September 2013

Special Report: Refining Developments

Mitigate fouling in crude unit overhead—Part 1

In a refinery crude distillation column, up to 40% of the total heat removal may be found in the tower overhead condenser. The quantity of duty available makes heat integration (HI) between the column..

In a refinery crude distillation column, up to 40% of the total heat removal may be found in the tower overhead condenser. The quantity of duty available makes heat integration (HI) between the column overhead and unit feed an interesting project. Approximately 70% of the present crude units recover some portion of this duty. However, many of these units suffer from persistent and serious corrosion problems in the overhead system. In extreme cases, the viability of the entire refinery site may be compromised due to fouling and corrosion conditions. Up to 50% of the refinery’s entire corrosion expense may occur in the crude unit. The root cause of the fouling and corrosion issues can of

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