ARC 2011: Market Insights with Doug Donzelli, Apprion

Jim Chrzan, Publisher, Automation World, sat down with Doug Donzelli, CEO, Apprion, at the 2011 ARC World Industry Forum and filed this report.

** Apprion released a new product at ARC Forum, called the ION Location Application, IONite Personnel Tag and IONite Asset Tag. The product is a wireless location application for asset and personnel tracking, and site access control. For more information on the new product, click here.

Market Insights: 

According to Donzelli, Ion Location Application (new product, see above) tag diverse and vendor neutral.  Working mostly with petrochemical and oil and gas facilities, Donzelli has traveled a lot in the past six months to both Brazil and Saudi Arabia.

Brazil, considered to be one of the top bio-fuel producers in the world, is supported by a strong agricultural base of sugarcane production.  The automation world has focused on Brazil, not only for biofuels, but particularly for rebuilding its communications and transportation infrastructure to prepare for the World Cup and Olympics.

Donzelli remarked that it took a good nine months to navigate Brazil’s complex import/export and regulatory maze.  “It takes the right partner,” he said.

Donzelli also traveled with a US Commerce Department trade delegation to Saudi Arabia.  Currently, the country exports 70% raw oil, and 30% processed product.  A barrel of oil costs between $60 and $80, while the finished products (like plastics) can bring in as much as $600 a barrel.  So, Saudi Arabia is intent on flipping these percentages by processing domestically.  

According to Donzelli, “several major petrochem providers have announced joint ventures in Saudi Arabia, reflecting plans to build dozens of new processing facilities."  Another interesting twist, the Saudis are committed to finding alternative energy sources to run the refineries. Using oil to power refineries is like to “burning money.”

Product highlights:

  • Ion Location supports real-time locating technology systems, including Wi-Fi, passive or active RFID, and EPC Gen 2.
  • “The location information from all these systems is displayed on a single dashboard with integrated CAD drawings, maps, and satellite photographs of a site to visually navigate the entire facility from a desktop while tracking the location and condition of people and key assets from a highly accurate spatial and visual perspective.”
  • The system includes IONite Asset tag and IONite Personnel tags, battery-powered for three to five year’s of life.
  • Can be used to track contractor hours and locations to match time sheets.



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