August 2014

Special Report: Fluid Flow and Rotating Equipment

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..

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 was equipped with a pressure-swing adsorption (PSA) unit. Several years after commissioning, the H2 plant experienced a major leak in the PSA unit. As a result, the H2 concentration in the tail gas jumped, while the H2 production rate dropped significantly. The leak caused significant supply problems to the refinery’s hydrotreating and hydrocracking units. This case history discusses the investigation to identify the root cause for the valve failure, and highlights new maintenance procedures

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