Thermax’s ROSS simplifies machine monitoring and corrective maintenance at Adam Afrique

Adam Afrique

Adam Afrique is a well-known producer of soaps in the west African country, Ivory Coast. Situated in the industrial zone of the capital city, Abidjan, it is a Limited Liability Company established in 1987. The company uses locally available natural resources to manufacture soaps of exceptional quality. With a rich range of products covering all household needs, the company’s clientele list extends overseas beyond the domestic market.

The latest industrial development and the availability of locally sourced palm oil and coconut oil in the Abidjan region have made it an attractive spot for soap manufacturers. Several soap manufacturers thrive in the area catering to the country’s domestic and export needs. Since the intensity of the competition is high, keeping up the productivity of the soap-manufacturing unit every day is vital for Adam Afrique.

Thermax’s chiller at Adam Afrique

Aligning with the company’s interests to increase production, Adam Afrique collaborated with Thermax to meet the cooling requirements of the saponification process in its plant. On 13th November 2018, Thermax commissioned a double-effect steam fired vapour absorption chiller of 360 TR capacity at their plant. The chiller runs on steam exhaust of a plant process and caters to the cooling section of the saponification process. The chiller has been performing well by delivering chilled water at 10°C since its commissioning. To ensure uninterrupted operation and predictive maintenance, the chiller is connected to Thermax’s cloud-based remote monitoring technology, ROSS (Remote Online Service Support).

Machine monitoring without site visit in real time

On 7th April 2020, an operational issue was observed in the chiller at the plant of Adam Afrique. Our technical service team intervened and logged into the chiller. After a study of the chiller’s latest data logs, a photograph of the recorded parameters on the machine’s Human-Machine Interface (HMI) was requested. Through ROSS, our service engineer was able to monitor the performance of the machine even when it was running. Anticipating a vacuum break in the chiller, our service team instructed the plant operator to perform a vacuum test.

Nitrogen gas at 0.2 bar was charged into the chiller and the test was conducted. The initial pressure at 25mm Hg dropped to 90mm Hg within 12 hours, confirming a leakage in the chiller. The post-detection maintenance measures were communicated remotely to the plant operator. The leak was attended temporarily by fixing with metallic potty and then LiBr was charged into the chiller. After closely monitoring the chiller for 24 hours, the chiller’s operations were declared normal. The timely response and proactive maintenance service by our service team ensured a continued operation at the soap manufacturer’s plant.

Issue analysis and preventive maintenance to reduce downtime

Further analysis to identify the root cause of the issue found that the line of the cooling water inlet and outlet were below the required size at the plant. It was also found that the cooling water temperature in the chiller went as high as 35°C as opposed to the designated 32°C. The root causes were communicated to the customer and the corrective measures to fix them were suggested as well.

ROSS’s excellence building deeper customer relationships

The chiller issue that sprang up unexpectedly in a very crucial moment put the company’s productivity at stake, especially as the production process at their plant is kept up on toes by the competitiveness in the market. ROSS helped the company keep up its pace by providing accurate operational data and remote maintenance.

Highly satisfied with the chiller’s performance, ROSS’s reliability, and the exceptional service experience, Adam Afrique has decided to adopt Thermax’s chillers again in view of their plant expansion.

Mr. A. Mahmoud, Deputy Technical Director at Adam Afrique says, “On behalf of Adam Afrique team, our thanks to Thermax team, for the professionalism displayed throughout this project right from project initiation, delivery commitment, installation support to start up.”

ROSS – Continuous monitoring with an automated solution

At Thermax, addressing every conceivable factor of customer experience is crucial. Our efforts to offer excellent service coupled with the recent advancements in remote automated solutions gave way to ROSS. It is a system of cloud-based industrial maintenance which connects installations across the globe to Thermax’s servers. ROSS enables managing and monitoring the chillers with alarms, trend graphs, and reports efficiently. With ROSS, the exact status of the chiller can be monitored anytime, thus offering customer service and chiller maintenance remotely. Machines across the globe can be promptly serviced by engineers remotely at the slightest indication of deviation in its parameters. The system, apart from speeding up the troubleshooting process, completely avoids the chiller’s downtime and call for maintenance.

First chiller from Sri City dispatched overseas

Thermax executed its first export consignment manufactured at the Absorption Cooling & Heating division’s new stateof-the-art facility in Sri City. This was a repeat order for a 60 TR low temperature hot water driven vapour absorption chiller from UBE Chemicals (Asia) Public Company Limited in Thailand. The chiller helps the customer in the process cooling application of ammonium sulphate, used as a fertiliser in the Asian region and caprolactam used in nylon fibres and resins. The chilled water at 5°C maintains Dinitrogen (N2 ) at its dew point temperature, which in turn is used for polycarbonate diol processing. Hot water, the driving heat source, is produced from steam condensate and process heat recovery. Thermax’s chiller is helping the customer save 2,00,000 units of electricity and reduce carbon footprint equivalent to planting 19,200 trees in a year.

Chillers for fertiliser and chemical major

Thermax successfully installed and commissioned three steam-driven absorption chillers of 994 TR each and two hot water driven absorption chillers of 815 TR each at Chambal Fertilizers and Chemical Limited (CFCL), India. This order was received from TOYO Engineering, a Japanese EPC company. Thermax chillers are catering to the process cooling needs at their urea and diammonium phosphate plant. The chilled water at 7ºC is used to cool the compressor inlet air supplied to the gas turbines, increasing their efficiency and output.


Chillers at RCF and heavy water board 

Thermax successfully commissioned an 800 TR Triple Effect absorption chiller at Rashtriya Chemicals & Fertilizers (RCF) in Thal, Maharashtra. It is the first triple effect chiller installation for inlet air cooling of process air compressor (PAC). The chiller runs on steam at 25 barg pressure, derived from a Heat Recovery Steam Generator (HRSG) operating on the gas turbine exhaust. This project is a part of their debottlenecking process in order to increase the overall production. 

Another two units of 1000 TR half-effect absorption chiller was recently commissioned at the Heavy Water Board located in Manuguru, Telangana. The chiller is specially designed to recover heat from low-temperature process condensate by cooling it from 68oC to 60oC.

Thermax footprint in Latin America

Thermax has now expanded its global presence to Argentina, by recently commissioning a tail gas combustor for Cabot S.A.I.C (a subsidiary of Cabot Corporation). 

The installation comprises a natural gas-cum-tail gas (CO) fired combustor, generating 38 MW of hot flue gases by incinerating carbon black tail gas. These flue gases are cooled in a waste heat recovery boiler (supplied by a local vendor), to produce 45 TPH of saturated steam at 22 barg pressure. Thermax bagged the order due to its technical expertise and experience in designing and fabricating the complete system of tail gas combustion (combustor + waste heat boiler). Cabot had prior experience of working with Thermax at one of its subsidiaries, Pt. Cabot in Indonesia in 2006. 

With emission norms becoming stringent, tail gas combustion units are becoming increasingly popular and customers are looking for sustainable solutions – reducing pollution at their facilities while generating steam/power in the bargain. Thermax has so far, supplied more than 20 such units to diverse industries.

Managing effluents for a fertiliser major

Chambal Fertilisers and Chemicals Limited (CFCL), one of the largest private sector fertiliser producers in India, partnered with Thermax for ‘Total Water Management System’ at Kota, Rajasthan. In the recent past, the fertiliser sector has seen tremendous growth, mainly due to the Government impetus on making India self-sufficient. With growth, the industry also faces the challenge of tackling effluent treatment and optimising the use of water, getting scarce by the day. CFCL’s water management initiative was part of its expansion project for manufacturing 2,000 metric tonnes of ammonia per day (MTPD) and 4,000 MTPD of urea. The system consists of a pretreatment and demineralisation plant, condensate polishing unit and an effluent recycle plant. The effluent recycle plant, based on ultrafiltration and Reverse Osmosis (RO) membrane system, recovers 91% of water. The RO system treats hardness and silica content in the water resulting in high-quality water having Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) less than 400 ppm. On the other hand, an advanced membrane based UF system is used for the removal of all types of fine colloidal impurities along with organics.


Thermax wins Rs. 279 crore order for a cogeneration plant

As a part of the customer’s drive to reduce energy consumption as well as dependence on grid power, Thermax concluded a repeat order of INR 279 crore from a leading public-sector fertiliser company to set up their captive cogeneration plant at Trombay. The project is for a GTG (Gas Turbine Generator) – cum-HRSG (Heat Recovery Steam Generator) based cogen plant of 50 MW capacity on an EPC basis. Commenting on the win, Unny says, “The need for reliability of power supply coupled with energyefficient technologies makes cogeneration a preferred choice for customers, where we have secured multiple orders recently.” The scope of supply includes designing, engineering, manufacturing, construction and commissioning of the cogeneration plant within a time span of 24 months.

Energy boost for RCF

Thermax commissioned a 50 MW gas based cogeneration plant at the Thal (Maharashtra) facility of Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilizers Limited (RCF). Power division executed this project to upgrade the energy efficiency of the urea and ammonia plants on a turnkey basis – from design to commissioning. The scope of supply included two gas turbines (25 MW each) and 2 X 100 TPH heat recovery steam generators, besides civil work. 

The CMD of RCF, in the presence of personnel from both the organisations, was briefed about the working of the cogen plant. Back in Pune, Power division’s project team celebrated the Performance Award from RCF for Thermax’s contribution. 

Wins Rs. 503 crore order for three cogeneration plants

Thermax will set up three natural gas based EPC cogeneration plants (each of 20 MW capacity) for National Fertilisers Limited (NFL). The public sector company has placed an order worth Rs. 503 crore with Thermax for the plants to be commissioned at its facilities in Haryana and Punjab. 

The project is the outcome of NFL’s initiative to bring down its dependence on fossil fuel and to save energy. The three cogen plants through a combination of GTGs (Gas-Turbine-Generators) and HRSGs (Heat Recovery Steam Generators) will generate power for captive use and steam for process simultaneously. Says Unny, “The thrust on cogeneration for saving energy costs has increasingly gained importance among our customers where we have secured recent orders.” Thermax’s proven expertise in EPC cogen plants positions it well in pitching for new business across sectors. 

The scope of supply includes design, engineering, manufacturing, construction and commissioning of the cogeneration plants. The project is to be completed in 22 months.

Thermax wins Rs. 327 crore order for a co-generation power plant

Thermax Group bagged a Rs. 327 crore order from a public sector company based in western India for its up-coming chemical plant. The project is for a BTG (BoilerTurbine-Generator) package on EPC basis for its captive cogeneration power plant of 2×65 MW capacity.

The order is an affirmation of Thermax’s expertise in cogeneration that provides optimal energy solutions to industries that need both power and steam to support processes. M.S. Unnikrishnan, Thermax MD & CEO stated that “as one of the pioneers of this energy efficient option,Thermax is confident of meeting such challenges and anticipates similar opportunities.” 

The scope of supply includes design, engineering, manufacturing, construction and commissioning of the solid fuel based BTG package consisting of two CFBC boilers, steam turbines and generators. Thermax also would be supplying emission control equipment and other auxiliaries for the BTG package. The project is to be completed in 24 months.

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