Key Trends in the Digital Transformation of the Chemical Industry

Abhinav Anand | July 14, 2022 | 768 views | Read Time : 1 min

Key Trends
The chemical business is intricate, with numerous sub-sectors dealing with various challenges. Thus, there are some differences in the sector's main areas of digitalization. For instance, while specialty chemicals with smaller batches but larger profit margins are concerned with improving quality, large factories are concentrated on accelerating throughput speed.

To be able to react to quick and repeated changes in demand, supply, and working circumstances, however, every plant must optimize output, reduce waste, improve safety and sustainability, and become more nimble. Therefore, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), artificial intelligence (AI), and cloud computing are expected to be the three most popular applications for digital transformation during the coming two years.

Key Trends


Production Optimization

The first and most valuable use cases of digitalization in chemical plants center on production optimization through improved equipment performance, process automation, remote and predictive monitoring, and simplified maintenance.

Chemical factories, which often provide basic chemicals for use as end products in other sectors, have a special responsibility to maintain consistently high product quality. However, doing so can be challenging given the significant variations in raw material supply and quality. In addition, as process engineers can change the mix on the fly in reaction to fluctuations in quality, feedstock, or ambient temperatures, better data and analytics enable finer and more frequent adjustments.


Lowering Waste

The main advantage of digitally transformed plants so far has been cost reduction. The price volatility of raw materials is a problem for the chemical production sector because customers naturally want constant low prices. Minimizing waste is critical since facilities must contend with rising energy costs.

Analytics tools that monitor fluctuating raw material prices aid factories in negotiating the best deals with suppliers and preparing in advance for price spikes. The risk of oversupply is reduced since plants can prepare the proper quantities of various products thanks to more precise demand predictions.

Sustainability, Compliance, and Safety

The chemical industry is heavily regulated as a result of the quantity of hazardous chemicals and the number of end-use industries that rely on it. Businesses are adopting digital transformation to boost safety awareness, reduce emissions and dangerous flare incidents, and guarantee a transparent and accurate audit trail.

Plants that quickly adopt digital solutions for remote monitoring, supply chain visibility, waste reduction, production optimization, raising their safety profile, and opening up new opportunities will profit from higher profits and increased revenue, whereas those that hesitate for too long risk failing in the long run.

Spotlight

Noahs Ark Chemicals Ltd

At Noahs Ark Chemicals, we consider ourselves a progressive and reliable global distributor of chemicals. Over the years we have developed a close relationship with chemical producers as well as chemical transporters and subsequently are in position to source chemicals at competitive rates. This ensures that our customers–and–you get the best deals for their chemical requirements.

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Read More

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The Petro-Company collected samples were removed because the samples were either from an off-property well or analyzed at a non-independent lab that returned lithium results that did not correlate well with the analytical results of the QP-collected samples. Four QP-collected sample analyses were also removed from the dataset because of suspected issues with contamination or the brine geochemical results were not compatible with representative Upper Keg River Formation aquifer brine. The contamination relates to high oil contents in the brine sample, or elevated iron and metal contents believed to be related to corrosiveness inhibitors used by the Petro-Company at a specific well that may have precipitated metals that are not representative of the true brine. With respect to the assessment of representative brine genuine Upper Keg River Formation samples in this dataset contain between 72,200 and 156,000 mg/L sodium; however, the QP-assessed invalid samples had very low sodium. Once the invalid brine analyses were removed from the database (n=6 analyses), the QP had no further significant issues or inconsistencies that would cause one to question the validity of the data. Brine analytical results are presented in Table 1 and include lithium-brine values from the three facilities and two wells. With respect to the QP-collected valid Upper Keg River Formation aquifer brine samples, brine from the wells yielded between 29.3 and 36.1 mg/L lithium with an average concentration of 33.0 mg/L lithium. Brine from the facilities yielded between 24.5 and 37.3 mg/L lithium with an average concentration of 33.6 mg/L lithium. Collectively, the brine analyses from Volt’s primary lab yielded between 30.6 mg/L and 37.3 mg/L lithium with an average concentration of 35.0 mg/L lithium. The QP concluded that the Volt sampling program validated the historical lithium-brine analytical results: 38.3 mg/L lithium versus 35.0 mg/L lithium. The similar lithium concentrations potentially demonstrates the chemical homogeneity of the Upper Keg River Formation aquifer underlying the Rainbow Lake Property. The sample program results also show that Volt could utilize the facilities for any future demonstration, or pilot direct lithium extraction test work, which is beneficial because the facilities represent multi-well collection points with high brine volume. Based on the results of the Rainbow Lake Property brine sampling program, Volt has commissioned APEX Geoscience Ltd. to prepare a technical report that will provide a geological introduction and exploration results of the Upper Keg River Formation aquifer brine assessment and include recommendations to advance the lithium-brine project. The technical report will be prepared in accordance with the Canadian Mining and Metallurgy Mineral Exploration Best Practice Guidelines (2018) and the disclosure requirements set out in National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.

Read More

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