Achievements at NECI

Doubled Productivity

Performing calibrations

Beamex MC6 & Emerson's AMS

Saved millions

In start-up delays

With a seamless system

Less maintenance

Easy to use and lower costs

Multifunction calibrator

Key Points

NECI finds Emerson’s AMS Device Manager Calibration Assistant SNAP-ON combined with the Beamex MC6 calibrator and communicator an ideal calibration system for several reasons:

- Easy to use and train less experienced technicians
- Doubles the amount of work they can complete in a day with the utmost accuracy
- Ability to execute a wide variety of calibrations with agility using one device
- Reduces the amount of equipment required to maintain and carry in the field
- Saves time of manually populating or adjusting vital data

About NECI

For over 50 years, NECI has provided field services for nearly all process plant instrumentation. Their comprehensive line of services includes calibration, installation, and startup services, as well as support with process development, general-use equipment, benchtop analyzers, CMMS support, utility optimization, and environmental safety. As an Emerson Impact Partner and full-service organization, they offer customized solutions to reduce performance issues or failure resulting from equipment age, calibration drift, or even pre-existing design, installation, and startup issues.

Helping their customers with high-quality, critical calibrations

While working at a waste-to-energy power plant, Antonio Vega, Calibration Supervisor at NECI, found a level transmitter was configured with the wrong range. For decades, the power plant dealt with motors burning out on annually, because the instrument incorrectly showed oil in the lube system. In fact, the power plant hired an additional technician to frequently monitor the system because of this ongoing issue. Antonio was able to configure with instrument correctly using the MC6’s built-in HART communicator. “All in all,” he said, “this probably cost them $50,000, plus the extra resources and time to manually correct the error. Our customers can trust us because we help them find and fix their problems.” Because Antonio Vega was able to solve this long-time issue, the power plant continues employ NECI to solve additional problems.

Reliable tolerances

More recently at a combined cycle plant, NECI was called upon to perform calibrations for around 20 instruments. The technicians at the plant lacked confidence in their measurements after noticing the DCS was scaling. Antonio found the instruments had previously been calibrated using standards that were not accurate enough for the process. Every instrument he found was between 1 to 6% out of tolerance. After bringing them back into an acceptable tolerance using the MC6, the scaling issues in the DCS have been resolved and do not have to be checked as often. Antonio said, “I’ve heard people say that Beamex is too expensive, but if you use low-quality equipment, your results are the same—low quality. After seven years of using Beamex, I can’t even imagine how I would perform calibrations without Beamex.”

Long-time user

As a long-time Beamex customer, NECI has used Beamex MC5 calibrators integrated with Emerson's AMS Device Manager via the Calibration Assistant SNAP-ON application to perform and document their work for many years. Today, they benefit from the advanced functionality of the latest Beamex MC6 calibrator. Additionally, they can take advantage of the new communication option between AMS and the MC6, which Emerson and Beamex recently released. In the future, NECI may opt to take advantage of the higher-level features of Beamex CMX calibration management software.

More benefits with the MC6

NECI explored the new options and calibration tools that are currently available. They noticed many improvements from the MC5 to the MC6. It is more ergonomic, easier to hold, the internal battery and connection ports have been improved, and the HART communicator is robust. Accessories, such as hose kits and communication cables, are standardized and less cumbersome to use. They also noted the MC6 has the capability to store a large number of tags which work effectively for loading multiple routes.

Practical Usability

In comparison to other tools, NECI is pleased that the communication functionality with the Beamex MC6 is more practical. For example, with the proper user rights, if a route is loaded in the MC6 and it is discovered that an instrument’s range or engineering units were changed, it is possible to make changes on the fly. With other calibrators, they would be required to go back to AMS to change the specifications before reloading the information to the calibrator. “This small detail makes a big difference to us,” explains Bryan Harris, Manager of Instrument & Valve Services at NECI. “It saves a lot of wasted time and makes us agile, so we can make the changes immediately when it is necessary.” Finally, many of the plants NECI services utilize the Beamex CMX calibration software. The MC6 enables them to populate their databases—an additional time saver.

Double performance

“We found that when using the Beamex MC6 with AMS, we are able to perform double the amount of calibrations in the same amount of time,” Bryan continues. “For example, in situations where we performed 12-13 instruments a day, we can now complete 24-30. It doubles productivity while increasing accuracy of the documentation.”

Wide variety of applications

In addition to efficiency, NECI needs the ability perform a wide variety of calibrations, many with high accuracy requirements and that were complex, such as multivariable instruments. The advanced accuracy and all-in-one capability of the MC6 allows them to perform static pressure tests with the high-pressure module and differential pressure on low pressures with the built in internal modules. “Other equipment would require multiple external pressure modules for us to manage. The MC6 does not, which MC6 allows us to carry less in the field. It makes executing our job easier,” Antonio states.

Easy to train new techs

Furthermore, NECI found the Beamex MC6 offers improved functionality that makes it easier for less experienced technicians. “The intuitive graphic interface guides the user on how and where to connect, whereas the MC5 required you to reference to the manual if you weren’t familiar with it. The instruments are also protected, so for example, technicians don’t source voltage when it is loop powered. This also brings consistency and standardization to our processes so that everyone performs calibrations in the same way. The learning curve is shortened, and the process is almost dummy proofed,” Bryan emphasizes.

Saved millions

Bryan finishes, “There’s power in a standardized system and processes. Recently, we were called into a new power plant that was going through its first outage. They failed to turn on the heat trace to their outdoor pressure transmitters and the temperature dropped below freezing. The legs on the instruments froze. We were called out for emergency help. Because of the standardization, we did not have to waste time finding the proper ranges or tolerances to calibrate the instrumentation. We were able to calibrate what was salvageable and replace what was not. The system gave us the ability to get the plant up and running in two days. Without the system, the plant would have missed their start up deadline and could have cost them millions of dollars a day.”