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Functions Of A Terminal Automation System
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A Terminal Automation System is used in the oil and gas sector terminals to efficiently distribute oil, gas and other by-products that are required or are produced by the industry. Oil industries are usually located in Middle Eastern regions. The major oil manufacturing countries include Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates.
Other than these, most of the other countries in the world are importers or petroleum in different forms. For the entire export – import process to happen smoothly, the terminals from where the materials are shipped from or are shipped to have to be automated. The different ports usually send out or take in the products in large barrels or trucks.
There are different storage areas for specific materials. These storages are connected to loading areas with long pipes from which materials are transferred between the trucks and these storage areas. These trucks then take the material to the ports from where they are transferred to ships for shipping.
Terminal Automation Systems control everything from loading the trucks at the ports from the ships, loading the storage containers from the materials brought in by the trucks, filling the trucks again, and loading the ships again. This is a collection of different instruments and machines all of which work together to form the automated system.
The entire terminal is divided into different areas, each for a specific task, such as security, vehicle entry and exit, truck and lorry filing area and more. The control room takes care of supervision. It contains all the control panels and switches that allow monitoring and control.
The S&D building or the supply and distribution building is where the trucks are given authorization for filling. There are different areas of administrative tasks, power supply and distribution, motor control, fire and emergency systems, security systems, et cetera.
The entire terminal automation is divided into the trucks on one side and the pipes and the storage area on the other side. The former area consists of the metering and filling systems. The latter consists of the blending systems, gauging systems and other. All these work together to automate the terminal.
Terminal Automation Systems are required both in areas from where the import is done, and the export takes place. It extends from the ports to the refineries. So, the entire TAS is actually implemented over a very large area. Even though it only seems like emptying and filling trucks, the entire process is more complicated than it seems to be. Hence, it is essential to have it automated to streamline the operations.
The author is an engineering graduate and has working experience in the petrochemical industry. For more details on
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