Course Content – Fired Heaters / Combustion Technology

Course Content – Fired Heaters / Combustion Technology


Schedule Date Time PDH Venue/Platform Cost Register
Spring 2024 April 24 – 26, 2024 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Central Time (UTC -6)
24 hrs. Sheraton North Houston at George Bush Intercontinental
Accepts in-person and virtual attendees


Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand combustion basics and operating best practices
  • Understand hardware and instrumentation of fired equipment
  • Make rough calculations for trouble shooting of field problems
  • Optimize/balance proper operation and thermal efficiency of fired equipment
Combustion Theory
  • Combustion of fuels
  • Furnace efficiency calculations
  • Flammability limit
  • Burner types
  • Operating characteristics
  • Optimization
Atomization (for oil fired configurations)
  • Atomizer types
  • Operating characteristics
  • Optimization
Low NOx Burners
  • Formation of NOx and Solids
  • Overview of NOx and Solids reduction techniques
  • How to reduce the impact of combustion on the environment
  • Purposes and process application
  • Furnace scheme, components, and general lay-out
  • Main parameters in furnace efficiency
  • Transfer of heat from fuel to process (radiation/convection; gasfiring / oil firing)
  • Two phase flow
  • Causes of furnace tube overheating
  • Effect of coke formation
  • Air Different furnace types
Air Preheat
  • Effects on efficiency
  • SO3 Dew point corrosion
  • Different types
  • Operation / maintenance
Furnace Control and Safety
  • Minimum stops:
  • – Mechanical minimum stops
    – Active minimum stops
  • Steam atomizers
  • Fuel temperature and steam-oil delta p control
  • Safeguarding
  • Air/fuel ration control schemes
  • Effect of variations in molecular weight
  • Safeguarding types:
  • – Flame detection
    – Low pressure trips
Furnace Drafty
  • Purpose of furnace stacks
  • Pressure profiles of natural and forced draught systems
  • To be able to calculate actual draught levels in combustion systems
Start-up and Operation
  • Maintenance and inspection of burners
  • Furnace Oxygen – and draft control
  • Normal operation – “control knobs”
Furnace Tube Decoking
  • Shot blasting
  • High Pressure Water Jetting
  • Spalling
  • Safeguarding
  • Steam-Air decoking
  • Mechanical decoking aka Pigging
  • Integrity and drying
  • Preparations
  • Water requirements and bonding systems”
Furnace Tube Failure
  • Causes
  • Prevention
  • Optimization
On-Line Chemical Cleaning
  • Fuel additives
  • Radiant cell additives
Trial for Ignition Time
  • Critical parameters
  • Calculation of the safe time periods for purge/etc
  • Optimization

Trial-For-Ignition time restrictions for process safeguarding

Keith Austin
Keith Austin has over 30 years’ experience in refinery operations, based on his long-term career with Shell Oil Company, Deer Park Refinery/Chemical Complex and as an independent consultant. His experience is focused on fired heaters and included research and development as well as large capital improvement projects related to fired equipment. Mr. Austin has provided operations support for over 65 process heaters and 7 large flares in a refinery, olefins and chemical plant as well as supporting hundreds of thermography inspections and heater improvement activities across North America. He has also participated in startup of a new power station which included two 1250 psi boilers, two steam turbine 50 MW generators, de-mineralized water and condensate treatment, cooling water system and associated equipment.
Belal Hassoun
Belal Hassoun, P. Eng is a seasoned professional with over 25 years of experience in the oil and gas industry, specializing in fired equipment engineering. He has a track record of success in various roles, ranging from working in vendor, owner/operator, and EPC positions, as a Design Engineer, Sr. Fired Equipment Engineer, Package Engineer and a Consultant. Belal’s expertise spans a wide range of areas, from standardizing engineering work practices to resolving complex technical issues during commissioning and start-up activities.

Throughout his career, Belal has led/participated in numerous projects, including a high-profile FAIR at Kuwait’s KNPC Shuaiba Refinery and the evaluation of a new ferrule system in a Sulphur Recovery Unit. Belal’s contributions have resulted in significant cost savings and operational improvements for his clients, earning him a reputation as a pragmatic problem solver and effective leader. Belal holds a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Calgary and continues to pursue personal, professional, and technical development through ongoing education and training. He is known for his collaborative approach, high-performance team development, and commitment to delivering results that contribute to the organization’s bottom line.

Cor Sinke
Cor Sinke BSc brings over 36 years of experience at Shell, specializing in combustion technology and fired equipment. With a BSc in Mechanical Engineering from Technical University Amsterdam, he has excelled in R&D, technical support, and refinery operations. As Shell’s principal engineer for fired equipment, he is a Subject Matter Expert in control and safeguarding (EN-746-2, NFPA) and heater mechanical design (API-560), with Technical Authority TA/2 for all fired equipment.
His expertise includes start-up and commissioning of 40+ furnaces, design and troubleshooting of two-phase flow heaters, and consultancy for energy saving and emission control in refineries worldwide. An accomplished lecturer, he has led over 20 Combustion Processes training courses. His recent roles include Principal Consultant for fired equipment and combustion at EPS Customer Solutions, NL, and various positions at Shell Global Solutions, Amsterdam, and Kuala Lumpur.

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Becht offers the following discounts on Public Training:

The highest applicable discount will be applied; discounts are not additive.

  1. Early Registration – A 10% discount is to be provided when you register 30 days before the start date of the training.
  2. Group Rate – A group discount is applied when you send three or more people from your organization to the same course and provide a single payment.
  3. No. of Registrants Discount/Person
    3 10%
    4 – 6 20%
    7 and up 25%
  4. Yearly Commitment Discount – A 25% discount when you prepay for a minimum of 10 participants from your organization to any of the courses in the same year.

Virtual Training Platform:
GoToTraining is Becht’s interactive online training solution with the most reliable features to help you before, during, and after your sessions. GoToTraining is a robust training platform that engages participants/attendees virtually.

Cancellation Policy:
A full refund is available for cancellations more than 30 days before course start date. Within 30 days of course start date, course credit can be transferred to another attendee within the same company, or can be kept on file to be applied to a future Becht training course.

For information regarding the training course, contact the Training Coordinator at

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