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Becht Engineering Blog

In this section of the site contributing authors submit interesting articles relating to the various services, industries and research & development efforts of Becht Engineering.

Judging Readiness for Maintenance Pitstops/"Squats"

maintenance_pitstops_squats
Major Maintenance - work commonly called “Pitstops” or “Squats” - can be forgotten in the hectic world of Turnarounds and Routine Maintenance, so how do you judge the readiness and whether you are doing the right work?Pitstops or Squats are normally smaller events in size and duration that fall between doing everyday routine maintenance and large heavily planned and scheduled turnarounds.  Although smaller in nature, these events can still cost millions of dollars and have durations up to 2 weeks.Typical Maintenance Pitstops start out as short duration work that is postponed from major turnarounds in order to lower the cost or duration of the turnaround, or a catalyst change which is required more frequently than the Cycle Ending Interval.  While it is prudent to perform all possible work within the window of the Pitstop, in is important to monitor the work requested to avoid pushing the cost and duration of the...
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Origins and Fates of Chlorides in Hydroprocessing Units - Part 3: Managing the Chlorides

chloride-processing-at-night Chlorides in Hydroprocessing - Part 3
The first two articles of this series provided a methodical approach to identifying a chloride problem in a hydroprocessing unit, determining the size of the problem, and narrowing it down to a likely source or sources.  This final article addresses approaches to dealing with various sources.Read Part 1 of this blog    Read Part 2 of this blogStep 4 - Managing the ChloridesNow that you have a clue about the magnitude of chlorides present and where they might be coming from, you can address the problems.  There are three fundamental strategies or options for controlling chlorides in a hydroprocessing unit:Keep chlorides outIntercept what gets throughDesign and monitor for chloridesBy the application of these strategies, individually and in combination, chlorides have been effectively controlled in many units.Keeping Chlorides OutAs a general rule, target to have much less than 2-3 ppm chlorides in feed and less than 0.5 ppm in makeup reformer hydrogen...
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Origins and Fates of Chlorides in Hydroprocessing Units - Part 2: Magnitude and Source(s) the Problem

chloride-processing-at-night Chlorides in Hydroprocessing - Part 2
The first article of this series introduced the symptoms of a chloride problem in a hydroprocessing unit.  In this article, we will explore how to interpret the symptoms by determining how much chloride-containing material we are looking for and identifying the possible or likely source(s) for this amount of material, embodied in Steps 2 and 3 of the problem analysis.Read Part 1 of this blog    Read Part 3 of this blogStep 2 - How Big is the Problem?It is very helpful to know the magnitude and type of the chloride problem before you go looking for a possible source.  Start by chemically analyzing selected streams for chlorides.  Be sure your operators use good industrial hygiene practices (e.g. chemical gloves) in sampling streams for chlorides since most chloride compounds are hazardous, even in the low concentrations we are testing.Analyze the hydroprocessing unit feed.  Determine the total chloride content of the feed...
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Origins and Fates of Chlorides in Hydroprocessing Units - Part 1: Recognizing the Problem

chloride-processing-at-night Chlorides in Hydroprocessing - Part 1
IntroductionThis series of three articles explores the impacts chlorides may have on hydroprocessing units (hydrotreaters and hydrocrackers).  It provides a methodical approach to identifying the typical effects that point toward chlorides, the sources of chlorides in process feed streams, chloride-induced failure mechanisms, methods for identifying chlorides, strategies for chloride control, and a step-by-step process outline for dealing with a problem.  Some of the approaches and impacts here can also be applied to other halogens in hydrotreaters, such as fluoride.This first article of the series focuses on recognizing a chloride problem in a hydroprocessing unit.  In the second article, we tackle how to identify the magnitude and source(s) of the problem.  The third article presents ways to address the chloride issues.Read Part 2 of this blog--------------------------------------------------------Problems caused by chlorides are often missed or misdiagnosed in a refinery.  They impact not only the hydroprocessing units, but other units as well.  Sometimes the methods...
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