At the Emerson Exchange Americas Virtual Series, Emerson’s Shen Zhang and James Thompson shared an update on Ovation Digital Twin technology. Here is their presentation abstract:
This session will provide an introduction to Ovation embedded simulation then step through what’s needed to develop a plant-specific simulator. An overview of new advanced models and simulation tools will also be provided.
James opened describing simulation for training simulators for the operations staff and developing & optimizing plant operating procedures. Also, simulation is used in engineering simulators for evaluating process equipment and control changes, validating process design, troubleshooting and analyzing root causes, optimizing plant operation and justifying ROI analysis.
James showed the architecture of actual plant control versus simulation.
Ovation Digital Twin technology with embedded Ovation-based models includes a large library of high-fidelity algorithms based on first principles, process models created with standard Ovation application tools, flow-network solver embedded in virtual environment and management & model updates performed in the Ovation environment.
The simulator can be hardware-based or virtualized based on VMWare virtual machines. These virtual systems can be single or multi-network architectures.
The high-fidelity simulation library includes a base suite of sensors, boundaries, transport, etc. Other suites include electrical, IC engine, turbine, flue-gas desulfurization (FGD), selective catalytic reduction (SCR), combined cycle, boiler and balance of plant. At present there are 196 unique models in 9 suites which adhere to ANSI/ISA 77.20—Fossil Fuel Power Plant Simulators: Functional Requirements.
James discussed various levels of model fidelity including tie-back, simplified models, empirical models and physical models.
Shen discussed the future of digital twin technology in the Ovation system. Maintenance today is required because the plant is always changing. Most systems require at least one maintenance event per year. This maintenance should be considered as value added engineering and not sunk costs.
Maintenance is focused in process optimization, controls optimization and operator training. The utilization of digital twin technology is a combination of asset reliability, simulation fidelity and operational availability.
The future of this technology is to continue to minimize maintenance activities while maximizing utilization. Maintenance is minimized through reducing the separation between the control room and digital twin room responsibility, increasing the robustness of the engineering tools, and integrating digital twin technology in the Ovation services portfolio to redefine maintenance.
Utilization can be maximized through ensuring assets are always available, expediting plant updates for the highest simulation fidelity, and encouraging digital transformation in control rooms. Technologies to help achieve these objectives include cloud-based digital twins, integrated simulation and a live digital twin.
The live digital twin has direct access to the live plant Ovation distributed control system by leveraging embedded simulation. The enables improved utilization of asset, fidelity and operations.
Visit the Power Plant Simulator section on Emerson.com for more on how digital twin simulation technology can improve operations through development, testing, and training.
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