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Oil & Gas Industry R+D+i

Major innovation worldwide

CLH AND MONTREL HAVE INVENTED AND PATENTED THE SIMAC-ICOMPP SYSTEM FOR AUTOMATIC IDENTIFICATION OF COMPARTMENTS IN PETROLEUM PRODUCTS TANK TRUCKS, WITH PURGE CONTROL AND ELECTRONIC RECORDING OF LOADS.

Invention Patent: P201530654

Both companies jointly market SIMAC-ICOMPP System for Oil & Gas Industry that they invented, and whose function is to automatically verify the unique identification of each compartment of the tank trucks during loading and unloading operations, as well as the automatic control of the purges. All of it based on the provision of a small hardware device (TAG) coupled to each compartment of the tank truck, which connects and communicates through the loading arm, along with the equipment installed in the loading bays of the Terminals and/or Loading Centers. Additionally, the System incorporates the implementation of a loading electronic record, with the storage of the result of the loading process in the corresponding TAG, for a later automatic reading and/or telematic download at the Service Station.

At present, the Terminals and/or Loading Centers have databases with detailed information on all tank trucks operating in their loading plants, including the capacity of each of their compartments. So far, the relationship between the compartment and the loading arm was determined prior to load, but only through manual entry of data by the driver, as he is the one who chooses and type the number of compartment to which they intend to connect the loading arm. The Systems did not have devices to verify the correct assignment and to prevent the continued operation in the event of discrepancies or errors.

Moreover, the obligated safety systems currently deployed in tank trucks to prevent overfills and spills during the loading process, are passive elements. In the case the amount of product introduced into a compartment eventually come to exceed the established maximum limit, the mentioned overfill control systems would indirectly stop the loading process. But if any of these controls systems were defective or its level detectors incorrectly regulated, there was a risk of product overflow, resulting in a spill at the loading plant.

The new SIMAC-ICOMPP System requires the purge of all compartments to be done thoroughly before starting the loading process, controlling this operation automatically, to avoid the minimum but unwanted mixtures of different products of successive loads (which may affect its quality thereof), ensuring and thus complementing the procedures established by CLH to guarantee an excellent provision of services to its customers.

Also, the unloading at the Service Stations is performed either during night hours or during business hours, but now always with the intervention and supervision of a responsible employee of the Service Station, that verifies the amounts used and controls the correct match between the product contained in the compartment (in accordance with the accompanying delivery note printed on paper), and the receiving tank. However, sometimes exceptionally, human error occurs, which can generate serious issues due to product mixing or product contamination in those tanks, with a laborious and expensive solution.

SIMAC-ICOMPP System, developed applying CLH’s extensive experience and built at MONTREL Factory of Seville, is born with the fundamental objective of improving quality control and safety during the loading and unloading process of more than 5,000 tank trucks assigned (only at Spain) to the transportation and distribution of petroleum products. This System is also designed to be applied in other countries, both in Europe (there is a single European Community legislation that oversees the transport of dangerous goods), and the rest of the world, since this activity is governed by very similar international standards.

Among other aspects, the implementation of SIMAC-ICOMPP System allows:

- Ensure the proper association between compartments-arms-products, preventing product load in case of error.
 
- Prevent the scheduling and loading of higher quantities than the capacity of tank truck compartments, which are duly identified by its TAG’s.

- Ensure and monitor the complete absence of residual product in the tank trucks before loading, as it verifies that the purging operation was thorough and successful.

- Record the result of the load of each compartment in its TAG, constituting a complete and authentic electronic record of the same, which can be read and / or downloaded telematically in the Service Station.

Accordingly, SIMAC-ICOMPP System provides an important additional improvement in the safety of loading and unloading process of tank trucks, avoiding potential overfilling, spillage and/or product contamination in tank trucks and Service Stations tanks, generally derived from possible human failures in the driver’s operation. It also facilitates implementation of safer loading and unloading procedures, fully automated and/or unattended.

This SIMAC-ICOMPP System has been jointly developed by CLH and MONTREL, with close collaboration of Hamburg SENING division of FMC Technologies multinational..

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