August 2014


Special Report: Fluid Flow and Rotating Equipment

Update on secondary seals for fluid machines
Bloch, H. P., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff; Carmody, C., AESSEAL plc

Elastomer-based O-rings are used as secondary sealing components in millions of fluid machines. Although O-ring seals are primarily intended for fluid containment between different but nonrotating com..

Improve compressor reliability with advanced chemical treatments

Although many olefin plants are making big investments in hardware and metallurgy to improve compressor performance and to extend run lengths, the reliability, efficiency and throughput capacity of the CGC are still key influences on plant profitability.

Triple-offset valves offer advantages in emergency services
Casaroli, S., Ferrara, M., Pentair Valves & Controls

Liquid hydrocarbon storage facilities have used triple-offset valves (TOVs) in traditional tank farm applications for decades. Due to more stringent health, safety and environment (HSE) requirements, ..

Case history: Troubleshooting a leaking valve in a hydrogen unit

A Middle East refinery installed a hydrogen plant that was designed to produce 20,000 Nm3/hr of pure hydrogen (H2) to support a diesel hydrotreater. The unit was commissioned in 2006. This H2 plant wa..

Refining Developments

Examining the ecological and profitable uses of refinery residues
Gambert, R., EDL Anlagenbau Gesellschaft mbH

With prices pressured and stricter environmental legislation being implemented, refineries are being increasingly forced to look at new ways of processing heavy residues.

Innovative modeling of heavy crudes provides competitive advantages
Beck, R., Ajikutira, D., Ye, V., Aspen Technology Inc.; Rumyantseva, I., Aspen Technology

The increase in heavy crude production, together with the diversity of heavy crude characteristics and sources, leads to technical challenges in accurately predicting production and refining process performance.

Management Guidelines

How are leading organizations implementing operational excellence?
Moran, M., Moran Manufacturing Excellence Consultants

ExxonMobil did not devote four full pages to operational excellence (OE) in its 2012 annual report because they had nothing else to talk about, but rather because they viewed it as one of their five k..

Maintenance and Reliability

Optimize plant reliability with operator-based maintenance programs
Fearn, D., Fluor Canada Ltd.; Porter, M., Irving Oil Refining, G.P.

This case study demonstrates the potential maintenance-labor cost savings that can be obtained through the greater utilization of operations staff; such savings can justify OPPM program investment.

Project Management

Use information management tools to support best practices and increase reliability
Standish, R., AVEVA Solutions Ltd.

The recently published ISO 55000 series of standards aims to promote best practices in asset management. Other goals of this standard include: achieving tangible benefits through the effective managem..

Refinery of the Future

Case history: Modernization of Russia’s refining industry—Part 2
Levinbuk, M., RAS, A.V. Topchiev Institute of Petrochemical Synthesis, Gubkin Russian State University of Oil and Gas; Galkin, V. V., Makhiyanov, V., Gazprom Neft

Russia’s refining industry is set to make major changes to improve profitability and produce cleaner transportation fuels. Such changes will enable the refining industry to export cleaner fuels t..

Safety, Security and Environment Supplement

Understanding people helps reduce safety risks in the workplace
Ford, G., TalentClick Workforce Solutions

It’s fair to assume that most employers strive to deliver quality results and maintain high safety standards in their plant operations. Recent research has shown that employing staff who share th..


HP Automation Strategies: Energy management lessons from Europe
Güldner, F., ARC Advisory Group

ARC Advisory Group research indicates that, by applying appropriate energy management measures, energy-intensive companies can reduce their energy consumption by 30% to 40% over a 15-year timespan. Th..

HP Reliability: Advances in gasket designs making progress
Bloch, H. P., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Long service life and maintenance cost avoidance for equipment are of great interest to reliability professionals in the hydrocarbon processing industry. These goals are supported by a renowned gasket..

HP Project Management: What skills will project managers need in the next decade?—Part 2
Badger, W., Del E. Webb School of Construction, Arizona State University

The role of the PM is evolving as new HPI projects are constructed across the world and enlist engineers and service companies scattered in different countries and regions. As discussed in Part 1, new..

HP Petrochemicals: Ethane cracking spurs need for on-purpose butadiene technologies
DuBose, Ben, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Several companies are teaming up to develop technology to produce butadiene from the suddenly-abundant butane supplies from the US shale boom.

HP Engineering Case Histories: Case 80: Sudden temperature change in a centrifugal compressor
Sofronas, T., Consulting Engineer

A process upset occurred that caused the gas temperature of a centrifugal compressor to increase from the design condition of Tstart = 300°F to Tinf = 600°F in t = 0.25 hours. Some engineers..

HP Boxscore Construction Analysis: The CIS—four countries, $50 billion in downstream investments
Nichols, L., Hydrocarbon Processing

Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are laying the foundation to attract foreign investment to develop their vast hydrocarbon reserves, as well as to develop their downstream processing infrastructure to meet rising demand and export opportunities.

HP Viewpoint: Optimize control systems with preventive maintenance
Parisi, P., Compressor Controls Corp.

Ensuring equipment integrity by conducting thorough maintenance provides multiple benefits, from maximizing machine uptime and minimizing process shutdowns, to prolonged equipment service life and imp..

HP Industry Perspectives: Second-generation petrochemical processes take lead
Romanow, Stephany, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Ethylene is the bellwether petrochemical. Almost all petrochemicals begin with ethylene and proceed to other major petrochemicals, including polyethylene (PE), ethylene dichloride, ethylbenzene and et..

HP News
Thinnes, Billy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Refining capacity in the US increases slightly At the beginning of 2014 in the US, there were 139 operating refineries and three idle refineries with total atmospheric crude oil distillation capacity ..

HP Industry Metrics: HP Metrics
Romanow, Stephany, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

At mid-year, the global demand for oil remains steady, and growth is forecast to average about 1.13 million bpd (MMbpd). Analysts are more optimistic for greater demand increases in 2015 at 1.21MMbpd,..

HP Innovations
Blume, Adrienne, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Small-capacity SRUs available for petchemsPrincipal Technology offers sulfur recovery units (SRUs) (Fig. 1) specifically designed for small-capacity petrochemical plants. The SRUs are available in nam..

HP People
Thinnes, Billy, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Energy Recovery has promoted Joel Gay to CFO, replacing Alex Buehler. Mr. Gay joined Energy Recovery in January 2012 and has held several positions at the company, serving as vice president of finance..

Free Literature
Meche, Helen, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Elastomer compatibility ratings anytime, anywhereDuPont’s upgraded Chemical Resistance Guide (CRG) is now available online and offline for desktops, tablets and smart phones. This user-friendly t..

New Developments
Meche, Helen, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Electromechanical switches certified worldwide to meet demanding requirements The vibration-resistant 316 stainless steel 12 Series switch meets the requirements of hazardous-area applications wo..


EU refining industry struggles to remain competitive in 2014
Romanow, Stephany, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

For European refiners, the economic situation remains clouded. The 2008 global recession sent this region into a financial downward spiral. Conditions are improving, but they still lag behind other de..