It was around five years ago that Rockwell and Endress + Hauser first announced their strategic alliance to create a partnership capable of offering comprehensive solutions for plant engineering, operation and management from one source. Another case study this week shows them delivering this for PZ Cussons, the leading personal wash company, at a new manufacturing facility recently completed, for liquid soap production (Link).
The new facility uses the control and visibility capabilities of the Rockwell PlantPAx process automation infrastructure, to remove the product and process variability caused by frequent operator intervention, and to allow the adoption of leaner manufacturing procedures. This required E+H to supply the instrumentation and fieldbus network to create accurate batching, mixing and metering systems, which work according to process and production procedures defined by the Rockwell master control system operating within the office IT structure, with data also accessible by external material suppliers over a secure extranet. Production line control is undertaken by a number of cabinet encased, line-side Allen-Bradley ControlLogix PACs, linking to FactoryTalk Batch software as a part of PlantPAx. Andy Ellams, process development manager at PZ Cussons, reports: “First-time passes are now becoming the norm. The quality standards we are seeing are very high with little or no tweaking required. We often go weeks without any production issues”. Cussons also report that due to the scalability and portability of the software, the Rockwell system has allowed pilot tests of new recipes on a small scale prior to mass production, shortening the time to market. Overall, the plant is experiencing reduced downtime, greater accuracy and shorter batch times, which is also saving energy. Other advantages have arisen in that the field instrumentation can be monitored, maintained and configured from a central location using E+H FieldCare.
Case studies like the above from Rockwell Automation are the most effective way of gaining interest in the capabilities of new products and systems, providing the same style of anecdote that knowledgeable and experienced sales engineers have chatted to customers about for years. By collecting these stories, and publishing them on Processingtalk, you can multiply this sales expertise many times over. Sales engineers know which stories will interest which potential customers: on the web the customers use their own key industry words to do the selection of what they want to hear. But without collecting your stories into an industry specific database, the customers will find other expertise from another supplier.