What is APC 2.0?

Large-matrix model-based multivariable control (call it MPC or APC 1.0) has been the dominant advanced process control technology in industries such as oil refining, chemicals and petrochemicals, for going on three decades.

The virtues and successes of MPC aside,
it has also earned a reputation as an ownership challenge in many areas, including cost, maintenance, support
and performance.  While MPC may always be the preferred solution in select applications, many end-users have long been moving away from MPC as an everyday tool, even if the technology to backfill that gap (call it APC 2.0) has yet
to fully emerge.

Experience makes it increasingly clear
that industry needs a multivariable control tool that is much more agile – more operation-friendly in every respect – to bring renewed progress in advanced process automation.  Thirty years of the APC 1.0 paradigm have left many people believing that burdensome large-matrix, model-based, multivariable control and optimization, must all go together – that you can’t have one part without all the others.  But experience now shows that alternative solutions are actually quite possible and even readily available within existing modern control system capabilities.

Going forward, how will the emerging
APC 2.0 paradigm differ in key respects from APC 1.0:

  • APC 2.0 will feature a matrix,
    but not necessarily models
  • Focus will shift to control-layer automation and business-layer optimization
  • Operational performance will become the new norm (after fully 75 years of Zeigler-Nichols!)

Read more here.

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