441802 Improve Run Length of Crude Heaters Processing Shale Crudes

Wednesday, April 13, 2016: 10:45 AM
342 (Hilton Americas - Houston)
Ashutosh Garg, Furnace Improvements Services, Sugar Land, TX

Refiners have now started processing shale crudes in their refineries. One of the major issues faced by the refineries is the run length of the crude heaters. Shale crude is light but it presents a lot of challenges in processing. One of the refineries in Texas started processing shale crudes in their unit and the run length of the heater came down from 5 years to less than 3 months. The refinery started injecting anti-foulants in the feed . They had limited benefit but the continuous cost of injecting anti foulants was in millions of dollar per year. The refinery approached Furnace Improvements to look at the crude heater operation and recommend improvements in the crude heater to extend the run length. FIS reviewed the crude heater design, analyzed the operating data and carried out CFD modeling of the existing heater. FIS recommended modifications on the fire side to improve heat transfer. FIS carried out CFD modeling of the fire side modifications and showed improvements in the film temperature and tube metal temperatures  to the client.  FIS implemented the modifications on the fire side and the run length has gone up by 6 times to about one and a half year without the expense of costly anti-foulants. We will present the challenges faced and improvements that were made to the heater in this presentation.

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