How to Get the Best From Your Preheat Train an UK Refinery Based Case Study

Fuels and Petrochemicals Division
AIChE Spring Meeting and Global Congress on Process Safety
April 29, 2013 - 3:30pm-4:00pm
Crude refinery preheat trains (PHTs) are a major part of a refining process as it reduces the quantity of energy required to heat the crude oil to its distillation temperature. Fouling is a long known problem in the PHTs; the ability of a refinery to process different crude blends or to increase its production capacity strongly depends on the thermal and hydraulic performance of the PHT under fouling conditions. This paper describes a data reconciliation approach that utilizes historical plant data, which usually consists of missing information and uncertainty, to generate a so called ‘dynamic fouling model’. Dynamic fouling models are used in a simulation methodology to predict plant performance under variable operating conditions. A discussion in the latest developments in modelling and simulation of PHTs subject to fouling is provided. A novel software tool, SmartPM, was successfully utilized to study heat recovery paths, cleaning schedules and furnace firing capacity on a UK based crude refinery PHT case study.
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