Industrial pigment manufacturer looks to standardize their production process using a PlantPAx® batch solution, leading to a reduction in quality assurance events, improved product quality standardization and an increase in production efficiency.
A leading global pigment manufacturer required a platform-agnostic partner that could help them successfully implement a complete automated batch solution. They engaged MAVERICK to initially serve in a consultative capacity to present the strengths and weaknesses of a variety of different batch solutions. Based on the options presented, the customer defined success as the MAVERICK team’s ability to completely implement the customer’s chosen operational batch solution – Rockwell Automation’s PlantPAx® – all while following a strict schedule and adhering to inhouse standards.
MAVERICK’s initial consultative approach ensured expectations were communicated on both sides, leading to minor iterations until all stakeholder input and expectations were fully aligned. This process included a customer request to allow operator manual intervention when the batch solution was running, adding to the project’s overall complexity. The MAVERICK team’s technical knowledge and expertise on the PlantPAx® system, combined with additional resources from Rockwell Automation, allowed for a smooth design and implementation process. The implemented solution included both the requested manual override feature and system to automatically track, log and generate batch reports. Overall, the operational batch solution was successfully designed, delivered and tested on schedule without any safety events or process failures.
To start the project, the MAVERICK team provided the customer with detailed documentation on the existing manual process. They also laid out the batch standards based on customer feedback and set up the new batch environment. The team then designed the network architecture required to implement the batch solution, including adding new servers, switches and thin clients to the customer’s existing network
Once the customer approved the network architecture and reviewed the proposed batch recipe documentation, MAVERICK engineers:
- Upgraded PlantPAx® objects
- Created FactoryTalk® View SE projects and migrated graphics from FactoryTalk View ME to SE
- Built batch graphics to ensure ease of operation
- Programmed the batch phases using the approved batch recipe documentation, including a sample batch recipe programmed for a slice test
- Performed the slice test, made process adjustments based on the results of the test and customer feedback, and finalized the batch recipe program
- Completed all factory acceptance test (FAT) and site acceptance test (SAT) documentation with customer approval and conducted both tests with some minor adjustments
- Ensured the correct installation and implementation of all hardware
- Ensured all documentation and maintenance knowledge required was passed to the customer, successfully closing this project engagement
MAVERICK’s comprehensive batch solution resulted in a standardized production process, significantly improving the company’s bottom line with regards to pigment manufacturing. Production efficiency increased significantly, while quality assurance events were reduced drastically. The customer was especially satisfied with the design and implementation of the manual override feature, allowing production to continue even in the event of batch solution unplanned downtime.