Reliability: Plan startups wisely and involve SMEs

Bloch, Heinz P., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

DE, a retired former colleague of mine, recounted his experience as an expert witness for ABC in litigation against XYZ. (Note that I picked the letters A through M for the plaintiff’s side; N through Z are assigned to the defendants.)

Engineering Case Histories: Case 110: A checklist for vibration analysis

Sofronas, A., Consulting Engineer

Periodically, I receive questions from engineers around the world on why a piece of critical machinery is vibrating excessively.

Design of very-high-flow coefficient centrifugal compressor stages

Jariwala, V., Elliott Group

Centrifugal compressors are widely used in the oil and gas and petrochemical industries, with more than 15,000 operating in the U.S. alone.

Reveal the unmonitored risks in your rotating equipment: The effects of torsional vibration—Part 2

O’Connor, D., Gutierrez, J., Bently Nevada, a Baker Hughes Business

In recent case studies, unexpected and unmonitored torsional vibration resulted in sudden failures, costly downtime and potential safety hazards. Part 1 of this article, which appeared in the January issue of Hydrocarbon Processing, examined the origins of torsional vibration and case histories to drive an understanding of the unmonitored risk existing at many industrial sites.

Reveal the unmonitored risks in your rotating equipment—Part 1

O’Connor, D., Gutierrez, J., Bently Nevada, a Baker Hughes Business

On December 15, 2002, an anomalous event occurred in a steam turbine of Unit 2 at the South Texas Project Electric Generating Station, a pressurized water reactor (PWR) nuclear reactor near Bay City, Texas. The ensuing investigation concluded that a blade was ejected from a low-pressure stage, and detailed inspections revealed additional cracked blades in several stages.

Reliability: Things rarely heard at reliability conferences

Bloch, Heinz P., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

We can only guess how many reliability conferences we have attended since accepting job offers in the refining or chemical processing industries. In my case, starting in 1965, it is somewhere between 60 and 80. If, in each of these conferences I listened to six presentations, the number of sessions attended is perhaps 400.

Can ammonia be a future energy storage solution?

Ammonia is well known as a fertilizer. However, it is also a potential carbon-free fuel and an excellent solution for storage of renewable electricity, especially if the syngas needed for producing the ammonia is made by electrolysis.

Reliability: When slow-rolling machines can cause failures, and how to avoid them

Bloch, Heinz P., Hydrocarbon Processing Staff

All the book learning in the world will fail if we do not use common sense. We could also say that we need to think things through and should recognize that intuitive logic can lead us astray. If that sounds like semantic banter, let us zero in on three practical field examples that illustrate the issues at hand.

Consider installing a VFD to increase reliability and savings

Vila Forteza, M., Petronor

The Petronor oil refinery is in the north of Spain and is part of REPSOL Group. In 2019, the facility upgraded the driver of a reformer’s draft fan from a general-purpose steam turbine and gearbox to a variable frequency drive (VFD) electric motor.

Hydrocarbon Processing Awards Winners

Hydrocarbon Processing, the downstream processing sector’s leading technical publication, has announced the winners for its third annual awards. The HP Awards celebrate innovative technologies and people that have been instrumental in improving facility operations over the past year.