Date: June 14, 2024 1:08 pm

The Power Behind Skids

The Power Behind Skids

Engineering Skids to Gain Operational Efficiencies

Some maybe asking – What is a Skid?

The continuous demands  placed on manufacturing, means efficiency is key. Skids offer exceptional solutions to support operational efficiencies and offer effective scalable solutions.

Skids are self-contained process systems pre-built on a sturdy frame. Think of them as mini-factories – complete with pumps, tanks, heat exchangers, and all the necessary electrical cabling and piping.

Skids are engineered to be plugged into an existing operation and come with a host of advantages for manufacturers:

  • Faster Startup: Since they arrive pre-assembled, installation time is significantly reduced. This translates to quicker product launch and faster returns on investment.
  • Reduced Costs: Skid construction often happens off-site, allowing for better quality control and potentially lower labour costs.
  • Compact Footprint: Skids are designed to maximise space efficiency. Their modular nature allows for stacking equipment, leading to a smaller overall footprint to be accommodated in often restrictive spaces.
  • Portability: Need to relocate a process? No problem! Skids are built for easy transportation, allowing for flexibility in your production line layout.

The Power behind Skids

Once installed, the skid will need the required interconnecting pipework, electrical connection and automation instrumentation for control and monitoring.

Coming in a range of sizes and complexities, skids are designed to handle tasks like:

  • Blending
  • Distillation
  • Chemical processing…and much more

It is then down to the electrical engineers to power the skid and interlink with your systems, as needed.

Electrical Design Engineers Putting the Power in Skids

Electrical engineers play a crucial role in bringing skids to life.

Through specially designed control panels and appropriate electrical systems the electrical engineers will design a system to meet the skid process requirements and installation needs:

  • Motor Control and Sensors: Electrical equipment will need to be powered and control systems installed. This ensures the equipment within the skid operates efficiently and meets production targets. The appropriate instrumentation is selected to allow for real-time monitoring of critical parameters, such as pressure, level, temperature, and flow.
  • Control Panels: The brains of the operation! Automation engineers will design and integrate control panels that house all the necessary electrical components for skid operation. This includes relays, contactors, and circuit breakers to manage power distribution and ensure safety.

The design and build of the control panel, house essential components to control & operate the skid:

    • Variable frequency drives (VFDs) for controlling motor speed.
    • Soft starters to reduce motor inrush current.
    • Relays and contactors for switching operations.
    • Programmable logic controllers (PLCs)

PLCs are the workhorses of control panels, housing the programmable logic that automates the entire process.

  • Remote Input/Output (RI0) modules which include Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs). These sophisticated systems allow for advanced control and automation of the entire process, further optimising efficiency and safety.

The PLC program will manage essential aspects, such as:

    • Equipment sequencing
    • Setpoint control for temperature, pressure, or flow
    • Safety alerts and alarm generation
    • Data acquisition

Designing for Efficiency and Safety

When designing a skid’s electrical system, there are two principles that are crucial:

  • Efficiency: Utilising energy-efficient motors and VFDs will have a significant impact on your energy consumption along with optimising control strategies to minimise power consumption.
  • Safety: Safety is crucial and a priority. Incorporating the correct grounding, overload protection, and emergency shutdown systems is paramount.

Skids with Electrical Design Automation Provides Manufacturing Efficiencies

Skids designed alongside electrical automation engineering form a vital part of modern manufacturing, and are the key to efficient, effective, and safe operations.

By understanding the core components and design considerations, you can ensure your skids run smoothly and contribute to a productive manufacturing environment and maximises operational efficiencies.

Delta Rock – The Power Behind Skids

Experts in industrial electrical and automation engineering, we are the trusted partner to leading skid design engineers.

Our in-house team have the experience and expertise in automation design, manufacture, installation, and commissioning, along with industrial electrical engineering to design. We install the complete electrical cabling systems to safely and efficiently power and control skids.

If you are looking to:

      • Expand your manufacturing system
      • Replace obsolescent parts and systems
      • Gain operational efficiencies for your future operations

Then contact our team to discuss how Delta Rock can support your project from design to commission.

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