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Case Studies

Case Studies February 18, 2010

Stronger project management can help drive manufacturing performance

As manufacturing organizations switch their focus from surviving to demonstrating business value, project governance and metrics will play an increasingly important role in keeping management informed about project performance and its impact on the bottom line and customer service.

By Joseph R. Czarnecki, PMP, Senior Advisor, ESI International
Case Studies February 1, 2010

Using technical assessment to identify root cause

A large pulp mill was shut down due to failure of the forced draft fan on its recovery boiler. Excessive vibration of the inboard bearing had broken the cooling water line inside the oil-filled bearing housing and flushed out the oil. The bearing journal had overheated, cracked and melted the Babbitt causing heavy scouring damage to the shaft surface.

By Gary Wamsley, JoGar Energy Services
Case Studies December 15, 2009

Find, track the right metrics

Performance monitoring is not new. The concept of regular reporting has been around for as long as manufacturing operations have been in place. However, the pursuit of real-time performance management (RPM) requires managers to actively consider which metrics effectively track key processes and enable process improvements.

By Catherine Jablonsky, AspenTech
Case Studies December 14, 2009

Schneider Electric powers up photovoltaic solar array project at Palatine headquarters

The array will reduce electric usage at its North America headquarters facility by an estimated 2%-3% annually.

By Bob Vavra
Case Studies November 1, 2009

Assemble the right combination of tools to construct an effective vision system

Seeing the advantages machine vision provides in automation environments isn’t difficult. Inspecting products on the line saves the costs and consequences of recalled items, and properly labeling items before shipping ensures customers receive the correct product – a critical concern in the food, beverage and pharmaceutical industries.

By Bradley Weber, PPT Vision
Case Studies October 28, 2009

Aging workforce: How will companies, workers cope?

A proactive approach to a skills deficiency is imperative for a company hoping to remain competitive. Let's face it, many industrial companies will be competing for the same group of skilled workers in the future. Here are five steps to help you survive a pending skill shortage in your company.

By Michael V. Brown and Alexandra L. Galli-Debicella, New Standard Institute, In
Case Studies March 23, 2009

A new dimension for the plant floor

3D modeling offers a deeper vision of plant operations

By Robert Shear, Autodesk
Case Studies March 1, 2009

A 7-step process to solve VFD harmonic issues

Several options exist to mitigate harmonic problems in plants. Unfortunately, there is no one solution that fits all applications. Finding and choosing the correct option for your needs is the key. Otherwise, failure to reduce these unwanted electrical currents can result in problems ranging from overheating neutral conductors and transformers to inefficient operation of electronic equipment.

By Randy Barnett, American Trainco Inc. for Fluke Corp.
Case Studies February 1, 2009

10 benefits of using adjustable speed drives

Adjustable speed drives can be used in most applications where motors power mechanical equipment. Drives provide precise electrical motor control, enabling motor speeds to be ramped up and down or maintained at a required speed. The obvious benefit is the motor and drive use only the require amount of energy, rather than having a motor run at a fixed speed.

By Plant Engineering Staff
Case Studies December 20, 2008

Do PLCs eliminate need for a DCS?

A PLC for process control can appear to be less expensive, but… Bill Lydon, contributing editor at has talked with a number of control engineers that are trying to sort out this issue to make decisions.

By Plant Engineering Staff