For South African Breweries (SAB), an automated and networked Ethernet/IP-based control system will integrate traditionally disparate, malt-production processes into a single, networked, Ethernet/IP-based solution for plant-wide visibility and actionable data. The maltings plant in Alrode, South Africa, will account for more than half of the brewery’s South African and Namibian malt production when fully commissioned early in 2016.
The brewery will increase local malt production from 60 to 90%, reducing the financial impact of imported malt. The plant will enhance the production capabilities of its predecessor by increasing malt production from 42,000 to 150,000 tons per year.
SAB contacted Rockwell Automation to design the networked Ethernet/IP system. It connects all data from the plant floor to the rest of the SAB enterprise, transforming the plant into a Connected Enterprise. “By converging operations technology and information technology, we deliver SAB secure access to operational, business and transactional data to improve the malting plant’s supply-chain, economic and sustainable performance,” explained Adrian van Wyk, Rockwell Automation business manager for power and components in Johannesburg, South Africa.
All devices and processes within the plant are integrated in a single, secure network with dual-port, Ethernet/IP-based hardware connected in a device-level-ring (DLR) configuration.
Controlled by Allen-Bradley ControlLogix controllers and Allen-Bradley Stratix industrial Ethernet/IP switches, the motor control centers comprise more than 500 E300 intelligent electronic overload control relays, 70 Allen-Bradley PowerFlex 750 ac drives, and 50 Allen-Bradley SMC Flex smart motor control soft starters for motor starting, stopping, control and protection with greater production efficiency.
To address the plant’s energy metering, energy consumption, load shedding and harmonics analysis, Rockwell Automation supplied a range of its Allen-Bradley PowerMonitor metering solutions. Technical partner, MSE, provided all packaged motor control centers distributed throughout the plant to reduce cabling costs.
“The new automated system gives SAB personnel plant wide control, from plant floor to executive level, through a single, secure and integrated Ethernet/IP network,” added van Wyk. “By enabling secure access to actionable, run-time production data, machine diagnostics and automatic fault-finding, SAB gains full visibility of the maltings plant, ultimately facilitating faster time-to-market, lower total cost of ownership, improved asset utilization and enterprise risk management.”
To keep the plant running nonstop, all motor control center, device-level hardware is equipped with the Rockwell Automation automatic device configuration (ADC) for automatic self-healing and configuring of replaced components. ADC, paired with the Rockwell Automation DLR network, ensures uninterrupted, real-time device communication, providing SAB with network resilience and reducing unplanned downtime.