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A pharmaceutical company experiencing issues with its current ammonia monitoring system turned to Coltraco Ultrasonics for a solution. The result is accurate, efficient measuring which offers improved safety for the plant’s operators


he desire to live longer and healthier is a pillar of modern life. Which is why

the demand for healthcare data, advanced therapies and ever quicker reacting cures in the pharmaceutical industry is so high. With the advances in knowledge comes the advances in manufacturing, with pharmaceutical companies manufacturing six times the average company in the UK. The scale of demand, and the free market, forces the manufacturing process to become smarter. One way to increase efficiencies is to improve the safety and maintenance of plants, which can be done using equipment from companies such as Coltraco Ultrasonics.

reusable storage tanks which commonly carry circa 1,040 litres. This ammonia is required to breakdown manufacturing by- products before they are safely incinerated. Previously, the company had been

monitoring the ammonia contents through a physical dip stick measurement on the tank, because of a lack of confidence in the internal IBC monitoring systems. However, the fumes given off by ammonia are irritating and corrosive, and can cause burning to the nose, throat and respiratory tract which poses a severe health risk for the engineers. Opening the top valve for the physical dip stick

‘The solution allows the operators of the plant to safely, quickly and accurately monitor the contents within the ammonia vessels ’

A large British pharmaceutical company recently approached Coltraco for a monitoring solution. At one of its manufacturing plants in Ireland, the company produces active ingredients that are used in drugs to treat cancer, Parkinsons and Depression. Here, a mix of ammonia and water is delivered to the site in Intermediate Bulk Containers (IBCs):

measurement also creates risk of contamination to the ammonia. For this reason, the pharmaceutical company asked Coltraco to deliver a new way to non-invasively monitor the contents within the IBCs. A Coltraco Engineer visited the site to conduct technology suitability trials. A survey of several of the IBCs was carried


Bell Flow Systems has introduced the new GWR200 flow sensor from APG, which it says will take the problems and frustration out of your level measurement. The System’s True Echo Communication Tool, which provides a Modbus-to- USB connection for communication with True Echo Software, allows for advanced configuration and monitoring of multiple True Echo sensors. Specifications include an auto calibration for easy setup with True Echo

software, a robust IP65 housing, innovative signal processing and disturbance signal suppression and a range up to 10 feet with SS rod, 80 feet with cable. Additionally, the sensors are unaffected by foam, vapours or dust. The Sensor NEMA 6 housing comes as standard, and its 316 SS or PTFE- coated 316 SS probes can operate in process temperatures from -40° to 203°C. Robust and reliable, the GWR200 sensor is said to make difficult level measurements easy. With a programmable 4-20 mA or RS-485 Modbus outputs, and innovative

signal processing, the GWR200 can accurately provide measurement of solids, liquids, and slurries at depths up to 25 metres. Bell Flow Systems T: 0800 027 7786

The Portalevel Intrinsically Safe provides fast operation and is Zone 1 ATEX Certified and UL Approved

out, and it was noted that some of the containers were partially full or fully empty. From this, the engineer determined the general range for a full and empty state across 7 of the IBCs. Trials conducted indicated that Coltraco can provide a solution for this application. Ultrasonics was the solution chosen by

Coltraco, a non-invasive, robust, easy to use system, avoiding the risk of harm to the site engineers. Because Coltraco’s equipment is designed to improve safety and best practice, it is imperative that the equipment used to conduct inspections is accurate and calibrated. For this reason, Coltraco calibrated their Intrinsically Safe Platform to application specific purposes. This was set to – 0 = LIQUID 100 + = Air. The Intrinsically Safe Platform was designed to operate in a specific environment where the presence of potentially dangerous gases can be experienced. The Portalevel Intrinsically Safe solution offered accuracy and clarity of indication. It provides fast operation and is Zone 1 ATEX Certified and UL Approved. The unit requires no input from the on-site engineer apart from the simple application of the sensor to the vessel wall. This protects the operator from the health and safety problems that were presented through manual monitoring, as well as increasing efficiency. With this solution, plant operators can

safely, quickly and accurately monitor the contents within the ammonia vessels. This unit is also cost efficient, reducing the amount of partially empty ammonia cylinders returned before emptying, increasing efficiency, and reducing costs over time. Coltraco strive to provide innovative and personalised solutions to customer needs, helping ensure business success and efficiency.

Coltraco Ultrasonics YouTube: watch?v=zHx3OlH-x3s

20 SEPTEMBER 2017 | PROCESS & CONTROL 

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