United Process Controls (UPC) successfully completed the restructuring of heat-treat operations of a U.S.-based aircraft engine manufacturer. The project involved retrofitting the control systems of eight vacuum furnaces as well as adding SCADA to meet the new functionalities required by the company for automated workflow and scheduling efficiency. The new upgrade also provides for tighter process tolerances and frees up operator time for value-added tasks. Upgrade plans called for UPC to replace legacy process controls and HMIs with Protherm 600 controllers.         

The replacement systems now include recipe control, chart recording and temperature control for achieving tighter tolerances over wider temperature ranges. Recipe control also incorporates specific programming for automatic leak-test cycles and guaranteed soak for aerospace requirements, tasks that were previously monitored and recorded manually. In addition, the Protherm 600 controllers monitor vital process alarms and alert the operator of any critical abnormalities. This allows the operator to focus on tasks other than the constant monitoring of process conditions.