Refining

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.

Good, bad and ugly process burner flames

Baukal, C., Weimer, B., Pappe, M., Mcguire, J., Johnson, B., Luginbill, R., John Zink Hamworthy Combustion

As part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) maximum achievable control technology (MACT) fired heater inspection program, the authors’ company has inspected nearly 1,000 heaters since the program started in 2015. These inspections have revealed all types of flames—the good, bad and ugly. Here, good is defined as no changes are needed; bad is defined as changes are needed where the conditions are not likely dangerous; and ugly is defined as immediate changes are needed because the conditions are potentially dangerous.

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.

Driving FCCU value through fresh and flushing catalyst activity modeling

Refiners are continually challenged to maximize economic gain in the face of cost pressures and plant operating constraints. The fluidized catalytic cracking unit (FCCU) plays an integral role in the optimization of the facility. FCC catalyst is often one of the largest budget items in the refinery. Therefore, the balance between FCCU performance and catalyst costs has a significant impact on refinery profitability.

Taking back what’s yours: Extractive desulfurization minimizes octane loss in FCC naphtha hydrotreating

Aggus, B., Massa, M., INVISTA Performance Technologies

Generating octane barrels has always been a tough road for refiners. In 2020, this road got a lot tougher with olefin saturation and octane destruction being collateral damage as refiners strive to achieve the sulfur limit in the gasoline pool.

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.

Shape the refinery of the future through integration—Part 1

Maiti, S. N., SNC-Lavalin Inc.

The negative impact of fossil fuels on the environment has become widely accepted, and our global society has begun to focus on alternative fuels. The pollution of the local, regional and global environment has become a primary concern.

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.

Industry Perspectives: Save the date: Hydrocarbon Processing’s Top Projects Awards

Nichols, Lee, Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

Over the past several years, Hydrocarbon Processing has honored the feats of capital project excellence with its Top Projects Awards. The winners and nominees encapsulate important contributions to the global hydrocarbon processing industry, whether that is through significant capital intensity, diversifying product offerings or adding a significant amount of refining and/or petrochemical processing capacity.