Oil refineries and large petrochemical plants contain thousands of pieces of process and utilities equipment that are subject to wear, erosion, deterioration, aging, etc., resulting in increasing breakdowns and outages. Imagine being a maintenance engineer and receiving 50 work orders during an overhaul with a limited budget, time, labor, spare parts, tools, machines, etc. How does that engineer prioritize the work?
For the connected enterprise, what was once just a futuristic ideal is now becoming a reality. Step by step, organizations are beginning to put together the pieces of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).
By definition, all gear units have teeth. These teeth are designed and produced to a certain strength, or a defined force-on-tooth, or an allowable pressure-load on tooth.
This issue of Hydrocarbon Processing tackles one of the most integral aspects of the downstream industry (or any industry, for that matter): maintenance and reliability. These two terms go hand-in-hand and help to ensure efficient and safe operations.
Founded in 2009, Gulf Publishing Company and Hydrocarbon Processing’s International Refining and Petrochemical Conference (IRPC) provides a series of events for the international downstream industry covering technical innovations, and exploring both the challenges and opportunities found in today’s market.
When a major asphalt manufacturer experienced random bearing wear in its gear pumps, there was justified concern.
All plants have a vibration monitoring program for rotating equipment. Portable instruments measure vibration at the bearing housing of machines at horizontal (x), vertical (y) and axial (z) directions. The frequency spectrum helps diagnose the causes of vibration.
The drop in crude oil prices since 2014 has impacted both upstream producers and downstream players. Upstream producers—those responsible for exploration, drilling and production—were the first to feel the effects. While refining margins benefitted from the drop in crude oil pricing, they began to suffer when record surpluses of gasoline and diesel flooded the market a year later.
Rolling bearings must be adequately lubricated to operate reliably and to prevent direct metal-to-metal contact between rolling elements, raceways, cages and other components. The choice of a suitable lubricant and lubrication method, and controlling contaminants, are important for improving the reliability of the machinery where these bearings are used.