Project: Fluor Pilot Plant
Client: The University of Surrey
The University of Surrey, working in collaboration with Dr David Faraday from Evolve Leadteam Ltd, requested Strata Technology’s expertise to undertake the detailed engineering design, procurement, build, installation and commissioning of a pilot plant to demonstrate the operation and troubleshooting of a number of unit operations, including a continuous agitated reactor, coarse and fine filtration steps, carbon dioxide absorption and heat recovery, whilst producing high purity saline solutions at various concentrations.
The Fluor Pilot Plant is the centrepiece of the University’s renovation plan for their Chemical Engineering department.
The Fluor Pilot Plant has been designed using Autocad P&ID and Solidworks 3D and is operated by undergraduate students as part of their curriculum course, thus consideration was given not only for health and safety purposes but also to ensure that the students could operate a semi-commercial scale process which includes the capability to simulate problems that occur in industry, in order for them to gain experience of real-world situations and better prepare them for their future industrial careers.
The Fluor Pilot Plant also gives industry experience to trainee chemical weapons inspectors from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands, preparing for field work.
The main challenge Strata faced with this project was the limited time available for on-site installation and commissioning, due to on-going undergraduate courses and external training programmes using equipment located within the same area, and whilst working within the university’s own renovation timeline.
Strata successfully completed the Fluor Pilot Plant in early March 2017 and was officially opened in early December 2017.
At the launch event Surrey president and vice-chancellor Max Lu said that the pilot plant is “improving the quality of the practice learning” for the students, who will have enhanced skills and experience.
Also present was David Seaton, Fluor chairman and CEO, whose company sponsored the pilot plant with a donation of $300,000 to the University, said that developing future chemical engineers is in the interests of both Fluor and the UK as a whole.
“Fluor continuously invests in developing future engineers, so we are particularly pleased to work with the University of Surrey to provide third-year students with industry experience by running a small-scale manufacturing plant as part of their practical experience module” he said.
Roger Kimber, managing director of Strata Technology Ltd also commented that it was “fantastic to work on a project that will be of direct benefit to future generations of undergraduate chemical engineers”
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