Providing competitive advantage with technology
Waste Management Expo 2020 MAR 12&13 BIEC, Bengaluru, India

Providing a competitive advantage with technology

12:09 PM, 11th November 2019
Rene Aldana, President & CEO Galvanic Applied Sciences Inc
Rene Aldana, President & CEO Galvanic Applied Sciences Inc.

In an interview Rene Aldana, President & CEO Galvanic Applied Sciences Inc views the demand for process analyzers in Asia Pacific as a significant opportunity as companies seek to improve product quality, reduce costs and ensure environmental compliance in the region.

By Shivani Mody

Global trends driving growth of liquid & gas analyzers.

From a global perspective, all macro indicators point to robust demand for goods produced by the chemical sector, fueling the need to optimize the manufacturing process, better manage upset conditions and ensure environmental compliance within this industry. Liquid and gas analyzers - particularly those employed in online process analysis of continuous streams - provide industrial operators with the certainty they need to reduce operating costs, maximize yields and meet environmental compliance. Against this backdrop, it is important to mention that Galvanic Applied Sciences has been manufacturing high precision, hazardous zone classification online process gas and liquids analyzers for over 30 years.

Demand for process analyzers in Asia Pacific.

The International Council of Chemical Associations highlighted that man-made fibers are the primary component of Asia Pacific’s growth, which is fueling the textile industry. Other products such as paints, cosmetics, and soaps also have a healthy outlook. Some market studies attribute a third of the global demand for process analysis instruments to this region, driving both investment and competition amongst chemical manufacturing companies. Galvanic is excited about the demand on process analyzers in the region as these companies seek to improve product quality, reduce costs, and ensure environmental compliance.

Liquid analyzers to support chemical companies.

There are many applications where online liquid analyzers can help reduce costs and meet emissions regulations. This includes process streams, chemical dosing, boiler & cooling water, gas abatement, water treatment and waste-water treatment. A great example of where online process analyzers add significant value over manual grab sampling is in a caustic scrubber used for gas abatement. The scrubber chemistry is often only tested in the lab or, at best, tested online using a simple pH controller. The issue with the infrequent grab sampling is obvious since upsets can occur at any time. However, even relying on only pH is not enough. While a pH sensor will determine how acidic or basic the sample is, it cannot determine the acidity or alkalinity. This is the buffer capacity for how much acid can be added to a solution before the pH changes. Imagine a scenario where the pH reading showed 12 pH but the alkalinity (or caustic) was low. The operators would have no idea that a pH swing was approaching which would require fast action since the scrubbing solution would not be able to remove acid gases effectively. The risk and cost from downtime and potential plant damage supports investing in a process analyzer like AccuSeries- LPA.

Sectors showing increased demand for liquid & gas analyzers.

Recent market research indicates that global demand for process analysis instruments (PAI) will continue to grow annually between 2 percent and 4 percent over the next 5 years. Global PAI sales in 2018 exceeded $4 billion, with petroleum and chemical sectors representing the largest sales and growth segments. From a regional standpoint, almost all demand is evenly divided between North America, Europe and Asia Pacific.

Advancement in hand held devices related to analyzers.

Hand-held devices have very application-specific uses, as is the case with infrequent measurement requirements. On a broad basis, the process analysis instrumentation has experienced mixed results with nanotechnology and miniaturization. Certainly, reduction in footprint is desirable to better manage overall installation and servicing costs. Modern electronics and innovative designs allow Galvanic to ensure that its analyzers are as compact as possible while still offering all the necessary features and benefits required by operators.

Digitization and automation for the liquid & gas analyzers.

When process analyzers first came on the market, they were quite primitive. Everything was analog and the human machine interface was a simple dot-matrix display. The biggest feature promoted was that analyzers incorporated a microprocessor. There were also many limitations when it came to DCS communication and control protocols. Technological advances have allowed process analyzer manufacturers like Galvanic to provide greater value to plant operators in the chemical industry. Remote ethernet access is now a common way of controlling analyzers in isolated or distant locations. This means an operator can be enjoying a cup of tea in their office and be able to use a web-browser based interface to review the status of their analyzer, initiate a calibration, run diagnostics, or review a report of measurement data. Also, modern process analyzers come equipped with advanced communication options. The analyzer itself can use programmed logic so that when a specific set-point is reached, it alerts a dosing pump to turn on or off. Looking ahead, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), cloud computing and cognitive computing are technology trends making their way into process analysis instrumentation. An example of how IIoT and analytics are being applied to manufacturing operations is predictive maintenance, which more effectively and safely helps plant operators manage asset integrity and maintenance.

Company’s international business and future plans.

Although our manufacturing operations are based in North America, a significant percent of our revenues comes from international sales. We currently have an extensive network of international distributors who provide sales and service support throughout the world, including Europe, the Middle East and Asia Pacific, which we consider key markets in support of our overall growth strategy. Based on the level of activity and established partnerships in the region, Asia Pacific is where we’re placing most of our effort to increase our international business at this point.

Catering to R&D and innovation for the analyzers.

Our R&D activities and investment are focused on addressing measurement and analysis challenges where others in the process analysis industry struggle. Rather than engage in offering “me too” solutions, we strive to introduce “follow me” technologies that create differentiated value for our customers.

For instance, our recently launched TDLS-based H2S analyzer (AccuLase-GPA) is not only the most accurate and repeatable laser analyzer in the industry, but it does not require high maintenance items like scrubbers and is immune to the types of interference with which competing products struggle. Another example is our AccuSeries-LPA “wet chemistry” platform introduced a couple years ago, which we’ve dubbed the “robot chemist”. What sets this liquid analyzer apart is its ability to measure multiple components in a single analyzer, in a hazardous area classification device. For instance, customers with caustic scrubbing operations can measure sodium hydroxide, sodium carbonate and sodium sulfide in a single device.

Government policies in support of liquid & gas analyzers market.

Emerging governments can enact policies and regulations that leverage established field-proven practices present in mature regions, especially with regards to safety and environmental compliance. At a broader level, evolving regulations to adequately manage VOC emissions and treat waste-water from manufacturing operations are key to preserving our ecosystem and way of life. Liquid & gas analyzers can play a key role to help chemical manufactures be compliant with newly enacted policies and regulations.

Challenges faced in the liquid & gas analyzers market.

The biggest challenge is the reliance of chemical manufacturers on manual laboratory measurements, and the resulting resistance to change. Historically, this was the most accurate and dependable way to understand process chemistry. However, process analyzers now rival the performance and sensitivity of laboratory equipment. Process analyzers can be installed in most applications to support process control and environmental compliance, resulting in increased operational flexibility and peace of mind.

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