Submitted by Sheila Kester, VP of Operations at TwinThread
When looking at your operational performance history, you need to ask yourself: what trends do you see over time? To answer this effectively – and to mitigate any negative outcomes – reports and analysis can bring you part of the way, but data scientists and other operations experts can accelerate both “connecting the dots” and taking faster, more impactful action. This is typically a multi-step process, each with its own time horizon:
Identify root cause & evaluate corrective action (analysis-to-action timeframe: weeks) Your experts should be able to easily identify top causations for energy fluctuation or excessive consumption and, based on this information, begin to formulate ways to rectify or optimize the situation. With the TwinThread Predictive Analytics Platform, you can run analyses and create visualizations using the Digital Twin that was created of your process. (This way you can test hypotheses and play “what if” scenarios without impacting your live operations.)
As you evaluate what can be done (such as changing processes, triggering alerts, or another approach), it’s important to keep in mind, this is a cyclical, iterative approach. You may find that a piece of equipment needs to be replaced because it has been running out of spec for too long or has simply run its course. However, in the future, by staying close to the indicators (derived from the data), you’ll be able to see this coming and transition more effectively.
Execute predictive analytics at the operator level (weeks to months for analysis, but action is immediate) Armed with this information, you can then train digital models to interpret and identify frequent causes of energy consumption (or anomalies) in advance. By triggering alerts any time one of these conditions are met, you can direct operators to correct “outside ideal” issues in real-time. As you continue to monitor these systems, you’ll also have an opportunity to identify best practices related to operator behaviors.
Optimize and standardize (analysis and action periods are ongoing) Here’s where continuous improvement truly thrives. As you’ve identified the operation actions that have produced the best outcomes, you can establish those behaviors and actions as the ‘standard operating procedure’ for similar processes plant-wide and propagate that throughout your enterprise.
If you’d like to learn more about TwinThread’s Predictive Operations Platform, and how easy it makes accessing your energy data and insights, get started today.