1) Any Chemical Plant requires raw materials in order to produce final products.
2) It also requires various other services called Utilities for smoothly carrying out the processes.
3) Utility is neither a reactant nor a product, But Utilities are required for maintaining adequate conditions of a manufacturing unit.
4) Utility area is an important area of a Chemical Plant.
5) This may house various Boilers, Large Compressors, Refrigeration systems, Air Conditioning systems, Water Treatment Plants, Cooling Towers etc.
6) Utilities also include Electric Power, so Power Plants are also considered as a part of Utilities.
7) Utilities are situated outside Battery limits should not give any wrong impression that utilities are any less important than the main process,because it is the Efficient Management of Utilities that generate Profits.
8) On the other hand bad management of utilities can make even the most profitable processes unprofitable.
9) The utilities help to maintain proper process conditions like pressure,temperature etc., without which it will be impossible to carry out the process.
10) Now a days most of the Engineering practices are aimed at reducing the consumption of utilities, Because the production of utilities whether it is compressed air,steam etc., requires energy and energy is becoming costlier day by day.
11) Efficient Utility Management doesn't end at cost cutting, If utilities supply is not proper the equipments may not last their full life.
12) For eg :-
If Steam at higher temperature than desired enters Heat Exchangers,the Exchangers may get damaged.
13) Air,Water,Steam etc., are the common utilities used in Chemical Plants.
14) Some Properties of utilities :-
a) They are generally Reusable.
b) Their Composition do not change.
c) They cannot be stocked, So regular supply is must.
15) The aim of an Chemical Engineer should be to provide Utilities & other services in required quantities and of quality as required by the users.