Environment Protection and Safety Equipment

We offer a full range of products and services related to the environment protection and safety equipment:

– Oil containment booms

– Oil skimmers

– Boom reels

– Hydraulic power packs

– Hydraulic transfer pumps

– Storage tanks, bladders

– Oil/chemical sorbent pads

– Oil/chemical sorbent rolls

– Oil/chemical sorbent socks, booms

– Oil/chemical sorbent pillows

– Oil/chemical absorbents

– Spill kits and accessories

– Safety equipment

– Cleaners and degreasers.

Five data acquisition strategies

Did you just see something extraordinary in the recorded data or was
it a data anomaly in measurement, communications, or data aggregation?

Did thing It that This might I just makes isn’t extraordinary see be the that? us aquestion video say, Everyone “Wait…. or or toaask unbelievable. sports seen about What?!” replay some- data acquisition (DAQ) systems or from data agorithms. Data collection should teach, not amaze and confuse. Causation cannot be derived just because a data set correlates to another. Actionable data is the goal. Data needs to help the return on investment

  1. Frequency of data

Data collection rates correlate to dollars; there isn’t much debate there. Sending data to the cloud is easy to understand. Mbps, data message counts, and terabytes cost dollars. Even with an on-premise solution, a network to support data collection and storage for data processing is needed. Both translate to cost.

It makes sense to ask “How often do I need an update?” Recording ambient environmental conditions on a millisecond level is probably overkill, but collecting vibration data once a second won’t give useable data either. Data must be collected at a rate that translates to representative data sets. Application requirements will point to the correct sampling rate.

  1. Accuracy of data

Sensor accuracy is important to collecting data that represents the real-world conditions. Is it necessary to know the ambient humidity to a 1/100th of a percent or the actuator position to 1 micron? If a temperature sensor has an accuracy of +/- 5° C, is that good enough? The data collected needs to represent the application correctly to draw accurate conclusions.

When measuring part dimensions to check quality, the sensor needs to exceed the tolerance accuracy of the part being measured. If ambient temperature may affect the process, an accuracy proportional to the expected temperature fluctuation may be needed to know if it has an influence or not. Some application knowledge will help in selecting sensors that are accurate and economical for the data collection system.

  1. Resolution

Data resolution is related to how well a recording device can read the sensor data. Data point size can make a difference between usable data and junk. The sensor might accurately detect data, but if the controller can’t read the data at that accuracy over the fluctation range, it doesn’t matter.

  1. Synchronized data

Some data points collected might need to be tightly synchronized to other data points. This can be important in high-speed data collection. Consider a monitored vibration value that corresponds to the position of an actuator. It might be good to know actuator position that corresponds to a specific out-of-tolerance vibration data point in a machine cycle. For measurement accuracy, the position and vibration data must be collected so they correspond to each other in a way that reflects the actual behavior in time. This could be accomplished by having one controller read both values at the same time, or by time-syncing two controllers so the time-stamps of both sets of data are synchronized. If data sets cannot accurately be correlated repeatably, an accurate measurement isn’t possible.

  1. Application knowledge

Application knowledge is the key to collecting the right data and turning it into actionable data. From the examples above, it’s easy to imagine different ways to collect data that can lead to misunderstandings. But even if data is accurate and represents the real-world conditions, is it relevant?

Allen Tubbs is product manager, and Benjamin Menz is a data scientist, with Bosch Rexroth Corp., a CSIA member, a CFE Media content partner. Edited by Mark T. Hoske, content manager, Control Engineering, CFE Media, mhoske@cfemedia.com.

Terminal Automation System Market

Terminal Automation system (TAS) is a process in which a Supervisory Software System (Terminal Automation System) automates certain manual processes in a terminal. TAS is used to automate, measure, record and report all transfers and exchanges throughout the product movement in a terminal. TAS provides monitoring, control and management of the entire product handling process from receiving to storage to distribution.

TAS combines automatic control and business management functions. It is generally an integrated, modular, open and scalable solution that helps ensure the safe and stable operation, optimal management and profit maximization of the terminal, as well as lowering production costs. This paper covers all the aspects of TAS.


A complete TAS has three basic layers:

  • Field Layer,
  • Control and Automation and
  • Business layer.

The Field layer includes Remote operated shutoff valves (ROSOV), flow meters, control valves, Double Block and Bleed valves (DBBV), temperature and pressure measurements, Level measurement and groundings.

The Control and Automation layer includes computers / servers, Operator stations, PLCs, Printers, card readers, and emergency shutdown system. The top Business layer is for data exchange between the Management / Enterprise systems and control & automation. Orders are transferred from the Management / Enterprise systems. When the order is complete, a transaction is uploaded to the Management / Enterprise systems for invoicing.




TAS encompasses various sub systems for automatic, reliable, efficient and safe operation of entire terminal from receipt to dispatch. The various subsystems of TAS are as mentioned below.

Ø  Process control system

Ø  Emergency Shutdown system

Ø  Tank farm management system

Ø  Fire and gas system

Ø  Custody Metering

Ø  Truck Lorry filling system

Ø  RFID Based Truck Identification System

Ø  Traffic Signaling

Ø  Truck Queue Management System

Ø  Weighbridge

Ø  PA system

Ø  CCTV system

Ø  Fire Detection and Alarm System

Ø  Intrusion detection system

All the above sub systems of TAS are integrated with each other for efficient and smooth operations of the terminal. Functions and features of these sub systems are briefly described in the subsequent paragraphs.

Process Control System

Process control system is PLC based system which interfaces with various other sub systems. It can be called as heart of TAS. The main functions of process control system are

  • Improves Productivity
  • Reduces Loss
  • Prevents Accidents and & Improves Safety
  • Protects the Environment
  • Reduces Paperwork
  • Expedites Billing Process
  • Enhances Product Security

The process control system is PLC based system with PC based operator stations. It mainly control and monitor the following areas / equipment

  1. a)     Pumping plant: The complete automatic start and stop of pumps based on the process requirements are controlled by process control PLC system
  2. b)     Motorized valves: Motorized valves are either hardwired or multidropped using communication bus and connected to process control PLC. All the motorized valves are operated and monitored by process control PLC as per process requirement. As per OISD guidelines motor operated valve (MOV) on inlet, outlet and recirculation lines should be located outside the dyke.
  3. c)     Double Block and Bleed Valves: The purpose of DBBV is to have positive isolation of lines / tanks.  Remote operation and monitoring of DBBV is carried out through process control PLC.
  4. d)     Dyke valve position monitoring: As per OISD guidelines Dyke drain Valves shall be provided with position indication and alarm system in the event of opening the valve.
  5. e)     Truck Queue Management System: The trucks arriving at terminals shall register at the entry gate. After registration vehicle is parked in parking area and driver goes and rest in driver rest room. A LED monitor is located in Driver rest room provided in parking area. According to the process requirement and first cum first basis the vehicle number will be displayed on the monitor for driver to report at the entry gate. This system will be part of process control system PLC.
  6. f)      The process control system PLC shall be Interfaced with the following systems for efficient operation of the terminal.

–       Tank Farm Management System

–       Truck Lorry Filling System

–       Weighbridge

–       RFID Based Truck Identification System

–       Traffic Signaling

–       RIM seal protection

–       Upstream and Downstream control system

Emergency Shutdown System

The emergency shutdown system for terminal consists of the following:

  • SIL certified PLC system
  • Interfacing with Terminal control system
  • ESD Push buttons at critical locations in terminal
  • ROSOVs
  • Flame detectors
  • Gas detectors (Point Type and Open path)
  • Audio Visual alarms
  • Manual call points in field
  • Vibrating fork type level switch

As per OISD guidelines the SIL classification study shall be carried out to determine the required SIL level. SIL of the safety instrumented function for the tank including overfill protection shall be meeting the requirement of Part 1 of EN 61511. ESD system shall be only through push buttons with wired connection.

As per OISD guidelines Remote operated shut off valve (ROSOV) is not a regularly operated valve and is kept normally open; the second motor operated valve (MOV) is a regular operating valve. ROSOV shall be fail safe and fire safe (shall close in case of signal failure). The actuator shall be fail-safe. The cables leading to the control room shall be fire retardant. ROSOV shall have only close operation from control room or at a strategic remote location. The Open/Close push buttons of ROSOV shall be provided in field i.e. just outside the dyke. These push buttons shall have distinctive feature so that opening is different than action required for closing (e.g. pull type and push type).

Tank farm management system

The various components of the Tank farm management system are as follows:

  • Radar gauge level measurement
  • Multipoint temperature measurement
  • Side mounted liquid head measurement
  • Field control unit
  • Central control unit
  • Water level measurement
  • PC based monitoring station with following features

–       Individual temp. and temp. Profile for tank

–       Product density

–       Volume calculation as per ASTM / API table

  • Interfacing with Terminal control system

Fire and gas system

The various components of the Fire & Gas system are as follows:

  • SIL certified PLC system
  • Flame detector
  • Point type gas detectors
  • Beam type gas detectors
  • Sounders
  • Beacons
  • Sounder cum beacon
  • Manual call points
  • Interfacing with ESD PLC

Custody Metering

For custody metering of the despatched product from the terminal there are there are two methods

  • Mass flow meter / Positive displacement flow meter
  • Weigh bridge

The custody metering of product despatched from terminal can be carried out using either flow meter or weigh bridge. Generally in most of the terminals the metering of despatched product is carried out using Weigh Bridge and same is cross verified using the reading from flow meter

Truck Lorry filling system

The truck lorry filling system comprises of following major components.

  • Batch controller
  • Flow meter
  • DCV (Digital Control Valve)
  • Truck tank overfill switch
  • Earthing system
  • Interfacing with Terminal control system

As OISD recommendations loading pumps shall be provided with additional explosion proof switch located at the strategic location in the gantry to switch off the pump in case of emergency such as over flow, fire or any other abnormal situation. Also automated locations should provide suitable overfill protection system to prevent any overflow and hazards arising out of that

RFID Based Truck Identification System

This system is very useful in reducing errors in terminals. It also reduces processing time of the various operations in dispatch. Various components of the RFID based truck identification system are as mentioned below.

–       RFID tag fitted on vehicle body.

–       RFID antenna fitted at the entry point to capture information from RFID tag

–       RFID reader to receive data from RFID antenna and transmit all the data to TAS

Traffic Signalling System

This is very useful for properly guiding the vehicles inside the terminal and to ensure that right designated vehicle enters to allocated locations. The various components of this system are as mentioned below.

  • Red and Green signalling lights
  • Software to program the functions
  • Cable and connectors

This system is interface with the terminal automation system so that it can work in co-ordination with the RFID system for controlling the movement of vehicles.


Truck Queue Management System

This system is very helpful in avoiding congestion inside the terminal. The truck queue management system mainly comprises of following items.

  • Vehicle registration
  • Q-management software
  • Monitor in Driver’s rest room


Weighbridge plays a very important role in functioning of the terminal. It is used for custody metering. All the billing for the material dispatched from terminal is based on the reading from weighbridge. Hence weighbridge in the terminal has to be periodically calibrated through national accredited authorities. All load cell of weighing system shall be OILM R 60 (International Organisation of Legal Metrology) Certified for custody transfer measurement

Public Address System (PAS)

The public address system is very important for the smooth operation and terminal and also for safe evacuation of people from terminal during emergency situations.  PAS is interfaced with F&G and FDAS system so that pre-recorded message can be initiated during emergency situations. The major components of PAS are

  • Speakers
  • Desktop call station
  • Field call stations
  • Amplifier and controller
  • Interfacing with F&G and FDAS system

As per OISD guidelines loading gantry shall be provided with at least one suitable explosion-proof telephone / paging device for communication with pump house in normal & emergency operations. In addition, operating personnel shall be provided with intrinsically safe walky-talky suitable for use in oil installations.

Closed Circuit Television system (CCTV)

It is mandatory to provide CCTV system in the terminal for surveillance and safety of terminal. Generally the CCTV system LED monitors are located in control room and security cabins for continuous monitoring the healthiness of terminal. The cameras located in the field shall be exproof suitable for hazardous area classification. The major components of CCTV system are

  • Cameras
  • Ethernet switches
  • Network video recorder (NVR)
  • Cable and connectors
  • LED monitors at control room and security

As per OISD recommendation the areas to be covered by CCTV system are

  • Tank farm
  • Entry / exit gate
  • Periphery
  • Critical operating areas

Fire Detection and Alarm system (FDAS)

The FDAS is required to be provided for all indoor areas such as control room, electrical substations, workshops, administrative / technical buildings etc. FDAS system is mandatory in control room as per OISD guidelines. The FDAS is designed as per the guidelines stated in NFPA 72 and IS 2189. The major components of FDAS are

  • Smoke detectors
  • Heat detectors
  • Manual call points
  • Fire alarm panel
  • Fire alarm repeater panel

Intrusion Detection system

The system is required to the periphery of terminal. There are various types of intrusion detection system available which can be provided for protecting the terminal boundary. There are no statutory guidelines for providing intrusion detection system. However, based on the past experiences and location of terminals it can be decided whether such system is required. Various types of intrusion detection system available are

  • Infrared detection system
  • Intrusion detection through CCTV.
  • Guard touring system
  • Break wire type system
  • Optic fibre cable
  • Optical intrusion detection
  • Ultrasonic Intrusion detection
  • Electrification of fence


Automation of terminals is a must to have safe and efficient operations. Manually planning, executing, and recording movements can greatly impact the profitability of terminal.  Mistakes result in contamination, unsafe working conditions, and the loss of materials and energy. Any of these factors can directly contribute to higher operating costs, revenue loss, and, ultimately, lost opportunities.

We have tried to list out some of the common challenges encountered during design of the terminals, the areas which are missed out during engineering and the areas where we are not able conclude during engineering

Operation of valves inside the dyke

In case of emergencies such as oil spillage inside dyke it is not possible to access the valves located inside dyke. Hence it should be ensured that suitable access platforms are provided right from outside the dyke up to the valves so that person need not have to land inside the dyke to approach the ROSOVs.

Cabling inside the tank dyke

It is observed that in most of the cases the inside portion of dyke is required to be made impervious. Due to which providing structural steel support for cable trays on dyke floor is not advisable. The best practice is to avoid puncturing dyke floor and use the access platform provided for valves to support the cable trays.

Cabling for the instruments mounted on the tank

There are many instruments such as Radar level transmitter, multipoint temperature sensor, vibrating fork level switch etc. are located on tank roof. Cable tray routing and supporting for all the cables from these roof top instruments up to junction boxes located outside tank dyke is always a challenge. There are two ways to overcome this situation. First option is to use the tank staircase structure to support all the cable trays from roof top to bottom of tank. Second option is to provide mounting pads all along the body of tank from top to bottom at certain interval to support the cable trays.

Safety Integrity Level (SIL) requirement for field instruments( Radar Relay only SIL certified)

The instrument, valves, relays, control system etc. used in emergency shutdown loops shall be SIL certified. The SIL level for these items shall be ascertained after carrying out SIL identification study. If Radar level transmitters if they are used in ESD loops then the specifications shall be designed considering the following aspects.

–       Very few manufacturers provide radar level transmitter with SIL rated 4-20 mA output.

–       Some manufacturers provide radar level transmitter with only SIL rated one no. relay output.

–       Very few manufacturers provide SIL 3 rated radar level transmitter.

Power supply for periphery security systems.

Generally all the terminals are provided with CCTV cameras, intrusion detection system, guard touring system etc. for security of the plant periphery. All these system components located near periphery boundary wall required power supply. Running long cables to provide power supply to these components from centralized located power source is not advisable from both technical as well as economical aspects. To overcome these problems various options are

–       We can locate power sources in various buildings located near plant boundary supply power supply to various nearby cameras.

–        Power to the cameras can be fed from the power supply from nearby periphery lighting poles

–       In case security watch towers are provided on plant periphery then power source for cameras can be located in watch towers.

Cable sizing for ROSOV(ESD Valves)

The ROSOVs have either pneumatic or electro hydraulic actuators.  ROSOVs generally located at quiet long distance from the control room. Proper cable sizing shall be carried out considering the load of solenoid provided for actuation of ROSOVs.

ESD system communication between Jetty and Tank Terminal

The distance between the jetty and tank terminal are large due to which laying of copper cable for interfacing between ESD systems for jetty and tank terminal is not possible. The best alternative is to lay fiber optic cable and provide TUV certified communication between the ESD systems of jetty and tank terminal.

Actuator Selection for ROSOV 

The ROSOVs in terminals are part of ESD system and hence are generally provided with pneumatic or electro-hydraulic actuators. In case instrument air is available in terminal then providing pneumatic actuator is most economical. When air is not available the providing electro-hydraulic actuators may be economical. Hence proper techno-economical study shall be carried out in selecting the type of actuator with due considerations to fail safe action, total air requirement, total quantity of valves etc.

Dyke valves position monitoring

For draining of leakage oil from dyke pit valves are provided. It is very important and also mandatory as per OISD to monitor the open / close positions of these valves and alarms shall be generated on operator stations as per the logic of operation.

Limitations of vibrating fork type level switches for floating roof tank.

The point of high-high level actuation point from tank top shall be properly calculated to decide on probe length for top mounted vibrating fork type level switches. Alternatively the switch can be mounted from side of tank at point of actuation. However, the probe shall not be projected inside the tank as it will get damaged due to movement of floating roof. The switch probe tip shall remain inside the mounting nozzle. Preferably the mounting nozzle shall be tilted upward with 60 degree angle with surface of tank so that no oil gets trapped in the nozzle.

Roof tilt indication for floating roof tank.

It is always advisable to monitor the tilting of roof as may cause hazard. In case roof tilt indication is required same can be achieved by providing 3 nos. of top mounted level transmitters above the tank roof at 120 degree apart. The signals from all these 3 nos. transmitters can be compared in terminal PLC to derive the roof tilt indication.

Location and quantity of Hydrocarbon detectors (HC)

There are no fixed guidelines to locate the HC in a terminal. Practically if HC detectors are to be provided at each leakage point for class A and B products then the quantity become very high. One has to very selectively place the detectors so that any leakage of class A and B products won’t go undetected. If below mentioned guidelines are followed almost all the leakage points will be covered.

–       In pump house open path HC gas detectors are most suitable.

–       For leakages in tank dyke point type HC gas detector may be located near leakage collecting pit and open path HC gas detector on the leakage path leading to collection pit inside dyke.

–       One no. fire detector for detecting fire near the valves inside the dyke.

–       In valve terminals open path HC gas detector are most suitable.

Philosophy for Audio visual alarms in field and control room

Providing hooters with single type of tone in field for all conditions does not give clear idea about the cause of alarm. Hence to have clear idea about the cause of alarm conditions the philosophy mentioned below may be followed.

–       Red colour beacon with hooter for master ESD condition in terminal

–       Amber colour beacon with hooter for detection of gas leakage or fire in the terminal detected by F&G detectors.

–       Yellow colour beacon with hooter for rim seal fail (Applicable for only floating roof tanks).

Proof testing for SIL rated instruments

For SIL rated instruments it is mandatory to continuously monitor the healthiness of instrument. This feature shall be always mentioned in the specifications while procuring.

For e.g. In ROSOVs which is the first body valve and part of ESD loop “Partial stroke test” facility shall be specified. Vibration fork type level switch which is provided for overfill protection of tank and is also part of ESD loop. Simulation facility shall be provided to initiate a pulse to check the healthiness of switch periodically without removing the switch from site.

P&ID’s (Indicate ESD and Terminal PLC instruments  clearly)

It should be ensured that the P&IDs clearly shows the instruments which are in ESD loop and instruments which are part of terminal process operations. So that further engineering is carried out error free.

Size of Nozzle for tank top mounted instruments.

It is always a confusion to finalize the size of process connection for various instruments mounted on tank top. Below mentioned process connections may be followed for mounting of various instruments.

Pressure transmitter: To mount the pressure transmitter on top of tanks, 2” size flange process connection is sufficient. To mount pressure transmitter on bottom side of tank 3” size flange connection may be provided to have desired accuracy level.

Multipoint Temperature transmitter: To mount the multipoint temperature probe 2” size flange process connection may be provided.

Vibration fork type level switch: To mount the Vibrating fork type level switch 2” size flange process connection may be provided.

Radar type level transmitter: Generally for mounting of radar type level transmitter 8” size flange process connection is adequate. However, based on the tank height, type of media to be measured process connection size shall be confirmed with instrument supplier before finalization.

For floating roof tank it is necessary to provide still well for each tank top mounted instruments. Alternatively instead of providing separate still wells for each instrument a common bigger size (around 20 to 24”) still well may be provided for mounting of all the top mounted instruments. For radar type level instrument as per manufacturer’s requirement a separate 8” still well inside the big size still well may be required.

Motorized valve communication

The second valve on the tanks inlet, outlet or recirculation lines are generally motorized valves. The distance between these valves and the control system located in control room are very large. It is most economical to use multidrop communication cable between the motorized valves and control room for operation and monitoring of valves. This will save huge amount of multicore cables to be laid for each motorized valve. Additionally it will provide all the diagnostic information and save commissioning time of valves.

Waxy Crude special requirement

In case of waxy crude additional instruments are required to be provided as mentioned below same shall be properly considered while designing the system

–       Monitoring healthiness of heat tracing system provided for pipelines.

–       Control and monitoring of steam for maintaining temperature of crude in tanks.

–       Provide temperature sensor located 120 degree apart at suitable level on the tank for monitoring spot heating due to steam leakage inside tank.

–       Water level monitoring inside the tank which may rise due to steam leakage inside the tank.

Queue management system

For trucks which come for receipt of material at terminal Q management system is a must. When the truck reaches the terminal the driver is provided a unique no. and is asked to park the vehicle in parking area and wait in driver’s waiting room. In driver’s waiting room a LED display is provided. As per the availability of gantry bay and material in terminal the number given to drivers and vehicle no. are displayed on the LED display. Looking at this numbers, sequentially the drivers will proceed toward the terminal. This avoids the congestion near the terminal entry gate.

RFID tracking

In many terminals preregistered trucks are only allowed to enter the terminal. In such cases this system is very useful from operation as well as safety of terminal. In RFID tracking system as preconfigured RFID tag is fixed on truck body which has information about the truck such as vehicle no., driver name, capacity of truck tank etc. The RFID antenna along with reader is provided before weighbridge, entry to gantry bays. As the truck with RFID tag reaches near the RFID antenna the reader captures all the information about the truck automatically. This system can be also used to operate the boom barriers provided at entry of gantry bay so that the truck enters the right designated gantry bay. The fig below shows the typical schematic of RFID system.

Multi spot temperature element(RTD/Thermocouple)

Most of the suppliers of multipoint temperature probe provide RTD as sensing elements in the probe. However, some suppliers provided combination of RTD and thermocouple as temperature sensing elements in the probe. Looking at the application of i.e. monitoring of temperature profile in tanks, both the option should be acceptable.

  • Radar Level Transmitter(FMCW/PWM)

There are two technologies (i.e. FMCW: Frequency Modulated Continuous Wave and PWM: Pulse Width Modulation) which are offered by various vendors for radar level measurement. Both the technologies are proven in field. However, when application is for custody metering then FMCW principle of measurement is preferable as accuracy of +/- 1 mm is required. Both the principles of measurement are suitable for level measurement in tanks.

  • Common PLC for ESD and F&G

For both Emergency Shutdown (ESD) and Fire & Gas (F&G) applications SIL rated PLCs are to be provided. As the quantity of I/Os for both F&G and ESD are generally small, it is advisable to provide a common SIL rated PLC for both ESD and F&G applications. This will save cost, intersystem wiring, space in control room etc.

  • Hardwired console

As per OISD guidelines ESD system shall be only through push buttons with wired connection. The hardwired console in control room is often missed out. For all the devices such as ESD valves, pumps, etc. operated by ESD system stop button along with status indicating lamps shall be provided on the Hardwired console in control room. All the signals from this console shall be wired to ESD PLC.



The information given in this paper is having references from below mentions various codes and standards. These OISD standards are applicable only for the terminals located in India. For designing of terminals located outside India suitable NFPA codes shall be followed.

OISD-117Fire protection facilitiesfor  petroleum depots, terminalsand pipeline installations
OISD-118Layouts for oil and gas installations
OISD-163Process control room safety
OISD-244 Storage and handling of petroleum products at depots and terminals including standalone crude oil storage facilities.

About the authors

Sunil P Agarwal is General Manager (Instrumentation and controls) at Tata Consulting Engineers Limited

Mohan R Joshi is Deputy General Manager (Instrumentation and controls) at Tata Consulting Engineers Limited

MSA Fixed Gas and Flame Detection

At MSA, our business is safety. We’ve been the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality safety products since 1914, providing sophisticated devices and protective gear – the result of countless R&D hours, relentless testing, and an unwavering commitment to quality that saves lives and protects thousands of men and women each day.

Our core product focus emphasizes fixed gas and flame detection instruments, industrial head, eye, face, hearing and communications protection, respiratory protective equipment, fall protection products, and portable gas detection instruments and sensors.

As the world leader in fixed gas and flame detection, MSA provides safety solutions that protect workers’ lives. Whether your field is upstream, midstream or downstream, MSA can help you safely navigate with our extensive line of detectors, built to meet your flame, oxygen, combustible and toxic gas detection needs.

Fixed gas and flame detection solutions

MSA offers a wide variety of fixed gas monitoring solutions to detect gas and flame hazards, combustible gases, toxic gases and oxygen deficiency / enrichment. Our instruments reflect the latest developments in sensor and instrumentation design using electrochemical, catalytic bead, metal oxide, photoacoustic infrared, advanced acoustic detection and both point and open path infrared sensing technologies.

Our products have been successfully installed in a variety of applications, including oil rigs, production platforms, wellheads, storage vessels, pipelines and compressor stations, to name a few.

Gas monitors for the offshore industry

The ULTIMA X5000 Gas Monitor, hereafter also called device, is a gas monitor for measuring toxic and combustible gases as well as oxygen. Using sensors, the device tests the ambient air and triggers the alarm as soon as the gas exceeds a specific concentration level.

The monitors are engineered using microprocessor-based technology and designed for varied gas-detection needs. X5000 with IR detector offer DuraSource technology, a new and improved light source providing extended sensor life.

Other features and benefits of the Ultima X5000 series include:

  • Simple retrofits have identical footprint and wiring to ULTIMA X
    Gas Monitor series.
  • Bluetooth® wireless technology allows mobile device to act as HMI
    screen and controller.
  • Download the X/S Connect App from the Google Play store. Reduce setup time by at least 50% with the X/S Connect App
  • Intuitive display features new design equipped with organic LED (OLED) display, with full word text in 9 languages. Bright green,
    yellow and red status LEDs for extreme visibility.
  • Industry-first, touch-button interface provides intuitive, tool-free user experience.
  • Instrument status indicators illuminate power, fault and alarm conditions.
  • Patented XCell Sensors with TruCal technology extend calibration cycles for as long as 18 months, actively monitor sensor integrity and compensate for environmental factors and electrochemical sensor drift.
  • Worry-free operation; automatically self-checks four times per day.
  • Three-year warranty and five-year expected life for XCell Sensors
  •  SafeSwap enables safe and quick XCell Sensor replacement without powering off gas detector.
  • Dual sensor capability doubles sensing power with half the footprint of a single gas sensor transmitter
  • SIL 2 safety integrity level available for integration into safety systems

Gassonic Observer-i ultrasonic gas leak detector

The new GASSONIC OBSERVER-i ultrasonic gas leak detector incorporates artificial neural network (ANN) technology into the detector’s ‘brain’ and distinguishes real gas leaks from nuisance alarms without requiring any in-field training. Potentially catastrophic gas leaks can be detected instantaneously without gas having to come into contact with a sensing
element. It simply ‘hears’ the leak.

The detector offers ease of use, and does not require in-field training. Ultrasonic gas leak detectors are used in pressurised gas applications to complement conventional gas detection methods. With the unique ultrasonic sensing technology found in all GASSONIC products, the sound of leaking gas is the key to detection.

The detector also provides failsafe operation. Senssonic™ self-test technology checks the device’s electrical integrity and microphone every 15 minutes and ensures the GASSONIC OBSERVER-i detector is operational at all times. Both the microphone and the microphone windscreen are constantly monitored to ensure that the detector always has optimal sensitivity and detection coverage.

Multi-spectral infrared flame detector

MSA’s FlameGard® 5 multi-spectral infrared (MSIR) flame detector with neural network technology (NNT) sets a new industry standard for performance, reliability and value. This is the industry’s first MSIR / NNT flame detector designed to operate at a longer range with a wider field of view and at a higher level of accuracy for superior false alarm immunity.

Additional members of the FlameGard 5 flame detector family include the FlameGard 5 UV / IR detector and the FlameGard 5 UV / IR-hydrogen detector. Both use ultraviolet and infrared detection technology to provide high immunity to false alarms. The FlameGard 5 test lamp for testing FlameGard 5 detectors is the final component in the series.

Important features of the FlameGard 5 Series include:

  • A multi-spectral infrared sensing array (in the FlameGard 5 MSIR detector) with highly intelligent neural network processors provides high accuracy through superior false alarm immunity
  • Wide field of view
  • SIL 3 suitable products
  • Continuous optical path monitoring (COPM) checks optical path integrity and electronic circuitry once a minute
  • Fire and gas detection system for the offshore industry

The MODEL 10K™ fire and gas detection system from MSA represents the next generation in highly intelligent monitoring solutions designed to help customers reduce hazard vulnerability and meet the world’s most demanding safety standards. The MODEL 10K system is an innovative, modular, Factory Mutual (FM)-approved system that is highly scalable.

Offering intelligence, flexibility and reliability, the system’s controller hardware configuration and software have been tested by Factory Mutual to verify NFPA 72 compliance.

Highlights of the MODEL 10K fire and gas system include:

  • Remote I/O capability
  • Optional fiber-optic communications
  • Color touch screen operator interface
  • Supports third party device integration
  • Simple, reliable and cost-effective field wiring topology

Open path IR gas detector

The Ultima OPIR-5 detector is an open path IR gas detector that provides continuous monitoring of combustible gas concentrations at a path length of up to 150m. It features a dual detection range (ppm meter and LEL meter), enabling sensitivity to both small and large gas leaks. It is performance approved for use in harsh environments.

Highlights of the Ultima OPIR-5 detector include:

  • Capable of detecting methane, natural gas, propane, LPG and other hydrocarbons
  • Unitised display for ease of operation and reduced cost
  • Automatic gain control compensates for dirty optics, rain and fog
  • Multiple communication outputs (HART, ModBus, AMS support) provide complete status and control capability in the control room

New innovation for static grounding protection

Newson Gale’s Earth-Rite® MULTIPOINT II is the new innovation which will provide customers with a unique value proposition that makes the active static grounding of multiple items of equipment with interlock control more cost effective than other options available to the EX/HAZLOC industries.

Newson Gale’s new Earth-Rite® MULTIPOINT II is an ATEX / IECEx / CSA certified static grounding system that enables customers actively monitor up to eight (8) discrete items of equipment at risk of discharging electrostatic sparks into flammable or combustible dust atmospheres. Whereas multiple items of equipment used in EX/HAZLOC operations require an individual grounding system to monitor each item of equipment, the Earth-Rite® MULTIPOINT II is a single system that actively monitors the grounding status of eight (8) items ranging from railcars to powder processing equipment. This new innovation from Newson Gale provides customers with a unique value proposition that reduces total purchase and installation costs for projects where multiple items of equipment require static grounding protection.

The Earth-Rite® MULTIPOINT II consists of a monitoring control unit that features an array of red and green LED indicators that verify when the equipment in need of static grounding protection has a resistance to a verified true earth grounding point of 10 ohms* or less. In addition to the LED indicators located in the monitoring control unit, equipment operators can refer to independent remote indicator stations that can be mounted closer to the process hazard. Each indicator station provides operators with a visual “GO / NO GO” reference that informs them when the resistance in the static grounding circuit is low enough (less than 10 ohms) to proceed with the operation. As the remote indicator stations are powered by the monitoring control unit’s intrinsically safe circuits power from external sources like 230 / 110 V AC supplies, that would be needed for more expensive Ex(d)/Ex(e) certified indicator stations, are not required.

The Earth-Rite® MULTIPOINT II’s power supply houses eight (8) volt free contacts, each of which is controlled by the corresponding monitoring channel in the monitoring control unit. In addition to the grounding circuit relays, a group relay can be selected to control external equipment that requires a 0 to 10 ohm permissive condition from several monitored channels. A fault relay is also provided so that interlocked processes can be shut down in a fail-safe mode should the system’s self-monitoring function detect if the permissive resistance range of the grounding circuits rise above 10 ohms or if a fault is detected with the micro-controller’s software.

The monitoring control unit and remote indicator stations are ATEX / IECEx certified for installation in Zone 0 / Zone 20 atmospheres and cCSAus approved for installation in Class I, Div. 1; Class II, Div. 1 and Class III atmospheres. The power supply is ATEX / IECEx certified for installation in Zone 2 / Zone 21 atmospheres and cCSAus approved for installation in Class I, Div. 2; Class II, Div. 1 and Class III atmospheres. (SIL 2 pending).

*10 ohms represents the maximum resistance level that international guidelines like Cenelec CLC/TR 60079-32-1 and NFPA 77 recommend for static grounding circuits.

The Earth-Rite® MULTIPOINT II is now available for quotation from Newson Gale and our global network of distributors. For more information contact us at:

  • United Kingdom tel.: +44 115 940 7500 or e-mail: groundit@newson-gale.co.uk

  • North America / Latin America tel.: +1 732 961 7610 or e-mail: groundit@newson-gale.com

  • Deutschland tel.: +49 201 89 45 245 or e-mail: erdung@newson-gale.de

  • South East Asia tel.: +65 6704 9461 or e-mail: ngsea@newson-gale.com

Protecting citizens, tourists, and businesses


Ports represent a complex security challenge, with a constant flow of inland and marine traffic. The US has an estimated 300 sea and river ports with more than 3,700 cargo and passenger terminals. In addition to business traffic which brings ships from around the world into the port, major port cities also attract visitors and tourists who enjoy shopping, dining, and special events. As a result, law enforcement agencies must patrol and protect an extremely diverse area, including sections where it’s dark and easy to hide. These agencies require the ability to detect and assess security, safety, environmental, and fire threats in the waterways, and near bridges, especially at night and at long distances. In particular, they need the ability to see vessels and critical infrastructure at great distances during periods of darkness with a high level of detail including vessel numbers and names, particularly ones of high interest. Because multiple law enforcement, government agencies and military branches share responsibility for patrolling the ports and surrounding bay areas, security solutions must support shared camera views and interoperability among different systems.

Vumii has extensive experience in supplying effective protection for ports in the United States and Europe.

The broad spectrum of Vumii thermal and nearIR camera technologies provide for a costeffective solution for helping law enforcement agencies provide the most complete protection to ports. The cameras’ ease of use, nighttime performance, and ability to zoom-into scenes at great distances with clarity and detail provide a winning combination.

Selecting thermal cameras

For port security, a comprehensive set of security cameras designed to address the challenges associated with this unique environment is required, including the implementation of active illumination and thermal cameras that meet long distance requirements and support day and night monitoring. The combination of Vumii Discoverii active illumination cameras and Accuracii thermal and CCD cameras meet these needs. The Discoverii long-range threat assessment cameras feature long range optics with CCD cameras that are optimized for near-IR laser illumination (beyond 4,000 meters in complete darkness). This combination of high performance cameras, optics, and laser illumination creates a camera system that enables natural contrast video providing critical scene details such as facial features, license plate or vehicle lettering, and the ability to see through glass. Accuracii is a powerful multi-sensor solution with CCD and a day/night thermal camera for mid- to long-range detection and observation. When the cameras are tied to a web-based Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) system, it enables multiple organizations to share views from Vumii cameras.

Vumii Discoverii camera systems leverage the power of directed covert (laser) energy to see  incredible details during the day or in absolute darkness at night using powerful long-range
optics, this enables rapid threat classification and identification for a quick security response to human, vehicle, or vessel threats using evidentiary quality details.

A near-IR laser illuminator uses a covert, continuous-wave, adjustable laser to produce naturalcontrast video in which text can be read, people identified, behavior recognized, and critical scene details observed at more than 4,000 meters away at night and more than 15,000 meters during the day.


With a layered and shared approach to security, Vumii products provide blanketed protection within diverse port environments, enabling better and faster protection and more value for customers. By integrating the visual aspect of the Vumii cameras with radar, Automatic Identification Systems (AIS) for gathering ship data, and other software tools, law enforcement agencies can tell what’s on the water at all times, day or night, even in bad weather.


Therm-App® transforms Android smartphones into powerful, high-resolution thermal cameras.


Available in 9/25 Hz configuration, this revolutionary concept extends human vision by turning smartphones into thermal cameras. It is great news for professionals world wide, whether they are night guards, law enforcement officers, farmers or hunters. Now you can purchase a lightweight, modular, low power device that clips onto your smartphone.

Plug in its USB cable, and your phone turns into a powerful camera that can display thermal images, record them, share them – and run a whole new family of exciting dedicated night vision and thermography applications.

Therm-App® combines the power of a fully functional thermal camera with the mobility, processing power, display capabilities and advanced features provided by smartphones today, and in the future. Through our SDK, we let the crowd decide which Therm-App® applications will be produced, changing our everyday life and making sure there’s always more to see!


Achieving profitable efficiency through process control

Profitable efficiency is profitability control cascaded to process control to maximize operational profitability in real time and improve financial as well as operational efficiency.

Achieving profitable efficiency through process control

Profitability control cascades to process control to maximize operational profitability in real time. While this is a new execution method, its concept is already ingrained in the DNA of process control.

The primary objective of process and logic control is to improve the efficiency of an operation. This has traditionally been measured by determining whether or not throughput has increased while energy and material consumption have decreased.

To improve efficiency, a feedback control loop measures the variables that need to be controlled, determines the variation from the desired set point, and adjusts the variables to move toward the set point.

Since the 1960s, process control has advanced beyond single-loop feedback control. Multi-loop cascade control, feed forward control, and coordinated multiple variable control use dynamic process models to enable sophisticated control strategies.

Real-time control involves making and acting on decisions in a period of time defined by the process being controlled. Decisions being made on human schedules are referred to as management decisions, while decisions made on process schedules are referred to as control decisions.

Traditional control strategies include four basic types: manual and automatic control strategies, and feedback and predictive strategies, which can use automatic or human control. When humans are provided the information they need to make effective real-time control decisions, as well as the tools they require to act on this information and to realize a positive result, they are empowered. An empowered workforce relies on operators being given the tools necessary to effectively serve as controllers.

It was once understood that improvements in efficiency could be translated into improvements in operational profitability. This is no longer the case. Since the early 2000s, the speed of industrial business has increased steadily, triggered by the deregulation of electrical power. As electrical power was deregulated, the supply-to-demand ratio on the grids started to fluctuate. Energy suppliers and grid managers tried to deal with these fluctuations by increasing the price of energy when the demand was high and supply was low and reducing the price of energy when the demand was low and supply was high.The result was while plants might increase their energy consumption, their energy bill could increase in the process.

The frequent fluctuations in electricity prices caused a domino effect across other energy sources and raw materials. To deal with unstable costs, industrial companies started changing the price of their products more frequently. This effect is seen in energy markets, but it also affects consumer production. Today, in an increasingly speedy industrial market, not only must plant managers decide how much to produce, but the operators also must determine the best time to produce, which can sometimes diminish the importance of operational efficiency. That is, it might be more profitable to run the plant less efficiently, according to the traditional efficiency measures, to more cost-effectively meet market demand and opportunity.

Process control for improved operational efficiency no longer had a direct impact on improved operational profitability and new approaches were required to deal with the ever-increasing real-time dynamics of industrial business variables.

The first response was to turn to information technology (IT) departments and enterprise resource planning (ERP) suppliers for solutions. Few, if any, realized the desired results, primarily because the IT teams and ERP software were both experienced in solving traditional management problems, not real-time control problems. The solution involved understanding that, as operational profitability fluctuated more rapidly, management decisions had become control decisions. In other words, the solution had to be approached from the perspective of real-time control.

Real-time control

Real-time control is predicated on the availability of real-time measurements. The first problem to be addressed was measuring operational profitability in real time. Engineers developed a number of engineering-based approaches to solve this problem. New key performance indicators (KPIs) with monetary context were calculated, but they had little credibility with the cost accounting teams who actually measure the performance of the operations because they used different metrics.

The correct approach was found to involve calculating the accounting factors of the operation in real time. This can be done using a combination of sensor-based data from the process and financial data to calculate the cost and profit points across industrial processes. This is referred to as real-time accounting (RTA).

Once these RTA factors became available, they could be used to control operational profitability very dynamically. Providing real-time feedback to operators allows them to determine the financial impact of their actions and empowers them to learn how to operate the process most profitably. The result is manual, real-time profit control. Automated control will be developed as engineers gain more insight into the factors that drive the decisions made by operators.

The next challenge was determining the relationship between traditional process control and real-time profitability control. Operational profitability cannot be manipulated if the efficiency of a plant is not well controlled. There is a very classic control relationship between profitability control and efficiency control. It involves a cascade control strategy with profitability control as the primary loop, with cascading set points to the process control serving as the secondary loops.

Implementing profit control strategies over process control strategies results in a new class of real-time control strategies, referred to as profitable efficiency. Implementing profitable efficiency throughout an industrial operation tends to drive new and improved levels of operational profitability that realize 100% return on investment (ROI) in a very short time. Additionally, making the real-time accounting measures the primary performance indicators of industrial operations ensures their sustainability and often enables continual operational profitability improvements for the life of the plant.

Embedding RTA models throughout the operation enables the measurement of operational profitability for any initiative that impacts the performance of the operations. With these measures, managers can learn how to shift the focus of their resources to activities that add more value.

The field of real-time control is expanding from traditional process and logic control for operational efficiency improvements to other real-time domains, such as operational profitability. As new control strategies are applied to new domains, the performance of industrial operations will improve significantly, to levels never before expected. Profitable efficiency, by ceding profitability control to process control, represents one new approach and allows the user to keep both the process and profits in control.

Peter Martin is vice president, Innovation and Marketing Process Automation at Schneider Electric. This article originally appeared April 2, on the Control Engineering Europe website. Edited by Chris Vavra, production editor, Control Engineering, CFE Media, cvavra@cfemedia.com.

In Response To Robots

For 30-plus years, economists and analysts have exalted the future of robots, praising the productivity gains we can expect (and the resulting increase in our standard of living) derived from making goods faster, better and cheaper.

Macroeconomic research finds that industrial robots have been a substantial driver of labor productivity and economic growth without putting jobs at risk.

Of late, though, I’ve witnessed growing concern that artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and industrial automation will result in the loss of jobs.

While it’s true that these technologies will modernize highly repetitive tasks (just as computers and tools like Excel spreadsheets made it unnecessary to do computations with pencil and paper) it’s important to remember that making an employee twice as productive does not result in eliminating half of the jobs.

Conversations with other experts and participation in global think tanks confirms for me that the jobs created as a result of deploying these technologies will create a net gain in the market through more jobs (and generally more rewarding and better paying jobs).

In Defense Of Robots

We haven’t seen jobs negatively affected by automation the way some pundits feared they would be. Automation and advanced technology will actually help to ensure employment (and increase good paying jobs) as manufacturers become more productive and successful and look to hire more people who have skills in advanced manufacturing.

What has changed is the types of jobs manufacturers need to fill. A shift is occurring around jobs that are repeatable with tasks that can (and should) be automated. It’s the technological advances in automation that will provide manufactures with new sets of tools to optimize their operations.

This will create not just opportunities for people to develop new AI and machine learning algorithms, but many times more jobs applying the tools and analyzing the results.

The introduction of electronic computers eliminated the job of a human computer, but created many more jobs for developers, programmers and analysts.  AI and machine learning will do the same, and if you have tried to hire a data analyst recently, I think you will agree with me that the trend is growing.

Automation and innovation go together. Programming a robot how to do something is relatively simple; mapping an entire operation remains something only humans can do.

Automation and advanced technology will actually help to ensure employment (and increase good paying jobs) as manufacturers become more productive and successful and look to hire more people who have skills in advanced manufacturing.

Addressing the Skills Gap Through Automation

Nearly 3.5 million manufacturing jobs will need to be filled over the next decade. The skills gap is expected to leave 2 million of those jobs unfilled.

If you’re looking at the number of jobs available – we will have more openings that people to fill them.

So why is there such a disconnect between the reality of the job market and the need for robotics and advanced manufacturing skills?

One basic behavior of economics tells us that people value the things they could lose more than the things they might gain. People are associating losing jobs with changing jobs.

With AI, augmented reality, machine learning and other advancements, people are unclear about what manufacturing jobs might look like in the future – or their role next to robots.

Emotions Versus Reality

Emotionally, productivity is hard to grasp; losing jobs to robots is not. But I return to this reality: In the next few years we’ll have millions more jobs than people to fill them.

There’s two ways to address the shortage: One, through programs like the Academy of Advanced Manufacturing(AAM), which upskills military veterans for advanced manufacturing roles.

The other is to prioritize the need to adapt skills that enable everyone to work effectively with the latest technological advances.

Advocating Education

This approach is supported by a recent report from the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), a nonpartisan research and educational institute focusing on the intersection of technological innovation and public policy. The report advocates education as a response to automation, suggesting that AI-based technologies ultimately enhance workplace productivity

The recommendation: Do not slow technology developments to protect employees, but instead help those workers adapt with new skills.

There’s no need to fear the robots. The full adoption of a powerful technology already can take a generation or more. Rather than slow down, we need to accelerate innovation through automation.

Technology has and continues to raise the standard of living, and now it’s improving job opportunities for employees interested in new manufacturing jobs.