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Importance of Pilot and Demonstration Plants for large production facilities

Technological advancements and innovation to scale-up the production is a common phenomenon in any industry, may it be mechanical, pharmaceuticals, chemical or industrial equipment. As they say, change is the only constant! And if you want to stay ahead of your competition in business, you got to accept the change. With cutting edge technology being introduced, there is always a scope for a new player to emerge, hence the only way out is to innovate and lead. But, is it that easy to just innovate and implement changed processes and methodologies? Not really. Large sized production and processing plant involves high risk and high investments, and they need to be cautiously designed and developed.
For a large size company, implementing the innovation straight from the lab, could be highly unsafe considering problematic mixing, product output and slow or hard-to-control reactions. Moreover, huge investments and time involved make things even more complicated. While some issues can be addressed in simulations, the physical version that runs in the real world will often behave differently than the simulations predict. Hence, they need a different approach of building pilot plants and demonstration plants to test the feasibility and practical implementation of the production plant.
Sometimes, the term pilot plant or demonstration plant are used interchangeably, but a demonstration module is often considered larger and more commercial than a pilot skid. Let’s know more about them.

Pilot Plant –
Pilot plant imageAs the name suggests, it’s a first sight of how the real plant will look like. A pilot plant is a smaller version of plant which is operated to find out the behavior of process before using it on a large scale industrial production. It acts as a system for hazard identification before full-scale production takes place.
A pilot plant allows you to collect actual data that can ensure smooth function of your full-scale production plant. It allows you to experiment with inputs, outputs, processing time etc. to streamline your process.
In some cases, a pilot plant may be of an optimal size that can produce specialty products in low quantities. You can stop at the pilot plant scale, produce plenty of product, and forgo a larger financial undertaking until the market demand increases.

Demonstration Plant –
Pilot plant imageDemonstration plant, larger than pilot plant, is a system used to validate the functionality of industrial production plant before building full capacity commercial plant. It is considered to be the final stage in research, development and demonstration of new process or technology being used in the plant. Demonstration plants are used to prove commercial and technical viability and prove production technology.

Benefits of demonstration plant –

  • Useful for initial production to test distribution and market development.
  • Used for testing end products and making required changes.
  • Ensures new process/production technology works fine at production level.
  • Testing the commercial viability of manufacturing method.
  • Prevention from probable production failures and hazards
  • Financial feasibility and reasonable return on investment.
  • Forecasting operational cost for running new system.

So, if you are looking to build pilot and demonstration plants for your next production plant and looking for a right design and drafting partner, get in touch with us. Indovance Inc. has years of experience and expertise in modeling that helps us understand the technology and client’s exact requirement. Indovance is a well-known brand in the manufacturing design and modeling domain for more than 15 years and has reputation of serving global clients. For more information about us and our services, reach out at +1 919-238-4044 or email us at [email protected]

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