Andrew D. Sullivan

Process Plant Technology

  • Home
  • Robotic's Camp
  • PID Controller
  • PPT Plan of Study
  • Syllabi
  • Lectures
  • Video
  • E-Learning


Mail: City College Phone: 406-247-3053
  3803 Central Avenue Email:
  Billings, MT 59102 Office: A061 Tech Building


My Background

I have 20 years of refining experience in both Technical and Operations. I started teaching in January 2013 for the Process Plant Technology program. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from MIT, and am currently working on a Master’s degree in Education at Montana State University Billings as time allows.

If you would like to know more about my background or how I can help you, feel free to send me an email, call, or stop by. I'd love to give you a tour of our Process Plant Laboratory. You are also invited to review the following social medial sites.

Google+ YouTube Linkedin PPT Facebook


Summer 2016 Schedule


The Process Plant Technology program hosts two summer camps at City College. One focuses on building a line following robot using the Arduino microcontroller, and the second builds on these skills to build a battle robot using an Arduino in a battle hardened aluminum chassis. Details and materials for the two camps are below.

Battle Robot Building

Combine form and function as you and your friends learn how to build a combat robot with style. Students will use their creative skills and learn how to use hand and power tools to construct an aluminum robot of their own design. They will personalize their robot and add defensive and offensive weapons like rams, ploughs, and wedges. Consider your design options as you construct your optimum machine. Evaluate and compare your design strengths as you compete against your friend’s designs. Best of all, keep your robot when you are done! Space is very limited to three boys and three girls, so plan to register quickly!

2016 Schedule: Week of July 11. Monday – Thursday (8 am-2:00 pm)
Students entering grades 8-12 Fee: $300 This camp will be held at the City College Campus located at 3803 Central Avenue.

Camp Resources:

How to build a low cost battle robot: Battle Robot Guide


Build a Battle Robot using Arduino!

Learn how to build a combat worthy robot and compete with your friends. Students will use hand and power tools to construct a sturdy chassis from aluminum, then fit the chassis with defensive and offensive armaments (rams, ploughs, wedges, and flippers: nothing dangerous to people). The robot will be controlled using an Arduino microcontroller students will program in “C”. The microcontroller allows students to control the robot remotely, or to program logic so the robot can run autonomously opening the door to a world of possibilities such as autonomous vacuums or snow shovels. Students learn how to interface electronics to control their own projects. They will design, build, program, test, and refine their designs using skills important to many careers including working with tools, electronics, embedded control, and programming.

2015 Schedule: Week of July 13. Monday – Friday (8 am-12:00)
Kids entering grades 9-12
This camp will be held at the City College Campus located at 3803 Central Avenue.

Camp Resources:

Material List: Battle Robot Supplies

Program: Camp_Robot_Driver_v02



Build a Robot with Arduino, Compete, & Keep your Robot!

Learn how to build a line-following robot. Students will learn to use the Arduino microcontroller, a powerful yet low cost single board computer with a large worldwide user community!! Students will design, build, program, test and refine their designs. The course culminates in a competition and students will keep their robots at the end of the camp.

2014 Schedule: Week of July 7. Monday – Friday (8 am-12:30)
Kids entering grades 8-12
This camp will be held at the City College Campus located at 3803 Central Avenue.


Interested in Conducting Your Own Camp?

If your interested in conducting a similar camp, you may find the attached booklet useful. It is a guide I used to run this camp and contains background, supplies lists, and instructions on how to build the different pieces of the robot.

Arduino Robotics Camp

PID Simulators

The following are PID simulators developed for PPT 135, Instrument and Control Systems. They simulate Proportional, Integral, and Derivative (PID) controllers that are common in industry. These simulations reflect realistic processes. They have the look and feel of a small microprocessor based controller that are in common use for small to medium sized applications. Large integrated process plants use a central control system with computer terminal interfaces, but the PID tuning is the same.

Side Stream Stipper with Level Control on Inlet

Simulates a typical side stream stripper used to remove light components from a product stream drawn from a distillation column. A small amount of steam, about 1% on feed, is injected at the bottom of the column. Light components are vaporized and routed back to the distillation column. Removing the light components improves flash point.

Drum with Level Control on Inlet

Simulates a common drum used to provide residence time.


PPT Suggested Plan of Study

The following tables summarize the Process Plant Technology Suggested Plan of Study from the Catalog. Course descriptions are included for easy of reference. Refer to the online Catalog for more information.

First Semester (Spring)

Course Title Credits Description
CAPP 120 Introduction to Computers 3 Instructs students in fundamental computing skills.  Concepts include the creation and manipulation of files, use of a common Operating System, a basic understanding of computer hardware, and a functional knowledge of common business applications such as:  word processing, spreadsheets, Internet and email, and presentation software.  The course is performed in a lab setting with access to computers and necessary software.
M 114  Extended Technical Mathematics 3 Applies math to problems drawn from diverse occupational fields.  Provides college level study of measurement, algebra, geometry, and trigonometry as
needed to solve mathematical applications in a trade or technical work environment.
PPT 101  Fundamentals of Processing Technology Lecture 4 Introduces the student to the fundamentals of process/refinery technology.  Areas covered are the mechanics of fluids, hydrocarbons, gases, heat, and chemistry.  The student realizes how each plays a significant role in the refining distillation process.
PPT 102  Fundamentals of Process Technology Laboratory 1 Provides students exposure to major concepts of industry through hands-on laboratory investigations and application of principles learned in PPT 101.
PPT 130  Process Diagrams for Process Technology 2 Provides the student with an introduction in the use of process flow and instrument drawings.  Upon completion of this course, students will be familiar with using P&ID (Process and Instrument Drawings) drawings in the course of their work as process technicians.  In addition, students will obtain the skills necessary to produce process flow diagrams.
PPT 151  Process Plant Safety I 2 Examines the regulatory safety programs instituted by OSHA and other regulatory agencies which are specific to the processing industry.  Covers a variety of topics such as hazards safety, personal protective equipment, emergency response and safe work practices.
TRID 185 Introduction to Industrial Power Systems Lecture 2 Covers the fundamental principles of direct current and alternating current circuits and their use in an industrial setting.  Also includes transformers and electrical distribution systems.
TRID 186 Introduction to Industrial Power Systems Laboratory 1 Provides students exposure to major concepts of industry through hands-on laboratory investigations and application of principles learned in TRI 185.


Second Semester (Fall)

Course Title Credits Description
COMX 111  Introduction to Public Speaking 3 Develops the student’s speaking abilities.  Students acquire an understanding of basic rhetorical theory and its application in a variety of speech situations.  Listening, speaking and critiquing abilities are emphasized.  This course addresses the following topics: speech preparation and delivery, forming and fielding questions, audience analysis, listening skills, critiquing and speaker anxiety.
PPT 120  Environmental Awareness 2 Provides the student with the history behind certain environmental policies, the creation of OSHA, and key environmental issues.  Provides learning in treatment processes, waste water units, vapor recovery systems, cleanup, and an overview of the specialty equipment necessary for an ecologically sound process plant.
PPT 135  Instrument and Control Systems Lecture 4 Familiarizes the student with the vocabulary surrounding the instrument and control field as well as examining the function of each instrument.  The topics of process measurements, analytical instrumentation, process controls, and instrument systems are also covered in this course.
PPT 136  Instrument and Control Systems Laboratory 1 Provides students exposure to major concepts of industry through hands-on laboratory investigations and application of principles learned in PPT 135.
PPT 161  Process Plant Safety II 2 Provides the student with detailed instruction in the field of safety and health within the Process industry.  In this course, the student will complete an in-depth study in the use of gas detection equipment, the use of the permitting system including lock out/tag out, the use of OSHA logs, the use of advanced safety equipment, and study the importance of industrial hygiene in an industrial setting.
PPT 175  Process Plant Sciences Lecture 4 Provides the fundamentals necessary for an in-depth look at the distillation process.  Examines the concepts of heat and thermodynamics, as well as the chemical bonds, organic chemistry, the periodic table and hydrocarbon concepts.  Gives students the necessary tools for a better understanding of the process taking place in the refining and power industries.
PPT 176  Process Plant Sciences Laboratory 1 Provides students exposure to major concepts of industry through hands-on laboratory investigations and application of principles learned in PPT 175.


Third Semester (Spring)

Course Title Credits Description
BGEN 105  Introduction to Business 3 Provides an overall picture of business operations.  Specialized fields within business organizations are presented and analyzed.  The role of business in today's society is examined and career opportunities in business are explored.
COMX 106 Communicating in a Dynamic Workplace 3 Offers a theoretical and practical understanding of communication processes in the working environment, self-awareness in that environment, and the individual's participation in these relationships.  The course aims to develop the student's perception and expression skill to communicate successfully in a variety of work contexts.
PPT 207  Boilers, Accessories and Basic Operations 3 Offers an introduction to boiler equipment, controls, and systems.  Instruction includes the function and operation of all major components and control devices, common troubleshooting problems, and common maintenance concerns.
PPT 208  Equipment and Operations Laboratory 2 Provides students exposure to major concepts of industry through hands-on laboratory investigations and application of principles learned in PPT 210.
PPT 210  Equipment and Operations Lecture 4 Covers the equipment necessary for the operation of a process/refining plant.  A few topics of discussion include pumps, compressors, valves, heat exchangers, distillation towers, cooling towers, as well as auxiliary systems.  Some of the operations principles reviewed are pneumatics, boilers, hydraulic functions, furnace processes, reactor systems, and distillation.  Reading process flows and instrument diagrams is also included.
TRID 160 Hazardous Materials Technician General Training 3 Provides hazardous materials training needed to meet all requirements of the first responder at the awareness, operations, and technician level of emergency hazardous materials response.  Technicians shall meet the training requirements in accordance with requirements of OSHA and NFPA (National Fire Protection Association).


Fourth Semester (Fall)

Course Title Credits Description
WRIT 121 or 122  Introduction to Technical Writing 3 Introduces the student to the creation and evaluation of several kinds of written and oral technical communication
PPT 211  Advanced Operations Lecture 2 Introduces the student to actual refining processes, taking an in-depth look at each process, as well as the unit variables, equipment, critical control areas, product and unit specific safety considerations.  Various types of processes are discussed, including Fluid Catalytic Cracking, Alkylation, Catalytic Reforming, Desulfurization, Crude/Vacuum Systems, Amine, Coking, and Hydro treating.  The course is also designed to provide classroom time balanced with field review of the various processes.
PPT 212  Advanced Operations Laboratory 1 Provides students exposure to major concepts of industry through hands-on laboratory investigations and application of principles learned in PPT 211.
PPT 220  Quality Control Practices 2 Provides the student with an overview of the field of quality within the Process industry.  Within this course, students will be introduced to many industry-related quality concepts including operating consistency, continuous improvement, plant economics, team skills, and statistical process control (SPC).
PPT 225  Plant Investigation and Troubleshooting 2 Provides the student with an overview of the various troubleshooting models used by process technicians.  Process troubleshooting involves different types of troubleshooting techniques, procedures, and methods used to solve process problems.  Topics include application of data collection and analysis, cause-effect relationships, and reasoning.  The student is exposed to many different trouble situations similar to those encountered in the process plant experience.  The student is taught a systematic way to solve problems, using measured process variables and personal knowledge of how they affect each other (cause and effect).
PPT 296  Cooperative Education / Internship 3 (45 hours/credit) Provides university credit for a sophomore experience in the area of Process Plant Technology, supervised by faculty.  Learning agreement must be completed prior to registration (restricted).
  Restricted Electives 3  


Class Audio

Spring 2016:

PPT 101 Fundamentals of Processing Technology

Lesson 01 - 01/20/16: Welcome to PPT / Syllabus

Lesson 02 - 01/21/16: Intro to Process Operators

Lesson 03 - 01/25/16: Lab 2 - Pre-Task Hazard Assessment

Lesson 04 - 01/26/16: Lab Safety.

Lesson 05 - 01/27/16: History of the CPI

Lesson 06 - 01/28/16: Introduction to Refineries

Lesson 07 - 02/01/16: Introduction to Refineries

Lesson 08 - 02/02/16: Introduction to Refineries

Lesson 09 - 02/03/16: Hand Tools

Lesson 10 - 02/04/16: Hand Tools

Lesson 11 - 02/08/16: Hand Tools

Lesson 12 - 02/09/16: Hand Tools

Lesson 13 - 02/10/16: Valves

Lesson 14 - 02/11/16: Valves

Lesson 15 - 02/16/16: Valves

Lesson 16 - 02/17/16: Physics

Lesson 17 - 02/18/16: Test #1

Lesson 18 - 02/22/16: Physics

Lesson 19 - 02/23/16: Heat Transfer

Lesson 20 - 02/24/16: Heat Transfer

Lesson 21 - 02/25/16: Fittings / Pumps

Lesson 22 - 02/29/16: Fittings / Pumps

Lesson 23 - 03/01/16: Compressors

Lesson 24 - 03/02/16: Turbines

Lesson 25 - 03/03/16: Misc. Process Equipment

Lesson 26 - 03/14/16: Misc. Process Equipment

Lesson 27 - 03/15/16: Distillation

Lesson 28 - 03/16/16: Distillation

Lesson 29 - 03/17/16: Distillation

Lesson 30 - 03/21/16: BP Texas City

Lesson 31 - 03/22/16: Furnaces

Lesson 32 - 03/23/16: Furnaces

Lesson 33 - 03/28/16: Furnaces / Simulation Solutions

Lesson 34 - 03/29/16: Furnaces

Lesson 35 - 03/30/16: Cooling Towers

Lesson 36 - 03/31/16: Test #2

Lesson 37 - 04/04/16: Cooling Towers

Lesson 38 - 04/05/16: Cooling Towers

Lesson 39 - 04/06/16: Cooling Towers

Lesson 40 - 04/07/16: Cooling Towers

Lesson 41 - 04/11/16: Instruments

Lesson 42 - 04/12/16: Instruments

Lesson 43 - 04/13/16: Instruments

Lesson 44 - 04/14/16: Instruments

Lesson 45 - 04/18/16: Instruments

Lesson 46 - 04/19/16: Exchangers

Lesson 47 - 04/20/16: Exchangers

Lesson 48 - 04/21/16: Exchangers

Lesson 49 - 04/25/16: Exchangers

Lesson 50 - 04/26/16: Systems

Lesson 51 - 04/27/16: Systems

Lesson 52 - 04/28/16: Course Review

PPT 102 Fundamentals of Processing Technology Lab

Lesson 01 - 01/22/16: Intro / Lab Safety Expectations

PPT 130 Process Diagrams for Process Technology

Lesson 01 - 01/21/16: Drawing for Communication

Lesson 02 - 01/26/16: Types of Process Drawings

Lesson 03 - 01/28/16: How to use Visio

Lesson 04 - 02/02/16: PIDs and Piping

Lesson 05 - 02/04/16: PIDs and Piping

Lesson 06 - 02/09/16: PIDs and Piping

Lesson 07 - 02/11/16: Valves and Fittings

Lesson 08 - 02/16/16: Rotating Equipment

Lesson 09 - 02/18/16: Drawing Lab

Lesson 10 - 02/23/16: Test #1

Lesson 11 - 02/25/16: Rotating Equipment

Lesson 12 - 03/01/16: Fixed Equipment

Lesson 13 - 03/03/16: Fixed Equipment

Lesson 14 - 03/15/16: Control Loops

Lesson 15 - 03/17/16: Control Loops

Lesson 16 - 03/22/16: Survey of Student Engagement

Lesson 17 - 03/29/16: Control Loops

Lesson 18 - 03/31/16: Interpreting Plant Function

Lesson 19 - 04/05/16: Test #2

Lesson 20 - 04/07/16: Drawing Lab (Room A070)

Lesson 21 - 04/12/16: Large Distillation Walkthrough

Lesson 22 - 04/14/16: Small Distillation Walkthrough

Lesson 23 - 04/19/16: Isometric Drawings

Lesson 24 - 04/21/16: Industrial Exchanger Operation

Lesson 25 - 04/26/16: Industrial Amine Units

Lesson 26 - 04/28/16: Course Review

PPT 210 Equipment and Operations

Lesson 01 - 01/20/16: Welcome / Governor's Visit

Lesson 02 - 01/21/16: People Interacting with Equipment

Lesson 03 - 01/25/16: Terminology

Lesson 04 - 01/26/16: Internships / Terminology

Lesson 05 - 01/27/16: Terminology

Lesson 06 - 01/28/16: Distillation Fundamentals

Lesson 07 - 02/01/16: Distillation flooding and dumping

Lesson 08 - 02/02/16: Distillation flooding and dumping

Lesson 09 - 02/03/16: Distillation - Tower Pressure

Lesson 10 - 02/04/16: Distillation - Reflux

Lesson 11 - 02/08/16: Distillation - Reflux

Lesson 12 - 02/09/16: Distillation - Practical Applications

Lesson 13 - 02/10/16: Distillation - Practical Applications

Lesson 14 - 02/11/16: Distillation - Practical Applications

Lesson 15 - 02/16/16: Distillation - Cause and Effect

Lesson 16 - 02/17/16: Distillation - Cause and Effect

Lesson 17 - 02/18/16: Turbines

Lesson 18 - 02/22/16: Turbines

Lesson 19 - 02/23/16: Test #1

Lesson 20 - 02/24/16: Turbines

Lesson 21 - 02/25/16: Interview Primer

Lesson 22 - 02/29/16: Interview Primer

Lesson 23 - 03/01/16: Pumps - Bearing, Lubrication, Flush

Lesson 24 - 03/02/16: Pumps - Mechanical Seals

Lesson 25 - 03/03/16: Pumps - Seal flush / Steam Quench

Lesson 26 - 03/14/16: Pumps

Lesson 27 - 03/15/16: Pumps

Lesson 28 - 03/16/16: Pumps

Lesson 29 - 03/17/16: Pumps - Procedures

Lesson 30 - 03/21/16: Pumps - Oil Mist Systems

Lesson 31 - 03/22/16: Survey of Student Engagement

Lesson 32 - 03/23/16: Centrifugal Compressors

Lesson 33 - 03/28/16: Centrifugal Compressors

Lesson 34 - 03/29/16: Centrifugal Compressors

Lesson 35 - 03/30/16: Centrifugal Compressors

Lesson 36 - 03/31/16: Centrifugal Compressors / Test Review

Lesson 37 - 04/04/16: Centrifugal Compressors

Lesson 38 - 04/05/16: Test #2

Lesson 39 - 04/06/16: Centrifugal Compressors

Lesson 40 - 04/07/16: Centrifugal Compressors

Lesson 41 - 04/11/16: Centrifugal Compressors

Lesson 42 - 04/12/16: Centrifugal Compressors

Lesson 43 - 04/13/16: Reciprocating Compressors

Lesson 44 - 04/14/16: Reciprocating Compressors

Lesson 45 - 04/18/16: Reciprocating Compressors

Lesson 46 - 04/19/16: Reciprocating Compressors

Lesson 47 - 04/20/16: Reciprocating Compressors

Lesson 48 - 04/21/16: Tanks

Lesson 49 - 04/25/16: Tanks

Lesson 50 - 04/26/16: Couse Review

Lesson 51 - 04/27/16: Interview / Workplace Success

Lesson 52 - 04/28/16: Final Exam

Process Plant Videos

Following are some videos created to support the Process Plant Technology program.

How to Operate the Kern Kraft 20F Oil Prince Oil Press

A copy of the procedure we use is available below:

Kern Kraft Oil Prince 20F Oil Press Procedure

Oil Start to Finish - Overview of the petroleum industry

Student Research - Designing and Building a Capacitance Level Instrument

Controls Lab #3 - Build and Calibrate a Temperature Transmitter

Controls Lab #6 - Replace a Pressure Transmitter

Controls Lab #10 - Permit and Replace an Orifice Plate

Controls Lab #11 - Pull or Replace a Control Valve

Sciences Lab #2 - Flash Points Video Demonstration

Sciences Lab #3 - Freeze Point Video Demonstration

Sciences Lab #4 - Steam Distillation to Recover Essential Oils from Spearmint

Sciences Lab #4 - Steam Distillation to Recover Essential Oils from Habanero

Sciences Lab #5 - Purify Methylene Chloride using Distillation

Sciences Lab #6 - Caffeine Extraction

Sciences - Simulation of Gas Phase Water

E Learning

I am your E Learning representative for City College. Please let me know if you have any E Learning concerns or issues. I will bring your concerns to the right people. I am also available to help with D2L, your web page, or other electronic learning needs, and will try to get you a solution to your question.

Following are some tips and tricks that might simplify some work processes. I am interested in your feedback and ideas on other tips and tricks we could add.

Google Forms for surveys and assignment collection

How to Unlock a Microsoft Word Form

1. Save the Word form as an xml document
2. Open the xml document in Wordpad
3. Search for "enforcement"
4. Change the enforcement="1" to a "0"
5. Save the document
6. Open the modified xml file in Word
7. Save the unlocked document as a docx file