Integrating smart sensors and products with embedded intelligence into the latest gas compressor modules has raised the bar in performance, efficiency and reliability, while removing risk in critical applications (illustration: ABB)
Embedded intelligence within a new range of gas compressor modules from ABB is contributing towards the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO) in oil, gas and chemical operations through a combination of high operating efficiencies, lower fuel consumption and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
The module’s intelligence is derived from advanced smart sensors tracking, in real-time, temperature, pressure, speed and shaft phase. Among the new sensors is ABB’s WiMon, a bearing-mounted vibration sensor. Additional intelligence is embedded within a range of products including low and medium voltage switchgear, variable speed drives (VSDs) and electric motors. The modules are some 30% more efficient than a typical gas compressor package through a combination of ABB motors and drives and patented advanced control technologies.
“With the advent of digitalisation, the number of smart sensors applied to the modules brings unprecedented levels of data, not previously attainable in such equipment,” says Diego Pareschi, global product manager for ABB’s gas compressor modules. “However, it is not the quantity of data, but the quality of the insights that we now have about each machine that delivers the real value. The ability to react instantly to any changes in performance and keep the machine optimised, as if it were operating at day one levels, is fantastic news for the industry.”
The modules, rated from 37 kW to 7,500 kW, are skid-mounted and come as complete packages connected with auxiliary systems, devices, piping, motors, VSDs, instrumentation, control and monitoring systems. At its heart is a premium reciprocating compressor from the Ariel Corporation which handles wet, acid and sour gases. The complete compressor
package is suitable for upstream, midstream, downstream, chemical, as well as on- and offshore uses. Applications range from gas gathering and boosting to hydro-cracking. As such, it complies with a host of standards including API618 and certified to international standards, DIN, GOST, ASME, API, ISO.
The modules arrive on-site fully assembled, pre-tested, validated and commissioned, thereby avoiding delays and unforeseen costs. As all the sensors and products are from ABB, the ability to perfectly match and then fine-tune the package contributes significantly to the lower TCO. Furthermore, despite using the latest smart sensors, the overall purchase price of the gas compressor module is some 20% lower than other units in the market.
Additionally, intelligent service and support packages remotely monitor, diagnose and often repair any changes in performance. ABB’s ServicePort, for example, channels all the data from the smart sensors to the cloud, thereby enabling the maintenance personnel to monitor the gas compressor’s process and control system performance, along with its mechanical and electrical conditions. “The fact that the gas compressor module is built around ABB products, together with ServicePort, means that customers only need one service contract. An ABB engineer can fix everything. This reduces operating costs and further contributes to a lower TCO,” says Pareschi.