5 tips from Technical Services
How Solex helps navigate from pre-commissioning to operations
Author: Jamie Zachary
When it comes to troubleshooting heat transfer solutions for bulk solids, Peter Menchenton and his team have seen it all.
In fact, it’s by design.
The work handled by Menchenton, Vice-President of Operations at Solex Thermal Science, and his global technical services team reach all corners of the company – woven into the fabric of every order, from pre-commissioning and project management to spare parts and end of equipment life.
We sat down with Menchenton to get his insights into five ways Solex customers will work with the TS team – including tips beyond commissioning on how to get the most out of their existing equipment.
1. A different way of doing business
The way we do business, it’s never just an order that gets added to the pile. We ensure our technical services professionals are involved early in the process – often pre-sale – so we thoroughly understand what problem our customers are looking to solve. It also helps get projects get off the ground more efficiently and creates continuity during startup.
2. Pushing the boundaries
Solex has decades of experience in industries such as fertilizer, oilseeds and sugar. Yet we’re continuing to push the boundaries of what’s possible with our units into different types of applications and, industrial products. That means there are situations where we will conduct in-house or on-site pilot tests to better understand whether Solex heat exchange technology is a good fit.
For example, we recently conducted several months of testing for soybean meal cooling, which is a newer application for Solex. Over the years, we’ve established near global coverage with our pilot testing units for situations like this.
3. Let’s get personal
All of our customers receive a detailed IOM (Installation, Operation and Maintenance) manual with equipment delivery. The IOM manual also includes pre-commissioning and commissioning checklists – things our customers need to consider before first fills and during startup.
Our team is also available to provide whatever type of support is necessary during installation, pre-commissioning and startup, including on-site or remote training as required.
In situations where we’re installing complete systems, it’s also important for us to be on on-site for commissioning to ensure the components are properly integrated and the equipment is ready to do its job effectively.
4. Optimization and evaluation
Our team can evaluate whether your Solex equipment is operating as intended, while identifying and documenting opportunities for process and efficiency improvements.
In a recent situation, we had a customer contact us for assistance after a vibrating feeder on their sand conditioning unit was damaged. We were able to replace and actually improve the unit’s functionality by designing a feature to reduce the amount of existing head pressure on the feeder— so much so that the customer was able to remove vibrating flow aids that were previously installed on the heat exchanger’s feed chutes.
5. The next step
Over the past two decades, Solex units have become known for their reliability and performance. We also can provide spare and replacement parts – from hoses and instrumentation to gaskets and exchanger plates – that will help keep our exchangers in peak condition.
Additionally, because of our units’ modular design, it’s relatively easy to add to existing installations without adversely impacting current operations. In fact, we’re often called upon to add capacity to existing Solex technology that’s already been performing reliably for many years and sometimes decades.
This entry was last updated on July 23, 2021
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