November 2016

Special Focus: Plant Safety and Environment

Managing complex changeover processes for integrated cracking furnace safety

Cracking furnace operations (e.g., for the steam cracking of naphtha feedstock into olefins) are an essential part of hydrocarbon (HC) refining; however, they are known to be potentially dangerous and complex to manage.

van Diessen, S., Sadowski, S., Netherlocks Safety Systems

Cracking furnace operations (e.g., for the steam cracking of naphtha feedstock into olefins) are an essential part of hydrocarbon (HC) refining; however, they are known to be potentially dangerous and complex to manage. The history of cracking operations contains several examples of what can go wrong when safety measures fail and accidents occur. Throughout the last decade, Netherlocks Safety Systems had the opportunity to work with European multinational petrochemical companies to co-develop an integrated safety approach, preventing and mitigating the main sources of risk involved, as presented in this article. In a 2009 incident in France, a superheater exploded during the manual light-u

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