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SEP-OCT 2018

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32 INTECH SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2018 WWW.ISA.ORG SYSTEM INTEGRATION recently, Bass led the wireless business de- velopment team with a focus on growing the Plantweb digital ecosystem. Current ly, he is responsible for leading product management for wireless and manages the Plantweb pervasive sensing applica- tion portfolio. Bass has a BS in mechanical engineering from Iowa State University and an MBA from The University of Iowa. View the online version at www.isa.org/intech/20181004. sight into what is happening with the process, the same applies to produc- tion assets. Steam traps are just one example. There are now many sensors and analysis tools available to use with a range of plant assets, such as pumps, heat exchangers, and pressure relief valves. When data is available, mainte- nance departments can find new ways to develop better predictive main - tenance programs to treat problems sooner, or before they even fully sur- face. This saves maintenance costs, but more importantly reduces losses from unscheduled shutdowns, and of ten prevents serious incidents. n ABOUT THE AUTHOR Tom Bass (www.linkedin.com/in/tom- bass-91241414) is the wireless product management director at Emerson Au- tomation Solutions in Shakopee, Minn. Bass started at Emerson in 2004, hold- ing many roles within the valve business before moving to wireless in 2016. Most other. The software can estimate lost energy and resulting costs at any time. Maintenance can see at a glance which steam traps need attention, so they can plan activities appropriately and can predict and deal with small problems before they become serious issues. Naturally the data may need some interpretation. For example, a steam trap reported as cold could be mal - functioning, or it could be cold because the equipment only operates intermit- tently and may simply be shut off. On the other hand, a steam trap attached to a process that runs continuously or at least regularly should develop char- acteristic discharge patterns. If these change, such as from a sudden increase in condensate volume, there may be some other cause for a deviation from the normal process operation. Predictive maintenance can take many forms and provide many types of information. Just as measuring and watching process variables gives in- Figure 4. A dashboard supported by analytical software can capture and display performance and condition information for steam traps throughout a facility, enabling a predictive maintenance program. RESOURCES "Natural Soda uses wireless technol - ogy to monitor mining operations" www.isa.org/intech/20170401 "Savings as a service cuts operating expenses with no CapEx investment required" www.isa.org/intech/201704web "Industrial Internet of Things in safety applications" www.isa.org/intech/201804web

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