Environmental reporting made easy

December 14, 2015 CHRISTIAN MARKUSSEN

FLSmidth’s new advanced online emissions analysis solution helps cement plants meet increasingly stringent environmental reporting requirements.

Cement plants and other facilities burning conventional or alternative fuels are facing ever-stricter environmental reporting requirements. Exceeding emissions limits means potential undesirable environmental consequences. This can lead to significant fines and even plant shutdowns. Emissions reporting is therefore an essential element of plant operations. But the process of collecting and reporting calculations is complex. This is leading to the rapid increase in the use of automated environmental reporting systems, which are fast becoming an essential tool for cement plant operators and environmental coordinators.

Strict requirements
An environmental reporting system allows cement plant operators and environmental coordinators to monitor emissions and avoid emissions exceedances. It collects all necessary data associated with the plant’s emissions and provides the necessary reports to the authorities. 

Yet for a cement plant to fully benefit from an environmental reporting system, it must fulfil a number of important demands.

The calculation methodologies associated with measuring and monitoring emissions are complicated, yet their accuracy must be unquestionable. The system must be trusted to always perform these highly advanced calculations quickly and with 100 percent reliability.

As plants grow and more production lines are added, the reporting system must be able to grow with them.The system should be scalable to process more measurements without compromising on speed and accuracy.

Also high on the list of the demands is uptime, because it has direct consequences on the uptime of the plant. Not only should the system be online 24/7, but it must never lose data. In the event of a failure in the reporting system, many plants are required to stop the kiln no later than four hours after the system has stopped logging data.

In the event of a system error or similar, this means there must be fast and efficient access to technical support so that fast action can be taken to avoid a kiln stop. The most efficient means of providing this access is making the system available online. Varying environmental requirements require different types of reports. The system must therefore have the flexibility to deliver exactly the report necessary for the situation. Yet providing historic values in reports is only part of an effective solution. The ability to predict exceedances in advance provides considerable benefits to plant operators as it improves plant productivity and creates more environmentally sustainable operations.

Integrated monitoring solution
FLSmidth meets these requirements and more with its integrated environmental monitoring solution, ReportLoq™. The solution enables cement plant operators and environmental coordinators to rapidly measure, collect and report emissions data.

The system measures and stores emissions values for the required 10 years, calculates average values as prescribed by the environmental authorities, and provides a comprehensive report via email. ReportLoq also provides real-time online calculations, which allows operators to monitor predicted valuesand avoid exceedances.

Using ReportLoq, environmental coordinators can extract up-todate reports and monitor the emissions system wherever and whenever they want. The application can be launched from any browser and any mobile device such as a tablet or smartphone, providing a whole new level of flexibility. This provides simple and easy access to emissions data from home, the office and the control room. With its user-friendly interface and wide range of reporting functions, ReportLoq also provides new possibilities for the proactive use of data.

Complex calculations
Developing an environmental reporting solution is a demanding task as the system needs to be able to handle many different types of calculations and permutations. According to Kenneth Vindum Senior Application Specialist, one of the special challenges to be overcome is quite simply correct calculations given the complexity of the situation and data.

“It’s not simply a matter of taking every value to calculate an average, as some readings are unusable. For example, the analyser may not be working properly or may be being calibrated, or the plant may not be operating. In such circumstances, readings cannot be used and the calculation needs to be flagged accordingly.”  He explains that he and his team have developed the ReportLoq system to handle a wide range of requirements and to ensure that all calculations are done correctly. 

Data storage is another challenging factor. This is compounded by environmental regulations, which often state that every analyser value must be logged every 10 seconds. ReportLoq includes an online solution that enables all data to be saved ‘in the cloud’ on FLSmidth’s own servers.

 We often need to log at least 20 analyser values per product line, which generates more than 63 million measurements a year!” This is a big challenge for our customers, especially if they are required to maintain data records for 10 years. ReportLoq’s cloud solution keeps their data safe, and transfers new data into the cloud in real-time. This means customers don’t have to take backup.”But what if disaster strikes and the data saved in the cloud cannot be accessed via the internet? The ReportLoq solution includes a local server installed onsite at the customer - Kenneth Vindum, Senior Application Specialist

“This offers customers real-time surveillance, but without the reporting part. The operator can continue working offline and once the internet connection comes back up, the cloud will catch up missing data. ReportLoq stores measurements locally for six months, allowing a fairly long internet connection repair time before any values go missing.”

He adds that the local server is an important part of the ReportLoq solution because it provides the functionality allowing the operator to foresee exceedances. This offers compelling advantages to plant operations and, not least, the environment. 

FLSmidth’s ReportLoq is in compliance with the European standard EN14181 and The Industriel emission directive (IED) 2010/75/EU, especially Annex 5 and 6. An application for MCERTS certification is currently being processed.

FLSmidth’s gas analysis solutions
FLSmidth has designed specialised gas analysis solutions for the cement and minerals industries for more than 40 years. With a focus on optimising production throughput, reducing cost of operations and the safety of people and machinery, we offer plug-&-play solutions for emission analysis that help plants comply with local legislation.

Find out more at www.flsmidth.com/gas

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