January 2012

Engineering and Design Developments

Case history: Replacement of existing pressure vessel

Installing new equipment involves more processes to ensure safety and to meet new codes

Fearn, D., McKay, J., Fluor Canada Ltd.

The replacement of pressure vessels is a common function in an operating refinery, particularly those units that have been in operation for the full design life of the vessel. From the client’s perspective, a vessel may have operated successfully for many years beyond the original design life with no issue. Its replacement should be easily accomplished given the relative success of the original design. In the real world, the replacement of existing refinery vessels in a brownfield environment is seldom replacement in kind. Some minor, yet important, activities should be addressed to ensure project success. In the presented example, work processes used to replace a hydrogen sulfide

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