chemical line production line pigging systems

In the chemical industry, process efficiency, safety and sustainability are crucial.

As manufacturers strive to optimise production processes and minimise environmental impact, innovative solutions like HPS Advanced Liquid Product Recovery (Pigging) Technology are increasingly valuable.

HPS Advanced Pigging Technology offers significant environmental and economic benefits, making it a key component of modern chemical manufacturing.

This blog explores how pigging systems contribute to sustainability and cost savings in the chemical industry.

Understanding Pigging Technology

Pigging involves using a specialist cylindrical shaped projectile (called a ‘Pig’) to reclaim residual liquid from the inside of process pipelines.

The pigging operation usually takes place during batch changeovers or at the end of a product run.

The pig is introduced into the pipeline, typically from a designated launch station. It is propelled through the pipe by liquids or gases.

As it travels through the pipe, it removes nearly all traces of residual product, ensuring that the pipeline is clear and ready for the next process. In HPS pigging systems, this process is nearly always automated.

Pigging systems are extremely versatile, applicable in various process and industrial industries such as the chemical sector, where maintaining product integrity and minimising waste are paramount.

chemical processing and production pigging tech

Environmental Benefits of Pigging Systems

As the chemical industry increasingly focuses on sustainability, pigging systems have emerged as a key technology for reducing environmental impact. Here’s how pigging systems help the environment.

Waste Reduction

Pigging systems reclaim nearly all the product left in the pipelines after changeovers. This reduces the amount of waste that would otherwise be discarded. By recovering this product, manufacturers can reprocess or sell the product, significantly reducing their waste footprint.

Cleaning Chemicals and Agents

Traditional pipeline cleaning often involves extensive use of water, solvents and cleaning chemicals and agents. Pigging technology, by efficiently removing product residue, reduces the need for such time consuming and intensive cleaning. This leads to lower consumption of water and chemicals, which in turn decreases the volume of wastewater and chemical discharge that needs to be treated or managed.

Lower Waste Disposal and Treatment Costs

By minimising the volume of waste and reducing the need for harsh cleaning agents, automatic pigging systems help chemical manufacturers lower their overall waste disposal, treatment, and transport costs. This not only benefits the environment but also translates into substantial cost savings for the business.

Resource Efficiency

By recovering up to 99.5% of product from pipelines, pigging systems help conserve raw materials, ensuring more of the product reaches the market rather than being flushed to waste.

In this way, pigging enhances the overall efficiency of the production process while maximising the economic return from raw materials.

Lower Energy Consumption

In addition, the efficiency of HPS pigging systems often translate to lower energy consumption compared to traditional cleaning methods, further reducing the environmental impact of the manufacturing process.

Reduced Emissions

Efficient pigging reduces the need for intensive, high energy cleaning processes and the associated emissions. In processes which use an initial flush, for example with water or solvents, the high recovery rates of the HPS pig are sometimes enough to eliminate the requirement for flushing completely. Even in cases where flushing is still required, the intensity is much less with a pigging process. This contributes to lower greenhouse gas emissions and a cleaner production environment.

In an independent report conducted by Carbon-Zero, it was found pigging reduced carbon emissions by over 2 tonnes per changeover.

pigging must have for chemical manufacturers

Economic Benefits of Pigging Systems

While the environmental benefits of pigging systems are substantial, its economic advantages are just as impactful. Pigging systems contribute to significant cost savings, improved efficiency, and enhanced profitability for chemical manufacturers. Here’s how:

Increased Yields and Capacity

Instead of sending product to waste, pigging recovers it. This ensures that chemical manufacturers can continue to process it, or pack, store or sell it.

And as a direct result of these increased yields and greater capacity, manufacturers will increase their profit margins.

Reduced Waste Disposal Costs

Due to their high recovery efficiency, pigging systems dramatically lower the volume of waste that needs to be disposed of. This leads to considerable saving on waste storage, disposal and treatment, including the handling of hazardous materials.

Lower Cleaning and Labour Costs

The reduction of cleaning chemicals, solvent or water usage translates to direct cost savings. In addition, pigging systems reduce plant downtime associated with cleaning, leading to increased productivity and lower operational costs.

Moreover, by decreasing the reliance on manual labour for cleaning tasks, pigging systems lower labour costs and streamline operations.

Enhanced Process Efficiency

The streamlined pigging process reduces the time and resources needed for cleaning and maintenance, allowing for more continuous and efficient production cycles.

Regularly Compliance and Risk Management

Adhering to stringent environmental regulations can be costly. Pigging systems help ensure compliance by minimising waste and carbon emissions, therefore avoiding potential fines and legal issues.

HPS hygienic and sanitary pigging system

Specialist Technology for Aggressive Chemicals

In the chemical industry, dealing with aggressive and corrosive substances poses unique challenges. HPS Advanced Product Recovery Technology is engineered to meet those demanding conditions.

Our specialist technology is designed to meet the precise needs and requirements of each customer. These systems use materials and designs that can withstand the harshest chemicals, ensuring safe and efficient pipeline product recovery.

For example, we offer a range of pipeline pigs suitable for chemicals. This includes different types of pig made from different chemically resistant materials compatible with different chemical products, including some which are suitable for processes with certain aggressive chemicals.

Our expert system design team works closely with you from the outset of your project to understand your specific needs and recommend the best pigging solutions for your chemical process.

Real-World Impact: Case Study

Many chemical manufacturers have reported significant benefits after implementing HPS pigging technology. Leading companies such as 3M, Akzo Nobel, Basildon Chemicals, BYK, Croda, and many others trust HPS technology to optimise their operations.

For instance, Croda, a global leader in specialty chemicals, has integrated HPS pigging systems into their production processes with remarkable results. These systems have not only reduced downtime and enhanced operational safety but have also contributed to their environmental sustainability goals.

By efficiently recovering residual product, HPS pigging technology helps Croda save on energy, chemicals, and other valuable resources, thereby minimizing waste and lowering their environmental footprint.

To learn more about how HPS pigging systems are enhancing chemical production, read the full case study on our website [pigging system case study on chemical production].

Implementing Pigging Technology

Pigging systems offer a solution for the chemical industry, addressing both environmental and economic challenges. By reducing waste, conserving resources, and enhancing efficiency, pigging technology supports sustainable manufacturing practices while delivering tangible cost savings.

As the industry continues to prioritise sustainability and profitability, pigging systems are set to play a crucial role in shaping the future of chemical manufacturing.

Implementing advanced pigging systems for chemicals not only helps companies reduce their environmental footprint but it drives economic growth through improved efficiency and reduced operational costs.

Request a Pigging System Quote

So, if you manufacture chemicals and want to greatly enhance your chemical manufacturing process, please contact HPS today. You can also request a free pigging system quote. We’ll just need some information such as pipeline diameter, length, pipeline material and so on.

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