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APC vs Toddlers

Over the last few weeks, I have been commissioning a couple of new Advance Process Control (APC) schemes within the refinery and it occurs to me that this is very similar to looking after a toddler in the house.

Watching a Toddler

When looking after the little one, you can ask him to help you by putting some toys away or getting a (plastic) plate out of the cupboard. Most of the time he will want to be helpful and will do as you ask. Occasionally however he decides that this is bad idea and decides to have a fit and throw everything everywhere, making a much bigger mess than you started with.

Watching a New APC

When commissioning a new control scheme it is a similar situation. When you ask it to make a move, it should adjust the process just enough to help you get it to the optimum position. Occasionally however it decides to do something silly and, like the toddler, makes a bigger mess than when you started.

Basically, I don't get to relax.

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