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Petro-CyberWorks Information Technology Company Limited (PCITC), a joint venture of Sinopec Group and Pacific Century CyberWorks Limited (PCCW), is the contractor for building these pilot projects. PCITC chose Huawei to help make these smart refineries a reality.
Big Data and machine learning technologies help implement smart refineries by supporting dynamic adjustments of the crude oil and catalysts to streamline the chemical reactions. The goal is to optimize productivity at the lowest energy consumption without compromising the quality of the refinery products.
In addition to enhancing the production capabilities of the refineries, Sinopec wanted to upgrade communications, reduce O&M costs, and reduce the risks of unplanned downtime.
To support Sinopec Group’s smart refinery initiatives, Huawei joined with PCITC to provide real-time communications and computing capabilities as well as architecture-wide security capabilities. For example, Sinopec Jiujiang Company deployed Huawei’s eLTE Broadband Trunking Solution to meet the company’s need for a larger communications capacity and a multimedia trunking dispatch system. This solution allows personnel to communicate by voice and video using a private radio system that required no wiring infrastructure investment.
Sinopec Jiujiang Company also chose Huawei’s OceanStor high-end storage system to ensure stable operation of core business systems such as O&M and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). This storage system has a future-proof design that supports data center resource consolidation and future service migration to the cloud, which were previously impossible due to the legacy storage systems’ limited scalability. The OceanStor system also enabled Sinopec Jiujiang Company to build a unified Office Automation (OA) platform for email, office applications, and portal subsystems, with all data stored centrally.
To support better communication between employees, Sinopec Jiujiang Company uses Huawei’s TE30 All-in-One HD Videoconferencing Endpoint system. This system combines a camera, microphone, and HD codec into one compact device that is easy to install and begin using. Intelligent voice dialing lets users join a conference by simply saying the conference’s name. At Sinopec Jiujiang Company, the system helps with video-assisted shift handovers as well as other internal and external communications.
The company also installed Huawei’s IoT-based smart warehouse technology and a process-optimization platform. These implementations are the first of their kind in refineries.
While the factories previously applied production optimization to a few processes in offline mode, optimization has now been extended to all processes and runs in online (in-service) mode. The real-time models for running equipment help implement predictive maintenance, reduce O&M costs, and mitigate the risks of unplanned downtime. These changes have improved productivity and contributed to better overall quality.
In April 2017, PCITC and Huawei announced a jointly developed smart manufacturing platform, which will serve as the core of a Smart Factory 2.0 implementation in the Sinopec Group. This platform has eight major capabilities:
Centralized integration: The platform consolidates smart factory data, enables centralized management and control of data assets, and allows effective integration with application systems.
IoT access: The platform provides the converged communications services necessary for smart factories and supports a wide range of service applications, such as warehouse management, hazardous chemical tracking, equipment vibration and corrosion monitoring, and environmental monitoring.
IT management and control: The platform implements cloud, security, and O&M management, as well as unified development.
Optimization: Optimization tools help streamline the entire production process, facilitate device operations, and improve energy efficiency.
Shared services: The platform centrally manages and controls business and technology service components, and provides shared cloud services.
Data processing and analysis: Big Data technology enables production exception analysis, equipment fault diagnosis, and product quality analysis.
Artificial Intelligence (AI): An AI capability helps instantiate rules, models, and knowledge to create an intelligent management information source for petrochemical plants.