Flexibele automatiseringsoplossing voor Vopak Terminal Eurotank
One of the three tank terminals of Vopak in Belgium is the Eurotank Terminal in Antwerp. This terminal offers a total capacity of almost 500.000 m³ divided over 184 tanks. Increasing requirements on bulk storage of chemicals, petroleum products and biodiesel, made it necessary to develop a Master plan to be implemented over the coming years. Amongst other, this plan includes the modernization of the power distribution and measuring & control systems on and around the tanks, to increase the overall safety, efficiency and sustainability of the terminal.
One of the challenges for the project is the limited space available on the terminal to install new distribution panels, MCC’s and control panels. No existing substations and/or technical rooms can be used and space for new substations is not available on site.
Prefab constructions built above the roads on site are chosen as a practical solution to create new substations within the terminal at close distance to the different tank pits.
Random automation of individual tanks
A modernization of the Eurotank terminal with 184 tanks during operation is not easy, but needed to enable an extension of the life cycle of the existing facilities. With the concept rolled out, including the compact power distribution system, remote I/O system within the hazardous area in the tank pit and the flexible automation templates, Vopak has assured
the future operability of this well known terminal in the Antwerp harbor area.
Flexible towards future changes and extensions
Daily business is expected to continue as usual. The large number of tanks makes it only feasible to roll out the modernization in phases. To ensure the lowest overall cost and lead time for the project, Vopak asked Agidens to work out a modernization strategy based on a “full option tank typical” that can be used for the different types of tanks divided over the different phases with minimal changes. To minimize the overall cost of ownership of the new installation flexibility in the concept for future changes in requirements and/or regulations is a necessity.
A reliable, safe and efficient concept
Starting from the new ‘floating’ prefab substations Agidens has worked out a concept for electrification and automation. A concept that combines flexibility, transparency and modularity with integrated functional safety and hazardous area safety. Simple but robust and easy to roll out.
To replace the existing out of date Eexd power distribution panels in the field, 3 new prefab substations were built with limited dimensions. Therefore Agidens has put a lot of energy in engineering the substations equipped with control and power distribution panels in such a way that all the installed tanks and product pumps can be automated by only ‘clicking’ a minimum of electrical components for each individual tank still to be automated.
Connectivity with the measuring and control points on and around the tanks is realized by using a local zone 2 certified “intelligent” junction box, identical for each tank and equipped with a combination of Eexi, standard and safety modules conform the “full option” tank. These Remote I/O panels are connected to the controllers in the substations via a Profi bus/Profi safe network regarding the Vopak standard. In this way field cabling and cable trays are minimized, while at the same time flexibility towards futures changes and extensions is high.
The automation of the different tanks is built around a ‘full options’ tank typical. Depending on the actual features needed on the different tanks, only the instruments and valves needed will be connected and options can be used or left out. Simply by configuration of the system instead of changes in the application. Configuration changes can be easily done by the Vopak engineers themselves.
By embedding the necessary functional safety (ESD) functions in the concept, the existing terminal will after the modernization fulfill all regulations on safety related to the storage of flammable liquids, without additional systems to be maintained.
Integration of tank gauging
Maybe the most important measuring equipment on bulk liquid storage tanks is the tank gauging equipment. Often tank gauging is implemented as a stand-alone system. At the Eurotank terminal the decision was made to integrate the Honeywell-Enraf tank gauging system in the overall automation concept, making the information of the gauges available to all stake holders on the terminal.
Ready for the future
The modularity of the engineered solution enables Vopak to be very flexible in scheduling the modernization of the Eurotank terminal. The concept allows to go from tank to tank even in different tank pits without additional cost due to inefficiencies. This gives Vopak the opportunity to modernize the entire terminal in time, without jeopardizing the business.