December 2002

Simulation/Process Control

A fast simulation algorithm for industrial cracking furnaces

Comparison with actual plant data shows it is accurate enough for real-time optimization

Chen, B., He, X., Xu, Q., Department of Chemical Engineering, Tsingshua University

A new simulation algorithm for industrial cracking furnaces significantly increases simulation speed with satisfactory accuracy. The energy-balance equations of cracking furnaces were transformed to the temperature differential equation by directly solving a quartic equation of the tube wall temperature. One set of new continuity equations for various reactants, temperature and pressure was formed. The new algorithm greatly reduces the number of complex iterations during the actual simulation, and simulation speed is fast enough to accomplish a periodic simulation of a cracking furnace in just a few minutes with a

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