September 2019

Special Focus: Refining Technology

Modified shed decks tackle crude tower fouling problems

Many tray designs have been complicated by the hunt for the “perfect distillation tray” design.

Hanson, D., Brown Burns, J., Valero Energy Corp.

Many tray designs have been complicated by the hunt for the “perfect distillation tray” design. Incremental improvements in the past 10 yr–15 yr have come at the expense of strict installation requirements and arguably even stricter application guidelines. While distillation practitioners seek improvements or upgrades to the conventional crossflow or counterflow tray designs, they rarely evaluate a backward step; that is, simplifying designs by employing basic, timeworn technology but with an updated viewpoint. If one had a menu-item list of the “perfect distillation tray” design and/or performance characteristics, the list would certainly contain the following items: Efficiency Capacit

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