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Fixed Equipment

Tankage

Becht Engineering provides expert services in design, design review, troubleshooting, fitness for service, repair and failure analysis of atmospheric and low pressure storage tanks built in accordance with API 620 and API 650.  Consulting assistance is provided to refiners on the application of API 653 Standard, and development of risk-based programs for cost effective inspection and maintenance of existing aboveground storage tanks.

A senior specialist in this area is Arcot "Radha" Radhakrishnan, who is a former member of the API Committee on storage tanks.  We also have provided highly experienced field staff to consult on and oversee tank cleaning and repair, as well as the construction of new storage tanks.

We also teach a two day course on storage tanks, covering API 620, API 650 and API 653. For details regarding our training courses, click here.

Welding/Fabrication

Becht staff includes materials and mechanical engineers with expertise in welding and fabrication of pressure equipment. This includes expertise in heavy wall vessels, welding in difficult circumstances such as the weld repair of embrittled material, and welding of modified 9 chrome steel. In addition, we have designed and evaluated heat treatment plans such as bulls-eye heat treatment for coke drum repairs and heat treatment of new nuclear heat exchangers. This expertise is applied both for new construction and repair.

Flanged Joints

Bolted flange joints can be extremely complicated parts of pressure equipment.  Leaking flanges can have personnel health and safety, environmental, fire, and loss of production implications.  We have extensive experience and expertise in solving leaking flange problems.  One of our experts, Clyde Neely, is the founding chair of ASME PCC-1: Guidelines for Pressure Boundary Bolted Flange Joint Assembly.  Often, leaking flanges can be solved by applying well-tested techniques from our wealth of experience.  Other times, analysis (including finite element analysis) is needed to both pinpoint the cause of the leakage and simulate the proposed solution.  Our track record of solving leaking flanges is the envy of the industry.

Plant-Wide Fire Water Systems

Refineries, petrochemical plants and other facilities with their own dedicated firewater distribution systems need to know the capacity of their firewater systems to prepare for major incidents, to comply with local, state and federal  regulations, or to demonstrate that their facilities have adequate firefighting capacity for insurance purposes.

 Commonly, a facility's firefighting department, with assistance from maintenance or operations personnel will perform a few firewater system tests annually, in which a number of hydrants within a part of the site will be opened and flow data recorded. This approach is often less than systematic and may not be sufficient to provide a proper assessment of the system's capability or deficiencies. A complete systematic approach is necessary to provide a proper assessment of the system's strengths and weaknesses. A systematic approach is necessary to consider "what-if" scenarios, which could include, for example, the simulated loss of a key pump or the breakage of critical underground mains.

We have developed firewater system models for the existing systems in refineries, predicted their performance, correlated results with testing, and determined the system demand.

A recent project for a client involved the development of firewater loads for all of the onsite process areas and for a number of the more critical tank storage fire risk areas. The firewater grid model contained over 30 miles of piping, over 1,800 individual pipes, over 1,800 junctions including approximately 800 hydrants plus seven firewater pumps and miscellaneous system wide leaks. To complete the model we reviewed and modeled nearly 100 individual D-size sub-drawings of the firewater grid. Using our approach our team was able to construct and preliminarily validate the model in less than eight weeks. The resulting flow simulations reproduced the site's existing test data to within a few percent of the flows and pressures. Later we assisted the client in evaluating several options to enhance his firewater coverage by running alternative cases for him.

Heat Exchangers

Becht Engineering has specialist expertise in the mechanical design, heat transfer design and materials selection for heat exchangers, including conventional shell and tube, air fin, plate-fin, and other configurations. Our staff of mechanical experts include members of the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code and former members of the API heat transfer equipment committees.

We have also provided consulting on materials selection, failure analysis and corrosion for heat exchangers. Our services in this area typically involve consultation in new designs, design review and troubleshooting.

Vibration Troubleshooting/Control

Becht Engineering evaluates piping, vessel, heat exchanger, fired heater, stack and other equipment and structural vibration and vibration failures and develops corrective actions. Our tools range from simple screening criteria to sophisticated finite element and piping dynamic analyses. We provide detailed designs that correct the vibration conditions. We also measure the levels of vibration in the field with sophisticated data acquisition equipment.

Dr. Becht and Don Frikken teach a course on Practical Piping Vibration. For details regarding our training courses, click here.

Metallurgical and Corrosion

Becht staff include over ten senior materials experts with expertise in applications including power, refinining, petrochemical and chemical facilities, and materials including metals, coatings and linings, and nonmetals such as refractories, thermoplastics (e.g., high density polyethylene) and reinforced thermosetting resins (e.g., fiberglass).  Our services include material selection, establishing operating envelopes for equipment, failure analysis, remaining life assessment, and establishing deterioration mechanisms and their associated probabilities for risk based inspection and development of equipment reliability plans.  We are experts in modifications to existing chemical processes to alleviate and control corrosion that allows continued operation of existing equipment.  We are experts in the equipment requirements for processing corrosive crudes (e.g. high TAN crudes such as Doba crude) as well as material applications for high temperature services such as steam cracking furnaces and furnaces to produce synthesis gas.

Civil/Foundations/Structural

Becht Engineering has expertise in challenging civil/foundation/structural design and evaluation, both for new construction and assessment of existing structures such as stacks, refinery structures and cooling towers.  Areas of special expertise include design and evaluation of blast resistant structures for resistance to vapor cloud explosions, design of stacks and heavy equipment foundations.  Our creative solutions have enabled us to remediate structures that have been written off by others.

Becht Fitness For Service

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We are organized to quickly and efficiently handle all levels of Fitness-For-Service assessments including rapid response to emergency situations where quick assessments are required to keep a plant running or when damage is found.

For immediate response, contact our FFS coordinator, Magnus Gustafsson (click to email / phone at 571-550-0722) or complete the form. Your form request will go to Mr. Gustafsson, as well as our President, Chuck Becht and General Manager, John Basil.

A quick response is guaranteed!

Finite Element Analysis

Becht Finite Element Analysis
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Becht Engineering has developed a reputation as one of the premier providers of Design-By-Analysis services.  We have a deep reservoir of staff that perfrom finite element analysis using commercial programs such as ABAQUS, ANSYS, SolidWorks and products of Paulin Research Group.  Types of analysis include linear and nonlinear analysis, stress, heat transfer and dynamics including seismic.

Given the many analytical tools available, we are able to choose the most efficient and cost-effective tool for the task at hand; for example, we frequently use non-linear analysis to develop more efficient equipment designs and/or to demonstrate that existing equipment is fit for service. Our extensive code expertise enables us to provide authoritative interpretations of the analysis results. Our experts include such frequently published engineers as Greg Hollinger, Trevor Seipp, and Dr. Charles Becht.