One company consistently sending news is ABB. PR on the process side has moved to Europe, but robotic and related PR is still handled locally. I find it interesting that the major European suppliers have moved marketing out of the US, while some US-based suppliers have just pulled back. Not sure what they know about US manufacturing that I should know.
Technology additions to Ethernet have become interesting. They’ve existed a while, but products and momentum are growing. One is 2-wire Ethernet; but this news relates to power over Ethernet. ABB has released a flowmeter. The other news relates to a hot topic—electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturing. This will remain a focus for quite some time.
ABB launches world’s first Power over Ethernet flowmeters
ABB has incorporated power supply through Ethernet connectivity on board the latest edition of its electromagnetic flowmeter ProcessMaster* and mass flowmeter CoriolisMaster, opening a new chapter in instrumentation and industrial communication.
Power over Ethernet (PoE) offers several benefits for process engineers, as it omits the need for a separate DC power infrastructure, providing power and communications via the same cable. This brings new agility as flowmeters can be installed wherever needed. In addition, ABB 4-wire Ethernet combines classic outputs with future communication protocols. Offering a modular design allows the combination of both worlds and ensures that devices are futureproof, increasing the longevity of the flowmeters.
Furthermore, flowmeters with Ethernet connectivity increase simplicity, flexibility and reliability to operations in process automation, while enhancing real-time visibility of data. Previously hidden data in field devices, such as measurement values on density, conductivity or concentration of the medium, can be unlocked. This in turn will help customers across all industries identify redundant measurement points in their plants to achieve savings along the way.
“ProcessMaster and CoriolisMaster with Ethernet will support our customers’ digital journey towards smart cities and Industry 4.0. Ethernet is the leading communications technology. By incorporating it into the ABB flowmeters, we can help even more customers reduce complexity of operations and lower costs of infrastructure in more plants around the world – safely and remotely.” said Frank Frenzel, Global Product Line Manager Process Flowmeters.
An integrated secure webserver based on the ABB Ability Cyber Security framework ensures robust and secure operations that offer instrumentation engineers support during commissioning and troubleshooting. It also provides access to configuration, diagnostics and measurement data through a built-in QR code. This allows verification of all parts of the flowmeter and provides insights into its operating condition with automatically generated reports.
Combining 4-20 mA or digital outputs with new 1- or 2-port Ethernet makes classic instrumentation truly future-proof, with speeds of up to 100Mbit/s. The flowmeters use various Ethernet based communication protocols, such as simple Modbus TCP or high performance EtherNet/IP. This prepares them for IT/OT convergence, cloud connectivity and the requirements needed for secure and encrypted communication both today and tomorrow.
*Ethernet connectivity for the electromagnetic flowmeter ProcessMaster is currently available in North America only. It will be released globally later in 2021.
Global EV battery production needs significant boost to meet demand
According to the ‘Electric Vehicle Battery Supply Chain Analysis,’ sponsored by ABB Robotics and authored by the automotive intelligence unit of Ultima Media, while 2036 is the changeover year when all-electric passenger vehicles are predicted to overtake sales of ICE-equipped equivalents, concerns over EV battery supply to meet the escalation in demand poses serious risk to the growth of electricity as a clean propulsion fuel, despite plans for 80 new global battery gigafactories.
The report outlines that although Asia leads electric vehicle battery production, Europe will make up vital ground over the next few years while US manufacturers are also planning increases in capacity.
“Automation is key to increasing assembly safety, quality and traceability and delivering battery technologies cost effectively, which is critical to the expansion of electric vehicles.” said Tanja Vainio, Managing Director of ABB Robotics Auto Tier 1 Business Line. “With production speed and flexibility essential to the successful scale-up of the EV battery industry, our cellular production architecture enables manufacturers to quickly validate a cell design and then roll out production cells globally with uniform quality, safety and productivity standards. Roll-outs can be scaled to demand with the flexibility to adjust capacity in real time.”
The report’s researchers point to the importance of battery pack assembly being located close to or within car assembly facilities.
“Co-locating battery pack assembly not only boosts sustainability by reducing transportation, it increases flexibility. A cellular approach to production is easily integrated alongside existing lines. If the demand curve moves, cells can be added or removed quickly to maintain accurate production scale. Our robots are designed to be quickly repurposed as needed, boosting flexibility and adding to our sustainable approach by maximizing the life of each robot we build,” added Vainio.
“We believe that building a robust battery supply chain will create a distinct competitive advantage for OEMs, setting a trend towards maximum production flexibility, whether battery pack production is insourced or outsourced, to further reduce costs and boost productivity,” Vainio added.
The high price of EVs will increasingly create a barrier to further market penetration, reducing vehicle cost has therefore become a whole-industry focus. Given that the battery represents up to a third of vehicle costs, ABB is focused on solutions that improve battery manufacturing productivity.
“Increasingly we see that higher productivity and lower costs are driven by assembling battery cells straight into packs,” concludes Vainio. “ABB is working in partnership with a number of manufacturers, using its systems and knowledge to increase productivity, quality and safety levels, as well as reduce finished pack costs through automated assembly – vital if EVs are to meet their required cost and adoption targets.”
The ‘Electric Vehicle Battery Supply Chain Analysis’ examines the current and future state of EV battery supplies – sources of materials, technologies available, demand analysis and potential risks.
The report is available to download from here
Just received this news from Nottingham University about a breakthrough sensing technology. Its immediate application is detecting at the cell level in a patient. However, there are potential applications for precision manufacturing. What do you think you could do with it?
Scientists at the University of Nottingham have developed an ultrasonic imaging system, which can be deployed on the tip of a hair-thin optical fibre, and will be insertable into the human body to visualise cell abnormalities in 3D.
The new technology produces microscopic and nanoscopic resolution images that will one day help clinicians to examine cells inhabiting hard-to-reach parts of the body, such as the gastrointestinal tract, and offer more effective diagnoses for diseases ranging from gastric cancer to bacterial meningitis.
The high level of performance the technology delivers is currently only possible in state-of-the-art research labs with large, scientific instruments – whereas this compact system has the potential to bring it into clinical settings to improve patient care.
The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)-funded innovation also reduces the need for conventional fluorescent labels – chemicals used to examine cell biology under a microscope – which can be harmful to human cells in large doses.
The findings are being reported in a new paper, entitled ‘Phonon imaging in 3D with a fibre probe’ published in the Nature journal, Light: Science & Applications.
Paper author, Dr Salvatore La Cavera III, an EPSRC Doctoral Prize Fellow from the University of Nottingham Optics and Photonics Research Group, said of the ultrasonic imaging system: “We believe its ability to measure the stiffness of a specimen, its bio-compatibility, and its endoscopic-potential, all while accessing the nanoscale, are what set it apart. These features set the technology up for future measurements inside the body; towards the ultimate goal of minimally invasive point-of-care diagnostics.”
Currently at prototype stage, the non-invasive imaging tool, described by the researchers as a “phonon probe”, is capable of being inserted into a standard optical endoscope, which is a thin tube with a powerful light and camera at the end that is navigated into the body to find, analyse, and operate on cancerous lesions, among many other diseases. Combining optical and phonon technologies could be advantageous; speeding up the clinical workflow process and reducing the number of invasive test procedures for patients.
3D mapping capabilities
Just as a physician might conduct a physical examination to feel for abnormal ‘stiffness’ in tissue under the skin that could indicate tumours, the phonon probe will take this ‘3D mapping’ concept to a cellular level.
By scanning the ultrasonic probe in space, it can reproduce a three-dimensional map of stiffness and spatial features of microscopic structures at, and below, the surface of a specimen (e.g. tissue); it does this with the power to image small objects like a large-scale microscope, and the contrast to differentiate objects like an ultrasonic probe.
“Techniques capable of measuring if a tumour cell is stiff have been realised with laboratory microscopes, but these powerful tools are cumbersome, immobile, and unadaptable to patient-facing clinical settings. Nanoscale ultrasonic technology in an endoscopic capacity is poised to make that leap,” adds Dr La Cavera.
How it works
The new ultrasonic imaging system uses two lasers that emit short pulses of energy to stimulate and detect vibrations in a specimen. One of the laser pulses is absorbed by a layer of metal – a nano-transducer (which works by converting energy from one form to another) – fabricated on the tip of the fibre; a process which results in high-frequency phonons (sound particles) getting pumped into the specimen. Then a second laser pulse collides with the sound waves, a process known as Brillouin scattering. By detecting these “collided” laser pulses, the shape of the travelling sound wave can be recreated and displayed visually.
The detected sound wave encodes information about the stiffness of a material, and even its geometry. The Nottingham team was the first to demonstrate this dual-capability using pulsed lasers and optical fibres.
The power of an imaging device is typically measured by the smallest object that can be seen by the system, i.e. the resolution. In two dimensions the phonon probe can “resolve” objects on the order of 1 micrometre, similar to a microscope; but in the third dimension (height) it provides measurements on the scale of nanometres, which is unprecedented for a fibre-optic imaging system.
In the paper, the researchers demonstrate that the technology is compatible with both a single optical fibre and the 10-20,000 fibres of an imaging bundle (1mm in diameter), as used in conventional endoscopes.
Consequently, superior spatial resolution and wide fields of view could routinely be achieved by collecting stiffness and spatial information from multiple different points on a sample, without needing to move the device – bringing a new class of phonon endoscopes within reach.
Beyond clinical healthcare, fields such as precision manufacturing and metrology could use this high-resolution tool for surface inspections and material characterisation; a complementary or replacement measurement for existing scientific instruments. Burgeoning technologies such as 3D bio-printing and tissue engineering could also use the phonon probe as an inline inspection tool by integrating it directly to the outer diameter of the print-needle.Next, the team will be developing a series of biological cell and tissue imaging applications in collaboration with the Nottingham Digestive Diseases Centre and the Institute of Biophysics, Imaging and Optical Science at the University of Nottingham; with the aim to create a viable clinical tool in the coming years.
ABB has moved its media relations, at least the people working with me, to England. Two other major European industrial technology providers also have moved marketing and media relations from the US to England. I have no idea whether this is a statement about the state of the US market or the state of their cost structure. Maybe both.
ABB changed CEOs several years ago and just changed again. These precipitated changes in corporate emphases—divesting several large businesses and adding others. The variety in these three announcements certainly reflects the new diversity of the corporate portfolio.
ABB drone-based leak detection and greenhouse gas measuring system
HoverGuard can help operators of USA’s three million miles of pipeline infrastructure to increase their safety and environmental capabilities in line with the USA 2020 PIPES Act.
According to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), the majority of gas shipments in the US take place using the millions of miles of the nation’s pipeline infrastructure. On December 27, 2020, the Protecting Our Infrastructure of Pipelines and Enhancing Safety (PIPES) Act was signed into law in the United States. The Act directs gas pipeline operators to use advanced leak detection technologies to protect the environment and pipeline safety.
Detection of odorless and invisible gas leaks can be challenging and expensive. ABB’s latest addition to its ABB Ability Mobile Gas Leak Detection System, HoverGuard, provides the solution by finding leaks faster and more reliably than ever before.
HoverGuard is an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV)-based system that detects, quantifies and maps leaks up to 300 ft from natural gas distribution and transmission pipelines, gathering lines, storage facilities, and other potential sources quickly, safely and reliably. It automatically generates comprehensive digital reports that summarize results and can be shared in minutes after a survey.
The cloud-connected, multi-gas solution is also the first of its kind to quantify the three most important greenhouse gases methane, carbon dioxide and water vapor continuously while flying. Each greenhouse gas affects the environment differently and is present in the air in different amounts. Sourcing individual gases also provides important information to scientists and researchers when studying the complex environmental processes affecting climate and pollution.
Patented cavity enhanced laser absorption spectroscopy detects methane with a sensitivity more than 1,000 times higher than conventional leak detection tools. This sensitivity and speed allow HoverGuard to detect leaks while flying at altitudes of 130 ft, or higher, and at speeds greater than 55 mph. It can cover 10-15 times more land area per minute by operating on low-cost commercial UAV capable of carrying a payload of 6.6 lbs.
ABB calls for more collaboration with OEMs
ABB has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Hitachi Construction Machinery to share their expertise and collaborate in bringing solutions to market that will reduce the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with heavy machinery in mining.
The companies will explore possibilities to apply ABB’s electrification, automation, and digital solutions to mining trucks and excavators provided by Hitachi Construction Machinery as part of wider efforts with mine operators to electrify all processes from pit to port. Original equipment manufacturer (OEM) Hitachi Construction Machinery also brings expertise in driverless operation and labor-saving technologies. The aim of the combined solutions is to enhance the efficiency and flexibility of customer businesses, contributing to the reduction of CO₂ and the realization of a sustainable society.
The collaboration with Hitachi Construction Machinery is one of many that ABB are looking to develop with OEMs to accelerate the transition to all-electric mines.
“ABB is calling for more collaboration between OEMs and technology companies to fast-track the development of new emissions-reducing systems with electrification and automation of the whole mining operation the goal. We are ready to work more with OEMs to establish a common approach for the market, and through strategic collaboration provide solutions that can help enable a low-carbon society and make mining operations more responsible,” said Joachim Braun, Division President, Process Industries, ABB. “New emissions-reducing technologies can transform the energy-intensive mining industry to achieve an even more productive, but also sustainable future.”
“Today, the challenge of our customers is on electrification of trucks and the time to change is now. But nobody can achieve this transformation alone. Co-creation of solutions with OEMs and mining companies is needed to successfully integrate electrification in mines.” said Max Luedtke, ABB’s Global Head of Mining.
ABB Ability Performance Optimization Service for cold rolling mills
ABB has launched its new ABB Ability Performance Optimization Service for cold rolling mills, offering steel, aluminum, and other metals manufacturers opportunities to reach new levels of operational performance through technology, boosting their processes and profitability.
The new service – part of ABB’s metals digital portfolio and Collaborative Operations for Metals suite – combines continuous performance monitoring using ABB Ability Data Analytics for cold rolling mills, with real time support from ABB experts. ABB will work alongside customers with the vision of continuing to transform the metals industry.
The data analytics component uses process-specific algorithms based on a century of metals domain expertise to collect high frequency data from mill control systems and discover trends, benchmarks and other performance factors, sending alerts to operators and maintenance when opportunities to optimize performance are identified.
Alongside this, ABB experts are available to provide onsite or offsite support, recommending actions to ensure the mill maintains its performance targets against key performance indicators (KPIs) for productivity, quality and yield. Leveraging the collective strengths of metals producers and ABB experts, access to dashboards is shared, enabling all parties to drill down to individual coil level.
In addition, ABB experts can provide customers with detailed reports at regular intervals describing areas for improvement, identified trends, or problem areas found in historical data, allowing for continuous improvement over time.
Key benefits include continuous collaboration and access to experts; increased productivity through improved asset performance and reduced downtime; higher yield and quality resulting from immediate corrective action when problems occur; reduced risk of equipment failure; the ability to leverage insights across the enterprise and reductions in wastage, energy and other costs.
I’ve recently heard about millimeter waves in relation to 5G cellular. Here is a different use from a company I just heard about. What’s it been, 10 or 15 years ago, when RFID was all the rage for logistics. Wal-mart was going to require it on packages. Journalists wrote about it like it was the neatest thing since sliced bread—when I kept reminding them it was old technology, even then, One problem was that you couldn’t scan a whole pallet of boxes down to the individual item. I have not seen this in operation, but it sounds like a step in the right direction.
ThruWave, the pioneer of 3D millimeter wave (mmWave) imaging for logistics and supply chain automation, welcomes Pieter Krynauw as Chief Executive Officer effective March 1, 2021. Krynauw joins ThruWave from Honeywell where he served in multiple roles in the US, China and the Middle East in the Performance Material & Technologies (PMT) and Safety & Productivity Solutions (SPS) groups. Most recently he served as President of Honeywell Intelligrated, a world leader in supply chain automation.
Unlike existing X-ray inspection systems, ThruWave’s sensors use human-safe millimeter waves to enable safe operation alongside human workers in busy warehouses and fulfillment centers and beyond. ThruWave’s analytics layer automatically interprets images to identify objects, measure cube utilization, count items, and detect missing or damaged items, all at high speed. ThruWave systems can automatically image and analyze up to 20,000 boxes or totes per hour.
“Consumer expectations are constantly changing, resulting in increasing pressure on supply chains and business operations. Over a career of nearly twenty years spanning multiple industries, I’ve seen and felt the challenges this creates for our customers and the role technology can play to lead the way in solving problems in a new and better way. ThruWave’s outstanding team is developing innovative products that solve key challenges for critical infrastructure security and supply chain visibility,” said Krynauw. “I look forward to leading the team as our solutions deliver compelling value for customers seeking unprecedented visibility and efficiency in their operations. Today, ThruWave lets our customers see through physical barriers, to the items inside, enabling the measurement of cube utilization, item counts and anomaly detection, all without opening sealed packages. Tomorrow, this level of perception will yield a new way for machines to see the world and help people make decisions ultimately reducing operating costs, improving safety and security as well as reducing carbon footprint.”
“We look forward to Pieter’s leadership and experience across multiple verticals in sensing and automation, as ThruWave delivers our ground-breaking 3D millimeter wave (mmWave) sensing and analytics solutions”, said ThruWave founder and Chief Scientist Matt Reynolds, adding “Pieter brings an outstanding global business perspective to ThruWave, and his leadership of high-growth, customer success-focused technology organizations will be an incredible asset as we serve our global customer base.”
Calvin Chin, Director and Managing Partner of ThruWave’s lead investor E14 Fund added, “Pieter shares our vision for ThruWave as he’s been on the front lines of serving the world’s largest and most demanding customers. ThruWave is transforming the way supply chain decisions are made by replacing sampling and guesswork with actionable intelligence that customers just could not get before. This will be another exciting chapter in ThruWave’s deployment of innovative supply chain solutions that enable customers to maximize accuracy and efficiency while minimizing their environmental impact and carbon footprint.”
Based in Seattle, Washington, ThruWave makes the invisible visible with human-safe, 3D millimeter wave imaging. ThruWave sensors and software analytics are an easy retrofit for existing conveyor and robotic material handling systems, enabling supply chain and logistics customers to measure and improve their inbound and outbound item handling.
About E14 Fund
E14 Fund is the early-stage venture capital firm for the MIT Media Lab community. E14 Fund invests in deep tech startups that are transforming traditional industries across a broad array of market-ready, scalable innovation such as sensors, AI/ML, robotics, health, synthetic biology and more. Officially affiliated with MIT, E14 Fund builds and supports a vibrant community of founders and companies with resources from across the MIT ecosystem.
New capability ensures configuration data integrity and signal tracing to improve process safety, reduce cyber risk and support digital transformation
PAS (now PAS Global, part of Hexagon) has long provided some valuable and interesting solutions for process automation. Its Integrity series of configuration management tools now integrated with its cyber security work offers many benefits. This announcement was highlighted at our meetings (virtual, of course) at the 2021 ARC Industry Forum.
PAS Global announced Sensor Data Integrity, a new Automation Integrity module, which enables industrial organizations to ensure configuration data integrity for smart and traditional sensors with signal tracing and validation. This addition to Automation Integrity helps reduce both process safety and cyber risk in support of digital transformation and Industrie 4.0 initiatives.
As industrial organizations expand their deployment of smart sensors, it is becoming increasingly more complex to manage configuration consistency across field device management, distributed control systems (DCS), programmable logic controllers (PLC), safety instrumented systems (SIS), historians and other operational technology (OT). Managing the complex configuration of millions of multi-vendor sensors consistently has become a major challenge for industrial companies. The lack of effective sensor management also puts digital transformation initiatives at risk of falling short of their intended benefits, potentially wasting multimillion-dollar investments.
The new Sensor Data Integrity module provides multi-vendor:
- Discovery of smart, industrial IoT, and traditional analog sensors
- Visibility to the complete inventory and potential cyber vulnerability for sensors
- Creation of templates to define approved configuration for each sensor type
- Automated detection of configuration errors
- Automated identification of devices that don’t match assigned templates
- Cross-checking of parameters (ranges, units, etc.)
- Support for large-scale, multi-site sensor deployments
- Sensor signal tracing, validation and visualization
The information provided by Sensor Data Integrity can also be leveraged by sensor asset management systems (AMS) to support instrument calibration and can feed PAS Cyber Integrity to support cybersecurity vulnerability assessments.
“PAS has a strong history of customer-led innovation and the development of Sensor Data Integrity builds on that tradition,” said Eddie Habibi, PAS Founder. “The expansion of smart sensors is making it increasingly difficult for operations teams to monitor for configuration drift and inconsistencies. This means teams are spending more time trying to find issues instead of correcting them, which increases the risk of poor plant performance and cyber vulnerabilities. PAS, now part of Hexagon, is the first technology provider addressing this challenge with a multi-vendor solution that works across OT systems.”
With Sensor Data Integrity, industrial organizations will:
- Reduce manual effort in reconciling sensor and field device configurations
- Improve plant performance and reduce safety risk (e.g., fewer unit trips due to bad configurations)
- Reduce sensor configuration drift and errors by more than 40%
- Enhance decision-making with higher-quality sensor diagnostics
- Leverage sensor data for vulnerability assessment and obsolescence planning
- Reduce sensor-related cost overruns before startup (e.g., accelerated loop check out)
“Multi-vendor sensor configuration management is a long-standing challenge in the industrial sector and the problem is only getting worse with the proliferation of smart sensors,” said Larry O’Brien, Research VP ARC Advisory Group. “In a 2017 study, ARC estimated the process industries lose as much as $1 trillion per year due to unplanned downtime. Misconfigured or inconsistent sensor configurations are key contributors to these events. We are pleased to see PAS, with support from key customers, has introduced sensor data integrity to address this pervasive and growing problem.”
Sometimes similar news comes in bunches, a little bit like a graph of an FFT. News from Swift Sensors and ABB take us from Covid to Space and back.
Swift Sensors Launches Sub-Zero Temperature Sensor to Meet COVID-19 Vaccine Monitoring and Storage Requirements
24/7 cloud-based wireless monitoring ensures vaccines are stored throughout the cold chain in the required sub-zero temperature ranges down to -100°C.
Swift Sensors, a provider of industrial IoT sensor solutions, launched a secure wireless vaccine storage unit monitoring and alert system to enable medical facilities and pharmacies to remotely monitor COVID-19 vaccine storage temperatures, automate data logging, and respond quickly in case of an equipment problem or power failure.
As vaccine suppliers and public health agencies expand the number of locations for vaccine delivery, pharmacies and clinics must quickly and safely store the vaccines to preserve the vaccines’ efficacy, prevent waste, and comply with data monitoring regulations. Swift Sensors has developed a wireless sensor system to achieve these goals.
“Data loggers have historically been used in cold-chain monitoring of vaccines, pharmaceuticals, and other critical perishable items. However, they lack the low cost, simplicity, and connectivity of wireless sensors connected to the internet,” said Ray Almgren, Swift Sensors CEO. “Our new sub-zero temperature sensor delivers an all-in-one, cost-effective solution for the safe and fast distribution and delivery of much-needed vaccines.”
Each Swift Sensors vaccine package includes at least one wireless remote temperature sensor to relay storage temperature data to an included wireless gateway.
The gateway sends data to a secure cloud-based Swift Sensors Console account. Pharmacy and clinic managers can view temperatures in real time on their computer or mobile device. They can also receive instant alerts via text, voice or email if the storage unit temperature exceeds established thresholds.
“Pharmacies and clinics can use our new sub-zero temperature sensor to monitor the super-cold temperatures the Pfizer vaccine requires or use our standard wireless remote temperature sensor to monitor Moderna vaccine storage conditions,” Almgren said. “Installation typically requires only a few minutes, and the device batteries last six to eight years.”
The Swift Sensors Console stores historical temperature readings so pharmacies and clinics can easily comply with CDC and state health department data logging requirements, without having to spend employee time manually recording or updating temperature data.
ABB sensor onboard SpaceX rocket to detect greenhouse gas emissions
An optical sensor manufactured by ABB was deployed with the successful launch of satellite Hugo from GHGSat, the emerging leader in greenhouse gas sensing services in space.
The ABB supplied optical sensor can map methane emissions from space at a resolution that is 100 times higher than any other sensors. Whilst previously only larger regions could be surveyed, for the first time the new greater granularity now allows the identification of the source of emissions. An additional nine units are currently under manufacture at ABB to be launched by the end of 2022 ready to be on-board across the first private satellite constellation dedicated to emission measurement.
Space offers the ideal location to freely monitor emissions across jurisdictions and quantitatively report on improvements. The ABB sensors will provide valuable insights which will enable governments and industries around the world to meet their emission reduction targets and reduce the negative impact on global warming.
With its involvement in the Canadian SCISAT mission and the Japanese GOSAT series of satellites, ABB has been at the forefront of the field of greenhouse gas sensing from space for more than two decades. ABB optical equipment already in space cumulates more than 100 years of reliable operation. The SCISAT sensor tracks long-term subtle composition changes in the earth’s atmosphere down to parts per trillion of more than 70 molecules and pollutants since 2003. Weather agencies across the world base their predictions on ABB equipment flying onboard the US National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) weather satellites (NPP and JPSS), which saves lives by improving the timeliness and accuracy of weather forecasts for up to seven days.
ABB is also a global leader in earthbound continuous emission monitoring with over 60,000 systems installed in more than 50 countries worldwide. Continuous Emissions Monitoring Systems (CEMS) continuously record and evaluate emission data across all industries. They provide important information for the environmental and economic operation of production facilities. The range includes the ACF5000 that accurately and reliably monitors up to 15 gas components simultaneously.
New ABB emission monitoring solution helps the maritime industry achieve decarbonization targets
The launch of ABB’s CEMcaptain will help shipping comply with the sulphur emission regulations that were enforced in 2020 and keep in check their CO2 footprint.
In January 2020, the low sulphur and nitrous oxide emission limits in the International Maritime Organization regulations became effective worldwide. CEMcaptain is a powerful emissions monitoring system from ABB designed to help the maritime industry meet these new regulations and become more sustainable. Its measurement and digital capabilities increase on-board safety, provide process optimization and substantially reduce ownership costs. By consistently achieving 98 percent and more uptime, the new system not only requires less maintenance effort but also saves time otherwise spent on handling non-compliance issues.
Designed with busy mariners and a regularly changing crew in mind, CEMcaptain is a multi-component analyzer system that continuously provides real-time data offering reliable measurement of emissions with the highest stability. Operating in even the harshest of conditions it integrates analyzer modules and sample handling components in a standalone cabinet, making installation easy.
Equipped with ABB’s renowned Uras26 non-dispersive IR gas analyzer, CEMcaptain simultaneously and continuously measures sulphur dioxide (SO2) and carbon dioxide (CO2) in line with regulation requirements. Each analyzer has two separate gas paths to allow for continuous CO2/SO2 measurement of separate streams, with up to four different components per analyzer module.
Fast fault reporting, diagnosis and repair are achieved via the on-site and remote digital services which help operators get closer to 100 percent availability for their gas analysis instrumentation. Dynamic QR codes are integrated into the ABB CEMcaptain system display panel. All relevant diagnostic information can be collected from the analyzer via a scanned code and transferred to ABB support. This means that maritime instrumentation technicians can send real-time information to an ABB service expert to get immediate guidance on appropriate maintenance. ABB Ability™ Remote Assistance with secured connectivity direct to ABB support is also offered for real-time solutions to problems. These features reduce the costly training of changing crews as well as the number of experts required on board. They also increase on-board safety by reducing crew exposure to emissions.
CEMcaptain GAA610-M is approved by all major classification societies (DNV GL, ABS Group, Lloyds Register, Bureau Veritas, ClassNK, Korean Register).