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Fully Automated Waste Facility

Yacimiento Barrancas, YPF's oil waste facility located in Mendoza, operates with no staff since July 2014.

The implementation of VKM Yard system, developed by the firm Valkimia together with GeneXus, makes it possible to run the plant using remote monitoring among other advantages for the environment, such as the immediate notification of a waste spill in order to take prompt measures.

Valkimia, a company that provides IT services and solutions, has developed a control system for Yacimiento Barrancas, YPF's waste facility in Mendoza. The system allows for the plant to operate in an fully automated manner.

The system developed by Valkimia with GeneXus – a tool for developing multiplatform applications – has been called VKM Yard. It allows for the automation of terminals for managing operations such as Reception, Control, Weighing, Loading, Unloading, and complementary operations at the plant.

“The plant is managed through VKM Yard with RFID devices that identify incoming vehicles, allowing them to enter and weighing them (gross, tare). When the weighing scale is enabled, the system takes a photo of the vehicle and identifies the driver through the self-service terminal and his personal magnetic card,” explains Juan Pablo Lembach, Business Director at Valkimia. “Next, it enables the unloading circuit and tells the driver where to unload the waste. After unloading, the weighing circuit is completed and the exit is enabled, submitting the corresponding documentation.”

Once they are classified, the materials entering the plant, both in liquid and solid state, are transported to treatment plants (thermal, biological, physical-chemical) with the purpose of recycling and reusing them in other processes, so as to reduce consumption of raw materials and discharge rates.

In addition to the tasks on the plant, the VKM YARD system is capable of processing and performing the tracking of vehicles, through interaction with the vehicle control system (via GPS) of YPF. 

VKM Yard was developed with GeneXus, which made it possible to greatly simplify the user interface, reducing the learning curve and the time needed to implement the system for the staff working on vehicles.

“Some events are expected to generate waste because they are considered as part of the company's operations, but there are also other events that generate unexpected waste, such as spills or repairs. The possibility to access online, real-time information about the waste plant's availability is crucial in these cases, as it allows making quick decisions for the correct transportation and treatment of waste. Due to the successful performance of the plant since its implementation, this experience is planned to be replicated in the rest of YPF's facilities,” stated Mr. Lembach.