Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 21

PLANT SAFETY MATTERS

OTS systems can demonstrate a full range of operations,
including normal and abnormal situations, in simulated, yet
safe environments.

factors, including best practices and modern tools for
ensuring safety in today's industrial operations.

Does automation reduce safety?
"On one hand," Willetts said, "technological advancements are making plants smarter by automating
dangerous tasks and reducing human involvement. But,
they're also creating safety issues." Consider the growing
numbers of plant control loops that are managed by a
single operator. As a result, two issues emerge:
■ The volume of accident instances increases across a
broad span of single-person operations.
■ The dwindling ability or time for the one person
responsible for the multiple, automated control loops
to manage abnormal situations.
Couple this greater complexity of tasks with the growing

The Case for Virtual Operator Training Simulators
Dr. Ian Willetts
Schneider Electric Software
What can be done to address the
potential for injury in today's industrial
settings? Improved education and
training must be elevated in importance
and implemented as a standard routine.
This training and education should
demonstrate the challenges faced on the
job, ensuring that today's workforce will
be prepared to make the right decision-on the fly, whenever and wherever
necessary-to maintain the highest
possible safety standards. But how do
we ensure high-quality, modern training
and educational practices that meet the
needs of digitally transformed plants?
Enter operator-training simulators
(OTS). With an OTS system, personnel
benefit from virtual plant replicas with
highly realistic graphics that can closely
mirror their actual work environments.
These systems can be embedded in
design-, operation-, and corporatetraining practices, creating a framework
that allows companies to methodically
produce sound safety training for their
plant staff.

SEPTEMBER 2017

An OTS can demonstrate the full
range of operations, including normal
and abnormal situations, in a simulated,
yet safe environment. This enables
operators to identify and understand
potential red flags that may arise in
real-life scenarios. Examples include
simulation of a fire incident at a plant,
a sudden appearance of a toxic vapor
cloud, or simply, how to respond to
a loss of power or other plant upset.
Simulating these types of situations in a
lifelike way prepares operators to handle
potentially life-threatening and intense
situations should they ever occur in the
plant.
Modern OTS training systems can
also immerse users in a virtual-reality
(VR) experience that creates an
environment for teaching control-room
operators, maintenance teams, and
field personnel to collaborate. Team
and role-playing exercises can be
taught and challenged, with the end
result being a group of workers that is
better prepared to avoid future safety

incidents. Augmented reality (AR) adds
instant access to new levels of data that
can create a highly immersive training
environment that has never existed
before. What this means is that it is
no longer considered a chore to read
training manuals and take a test.
Some managers may run on the
"it won't happen to me" mentality, and
assume that their operations are immune
to safety incidents. That's not reality.
Safety incidents can occur anywhere,
anytime, and often without warning. If
and when they happen, the ability of
operators to respond appropriately could
mean the difference between a small
inconvenience, a major production
shutdown, or even loss of life.
Advanced VR/AR-enabled OTS
systems are already modernizing the
face of plant safety. They're also poised
to continue evolving and providing
further benefits to plants as OTS and
simulation-based solutions move to
cloud-based learning-management
systems with ever-increasing detail.

MAINTENANCETECHNOLOGY.COM | 21


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Maintenance Technology September 2017

Editorial
Uptime
On The Floor
Bionics Will Drive Future Factories
Filling The Skills Gap
Virtual Simulation and Plant Safety
Update Grounding Knowledge
Don't Overlook STF Hazards
Alternative LOTO Measures
SAP: Tips and Tricks
Compressed Air Filters
IR Inspections
Crack The Lube-Fault Code
DCIM Drives Efficiencies
Products
Ad Index
Showcase
Final Thought
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Ad
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Cover1
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Cover2
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 1
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 2
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 3
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Editorial
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 5
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Uptime
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 7
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - On The Floor
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 9
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Bionics Will Drive Future Factories
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 11
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 12
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 13
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 14
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 15
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Filling The Skills Gap
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 17
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 18
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 19
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Virtual Simulation and Plant Safety
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 21
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 22
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Update Grounding Knowledge
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 24
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 25
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Don't Overlook STF Hazards
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 27
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 28
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Alternative LOTO Measures
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 30
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 31
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 32
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - SAP: Tips and Tricks
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Compressed Air Filters
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 35
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - IR Inspections
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 37
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Crack The Lube-Fault Code
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 39
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 40
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - DCIM Drives Efficiencies
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 42
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Products
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 44
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - 45
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Ad Index
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Showcase
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Final Thought
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Cover3
Maintenance Technology September 2017 - Cover4
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