Overview of the 2014 OLI Simulation Conference

A review of the 2014 OLI Simulation Conference.

OLI held its 2014 conference at the Wyndham Hamilton Hotel and Conference Center in Florham Park, New Jersey from Monday October 20 to Wednesday October 22. It was actually 5 sessions:

  • Review of the Mixed Solvent Electrolyte project (Monday October 20)
  • Review of the Corrosion Simulation Code (Monday October 20)
  • Corrosion in Refining Overheads (closed session, Monday October 20)
  • OLI Simulation Conference (Tuesday and Wednesday October 21 and 22)
  • Ultra High Temperature High Pressure Consortium meeting (Closed session Tuesday October 21).


Details of the presentations can be found on the main OLI website (authored by AQSim).  I will only point out the highlights.

There were many excellent papers presented by users of OLI software. Rusty Strong (Athlon) presented a paper where he stated “I did not know if this would work but I did not ask OLI first.” As an employee of OLI I got really nervous about statements like that. Rusty’s work showed that we worked and worked well. Whew…

The OLI side of the conference was pretty much the same as we usually do it. Marshall Rafal (Present and Founder) presented a nice heartwarming speech about the history of OLI and its future.  He correctly identified three generations of OLI Employees.

  • First Generation
    • Marshall Rafal
    • Jim Berthold
    • Robert Young
    • Pat McKenzie
  • Second Generation
    • Andre Anderko
    • Margaret Lencka
    • Peiming Wang
    • Ron Springer
    • Chris Depetris
    • Jane Mooney
    • Sandy Hogan
    • George Englehardt
    • Warren Shen
  • Third Generation
    • Jianping Liu
    • Prodip Kundu
    • Rasika Nimkar
    • SachinDaluja
    • Zousho Lu
    • Yan Ramlakhan
    • Denize Llerna

I was quite pleased (and a bit dismayed) that I am in the first generation. I guess I am getting old.

Many of the OLI Staff presented during the conference.  Several others presented demonstrations during the breaks.

Of perhaps the most important (in my not-so-humble opinion) was the presentation and demonstration of OLI Flowsheet by Sachin Daluja.  This was an impressive piece of work. I am amazed at how fast Sachin has created this code. To give him credit, I have full faith in his skills that he could have created a working code.  This wasn’t just any demo-ware. It is a full functioning Flowsheet simulator. Of course it needs many features to be added.

If you are interested in becoming a beta testing in 2015 for OLI Flowsheet please let me know.

Also demonstrated were the OLI Studio by Warren Shen, the OLI API (interface to Excel) by Zousho Lu and our new wikipedia page by Rasika Nimkar.  All did very nice demontrations.

OLI has a Wiki!

OLI now had a wikipedia page that we host internally. Here is the link wiki.olisystems.com

This site is still in its infancy but it is growing.  We are moving away from the old OLI support website as it is rapidly becoming outdated. The Wiki is much easier to maintain.  Beside OLI, AQSim is also a contributor to the wiki pages.  As time progresses we may allow end-users to add to the wiki. Time will tell.

Future Release?

Many users asked when OLI will release the next version.  The next version will be 9.2.1 of all the products. We are currently waiting some last minute data work to be completed. When that occurs it will be about 2 weeks to publish the version. Of course OLI Studio is published first, followed by ESP Original, ScaleChem Standard, Alliance Products, Developer Edition, and any others.  Each gets tested.

I would anticipate December 1, 2014 for the release but don’t hold me to it.


That’s all for now,

Jim Berthold



OLI Releases New Software (again!)

OLI Systems finally releases updated software.

It has been quite a trial to release this new update of the software.  I will not bore you will the details but we had some problems with the numerical engine.  Since our last series of blogs back in 2010 we have changed the way the software works.  The core of the software is called the Engine and it is the same for all of our products.  There is a single solver and a single database (per version) across the board for each product.  Long-time users of the OLI Software will recall that the OLI Analyzer had a separate installation location for the database than did OLI ESP.  This is no longer true. Only a single location exists for the database.

For all the versions of 9.1 this location of the database is:

C:\ProgramData\OLI Systems\Databanks\9.1.4

The current version of the software is version 9.1.5 so why is the the database location 9.1.4?  We for the current version of 9.1.5 we did not update the database.  In fact there could be many versions of the database installed on your computer. You have the option of using previous versions.  Here is what the database folder looks like on my computer.


You can see that I have a lot of versions installed.

OK, what got released?

The current base version is 9.1.5.  Here is what got released (along with the corresponding release notes link)

OLI Studio  9.1.5

ESP Classic 9.1.5

Aspen PLUS V7.3, V7.3.2, V8.0, V8.2, V8.4 and V8.6

Aspen HYSYS V7.3, V8.0, V8.2, V8.3, V8.4, V8.6

Unisim Design R410 and R430

What’s not supported any more?

We can’t do this forever…

Aspen Technologies has stopped supporting their products that are more than 4 versions old.  Since V8.4 is the “Official” release, no version before V8.0 is supported by Aspen Tech.  OLI Systems is not taking quite as a draconian view, we will support the versions listed above.  We have stopped supporting Aspen PLUS/HYSYS 2006.5 and earlier.

What about ScaleChem?

Yes, we are still supporting ScaleChem although it is largely replaced by OLI Studio ScaleChem.  We refer to the classical ScaleChem program as “ScaleChem Standard“.  The current version of ScaleChem Standard is 9.1.3 but we will release a version 9.1.5 sometime next week.  There were no interface changes to ScaleChem Standard but it will use the new engine and databanks.

Some users (primarily oil companies) have requested that ScaleChem Standard 4.1.11 be made available. C’mon, we have to draw the support line somewhere and it is not supported any longer. We have pulled it from our download page.  If you need a copy I will make it available via our temporary upload/download area. Just ask.

What about the other alliance partner software?

We are still supporting Schneider-Electric’s ProII as well as PSE’s gProm and Andritz’ IDEAS. We have not created new builds for them as of yet.  We can test ProII here at OLI so that will be an easy release. That should occur next week.  The others we cannot test, we have to let the partners test them.  The builds will also be created next week and given to PSE and Andritz.

That’s it…

That’s it for this week. Remember, the OLI Simulation conference is in October. If you are interested in attending check out the OLI Conference Page.

All the best,

Jim Berthold





OLI Studio, Aspen PLUS OLI Updated

Some updates to the software:

OLI Studio 3.1.2 has been released.  There has been many fixes to the software. Check the Release Notes for more details.

ESP version 8.2 has been out for some time but OLI had never updated the User Guide. Well that has finally occurred.  The User Guide was updated for version 8.2 but does not include much new material except for some of the OLI Support Guides that have been written over the years.  Here is a link to the new user guide: ESP v8.2 User Guide

ScaleChem version 4.0 was released in January 2010. We did not make much noise about this release. Some of the features we changed were

  • Added new heavy hydrocarbons,  C21,  C22, C23, C24, C25, C30, C35 and C40.
  • Added some neutral inorganic species to the input
    • HCl
    • HBr
    • H2SO4
    • HNO3
    • Boric Acid
    • SiO2
    • N2
  • Removed some uncommon solid phases from the solid selection dialogs
  • Removed some uncommon ions from the brine entry dialogs
  • Renamed species to more familiar names
  • Updated the menu items to be easier to use
  • Created a new brine entry dialog (but allows  you to use the old form as well)
  • Updated various calculation dialogs to be easier to use

We have also made some more subtle updates. Check the release notes for ScaleChem 4.0 for more details.

Training and Support

The training website has been updated with some new material. Here is a current list of what is available. For this version I have added some links to the various support sites.

  1. OLI Analyzer Installation Issues (new)
  2. How to import data from Excel in to the Extreme Value Statistics (EVS) program.
  3. OLI Security Issues

OLI ScaleChem 4.0 Released

Happy New Year from OLI Systems

The start of the new year has become a busy time for OLI. We spent the last several months upgrading our ScaleChem program. We are pleased to announce the release of ScaleChem 4.0.  This new program features some major improvements to the user interface as well as using the latest solvers that are also used in OLI Studio and ESP.  The new version of ScaleChem also uses the latest database updates found in our aqueous PUBLIC database.

Check out What’s new in ScaleChem 4.0 for more details.  You can download the latest software from the OLI Downloads page

Posted in ScaleChem. Tags: . 1 Comment »

Announcing Technology Partners Week

OLI Announces its annual Technology Partner Week

During the week of October 19 in Morristown, NJ OLI will hold its annual Technology Partner Week.  Most of OLI’s staff are involved and support response will be delayed.

Some of the projects that will be covered are the:

  • Mixed Solvent Electrolyte Project
    • This project has been underway for many years. Currently we are in phase 4 of the project. We are almost done and will be announcing plans for phase 5. Open to all OLI licensees
  • Corrosion
    • Like the MSE project, this has been ongoing for many years. We are also announcing plans for the next project. Open to all OLI licensees
  • Chemistry in Refining Overheads Project
    • We are nearing the end of this project which combined both experimental and data regression work. It was a difficult project. This meeting will summarize what we have done and announce plans for the deployment of the data. Members only are allowed to attend.
  • Process Water Group (a/k/a Scale Analyzer Project)
    • Year 1 is at an end and we will show the front-end of the software. The user group will review the current software and discuss plans for the next release. Open to members only.

Plan on attending if you desire. Space is limited. Contact Sandy Hogan at OLI Systems. 01 973-539-5996


Jim Berthold
Director of Customer Relations.

Aspen Updates and more

Aspen PLUS 2006.5 Updated

As mentioned last week, we found an installer bug with Aspen PLUS OLI for 2006.5. We can not explain it but we were testing to see if the Aspen PLUS 2006.0 folders existed and then copied files there. If you never had 2006.0 installed then our installer also failed. We have updated the installer to look at the correct folder.

The Aspen PLUS 2006.5 patch I mentioned last week is also incorporated into this build.  The build was pushed to the OLI download site.

OLI Analyzers 3.0.7 is born

Sigh, it seems like we can not go a week without creating a new build of the software. We recently found a bug in the Gibb’s and Entropy calculations in the Analyzers. There was an array mismatch between the Fortran side and the interface side. We have fixed this and will probably push a new build to the download site late in the week.

We also found a rather odd error in our network security. The user has to specify the name or IP address of the license manager server in the Security Options. When entering in the name or the address an error occurred about an “Invalid Binding”. The oddity is that the error message is in error if you typed the name in correctly. The dialog did accept this entry but threw out the error message. This has been fixed for this new release.

ScaleChem and Vista

We thought that ScaleChem 3.2 was compatible with Microsoft Vista but we were wrong.  Although the calculations are completely fine, the help system will not work. What we found is that Microsoft is no longer supporting the old WinHelp32 system that has been around since Windows 3.1. Unfortunately we originally wrote the Scalechem help system with WinHelp32.

There is no solution. We are considering rewriting the help system in the more modern HTML forms but that will be a long time coming.

ScaleChem patches and other picture post cards

ScaleChem patch for Version 3.2 Build 58

Way back in the dark ages, OLI included some solid organic (non-acid) species. These were to simulate waxes in petroleum fractions. We found that these solids had poor thermodynamic properties and were removed from the mainline OLI databases. We missed updating the ScaleChem databases and now you could get the dreaded “Missing Species” error message.

The errant species were C18H38PPT, C19H40PPT and C20H42PPT.  The access table was updated.

A patch is available until the next version of ScaleChem.

Download the patch and put the archived file into the folder C:\Program Files\OLI Systems\ScaleChem 3.2\AccessDB

ESP Documentation update

Multi-stage  condenser types are not well documented in the ESP manuals. A new tips document (83) was written to fill the gap in documentation. You can get a copy of the tips document from the tips page on the support website.

Tips 83: Condenser Types

OLI Analyzer Studio

We have found a rather serious error in the creation of Pourbaix diagrams (Electrochemical Potential v. pH). Apparently we made a change for a single user that has disabled all diagrams in version 3.0.5. What we found is that this simple change caused an array to exceed over 500 mB of RAM. This frequently caused a virtual memory error.

We re-evaluated what were are doing in this array and have adjusted its properties such that we only allocate what we need to use which is many times smaller. This will be included in the next release of OLI Analyzer Studio.

Analyzer 3.0 training video

I have created another training video for the Analyzers 3.0. This  is how to use the custom object palate. Click this link to view the video

Till next time

Jim Berthold