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Maintenance Optimization and Simulation Modeling with Process Flow

Facing increasingly complex production systems, as well as technological, economic and competitive challenges, various companies and organization must bring new processes and products to market more quickly. Because of the advanced nature of manufacturing operations, planning for improvements and managing increased demands must be made carefully and with each part of the operation taken into account.

Optimizing production and minimizing costs is a constant challenge. With so many different requirements and configurations, the outcomes of the process improvement changes can be difficult to predict. These difficulties often lead to neglected or over-simplified modeling. In order to correctly forecast real life scenarios, allowing you to evaluate, analyze and quickly identify bottlenecks, HBM Prenscia developed Process Flow, an advanced simulation module available in ReliaSoft BlockSim software.

What is Process Flow?


Process Flow is an essential model-based tool designed for modeling the reliability and maintainability of equipment and for analyzing multiple flow types within the system. It can be used for the visual design and optimization of any technical processes such as chemical plants, Oil and Gas facilities, power stations, complex manufacturing operations and biological processes such as water treatment.  

Why Process Flow?


Traditionally process-oriented throughput-based simulation approaches have been largely focused on cost or throughput capability and many simplified the RAM impact. With Process Flow, organizations are now ableto analyze their continuous output system efficiency and safely test process changes to improve throughput and profitability. With its advanced capabilities, Process Flow becomes an essential tool for visual design and optimization of nearly any technical processes.  

Using Process Flow to improve efficiency


Process Flow takes full advantage of the Monte Carlo based simulation engines that are already built into BlockSim software and assess how to use properly the existing framework in order to focus on continuous throughput environments.

For existing BlockSim customers who have focused their activities on Reliability and Maintainability (RAM Analysis) of their systems, all the reliability information including tasks, crew, and sparing information is immediately re-usable in the Process Flow.

Process Flow block types


Block types for Process Flow are focused on the application of production. 

Source block
A source block is where a fluid enters the PFS diagram.
Sink block
A sink block is where a fluid exits the PFS diagram.
Process block
A process block represents where fluids are combined to create other fluid types.
Tank block
A tank block is used to store fluids.
Valve block
A valve block is used to switch flow from one output to another.
Subdiagram block
A PFS subdiagram block represents another PFS diagram within the project. Subdiagrams are generally used to break down a larger diagram into simpler steps to reduce complexity and improve traceability.

Example: Understanding the petroleum refining process


A petroleum refinery needed to identify ways to increase throughput and decrease cost of its refining process. By using the Process Flow module, customers working within very large industrial complexes such as oil refineries can define the major factors involved and locate the deficiencies which need attention and improvement.

Quantify and fully optimize design of processes


Different types of analyses require different applications and logic to achieve variations and balance between RAM analysis and process efficiencies. With the advanced techniques available in the Process Flow module, we have created an advanced solution to help you quantify and fully optimize the design of your processes.