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Comment Business & Economics

Keeping fast-track projects from going off the rails

By Nicholas P. Chopey |

Whether working on retrofits or new-plant construction, engineers involved with chemical-process projects nowadays are likely to find themselves under pressure to reach completion quickly, sometimes even at the cost of bypassing traditional procedures and project controls. The downside becomes a loss in predictability, in terms of costs and sometimes, paradoxically, in the very meeting of those hurry-up deadlines. Complicating the situation is the need to correlate, manage and efficiently deploy the great amounts of digital information created or called up by various parties from the inception of the project and (ideally) during the subsequent working life of the plant, process unit or other asset that the project creates or modernizes. These challenges are among the reasons why Daratech (Cambridge, Mass.) holds its annual daratechPLANT conference, the latest of which took place in Houston late last month as this issue of Chemical Engineering was en route to the printer. The meeting’s key themes aim to reflect some of the main concerns and opportunities confronting engineers and managers involved with projects, whether their employers manufacture chemical-process products, or provide engineering-procurement-construction (EPC)…
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