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The Value Of A Truly Modular “Clean In Place” System

Improving overall manufacturing process efficiency is not limited to the tasks and methods used to make the products; important opportunities also exist in the clean in place process (CIP). CIP is a factor that directly impacts the utilization of the plant equipment, as well as the unit cost and quality. A modular CIP system fosters more innovation by providing the process owner the ability to pilot solutions with minimal effort. A properly designed CIP system will not only allow the owner to optimize the execution of the cleaning procedures, but it will also reduce the costs associated with cleaning solutions, water and energy.

Typically, CIP systems are commissioned and their procedures are seldom changed. This is due in part to the rigid logic that provide the process owners very little flexibility to improve the procedures, programs are created to perform tasks such as the pre-rinse, detergent(s) wash, and a final rinse, etc. The process owners find themselves limited to changing recipe values (parameters) and are not given the flexibility to optimize the procedures. If a change needs to be made it may require the intervention of an engineering group to gather requirements, make and test the changes, then release these changes to the process owners. Often, improvements don’t happen because of the time and resources required to make such changes.

The key to allowing the plant to improve the cleaning process is to provide a truly modular CIP system that allows the process owner to configure procedures based on the capabilities of the equipment instead of coded routines.

ISA S88 provides guidelines for the design and specifications of batch control systems. The capabilities of the equipment are exposed to the recipe authors and these capabilities are captured in what is defined as the equipment model. These capabilities are then programed as sub routines (Phases) that can be called upon to be executed at any time.

A procedural model (Recipe) provides the recipe author the granularity that allows the author to define tasks to be performed as well as their triggering conditions. This recipe authoring flexibility empowers the process owners to quickly author new procedures that reflect the current best approach, these can be tested without requiring programing and revalidation of code.

Given the mathematical capabilities of modern automation controllers it is also possible to write equations that can be integrated over time to provide a cumulative cleaning factor, such concept is used for steam sterilization cycles (“F-sub-zero”). This method can be used to dynamically determine when the cleaning cycle is complete without having to follow the traditional method, a direct benefit should be the reduction of time, materials and energy required.

*A major food manufacturer initially reduced their total clean in place time by eight hours per week—creating far more efficiency.

Important opportunities to improve the overall manufacturing process efficiency exist in the clean in place process automation, key to this is a well-defined ISA S88 Equipment Model that provides a modular and flexible solution to the process owners.

ECS is a Control System Integrator’s Association (CSIA) certified control system integrator offering Total Process Automation—from your ERP solution to the end of your packaging line. We help customers solve real problems, making them more profitable. After more than three decades of hands-on process control system development, ECS has refined its ability to deliver high-value, agile, solutions at a fair price and within an amazing schedule.

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