How Continuous Corrosion Monitoring Is Helping to Evolve Refinery Operations

Source: AIChE
  • Type:
    Conference Presentation
  • Conference Type:
    AIChE Spring Meeting and Global Congress on Process Safety
  • Presentation Date:
    April 28, 2015
  • Duration:
    30 minutes
  • Skill Level:
  • PDHs:

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Refiners are continually seeking to improve profitability in a tight margin environment. This is driving them towards a wider basket of crude oils, particularly towards cheaper opportunity crudes. These crudes are discounted against marker crudes because of their processing difficulty - in particular, the high concentrations of corrosive species. This makes them both attractive and risky.

The risk to plant integrity, in a highly regulated operating environment, is leading refinery operators to implement innovative solutions to mitigate the potential that these opportunity crudes pose for unexpected loss of containment or reduced plant availability, making maximum use of skilled inspection personnel available to widen corrosion surveillance across the refinery.

This paper will look at how the application of permanently installed ultrasonic wall thickness monitoring equipment and wirelessly transmitted data is providing continuous information on the rate of metal loss at many refineries globally. This data is providing operators with valuable real-time information on the link between feedstock quality and corrosion rate, and the effectiveness of mitigation levers, such as corrosion inhibitors, changes to process conditions and defining effective strategies for metallurgical upgrades.

Using case studies from the implementation of these sensors at BP Rotterdam, the paper will show how the sensors can be used from an integrity perspective to identify if/where corrosion is taking place, and in what form.  Permasense will present other customer case studies demonstrating how permanent corrosion monitoring represents a significant step forward in optimising the use of corrosion inhibitors, in assessing the impact of feedstock flexibility and selection and in providing asset and integrity managers with a more accurate picture of how the infrastructure is coping with the demands placed upon it.

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