Refineries Explore IIoT Tools to Maximize Profits

by Bill Fester on May 2, 2017

in DCS, Industries, People, Refining, Systems

New IIoT- and cloud-enabled digital tools and services give petroleum refiners new avenues to increase profitability and safety, but also require greater attention to cybersecurity

By Scott Jenkins

While several forces are creating conditions in which U.S. petroleum refiners can thrive in 2017 and beyond, success and profitability are not guaranteed (see U.S. refining outlook section below). Refiners must address changing supply and demand for individual refined products, fluctuations in crude oil prices and dynamic geopolitical factors, all while pursuing the industry’s ever-present imperative for efficient and safe operations. And refinery operations are taking place in an environment where the retirement of experienced workers is ongoing and the industry infrastructure is aging. The sum of these forces makes for a challenging environment for the nation’s 139 active petroleum refineries.


To strengthen their chances of success, refiners are increasingly exploring digital tools that take advantage of the emerging Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), as well as advanced software for data analysis that can optimize process operations and reduce downtime. A host of new offerings are becoming available, and several were discussed at the annual meeting of the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM; Washington, D.C.;, which took place in San Antonio, Tex. in late March.


Read more at: Chemical Engineering Online

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