Thursday, February 28, 2013

Do you know about SmartFire? You Should!

Guest blogger: Kaylen McMullen, Marketing Assistant, Invensys Operations Management
The SmartFire solution from Invensys is based on an extension to SimSci-Esscor’s Connoisseur Advanced Process Control (APC) software. This solution is a boiler optimization application that offers multivariable model predictive control and neural networks. It is often applied to bias furnace air flow distribution and addresses O2 imbalances and regions of high CO. The original application needed some adjustments in order for it to achieve its fullest potential. It was decided that improvements could be made if this offering could automatically determine more optimum air/fuel settings at individual dampers.

SmartFire completes the boiler optimization offering from Invensys by compensating for a phenomenon in coal-fired boilers known as roping. Roping occurs when pulverized coal is fed to a utility boiler, causing disruption to the distribution of coal flow to the coal pipes that supply the burners. This imbalanced distribution causes some regions of the furnace to have more fuel and others to have less fuel.

SmartFire continuously tests the APC system and adapts the models to capture the characteristics of shifting relationships. Operators do not interfere with this process, which optimizes work performance and greatly enhances the bottom line. This solution offers significant improvements in boiler efficiency. After testing the system, there were estimated benefits of $78,000 a year - in addition to the benefits of APC which typically exceed $500,000. This shortens the payback period and is truly unique to the Invensys APC offering.

For more information on SmartFire and Connoisseur, please visit our webpage on

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