Increase production and cut costs with ECS/ProcessExpert® advanced process control software
An intelligent control solution for the cement and mining industries
With decades of experience supporting the cement and mining industries, we know how much of a drain high energy and maintenance costs can be on your business. We also understand that the competitive landscape means you are constantly looking for ways to increase production and get an edge over your competition. Our ECS/ProcessExpert software was specifically designed with these needs in mind.
Designed for the cement and mining industries
In both the cement and mining industries, there is a push to do more with less. For cement manufacturers operating in highly competitive markets, it is vital that your business operates as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible. And for mining operations, increasingly complex mineralogy, combined with remote locations and a global scarcity of experienced, qualified staff, makes cost control more important than ever.
The software is also designed to be applied to a wide range of equipment, including kilns, ball mills and vertical roller mills, as well as grinding and flotation circuits. So, whatever your advanced process control needs, the ECS/ProcessExpert platform offers a solution.
The ultimate assistant
The purpose of the ECS/ProcessExpert solution is to optimise your plant to achieve maximum efficiency and higher profitability. In many ways, it’s the ultimate assistant. Able to adjust your process far more frequently and accurately than can be achieved by manual intervention, it better manages and corrects process disruption to minimise wear and reduce energy consumption.
The ECS/ProcessExpert software is part of FLSmidth ENABLR, our portfolio of digital solutions that connect, monitor and optimise the performance of your assets.
Improve your bottom line
We’ve built the ECS/ProcessExpert solution to help increase your productivity by reducing costs and lifting output. Our software will quickly have you producing more with less.
- Cut energy costs
- Our ECS/ProcessExpert solution aims to reduce energy usage by around 6%, while improving productivity by a similar amount. And some customers have reported significantly higher gains, sometimes in the double digits. So, you’ll be saving money on energy without crimping output.
- Increase production
- You’ll be able to increase production by ensuring your plant is operating efficiently. Higher production and lower costs will quickly have you on the path to greater productivity.
- Reduced downtime, equipment wear and maintenance costs
- Running your plant under less-than-optimum conditions will take a toll on your equipment, reducing the life of assets and potentially resulting in costly downtime. ECS/ProcessExpert software reduces wear on your assets by ensuring your operations are running efficiently.
Driving sustainable productivity with ECS/ProcessExpert software and MissionZero
Improving energy efficiency not only lowers operating costs. By reducing the amount of electricity and fuels used, it also helps to reduce the environmental impact of your operations. Intelligent process control solutions, such as the ECS/ProcessExpert platform, stabilise and optimise your processes, enabling you to achieve up to 100% alternative fuels, reduce emissions by up to 5% and increase production up to 6% – whilst maintaining product quality.
This directly aligns with and supports our MissionZero ambitions to operate zero-emissions cement plants and manage zero-emissions mining processes by 2030.
Developed by process experts and equipment engineers
Our ECS/ProcessExpert solution is packed with features to lift the performance of your operations. With our software, you can be confident that your plant and equipment are working to their best capacity, no matter what the conditions. And you’ll have the support of our remote team of experts to make sure our system is working as you need it to.
- Immediately respond to changes
- We’ve designed the ECS/ProcessExpert software to constantly monitor conditions inside your kiln, crusher or mill. When conditions change, it responds to ensure that your plant and equipment are operating as smoothly as possible.
- Optimisation and process disruption control
- Our software initially operates in a normal control mode to stabilise equipment, using a range of calculated KPIs. Once stability has been achieved, it starts to work on optimising control to make sure your plant is working as closely as possible to the specified performance limits. And, in the event of process disruption, our software quickly adjusts conditions to ensure a smooth and speedy recovery.
- Mill ramp-up
- The ECS/ProcessExpert software can optimise ramp-up of grinding circuits, ensuring that nominal production is achieved more quickly and with less process variability. The operator starts the mill following normal procedures. Once the machines are running, our software is turned on to control ramp-up of the mill to nominal production levels, and to then continue optimising it.
- Target adaptation
- The ECS/ProcessExpert software constantly adapts the operational targets, ensuring that maximum production and minimum energy and fuel consumption are achieved.
- Remote monitoring
- When you purchase our ECS/ProcessExpert solution, you’ll also have the ongoing support of our remote monitoring services team. Our technical experts are available to help troubleshoot and tune the system remotely to improve its performance and ensure its longevity.
A platform that combines process control and AI technologies
The ECS/ProcessExpert platform includes several advanced and intelligent process control technologies. It combines well-known control techniques, such as model predictive control (MPC), with symbolic and non-symbolic AI technologies based on machine learning and deep learning algorithms. The end goal? A system that is best able to solve problems related to the control and optimisation of the cement and mining processes.
- Process modelling
A key requirement for achieving good control and optimisation of industrial processes is the ability to generate accurate mathematical models of the processes. Finding a good model may require some time, however. The ECS/ProcessExpert solution overcomes this challenge with a process identification tool that helps find the model’s correlating process variables and actuators.
Model predictive control (MPC) is an advanced optimisation method of process control that is used to drive a process, while satisfying a set of constraints. It uses a mathematical model of the process to predict near-future behaviour. It then uses these predictions to plan actions to reach the desired targets.
- Decision trees
Another key component of an intelligent process control solution is the ability to inform operators of the process status and to explain to them why the system is making the decisions that it is. Our ECS/ProcessExpert solution does this using decision trees. These highlight the decisions that the system is making and allow operators to see the reasoning behind them.
- Symbolic AI
- The ECS/ProcessExpert solution incorporates symbolic AI technologies, in the form of expert systems and fuzzy logic. These technologies are focused on high-level ’symbolic’ (i.e. human readable) representation of problems, logic and search.
- Non-Symbolic AI
- Our ECS/ProcessExpert solution also incorporates the ability to compute non-symbolic AI technologies in the form of machine learning and deep learning algorithms. These technologies take and analyse raw data from the machine to construct their own understanding of the process. Predictive modelling and time-series forecasting are applications of non-symbolic AI.
- AI collaboration platform
The PXP Data module allows your data scientists or AI engineers to integrate any machine learning or deep learning algorithm that they have developed and trained using their preferred frameworks into ECS/ProcessExpert’s applications and control strategies. This helps to close the gap between our automation and process control engineers and your skilled teams to build AI solutions and place them seamlessly into service.
The PXP Insights analytics module automatically calculates the operational, quality and environmental benefits of using the ECS/ProcessExpert solution. It then converts these into meaningful KPIs that can be visualised using pre-defined dashboards.
- PXP Advisory Mode
In cases where human operators are managing process commands, our ECS/ProcessExpert solution includes a PXP Advisory Mode to recommend actions to the operators. To reach higher levels of optimisation, it is however advisable to close the control loops and let our software drive the processes to their full potential.