“The Fundamentals of Process Troubleshooting”Developing Effective TroubleshootersSimulation Solutions, Inc.“The real plant is no place for practice.”
Process Industries Challenges • Maximize Production Output While Maintaining Product Quality • Higher Operating Rates/Risks • Increased Operator Scope of Responsibility • Increased Safety Awareness • Increased Usage of Sophisticated Plant Automation
Why Troubleshooting Matters to Operations Personnel • Consequences of failure getting larger -->Cost, scale, EHS impact. • Loss of experienced staff = loss of troubleshooting experts • Well running plants provide for complacency, with few chances to keep troubleshooting skills sharpened
What Have We Learned from Good Troubleshooters? • Knowledge counts: Expertise in process leads to troubleshooting expertise • Experienced troubleshooters keep getting called to help --> And so they maintain and improve their troubleshooting skills • The best troubleshooters are systematic and “system thinkers.” • Everybody wants them, but few have them
Successful Troubleshooting requires: • An understanding of basic process parameters • The ability to think in systems terms • A systematic trouble-shooting methodology
Formal Training Approaches Most formal approaches to teaching troubleshooting skills fall into one of 2 categories: • Very generic • Equipment specific These approaches have their limitations
Generic Approach to Troubleshooting As taught in a leading plant safety seminar: • Define the problem • Gather relevant facts • Identify the source of the problem • Develop possible solutions • Select the best solution
Generic Approach • While this is certainly a respectable list of tasks, many people find it difficult to apply them across a broad range of problems. • Some examples specific to the trainee’s job would certainly help! • Often, though, the instructors for this type of training have little plant operations or maintenance experience.
Specific Troubleshooting Approach • While this approach is on target for this particular problem, such as specific equipment operations, most people would have trouble generalizing the technique and applying it to other - particularly dissimilar - problems.
“The Fundamentals of Process Troubleshooting” • Don Glaser, Simulation Solutions, and Paul Balmert, Balmert Consulting, have developed an effective approach to teaching troubleshooting skills for process operators. • Our approach embeds a sound generic troubleshooting model combined with immediate “hands on” practice. • This blend of knowledge and skills is unique to the industry.
Describe the 5 Phases of effective trouble-shooting Describe the specific Steps within each troubleshooting Phase Successfully apply the Phases/ Steps to actual operations problems Distinguish between “possible” and “probable causes” Recognize the difference between “trial and error” & “designed testing” Recognize the adverse effect of each of the following phenomena: Lock on/lock out Task interference Organization hierarchy Unintended consequences Successfully counter the influence each of the above has on effective troubleshooting Conduct the practice of trouble-shooting fully recognizing that safety -- process and personnel -- is always the first priority The Fundamentals of Process Troubleshooting Learning Objectives:
Intended Audience: • Supervisors who want to improve the troubleshooting abilities of their operators • Operators who want to improve their basic troubleshooting skills • Plant engineers and others who need to understand the basic principles of troubleshooting and its application to process operations
5 Benefits of taking this Course: • Our graduates will leave with a disciplined, rigorous, transferable method of troubleshooting. • We bridge the gap between “theory and practice” and teach the skills to recognize how to stay with the troubleshooting process during the “heat of the battle.” • We are the only troubleshooting course to use desktop process simulation developed by an industry leader. Simulation is recognized as providing the best learning environment to master the process and skills course teaches • We help minimize process incidents caused by “unexpected” or “unintended” results of poor troubleshooting. • Achieve the kind of business objectives that all plants share -- the desire for safe, reliable, and efficient operations with operators who can effectively resolve plant upsets and abnormalities.
Getting started: • Analyze the need in your plant for better trouble-shooting skills. • Identify a target audience in your plant with input from supervisors. • Review schedule/staff availability for a 2-day course. • Review availability of training room with individual PC training stations • Contact Simulation Solutions or Balmert Consulting for a Proposal and Price Quotation • Issue an Order or Contract and conduct training. • Evaluate results and agree on next steps.