A Breakthrough Innovation in Refractory Ceramic Fiber Insulation: Redefining the Efficiency and Thermal Performance of Ethylene Cracking Furnaces

  • Type:
    Conference Presentation
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    AIChE Member Credits 0.5
    AIChE Members $19.00
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    Non-Members $29.00
  • Conference Type:
    AIChE Spring Meeting and Global Congress on Process Safety
  • Presentation Date:
    April 11, 2022
  • Duration:
    20 minutes
  • Skill Level:
    Intermediate
  • PDHs:
    0.50

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Operators and designers of Ethylene Cracking Furnaces are under increasing pressure to improve efficiencies and yields, while generating lower emissions and burning less fuel to run their furnaces. Selection of the optimal furnace lining insulation is a key factor to achieving the end user’s goals of lower energy consumption, lower operational costs, improved safety, and increased production throughput of the ethylene production plant. Heat management solutions for ethylene cracking furnaces have evolved over time from traditional solutions such as insulating castables and refractory brick, to lower cost and more energy efficient refractory ceramic fiber and microporous solutions.

Recently, a step change in refractory ceramic fiber manufacturing technology has been achieved which redefines the insulation design and heat management capabilities imaginable for ethylene cracking furnaces. This technical paper discusses the newly developed refractory ceramic fiber in detail, along with illustrative examples of how its enhanced fiber properties of higher fiber index and lower shot content allow end users to reduce energy consumption, heat loss, heat storage, weight, and the associated insulation investment costs. Several case studies are presented which will contrast the enhanced efficiency and thermal performance benefits of the new refractory ceramic fiber material versus existing strategies for thermally insulating ethylene cracking furnaces.

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AIChE Member Credits 0.5
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