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					                                                  Environmental Conference
                                                  September 18-20, 2005
                                                  The Fairmont Hotel
                                                  Dallas, Texas

ENV-05-188                        Implementation of a Large Real-time
                                  Environmental Data Management System

                                                  Presented By:

                                                  Paul Glaves                Claire Meurer
                                                  Mustang Engineering,       Valero Energy Corporation
                                                  Inc./ Ellipsys, Inc.       San Antonio, TX
                                                  Houston, TX

                                                  Todd Spears
                                                  Valero Energy
                                                  San Antonio, TX

                                                  Brian Funke
                                                  Valero Energy
                                                  San Antonio, TX

National Petrochemical & Refiners Association     1899 L Street, NW          202.457.0480 voice
                                                  Suite 1000                 202.429.7726 fax
                                                  Washington, DC   
       This paper has been reproduced for the author or authors as a courtesy by the National
       Petrochemical & Refiners Association. Publication of this paper does not signify that the
       contents necessarily reflect the opinions of the NPRA, its officers, directors, members, or staff.
       Requests for authorization to quote or use the contents should be addressed directly to the

National Petrochemical & Refiners Association               1899 L Street, NW         202.457.0480 voice
                                                            Suite 1000                202.429.7726 fax
                                                            Washington, DC  
  Implementation of a Large Real-time
Environmental Data Management System

                Todd Spears
                 Brian Funke
                Claire Meurer

         Valero Energy Corporation
            San Antonio, Texas


                 Paul Glaves

     Mustang Engineering / Ellipsys, Inc.
              Houston, Texas

               Presented at the

   2005 Environmental & Safety Conference
         September 19 and 20, 2005

                Dallas, Texas

                  Page 1

Valero Energy Corporation (Valero) has installed and is currently completing the
implementation of a real-time environmental data management system (EDMS) project at
the Corpus Christi refinery (capacity of 340,000 barrels per day). The principal purpose
is to enhance the existing calculations and reporting system that used spreadsheets with
continuous, real-time calculations and monitoring of air emissions. The real-time
notification of environmental staff when a reportable quantity (RQ) violation has
occurred was viewed as critical enhancement. This project was the final test for selection
of a corporate standard real-time EDMS solution that will be deployed to many of the
domestic Valero refineries.

This paper presents the background for pursuing a corporate real-time EDMS to replace
the legacy air calculations, the pilot and project scope of the large Corpus Christi system,
and the benefits and challenges in the Corpus Christi implementation. With the success
of this initial project, Valero has begun corporate-wide deployment of the real-time
environmental package, E!CEMS.


Valero Energy Corporation recently became the largest refining company in North
America with 18 refineries, 16 in the United States. In early 2004, Valero was pursuing a
corporate standard for air emission calculations that met their requirements using an off-
the-shelf software product. With refining operations in eight states with varying permits,
the challenge was to find a product that was flexible in configuration to handle the unique
demands of each site.

The three different components to the Valero air emission calculations are:

•   Real-time Emissions
•   Monthly Emissions
•   Title V

Limited real-time calculations of critical air emissions were being performed in many
Valero refineries on a case-by-case basis, including Corpus Christi. The quest to improve
air emissions monitoring made real-time calculations and associated notification of
violations very appealing. Using real-time monitoring also addresses growing pressure to
monitor and report emissions faster. An example of this is the HRVOC monitoring rules
for non-attainment areas that require hourly monitoring of emissions under current rules.
These pressures have increased the demand on the environmental staff time since many
of the air emission calculations are desktop applications, such as Microsoft Excel, that
require user intervention.

                                         Page 2
The use of common solutions such as Microsoft Excel or Microsoft Access databases has
limitations. These include:

•   Single or limited number of environmental staff who ‘own’ the desk-top application
•   Requires interaction by staff to execute the desk-top application ad hoc for data
    collection and updated calculations
•   Enterprise concerns:
    o Reliability
    o Security
    o Audit capability – corrections to data are commonly not “auditable”

Many “top-down” solutions are available. These often do not start with the real-time data
available in the process data historian. This real-time data is required for air emissions
calculations and monitoring. Often these packages are focused on other needs such as
waste, compliance management, etc.

Valero Challenge

                                        Page 3

As stated above, the key corporate objective was to identify a system that could enhance
the air emissions calculations, event detection and automatic notification. The use of a
real-time solution was appealing. Also, Valero desired a system that had the flexibility to
offer a common solution to handle air emissions in many of their refineries in the United

Business objectives include leveraging the data available in the existing process historian
to be proactive in detecting violations in real-time. By ensuring that violations requiring
notification of the authorities are detected in real-time, the risk of fines is reduced. Staff
time to collect, calculate and evaluate all of the air emissions data is also decreased. The
system would focus on the events that require attention while the emissions calculations
that are within the normal range are collected with limited staff intervention. A system of
this type is expected to increase data accuracy while being a robust solution that is not
dependent on the limited number of staff members familiar with the operation of the
desk-top based air emissions applications.

Identified Project Drivers

As a part of the evaluation of possible software packages, the following attributes were
identified as project drivers:

•   Real-time Data Requirements
•   Data Historians – AspenTech InfoPlus.21™, OSIsoft PI™, and Honeywell
•   Analytical Data Systems (CEMS, LIMS, etc.)
•   Unattended Calculations
•   Real-time Exceedance Events Detection & Notification
•   New Capabilities (Data Recovery, Data Substitution, etc.)
•   Web Enabled
•   Enterprise-grade Security and Audit Capability
•   Existing Support Infrastructure
•   Additional Savings

                                          Page 4
Identified Options

The principal options considered were the following:

•   Desktop Solutions – These are commonly done in Microsoft Excel or perhaps a
    database like Microsoft Access. Some of the issues with this type of solution are the
    corporate concern for reliability, security and audit trail. These applications are not
    generally real-time and the solution can be less than robust depending on the
    complexity of the calculations. Any events and notifications of violations will
    commonly depend on execution of the application by the staff.
•   “Top-down” Solution Components – Some these software solutions include
    Essential Suite™, Enviance®, and ESP opsEnvironmental™. These packages do not
    typically     include    real-time    data    collection,    calculation   and    event
    detection/notification. They are commonly used for other specific needs such as
    waste, compliance management, etc.
•   New approach – Leveraging the presence of process data historians, real-time
    calculations were viewed as a critical advantage to meet the objectives and project
    drivers. To deliver the greatest value, real-time detection of events and automatic
    notifications were deemed a critical advantage. This is especially true for refineries
    in non-attainment regions that will be required to monitor HRVOC emissions on an
    hourly basis according to current rules. The ability to have a free standing database
    that is largely configured by the environmental staff was also identified as being very
    desirable. By interfacing with the process historian to collect data, the risk of
    affecting process operations is effectively eliminated.

The software package of choice was Mustang/Ellipsys’ E!CEMS™ Real-time
Environmental Data Management System. The initial step was a pilot that has now been
followed by a full deployment at the Valero Corpus Christi refinery.

                                         Page 5
            System Overview

            The figure below shows the system overview for the latest version of E!CEMS.

                    Real-time Historian Server
 CEMS               Hardware-                                                                      Manually
Analyzer              specific                                                        Lab Data     Entered
                     Interface                                       Interface
 Data                                                                                               Data
                                     Real-time Historian
 Source                                                                                 Other
                      specific                                         OPC
 Process                                                                              Real-time
                     Interface                                       Interface
   Data                                                                               Historians

                                        OPC Driver for                                       Standard real-time
                                          Real-time                                           historian client
                                          Historian                                                tools

                    E!CEMS Server        E!CEMS Read                E!CEMS
                    Windows 2000         & Write-back              Calculation
                    IIS 5                   Module                   Engine
                    .Net Framework
                                       MS SQL                 E!CEMS History Data
                                       Server DB
                       ODBC Client
                         for SQL             E!CEMS               Raw Values,
                          Server           Configuration     Aggregates, Calculated
                                               Data          Results, Events, Tasks

                        E!CEMS Data Access Layer (VB .Net)
                                                                                      Internet Explorer

                                               E!CEMS Presentation Layer
                                                      (ASP .Net)

                                                   Page 6
“Work Groups” Overview
The figure below shows the work groups that utilize or support the E!CEMS system.

                                      Page 7
E!CEMS Product Features

The E!CEMS product features that were identified as key for a possible corporate-wide
solution are summarized below:

•   Data Acquisition – Collection of historical data from a process data historian was an
    important feature. Adding calculations after emissions are required are now possible
    using E!Catchup to calculate the emissions using historical data.
•   Intelligent Calculations
    o Data Aggregation: Starting with the ability to configure a wide range of data
        aggregation types is critical to meeting permit requirements. Examples of
        aggregates include block hourly averages, 24 hour rolling totals calculated hourly
        or daily, month-to-date totals daily and year-to-date totals daily.
    o Engineering Units: The calculations handle engineering units automatically. This
        was expected to reduce the amount of time to implement the project and would
        reduce maintenance time when the units of field measurements are changed.
    o Formulas: The use of formulas for all calculations enhances the reliability of the
        calculations. It also allows for propagation of formula changes globally. The use
        of formulas was deemed an advantage for demonstrating calculation methods
        during audits.
    o Data Substitution: Using data substitution, missing or errant data could be input or
        corrected. All dependent calculations are then automatically updated. Using the
        change log, all data substitutions could then be identified during an audit.
•   Events, Tasks, & Notification
    o Events: A wide range of events can be configured. Events are stored in the
        database and can be retrieved with a search tool by a number of criteria. Events
        can be created as a warning of approaching limits as well as triggering permit
        limits events that require notification of the on-call staff for notification of the
        authorities when an RQ is violated.
    o Scheduled Tasks: Scheduled tasks are one of the two types of tasks. One example
        of a scheduled task includes automatic generation of reports for storage or
        printing for morning reports. Another is reminding staff to enter reason and
        corrective action codes for events that have been triggered.
    o Notification: The other type of task is e-mail notification when an event is
        triggered. This method can be used to contact staff such as the operations
        supervisor, the on-call environmental staff and the E!CEMS administrator. Each
        event notification is configurable as to who is to receive the notification.
•   Reporting – A full range of standard reports are available for configuration. These
    include summary, change log, compliance, downtime summary, drift check summary,
    event list, performance summary, as well as startup, shutdown, and malfunction
    (SSM). Reports generated in HTML can be exported to Adobe Acrobat (pdf) and
    Microsoft Word files.

                                         Page 8
•   Enterprise Features
    o Security: Using the Microsoft network logins, E!CEMS security can be
       configured to manage the access of information in each E!CEMS database. Many
       will likely be given access view reports and events. Fewer will have additional
       access to the add input to tasks. Only administrators will have the ability to fully
       configure E!CEMS.
    o Web-based: Providing access via the corporate Intranet, each refinery’s E!CEMS
       system can be configured by the E!CEMS administrator and viewed by others
       who have been given the security rights to access E!CEMS.
    o Date Retention: Systems are commonly configured to store data for 5 years or
    o Change Log: The change log collects and stores all changes made to the system.
       This includes all configuration changes as well as data substitutions. The user and
       the changes are identified. The change log can be searched using a calendar
•   Analyzer Management – Although not planned at this time for the Corpus Christi
    implementation, cylinder gas audit (CGA) data can be managed using E!CEMS. In
    addition, downtime tracking and drift checks can also be performed.

Corpus Christi Pilot

For the pilot, Valero selected their Corpus Christi refinery as the site. Corpus Christi was
expanded in 2001 when a neighboring refinery was acquired. This new section is now
referred to as the East Plant while the original facility is referred to as the West Plant

The East Plant is operated under a separate permit. A new permit was pending and more
active monitoring of current conditions was planned. The West Plant was performing the
emissions calculations in a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet that was run on an engineer’s
desktop overnight or could be manually executed during the work day. The spreadsheet
collected hourly data from the process data historian and performed air emission
calculations. The spreadsheet was nearly 7 megabytes with 55 separate worksheets for
the heaters, heavy oil cracker (HOC) and the sulfur recovery units (SRUs). The East
Plant was contemplating configuring a similar spreadsheet to support the requirements of
their new permit.

The objective of the pilot was to demonstrate the ability to provide the calculations in real
time for select units in the East Plant. In addition, a heater with CEMS for NOx and CO
was configured by the Valero staff with support from the configuration team.

                                         Page 9
The functionalities demonstrated that were important to the evaluation team included the

•   Automatic notification of critical events such as RQ violations
•   Configurable by staff via web pages
•   Reports are viewable via web pages on the Intranet by others
•   Automatic data recovery
•   Data substitution
•   Change Log

The benefit of automatic notification of critical events based on emissions totals
calculated in real-time was identified as a very important feature. By sending the
notification by e-mail to the on-call pager, the risk of a fine due to late notification of the
authorities is reduced.

Configuration by the staff was an important requirement. The designated E!CEMS
administrator will have the ability to change the calculations, configure events and tasks
via web pages with limited assistance required from the data historian team.

The ability to provide access to reports via web pages on the Intranet was demonstrated.
This functionality was not available with the spreadsheet. Reports from the spreadsheet
were configured but only in hard copy for morning reports via the early morning
execution of the spreadsheet. Up to the minute reports, say at the end of the business day,
required the one engineer responsible for the spreadsheet to execute it for review of the
emissions in question.

Data substitution to correct errant or missing process data was viewed as an important
feature. With data substitution, the dependent calculations are automatically re-executed.
In combination with the change log that records the data substitution, an audit is much
easier to perform.

Corpus Christi Initial Deployment

With the successful completion of the pilot, Valero opted to perform the first project at
Corpus Christi. This initial deployment had the following scope:

EMISSION SOURCES                          #   SPECIES CALCULATED
Heaters – NOx/CO CEMS                     15  NO2, NO, CO, VOC, PM, SO2
Heater – Non-CEMS                         63  NOx, CO, VOC, PM, SO2
Control Valves to Flare                   38  NO2, NO, CO, H2S, SO2, C2=, C3=, C3,
(mostly valve position, some flows)           IC4, NC4, IC5, NC5, NeoC5, C6+, iC4=, 1-
                                              C4=, c-2-c4=, t-2-C4=, 1,3-C4==
Sulfur Recovery Units                       4 NOx, CO, PM, VOC, SO2, H2S
FCC/HOC                                     2 NOx, CO, PM, PMSO4, VOC, SO2, H2SO4
Engines / Turbines                          7 NOx, CO, VOC, PM, SO2

                                          Page 10
This rather large scope was approached as follows:

•   Aggregates – The aggregate required were identified and configured.
•   Calculations – Different types of calculations were identified as common such as
    heaters with CEMS and heaters without CEMS. A special challenge was the HOC
    for the West Plant. An extremely detailed calculation in the spreadsheet was
    converted to a series of formulas. From the HOC, the East Plant FCC emissions
    calculations were configured. The control valve flow calculations based on valve
    position were required to estimate flow to the flares. Also, each control valve could
    use a lab data for the composition or a manually entered composition. A section of
    the heater with CEMS calculation flow chart is shown below:

Example: Calculation Flow Chart

                                        Page 11
A unique part of the scope was the hourly tracking of exceedances to monitor reportable
quantities (RQ) using 24 hour rolling aggregates.

•   RQ Calculations – Using hourly averages of process data, emission totals are
    calculated. If an emissions limit has been set for a species, the limit is checked to
    determine if an exceedance has occurred. A 24 hour rolling total of the species
    exceedance is calculated each hour.
•   RQ Event Detection and E-mail Notification Task – The rolling 24 hour total of
    each species exceedance is checked in a permit limit event for each species RQ limit.
    The types of units checked include the heaters, HOC/FCC, sulfur recovery units, and
    control valves. When a 24 hour rolling total exceedance violates a species RQ limit,
    a task has been configured to automatically notify the on-call environmental staff for
    notification of the authorities.
•   RQ Reporting – When a RQ event has been detected, a report will need to be filed.
    The staff determines the start and end times for the event. To assist in the reporting,
    E!CEMS was configured to allow collecting of the total exceedances. Using data
    substitution., the staff member sets a flag that in turn places the exceedances in RQ

The project is nearing completion as the final checkout is performed on the calculations
prior to activating the task notifications. Additional reporting will also need to be
completed. Migration to the latest version of E!CEMS was recently started.

                                         Page 12
Benefits Realized

The following are the benefits realized by this project:

•   Better Operations/Maintenance Integration
    o Real-time Notification – Reduced Risk of Fine
           RQ Exceedances – Now notifications to the on-call staff is based on an RQ
           violation that is confirmed to exceed the species limit for the 24 hourly rolling
           Emission Rate Exceedances – Long before a RQ is violated, when an
           emission rate has been exceeded and exceedances have begun to accrue, the
           event will be detected in real-time and a notification to the operations team
           will provide operations with feedback that an emission event has started. The
           operations staff will have the opportunity to make adjustments to the process
           to reduce emissions, if possible.
•   Improved Maintainability of Emissions Data
    o Standardization of Calculations – With the use of formulas that are used in
       many calculations, the calculations are consistent. The calculations can also be
       more easily shown during audits.
    o Centralized Repository of Emissions Data – The separate database with air
       emissions is viewed as a positive. This database is managed by the environmental
       staff with limited support required from the process data historian staff.
    o 5 years of On-line Emissions Data –With a separate, smaller database, five year
       of on-line emissions data will be collected.
•   Adaptability for future regulations
    o Title V, HRVOC, etc.
    o Allows addition of future Sources
    o Allows choice of averaging period in order to comply with regulatory

                                         Page 13
Project Challenges

The project challenges identified include:

•   Number of Emissions Calculations – The number of speciated emissions
    calculations exceeded 1,100. In addition, for species with a permit limit, a total of 5
    emissions values were calculated – total, exceedance, cap, internal reportable and RQ.
    The checkout of the calculations has proven to be challenging since the staff has had
    to perform the checkout into their already busy schedules.
•   Complex Calculations – Several of the more complex calculations such heaters with
    multiple burners and multiple fuel gas, the HOC/FCC, and the control valves were a
    challenge to checkout and troubleshoot. This included the need to interpret the
    calculations in the spreadsheet. The control valves required control valve parameters
    and the selection of either a lab value or manually entered data.
•   Data Error Handling – To leverage the capabilities of E!CEMS, the error handling
    for measurement data was an involved process.
•   Abnormal Operating Modes – As is typical in many refineries, operation modes
    change due to scheduled maintenance or other unplanned shutdowns. One example
    was the West Plant Belco unit that normally collected the HOC and two SRU
    incinerators. The SRUs normally went through individual incinerators with SO2
    measurements in the incinerator stack. From the incinerator, effluent entered the
    Belco downstream of the water wash tower for the HOC effluent. For process
    reasons, it was sometimes necessary to change the SRU effluent to bypass the
    incinerator and put the effluent upstream of the water wash tower. In this non-normal
    mode, the normal SO2 calculations for the SRU’s incinerator must be set to zero
    since the Belco stack will now measure all of the SO2 emissions. The E!CEMS
    configuration allowed the staff to change a flag for when either SRU is being directed
    to the “front end”. In addition, if the environmental staff are not informed by
    operations in time to make the change in E!CEMS at the start, they can use data
    substitution to set the flag for the missing period so that the correct emissions are
    calculated during this non-normal operating mode.
•   RQ Events – As discussed above, the handling of exceedances each hour required
    design and detailed testing of the logic to store emissions data in the five variables –
    total, exceedance, cap, internal reportable and RQ. With the 24 hour rolling total
    exceedance being calculated ever hour, an RQ event can be detected a few minutes
    after an hour is completed.

                                         Page 14
Valero’s Path Forward

With the successful initial project deployment at Corpus Christi, Valero has plans to
install E!CEMS at four refineries in 2005. Additional projects are planned for 2006.

The Corpus Christi project initially installed a version of E!CEMS that collected and
stored data in a separate process data historian. Since the initial installation, E!CEMS has
been updated to provide storage of the measurements and calculated values in a separate
database, Microsoft’s SQL Server. This separate database is exclusively used to store air
emissions data. This latest version of E!CEMS uses E!Catchup and OPC-HDA drivers to
collect historical data from the process data historians. Migration at Corpus Christi to the
latest version of E!CEMS is underway at the time that this paper was written.

                                         Page 15
      E!CEMS Product Highlights

      This section includes sample screenshots from Valero’s E!CEMS implementation:

      Example: Calculation Aggregates

                        Security Roles


                                           Page 16
        Example: Calculation Aggregates

Calculation Formula


                                   Page 17
E!CEMS – Report Types

                          Page 18
Example – Summary Report
Report Output Options

                          Page 19
Example: Events List – Permit Limits

                             Page 20
Example: E-mail Notification Task

Example: Change Log (Audit Trail)

                             Page 21

Todd Spears, has worked in the information technology project management industry for
the past 11years. He graduated with a Bachelor of Education degree from Texas Tech
University in Lubbock, and later earned a Master of Science in Business Administration
degree in Management Information Systems from Texas Tech University. He worked as
a high school teacher and coach for three years before starting his project management
career. He worked at USAA for nine years as a technical project manager in their e-
commerce department. Todd is currently employed as a Lead I/T Specialist for Valero
Energy Corporation in San Antonio, Texas.

Brian Funke has worked in the regulatory, refining, and environmental industries for over
eight years. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental
Engineering from Texas A&M University in College Station. He worked for the Texas
Commission on Environmental Quality for three years in the Title V permitting
department and as an environmental consultant for two years. Brian is currently
employed as a Senior Environmental Engineer at the Valero refinery in Corpus Christi,

Claire P. Meurer, P.E., has worked in the petrochemical, refining, public works, and
environmental industries for over 20 years. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science
degree in Chemical Engineering from Texas A&M University in College Station, and
later earned a Master of Science degree in Environmental Engineering from the
University of Texas at Austin. She served for five years in the U.S. Navy Civil Engineer
Corps, worked as an environmental consultant for 10 years, taught environmental
technology at Bee County College, and worked as a process engineer for Celanese
Chemical Company. Claire is currently employed as a Senior Environmental Engineer at
the Valero refinery in Corpus Christi, Texas.

Paul Glaves has worked in the oil and gas, refining, petrochemical and environmental
industries for 29 years. Paul has principally worked in the engineering services business.
He has experience as a process engineer, project manager, control engineer and
consultant. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering and a Masters of
Chemical Engineering, both from Rice University. Paul is currently employed as a senior
consultant with Mustang Engineering as a member of their Automation and Control
sector. He was with Ellipsys when Mustang Engineering acquired the company to form
the Advanced Applications department.

                                        Page 22

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