I had a chance to speak with Peter Guilfoyle, VP Marketing, Northwest Analytics (NWA), at the ARC Industrial Forum. Northwest Analytics specializes in offering manufacturing analytics software, NWA Focus EMI®, that provides the user the ability to use data that is already being collected in process historians, LIMS, MES and other systems to do real time process control in order to keep a product on specification. The software has analytics-based alarms that tells operators, process engineers, and plant managers if processes are deviating from their ideal operating state. The software monitors several key process variables that are essential to producing a high quality product. The objective is real time analytics-based control, rather than historical. The software is designed, on the back end, to use industry-standard connectivity protocols to connect directly with any data source: Sequel, Oracle, SAP, etc.
It is important to note that although NWA Focus EMI concentrates on analytics-based process control, it is not a control system that acts on the process. FOCUS monitors processes and notifies users of potential and developing problems in the plant. Companies like Dow and Air Liquide have found marked success using FOCUS.
Here are some of the key highlights of Northwest Analytics FOCUS software:
- User friendly front end dashboard
- Analytics based alarms
- Link to user developed decision tree
- Connectors to many different database platforms