and Hydrolysis operation
  6. Conversion of Ad-Blue and NP products

These complex but advanced (APC) and tight controls of entire urea production unit can give remarkable monetary benefits and savings such as:

  • Lower fuel costs
  • Lower steam production
  • Higher yields and
  • Overall optimized urea process efficiency

For urea processes PiControl Solutions DCS-based APC (Advanced Process Control) can typically ensure:

  • 2-4% increase in profit
  • Reduction of the oscillation amplitude by 35 - 50%
  • Increase of the controller action by a factor of 2 or 3
  • Smoother and more stable operation of urea process and
  • Avoiding unnecessary process problems such as: damage and/or to fast wear and tear of the equipment, plant irregular shutdowns or off spec product properties and/or grades

PiControl Solutions LLC has extensive experience in PID tuning and advanced process control inside of existing DCS.  We understand the economics factors that drive the profit margin and we focus to analyze the process and provide the right economic advanced control solution for each urea process.  The main opportunity for achieving APC (advanced process control) benefits is based on the fact that the urea process is not very interactive, it is rather serial process.  Poor control, oscillations and deviations in one control loop can cause problems only in the downstream unit, but not upstream of the process since the process is very sequential.

We have unique and novel multivariable full-blown closed-loop system identification, PID tuning and APC (Advanced Process Control) Optimization technology, which tune and optimize base-level PID control loops quickly, efficiently and precisely.

PiControl is an innovative process control software and services company that offers state of-the art, modern solutions at a lower cost, implemented in shorter time compared to competitors.  PiControl Solutions is the only process control and automation company in the world which can perform any advanced process control (APC) project completely remotely.  Over this low cost online/remote approach huge travel and accommodation costs can be saved and human health and safety can be kept on the high level.

For more information and details, please send us an email: [email protected] or call the Tel: (832) 495 6436.

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