PPG installed wireless temperature-monitoring devices from Emerson Process Management at its Lake Charles, La., refinery, allowing plant operators to monitor steam flow and identify cold spots quickly and effectively.

PPG Industries has installed and commissioned Austin, Texas-based Emerson Process Management’s Smart Wireless solution at its chemical division facility in Lake Charles, La. The production installation follows field trials of Emerson’s self-organizing wireless networks conducted by a PPG cross-functional process and corporate IT personnel team. The team verified the reliability and coexistence performance of the network, and also deployed it in the plant.

The network uses ten wireless Rosemount transmitters for pipeline and steam header temperature measurement, which enables operators to watch for cold spots and adjust steam throughput. PPG also plans to use the wireless tools to perform temperature profiling of the entire plant, enabling load sharing and balancing to maintain superheated steam plant-wide.

PPG has commissioned eight wireless Rosemount transmitters on the self-organizing mesh for tank-level measurements to provide backup of primary radar level measurements, helping to ensure level control.

Wireless transmitters allow PPG to install instrumentation that would normally be cost-prohibitive in the plant, which covers approximately 765 acres and is dense with pipes, buildings and equipment. The wireless devices have the potential to increase process reliability and provide low-cost redundant measurement, according to PPG.