June 1997

Environment/Reliability

Control corrosion in washwater systems

When operating reactor wash units above design conditions residual salts can cause equipment failures

Turner, J., Fluor

Ammonia salt deposition in hydroprocessing units, particularly hydrocrackers and hydrotreaters, has been a chronic problem. If allowed to settle, this deposition can plug equipment and/or increase exchanger fouling. To keep salts from crystallizing and depositing on piping and equipment, washwater systems are designed to dissolve salts into an aqueous phase before the reactor effluent cools to the salt-deposition temperature. Unfortunately, the resulting aqueous solution can be very corrosive and has led to major equipment failures, fires and explosions. At the same time, units are operating at rates above the original design, thus compounding the problems. Using new guidel

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