What Is a Modular Process Skid?

What Is a Modular Process Skid?

In the world of industrial processes, efficiency and flexibility are paramount. One solution that has gained popularity in recent years is the modular process skid. These pre-engineered, pre-assembled units offer a range of benefits for various industries, streamlining operations and enhancing overall efficiency. 

Process Skid Definition

A modular process skid is a compact, self-contained unit that integrates various components of a larger industrial process into a single, transportable module. 

These skids are designed and fabricated off-site in a controlled environment and are then transported to the final destination for installation. This approach allows for greater control over the manufacturing process, ensuring quality and consistency.

Key Features

  • Compact design: Modular process skids are characterized by their compact and space-efficient design. This minimizes the footprint required for installation, making them ideal for locations with limited space.
  • Pre-assembled components: The skids come equipped with pre-assembled components, reducing the need for on-site assembly and minimizing the risk of errors during installation.
  • Standardization: The modular nature of these skids allows for the standardization of components and processes, simplifying maintenance and facilitating scalability.
  • Ease of integration: Integration with existing systems is often seamless, as modular process skids are designed to easily connect with other equipment and processes in a plant.

Common Applications for Modular Process Skids

Process skids can be used in virtually any application where they streamline processes and better ensure quality. Below are four applications where our team sees them most often.

Chemical Processing

Modular process skids find extensive use in chemical processing plants for tasks such as mixing, heating, and chemical reactions. These skids are tailored to handle specific chemical processes efficiently.

nitric acid skid

Oil and Gas

Modular process skids play a crucial role in the oil and gas industry, facilitating activities like metering, separation, and dehydration.

Water Treatment

Skids are widely utilized in water treatment facilities for processes such as filtration, disinfection, and chemical dosing.

Pharmaceutical Manufacturing

In the pharmaceutical industry, where precision and cleanliness are crucial, modular process skids are employed for tasks like formulation, blending, and purification.

Top 5 Benefits of Using Modular Process Skids

  1. Cost-efficiency: Off-site fabrication and standardized components reduce overall project costs, as labor and material expenses are optimized.
  2. Time savings: The parallel construction of skids while site preparation takes place allows for faster project completion compared to traditional construction methods.
  3. Quality control: Fabricating skids in a controlled environment enhances quality control, reducing the risk of defects and ensuring consistency across units.
  4. Flexibility and scalability: Modular process skids offer flexibility in design and can be easily scaled to meet changing production requirements.
  5. Minimized disruption: Installation on-site is streamlined, minimizing disruption to ongoing operations in the plant.

Process Skids from PALA

At PALA, we deliver high-quality, customized solutions for industrial construction projects. Our fabrication shop employs cutting-edge technologies and a skilled workforce to mechanically design and construct process skids tailored to the unique needs of our clients. 

If you need a process skid that meets the highest standards of quality and reliability, we’re here to help. Get started by contacting us online.

PALA Is AISC-certified! What It Means & How It Benefits You

PALA Is AISC-certified! What It Means & How It Benefits You

In the world of structural steel erection, quality and reliability are paramount. Clients and stakeholders demand assurance that the materials used in industrial construction projects meet the highest standards. This is where certifications play a crucial role. 

One such notable certification is the American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) certification. In this article, we’ll delve into what AISC certification entails, why it matters, and explore how PALA’s recent AISC certification is a game-changer.

What is AISC Certification?

The AISC is a leading authority in the steel construction industry. AISC certification is a prestigious acknowledgment granted to erectors who adhere to the institute’s rigorous standards for quality, safety, and efficiency throughout the entire process of fabrication and erection. It is the most recognized quality certification program for the structural steel industry in our nation.

This certification is a testament to an erector’s commitment to erecting high-quality steel structures that meet or exceed industry standards.

See the core quality criteria for AISC certification in this document

About PALA’s AISC Certification

At PALA, we’ve been erecting steel for the better part of 50 years, yet this is the first time we have gone through the arduous process of being recognized as a certified erector by AISC. Our official certification date was August 21, 2023.


Below are photos of some of our recent steel erection projects.

steel erection project 1       steel erection project 2

Top Benefits of Working With an AISC-certified Erector

This certification is great for PALA, but what exactly does it mean for you? 

1. Quality Assurance

AISC certification is a guarantee of quality. When you choose an erector with AISC certification, you can trust that your project will be executed with precision and attention to detail. This assurance is critical in construction projects where structural integrity is non-negotiable.

2. Code Compliance

AISC-certified erectors are well-versed in the latest building codes and industry standards. Working with such an erector ensures that your project aligns seamlessly with regulatory requirements, minimizing the risk of delays or complications.

3. Enhanced Safety

Safety is paramount in construction. AISC-certified erectors prioritize safety protocols, ensuring that every aspect of the erection process is conducted with the highest regard for the well-being of workers and the end-users of the structures.

4. Cost Efficiency

The long-term benefits of working with an AISC-certified erector can lead to better cost efficiency. Reduced rework, fewer safety incidents, and enhanced project efficiency contribute to overall cost savings.

Other Ways PALA Ensures Quality

Our team is dedicated to our core values of quality and safety. In fact, as of today, we’ve worked 545 consecutive days without an OSHA-recordable injury!

Our quality and safety processes include (but aren’t limited to):

  • Planning — estimate checklists, project JSAs, PTSAs
  • Training & education — industry, site, and regulatory trainings, plus project-specific plans
  • Safety Wire — proprietary behavioral risk tolerance survey
  • Management and site staff involvement in planning, training, and projects
  • Worksite and safe workplace observations
  • PII™ incident measurement, analysis, and feedback

What Can We Construct for You?

Whether you have a question about our solutions, our service areas, or our erection capabilities, we’re here to help. Leave us a message and one of our team members will be in touch as soon as possible.

Industrial vs. Commercial Construction: Understanding the Differences

Industrial vs. Commercial Construction: Understanding the Differences

Construction is a dynamic industry that encompasses a wide range of project types. Two key sectors within the construction industry are industrial and commercial construction, each with distinct characteristics, purposes, and considerations. This article breaks down the various factors that set them apart.

TL;DR: What’s the Difference Between Industrial and Commercial Construction?

Industrial and commercial construction are two distinct sectors within the construction industry, each serving specific purposes and industries. Industrial construction caters to the needs of heavy manufacturing and production, while commercial construction focuses on creating spaces for businesses and customers. Understanding the differences between these two sectors is crucial for successful project management, as it helps ensure that the unique requirements and challenges of each are addressed effectively.

Defining Industrial Construction

Industrial construction refers to the planning, design, and construction of facilities and infrastructure tailored to meet the specific needs of industrial processes, manufacturing, or heavy production activities. These facilities are generally large and complex, often requiring specialized construction techniques and expertise.

Industries & Applications

Industrial construction is associated with industries like: 

  • Manufacturing
  • Petrochemicals
  • Mining
  • Energy
  • Warehousing

Facilities constructed in this sector include:

  • Factories
  • Power plants
  • Refineries
  • Chemical processing plants
  • Distribution centers 

The primary goal is to create structures that can efficiently house heavy machinery and production lines.

Distinguishing Factors

Besides the obvious intent of the building, other distinguishing factors are at play when it comes to industrial vs. commercial construction projects. 

Structure Types & Designs

Industrial facilities typically have large, open floor plans to accommodate heavy machinery and production equipment. These buildings often feature high ceilings to allow for overhead cranes and ventilation systems.

Specialized designs are employed to meet the specific needs of the industrial processes within, such as reinforced flooring, chemical-resistant materials, and controlled environmental conditions.

Location & Environment

Industrial construction projects are often situated in remote or industrial areas due to the need for space, utilities, and logistics. Environmental considerations, such as zoning, waste management, and pollution control, are critical in industrial construction due to potential environmental impact.


Industrial construction projects typically require a complex array of permits, including environmental permits, safety permits, and often federal, state, or local regulatory clearances due to potential hazards.

Mechanical, Electrical & Plumbing (MEP)

The MEP systems in industrial buildings are highly specialized, involving complex electrical systems, heavy-duty HVAC systems, and extensive plumbing networks to support industrial processes.

Safety Risks

Safety is a paramount concern in industrial construction due to the presence of heavy machinery, high voltages, chemicals, and potentially hazardous materials. Strict safety protocols are followed to mitigate risks.

Defining Commercial Construction

Commercial construction, on the other hand, encompasses the development of facilities designed for business and commercial activities. These projects are typically more diverse in nature and focus on creating spaces for retail, offices, hospitality, and entertainment.

Industries & Applications

Commercial construction serves a wide range of industries, including: 

  • Retail
  • Hospitality
  • Healthcare
  • Education
  • Office spaces
  • Entertainment

Examples of facilities include:

  • Shopping malls
  • Office buildings
  • Hotels
  • Restaurants
  • Theatres

Distinguishing Factors

See how the distinguishing factors vary from industrial construction projects.

Structure Types and Designs

Commercial buildings often have more aesthetically pleasing designs to attract customers and clients. These structures can vary widely in size and layout, depending on their intended purpose, from small boutiques to large shopping centers.

Location & Environment

Commercial construction is usually found in urban or suburban areas, where accessibility and visibility are key. Location is critical in attracting customers, so factors like proximity to highways and public transportation are important considerations.


While commercial construction also requires permits, the process is generally less complex than in industrial construction, primarily focusing on zoning and safety compliance.

Mechanical, Electrical & Plumbing (MEP)

Commercial buildings feature standard MEP systems tailored to the specific needs of the industry, such as efficient lighting, heating and cooling, and plumbing for restrooms and kitchens.

Safety Risks

Safety risks in commercial construction are generally lower compared to industrial construction but still require safety protocols to protect workers and the public.

Contact PALA for Your Industrial Construction Needs

PALA is an industrial construction company with a strong commitment to quality and safety. Serving the Southeast United States and Gulf Coast, we’ve built a strong reputation for completing complex industrial projects for a wide range of companies. 

For a project well done, get in touch with our team. 

Working at an Industrial Construction Company? Be Sure to Follow These Safety Guidelines

Working at an Industrial Construction Company? Be Sure to Follow These Safety Guidelines

Safety is discussed frequently in the world of industrial construction because it’s a concern that’s top of mind. Due to the nature of construction work with heavy machinery, power tools, pressurized equipment, high and low temperatures, hazardous chemicals, and heavy, unsecured building materials, it’s an industry with one of the highest rates of workplace injury and death. Industrial construction companies owe it to their workers, as well as their clients and shareholders, to take safety seriously. 

Top 4 Safety Guidelines for Industrial Construction Companies

Here are four safety guidelines that industrial construction companies should absolutely follow to ensure a safe, healthy, and productive work environment.

1. Know the Law

This is less a guideline and more an absolute mandate: you must know the laws that apply to the work your company does. Workplace safety is regulated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA); the construction industry is regulated by OSHA Standard 1926. All aspects of the industry are regulated under this act — from more general rules on housekeeping and injury reporting to industry-specific rules on concrete construction and steel erection.

Keeping up to date on new regulatory requirements is crucial, and it’s not only the responsibility of an EHS Manager but all of company leadership. 

2. Foster a Safety Culture

“Safety culture” is a bit of a buzzword in the industry, but it’s not initially a clear-cut concept. Every workplace has a culture, comprised of the ways in which people do their work and interact with one another and the values that guide those actions. Culture can seem to just arise out of day-to-day work and the way things get done (or don’t), but it’s important to make safety one of the values that guide the actions of your entire team. 

In a safety culture, neither management nor employees consider taking risky shortcuts or violating inconvenient regulations, because that’s just not how they do business. No one resists or even just absently forgets to wear the necessary PPE. Why? Because the importance of performing work safely is emphasized not just in infrequent training sessions but every day on the job site, and not just by top leadership but by crew members at every level.

3. Get Everyone Involved

As mentioned previously, having buy-in from everyone in your organization — from the newest hire to the CEO — is essential to promoting a safety culture. In addition to comprehensive safety training and top-down commitment to safety, getting other team members involved is necessary not only to encourage safe work habits but to accurately evaluate and mitigate hazards and risks. 

Even the best managers and supervisors can only see and do so much. Workers who are working with hazards on a daily basis will have valuable insights on how to address those hazards and any obstacles they face in safely performing their duties.

4. Evaluate and Improve

Beyond the reporting obligations determined by OSHA, it’s crucial that industrial construction companies keep detailed records of their safety program’s performance. This includes not just injuries and incidents, but near misses and potential hazards that are caught before they could result in an incident and when changes to protocols are implemented. Tracking this information will allow you to review it and make necessary changes, including seeing patterns that might not otherwise be obvious.

Health and safety systems are never perfected, and there will be incidents and mistakes, so continuous improvement is possible. This is especially the case as regulations will evolve over time, and your company will need to implement and adapt to the new requirements. 

Our Commitment to Safety at PALA Interstate 

PALA Interstate ensures a safe project all around by adhering to the regulations and guidelines listed above alongside our own safety protocols. In the planning phase of our projects, we perform both a Job Safety Analysis (JSA) and Pre-task Safety Analysis (PTSA). 

We’re also dedicated to fostering a safety culture, involving management and site staff. We perform industry, site, and PALA-specific safety training and orientation. Regular observations are performed on the worksite to ensure that safe work practices are being used, and we use the PII™ system for incident measurement, analysis, and feedback — because if you don’t measure it, you can’t improve on it.

Safety is at the heart of every project we take on; safety for people, facilities, and environments. For industrial construction and aboveground storage tank fabrication, installation, and repair, you can trust us to perform high-quality work with a safety mindset. Get in touch to learn more about how our work practices promote a safer worksite and results that will exceed your expectations.

PALA Group Celebrates 50th Anniversary

PALA Group Celebrates 50th Anniversary

BATON ROUGE, Feb. 2023 — This year, PALA Group is celebrating its 50th anniversary of delivering turnkey industrial construction solutions. While based in the Gulf Coast region, PALA has served clients across the United States with the highest level of service, safety, and quality — now for over five decades. 

PALA was founded in 1973 by Rick Tarajano, an industrial contractor working for the Louisiana sugar industry. His focus on mechanical piping and equipment installations made it a natural fit to move into other industries like pulp and paper, refining, and petrochemicals throughout the 1970s. 

In 1987, PALA formed its aboveground storage tank and ASME vessel operations. This division continued growing throughout the 1990s, securing contracts for small capital projects and tank farm maintenance with some of the Gulf Coast’s largest facilities. 

In 2008, PALA became an employee-owned company (ESOP) via acquisition from the original founding Tarajano family. Since then, the business has further expanded and diversified its service offerings, including: 

  • US FUSION & Specialty Construction (2017): A subsidiary providing services complementary to PALA’s, including installing plastic pipe, concrete embed liners, and various erosion control systems.

US Fusion

  • ARCCO Power Systems (2021): A subsidiary specializing in the sale, service, and rental of new and used generators ranging from 10kW to 3.5MW — offerings that are particularly useful in emergency response and disaster recovery situations.

arcco power systems

  • SMART Safety Group (2012): A company founded by PALA to help contractors and manufacturers in their quest to protect their most valued asset — their employees.

smart safety group

  • Elite Helical Solutions (2021): A subsidiary providing specialized helical piles as a deep foundation solution for industrial, mid-stream, and commercial building markets across the Gulf Coast.

Elite Helical

“PALA has evolved into a group of growing companies that relentlessly focuses on delivering the best possible service to our customers and creating value for our group of employee-owners,” said Scott Barringer, PALA CEO. “I’m proud to look back at our humble beginnings in the sugar mills of Louisiana and see how far we’ve come in 50 years.” 

What Does an Industrial Construction Company Do?

What Does an Industrial Construction Company Do?

“Industrial construction” is a broad term, and not everyone knows what it means. If you’re looking for an expert construction partner, it’s important to know that you’re looking at qualified candidates, especially if your industry has to meet certain regulations or your application has unique needs that present complex construction situations.

Here’s what you need to know about what an industrial construction company does, from the services they provide to the industries they serve. 

What is industrial construction?

Industrial construction is a kind of commercial construction (construction for a money-making business, as opposed to residential construction of homes or infrastructure construction of roadways and other such public-use structures). 

It refers specifically to construction for manufacturing and heavy industrial applications—think factories, mills, oil refineries, pipelines, or applications using heavy equipment.

These industrial applications have different challenges and complexities than other forms of commercial construction, such as building retail stores or restaurants, due to the heavy equipment in use, as well as legal and environmental safety requirements. Additionally, manufacturing and production facilities have unique needs in terms of piping, pressurized containers, bulk storage of chemicals, and more that require specialized solutions.

Industrial construction may also require offshore construction, particularly for energy installations like oil platforms or wind turbines. Offshore construction has particular safety and ecological concerns, as well as engineering challenges due to the need to create structures that can withstand the water and weather.

What services do industrial construction companies provide?

Industrial construction companies provide what we would typically think of as “construction” services: building facilities like factories and laboratories and warehouses. But industrial construction doesn’t stop at buildings. Industrial construction companies also build aboveground storage tanks and pressure vessels, install mechanical piping systems, set equipment, and more.

Additionally, due to the heavy load industrial sites bear from their equipment and machinery, the construction of buildings like factories and warehouses can require additional services, like helical pile installation (which strengthens and deepens building or equipment foundations) or specialized erosion control. 

The use of potentially hazardous chemicals and substances in industrial applications means that solutions are required to contain these substances, both in terms of primary containment (e.g., in an aboveground storage tank) and secondary containment, which protects the environment in case of a failure of the primary containment method.

Not all industrial construction companies provide all of these services, however. Many industrial construction companies specialize, either in specific services offered or in the needs of a specific industry. Some industrial construction companies may focus on the oil and gas industry, for example, while others may focus on providing just helical pile solutions or plastic pipe systems.

Some industrial construction companies may offer additional, related services. PALA Interstate, for example, not only fabricates and installs aboveground storage tanks, but we also offer maintenance and repair services, along with 3D laser scanning services for tank inspection.

What industries do industrial construction companies serve?

Industrial construction companies work with clients in a variety of industries, depending on their location and specialties. 

Some examples of industries that use industrial construction services include

  • Petrochemical
  • Fertilizer
  • Agriculture
  • Chemical
  • Refining
  • Energy
  • Bulk liquid terminals
  • Government and municipalities
  • Mining
  • Water treatment
  • Food and beverage

This list is certainly not exhaustive. There are many applications that require the specialized knowledge and expertise of industrial construction companies.

What does an industrial construction company do?

To wrap it all up, an industrial construction company provides construction services for manufacturing, energy, and other heavy industrial applications. These services can include erecting factories and other buildings and more specialized services like installing mechanical piping systems or fabricating aboveground storage tanks. If your application requires the use of heavy equipment or you have other industry-specific requirements for your construction project, you’ll need to work with an industrial construction company.

As an industrial construction company, we on the PALA team understand that it can be tough to find the construction professionals you need to complete a complex job properly. Here, you’ll find we offer the very best in technology, service, and safety. For more information, or to get help with your upcoming industrial construction project, get in touch with our team