Simplification of Data Acquisition in Process Integration Retrofit Studies Based on Uncertainty and Sensitivity Analysis

Riccardo Bergamini*, Tuong-Van Nguyen, Brian Elmegaard

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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    Process integration methodologies proved to be effective tools in identifying energy saving opportunities in the industrial sector and suggesting actions to enable their exploitation. However, they extensively rely on large amounts of process data, resulting in often overlooked uncertainties and a significant time-consumption. This might discourage their application, especially in non-energy intensive industries, for which the savings potential does not justify tedious and expensive analysis. Hereby a method aimed at the simplification of the data acquisition step in process integration retrofit analysis is presented. Four steps are employed. They are based on Monte Carlo techniques for uncertainties estimation and three methods for sensitivity analysis: Multivariate linear regression, Morris screening, and Variance decomposition-based techniques. Starting from rough process data, it identifies: (i) non-influencing parameters, and (ii) the maximum acceptable uncertainty in the influencing ones, in order to reach reliable energy targets. The detailed data acquisition can be performed, then, on a subset of the total required parameters and with a known uncertainty requirement. The proposed method was shown to be capable of narrowing the focus of the analysis to only the most influencing data, ultimately reducing the excessive time consumption in the collection of unimportant data. A case study showed that out of 205 parameters required by acknowledged process integration methods, only 28 needed precise measurements in order to obtain a standard deviation on the energy targets below 15 and 25% of their nominal values, for the hot utility and cold utility respectively.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number108
    JournalFrontiers in Energy Research
    Number of pages19
    Publication statusPublished - 2019


    • Data acquisition
    • Monte Carlo
    • Process integration
    • Retrofit
    • Sensitivity analysis
    • Simplification
    • Uncertainty analysis


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