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Case Study:

Optimizing Pump System Efficiency With PIPE-FLO

As part of the 12th International Conference on Energy Efficiency in Motor Driven Systems, our team set out to prove the benefit of digital twin technology – a virtual simulation that mirrors physical systems. We used real-world examples to show how digital twin solutions can help manufacturers better analyze and improve their fluid handling systems.

The manufacturing example studied by our team was based on a real-world pulp and paper mill located in North America. This manufacturer recently implemented a machine upgrade designed to increase the production output of their plant. However, this new upgrade created a dilemma for their team when it came to efficiencies, downtime, and how to alter their system to meet new conditions.

The challenge

The manufacturer used as an example in this study faced occasional service outages and service disruptions — leading to reduced production. To prevent further costs and disruption during this extended maintenance time, their engineers identified a need for a remote storage tank for process fluid storage.

However, while this remote storage tank delayed a full production line shutdown, their team now needed to make sure their system could maintain maximum flow while transporting fluid to and from the added tank. This meant analyzing their system as a whole to understand current performance and assessing potential upgrades that could help them reach their goal.

The solution

Using a digital twin system, specifically PIPE-FLO from Revalize, our team ran a series of model scenarios to determine what changes could be made to improve the total weighted efficiency (TWE) and energy costs of the example manufacturer’s system. These scenarios used the same variables and evaluated both existing and new conditions.

From there we performed the following actions:
These scenarios tested the introduction of a new motor with variable frequency drive, a new stock pump, a new booster pump, and a new variable speed pump with a booster pump to see which would produce the best results.

The results

After running a series of tests, we made the following discoveries:
After considering this result and the results of the other scenarios, the customer project team chose to install a new motor with variable frequency onto the existing baseline system. This scenario met all requirements while having the lowest anticipated capital costs for components, installation, and downtime.

The takeaways

Our team learned that optimizing fluid handling systems is significantly easier using a proven digital twin modeling system like PIPE-FLO.

Digital twin systems allow manufacturers to use real-time data and updated regulations to analyze, improve, and modify their systems without having to invest capital into installation and operation. Using a digital twin, this operation was able to compare efficiency benefits, part costs, and variable conditions to discover their most efficient setup without unnecessary costs that come from outdated methods.

We invite you to explore the transformative potential of PIPE-FLO in your operations. As illustrated through this case study, PIPE-FLO not only enhances system performance but also ensures adaptability and resilience in a rapidly changing industrial landscape, securing your competitive edge.

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