Honeywell > Case Studies > Suncor Achieves 95% Reduction in Operator Alarm Load at Fort Hills Oil Sands Mine

Suncor Achieves 95% Reduction in Operator Alarm Load at Fort Hills Oil Sands Mine

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 Suncor Achieves 95% Reduction in Operator Alarm Load at Fort Hills Oil Sands Mine - IoT ONE Case Study
Technology Category
  • Sensors - Environmental Sensors
Applicable Industries
  • Oil & Gas
  • Retail
Applicable Functions
  • Product Research & Development
Use Cases
  • Inventory Management
  • Perimeter Security & Access Control
  • System Integration
The Challenge
Upon completion of commissioning of Fort Hills site in 2018, Suncor’s control room operators faced average alarm loads 30 times higher than those recommended by alarm management standards and best practices. These alarm loads, combined with frequent alarm floods caused by plant upsets, resulted in significant operator overload that increased the risk of safety, environmental and production related incidents at the site.
The Customer
About The Customer
Suncor is one of Canada’s largest integrated energy companies, specializing in the extraction of oil sand and its subsequent upgrading and refining into high-quality oil products. Their Fort Hills mine is an open-pit truck and shovel mine capable of extracting 154,000 tons of oil sands per hour, producing 194,000 barrels of bitumen per day.
The Solution
Suncor commenced an alarm system improvement initiative, following the ANSI/ISA-18.2-2016 standards for alarm management. They developed an Alarm Philosophy and used the Honeywell Forge Alarm Management suite to identify, rationalize, design, and implement alarm changes. A multi-disciplinary team was formed, and daily meetings were held to focus on the most frequently occurring alarms. As alarm system performance improved, meetings were reduced and focus shifted to other alarm issues. The Honeywell Forge Alarm Management suite facilitated the rapid identification, investigation, and implementation of changes to reduce alarm load.
Quantitative Benefit
  • Suncor achieved a 95% reduction in alarm load, resulting in improved safety, reduced environmental risks, and increased production uptime. The use of the Honeywell Forge Alarm Management suite facilitated the speed of improvement and the ability to sustain alarm system performance.
  • This trend continued to only six  (an 80% reduction) in the following month. Over a period of two years, the team has successfully achieved and sustained a 95% reduction in alarm load that is in-line with ISA 18.2 standards.

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