August 2000

Instrumentation/Safety

Safety instrumented system design: valuable lessons learned

Reduce refinery risks by applying new methods based on information acquired from previous experiences

Gruhn, P., ICS Triplex, a Rockwell Automation Company

Valuable lessons can be learned from control and safety system failures. Facilities without catastrophic events may actually contain hidden flaws that were simply never revealed. It is only when known boundaries are exceeded, and systems fail as a result, that we actually learned where we went wrong. The author presents important lessons learned on safety instrumented system design to help reduce accidents. Engineering is a bold discipline. Engineers are always reaching for new heights, trying new materials and reaching for greater efficiencies. Unfortunately, part of that process means we occasionally exceed known boundaries. It is regrettable, but it would appear that human nature requir

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