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Production Process Insights

The Role of Training in Successful Sampling Startups

Posted by George Buss on 11/9/20 8:00 AM

Successful Automatic Sampling

Implementing a new sampling system within an established process requires rigorous startup procedures, complete with plantwide training for all operators. With this specialized training, plant operators will fully understand the intricacies of the sampling system and components so they can maximize the accuracy of measurements, support operator and equipment safety, and extend the life of plant assets.

essential components of start up training

Comprehensive training supports a proper startup process to prevent production delays and avoid implementation issues caused by unforeseen challenges. It verifies that equipment has been properly installed and programmed to operate as needed within established processes.

Training all operators and maintenance personnel can help shorten startup times and validate reliable performance throughout the life of the asset. With this knowledge, operators can ensure the automatic collection of representative samples is acquired on a repeated basis consistently and accurately.

Startup training should include:

  • Comprehensive list of samplers and components included in the process
  • Details about the purpose of each piece of equipment
  • How each component works within the process
  • Installation verification of components and equipment:
    • Samplers are installed at the proper location
    • Samplers are properly connected to a process line
    • Air lines are properly connected to the sampler and air set
    • Solenoid valves on the air set are wired to the controller
    • Settings, such as timers, are programmed accordingly if using an SBC controller
    • Programming is set to function with the sampler if a PLC or DCS
    • Collection container is set in place prior to sampling
  • How to safely operate each piece of sampling equipment
  • Potential equipment hazards and safety precautions
  • Sampler electrical and instrumentation training
  • General maintenance 
  • Troubleshooting tips

Once all of these elements are properly installed and staff is trained to operate them, it’s wise to conduct a sampler dry run without any product in the process to ensure the sampler is cycling, starting and stopping as programmed.

During this process, you should be able to hear the sampler cycling and you may visually see the internals moving, depending on sampler configuration. Once this is verified, you can proceed to use the sampler with process product.

Finally, operators can verify that the proper amount of sample is collected over a period of time.

Get more from your sampling equipment

Training helps your plant operators be familiar with the sampler they’re planning to operate and service. It’s critical to train any operators or subject matter experts so they can, in turn, train potential operators in the future.

However, many equipment suppliers and installers don’t provide any instrumental direction regarding function and proper usage beyond a basic instruction manual or IOM. Working with your staff and a trusted supplier will help you get the complete start-to-finish services you need for a successful startup.

Empower your employees to become sampling experts with customized, hands-on training complete with a full set of manuals for ongoing reference, as well as highly skilled technical services and products that help plants of all sizes optimize operations.


See how startup training could help your refinery. Sentry ProShield Lifecycle Services help you establish and maintain safe, reliable and efficient sampling performance.

Learn More About Sentry ProShield Lifecycle Services

Topics: Cement, Food & Beverage, Mining, Solids & Powder, Pharmaceutical, Liquid & Slurry

Written by George Buss

As one of our expert service technicians, George has been working on Sentry sampling products and systems since 2001. This means he has accumulated a wealth of knowledge and experience with Sentry sampling equipment, and is happy to share his knowledge with customers looking to ensure their sampling equipment is working optimally and efficiently. In his spare time, George can be found fixing stuff and making it work (which also sounds a lot like work, doesn’t it?)

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