Equipment

How valve upgrades can improve tank and terminal facility operations

Tank and terminal facility profitability ultimately rests on a handful of key performance indicators (KPIs). The ability to maximize tank capacity utilization—while minimizing the time it takes to load and unload ships, trucks and rail cars—drives the bottom line. All those transfers must happen quickly and accurately, while avoiding product contamination.

Hydrocarbon Processing Awards 2020—FINALISTS

This special section details all finalists within each category for the fourth annual HP Awards. The winners will be announced on Oct. 1.

Catalytic processes operation during downturns in aromatics complexes

Andrews, J., Hung, J., Molinier, M., Lim, Y. T., ExxonMobil Chemical Co.

Paraxylene production is a highly cyclical business that is subject to changes in the global economy and dependent on feedstock costs, alternative dispositions for aromatics, utilities costs and plant locations, among other factors. With the large PX capacity added by recently started crude-to-chemicals complexes and the expected impact of the economic recession on commodities demand, many aromatics complexes face a significant slowdown in the coming months or, possibly, years.

Conventional FCC to maximum propylene production

Singh, R., Lai, S., Dharia, D., TechnipFMC Process Technology; Cipriano, B., Hunt, D., W. R. Grace

Fluid catalytic cracking is one of the most important conversion processes used in refineries. This process converts heavy petroleum fractions into lighter, higher-value products, such as gasoline, propylene and others.

Business Trends: Autonomous operations in process manufacturing—Part 1

Agnihotri, R., IBM Corp.

Progress in the driverless car segment has served to illuminate one of the major future goals in industrial and process manufacturing: autonomous operations in process plants—in other words, the autonomous plant. While AO for process plants has received interest from the process automation and control industry, limited serious discussion has taken place in the process operations and IT domains.

Supply Chain: How to reduce piping inventory

Abid, J., Consulting Engineer

Piping represents a significant part of the plant cost, ranging from 15%–25%.1 Materials stored in warehouses or storage facilities cost companies in terms of personnel, materials, time, space, insurance, risk, etc. This article proposes cost-saving strategies for inventory reduction. Further, it emphasizes consistent naming conventions to avoid creating duplicate/redundant items.

Project Management: Reduce installation schedule for column trays

Dixit, P., Consultant

The implementation of a project schedule must avoid slippage, which can lead to budget overruns and delays in commissioning and production. Conversely, a reduction in project schedule results in an early startup of the plant, creating advantage for stakeholders. Customers often demand reductions in schedule timelines, which can be difficult for engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractors to implement. New innovations like concurrent engineering, modular construction, prefabricated pipe racks and structures, etc., are already in practice.

Editorial Comment: Optimizing operations and recognizing achievements

Nichols, Lee, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Over the next two months, Hydrocarbon Processing will host two separate events for a global audience. One will gather the brightest minds in the industry to share the latest innovations and technologies in the industry, while the other will recognize the leaders in advancing the industry toward safer and more reliable, sustainable and profitable operations. Both events—Hydrocarbon Processing’s IRPC and the HP Awards—will be streamed on digital platforms and free to view.

Innovations

Rhodes, Mike, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Sphera has released a new Interactive piping and instrumentation diagram (P&ID) solution that helps organizations break down silos between their operations, maintenance and engineering departments while simplifying isolation planning.

Business Trends: Managing risk and uncertainty: The importance of optimizing your value chain

McMullen, J, AVEVA

No doubt exists that COVID-19 is disrupting the oil and gas industry. Oil prices are falling, demand is down, supply is up, and storage capacity is limited. In these difficult times, the industry must swiftly act to keep business viable to come back strong when conditions improve.