Honeywell moves beyond process control to business optimization

Controlling a few processes can improve performance and revenue, but controlling an entire enterprise can maximize total profits. That's the logic behind Honeywell Hi-Spec Solutions' recent launch of its expanded Business Optimization application software suite.To leapfrog traditional, model-based process control, Hi-Spec widened the usual optimization boundaries to...


Controlling a few processes can improve performance and revenue, but controlling an entire enterprise can maximize total profits. That's the logic behind Honeywell Hi-Spec Solutions' recent launch of its expanded Business Optimization application software suite.

To leapfrog traditional, model-based process control, Hi-Spec widened the usual optimization boundaries to include sustained asset capability and improved business decision cycle solutions. "Adding these applications to those already in the Hi-Spec Solutions portfolio for advanced control and optimization, refinery off-sites management, and dynamic process simulation means our customers can achieve maximum profitability with optimum plant operations that are closely tied to corporate objectives," says Russel McMeekin, Hi-Spec's vp.

Industry analysts gage the market for advanced control and optimization at $480 million in 1998, and expect it to grow to $1.2 billion by 2001.

"Our broadened software makes us the sole vendor of applications that focus on business optimization and not just process optimization," adds Mr. McMeekin. "Business optimization balances the monthly demand for maximum profit with the longterm need for sustained asset capability, while meeting enterprise requirements."

While process control typically simulates, manages, and optimizes one or more process units at an operating site, Hi-Spec's expanded applications analyze overall performance and contribution of a total enterprise's multiple process units at many sites. The firm's business optimization applications are grouped into three categories:

  • Process Performance Solutions link solutions to site and corporate targets in real time to optimize overall process operations. Hi-Spec's recently announced ProfitSuite family of control and optimization applications is one of these solutions;

  • Asset Capability Solutions use automated monitoring and testing for early detection and alerts. These data are combined with other plant information to determine probable causes and recommended responses, which can sustain performance and save millions of dollars in avoided incidents and shutdowns. Equipment Health Management Virtual Testing and User Alert are two of Hi-Spec's asset capability products; and

  • Unified Information Solutions make consistent plant data more widely available, which improves overall decision making, increases productivity between 2 and 5%, and cuts costs between 0.5 and 1%. These solutions are built with Hi-Spec's new Uniformance software. Uniformance includes both the process and plant data historians and a plant reference model that allow access to operations data by business systems.

Hi-Spec recently launched a new suite of Uniformance applications and reintroduced some existing solutions as "Uniformance-compatible." Hi-Spec received more than 200 orders for its Uniformance Plant History Database (PHD) over the past year, and began shipping Uniformance PHD Release 120 in April. The new release, which supports the OLE for Process Control interface standard, includes migration features for Honeywell's TotalPlant History product.

In addition, manufacturing execution system (MES) applications contained in Hi-Spec's OptiVision product are also being integrated with Uniformance. These MES solutions allow planning and execution at the corporate level and manufacturing functions at the plant level.

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