MAVERICK Affiliate CFPA Discusses APC in Processing Magazine
COLUMBIA, Ill., November 22, 2006 — This month Hydrocarbon Processing magazine features an interview with Dr. Jim Ford, president of C. F. Picou Associates, Inc. (CFPA), an affiliate of MAVERICK Technologies, regarding his views on advanced process control (APC).
Ford said that while many companies depend only on multivariable predictive control (MVPC), CFPA often uses advanced regulatory control (ARC) as the more appropriate tool for reaching lower level control objectives. Proficient in both levels of process control tools, the company employs a methodology of project development for each client to determine exactly what kinds of improvements are needed. The final solution is typically hierarchical and deployed through a combination of ARC and MVPC tools.
Qualified personnel are key to successful APC, Ford also said. For example, APC solution providers who specialize in process engineering are more effective than those who focus on mathematics. And APC management works best when a process engineer or unit supervisor in the chain of command takes control of setting the appropriate targets and ensures continuity in process monitoring.
“Well-designed APC can pay off handsomely,” said Ford, “and operating companies are beginning to realize that a long-term commitment is required to maintain high service factors. Where we have been hired to assist with ongoing maintenance, APC service factors have increased dramatically.”
C. F. Picou Associates, Inc. was founded in 1974 as a process engineering consulting firm for the refining industry, and has evolved to become a global provider of advanced process control solutions. CFPA is an affiliate of MAVERICK Technologies, a next-generation engineering, systems integration and operational consulting firm dedicated to helping clients break away from perceived business inefficiencies in a variety of manufacturing and process industries.
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