Decontamination of Heat Exchangers Forced Offline During a Hurricane

Chemicals Cleaned Heat Exchangers

Results Achieved

Mechanical outage time reduced by 75%

Saved thousands of dollars in cleaning costs

Successful decontamination of heavy asphaltenic resid, allowing for inspection and maintenance

Chemical profiles

FQE Solvent-H

Created for the dissolution and recovery of asphaltenes in process equipment, pipelines and storage tanks.

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August 2017 was witness to one of the largest hurricanes to make landfall in the United States in more than a decade.

One of the prevalent oil refineries in the Gulf Coast undertook a controlled shutdown amongst fears of flooding and to minimize operations to essential personnel only.

 

Once weather related fears were abated, the facility was required to bring equipment back online as quickly as possible. FQE Solvent-H was used on two heat exchangers; both running flash crude and vacuum resid. The preheat temperature prior to injection was 240°F – 300°F (116°C – 149°C). The heat exchanger tubes were vapor phased for 30-40 minutes, and the shell side was done in 35-45 minutes.

 

The project was deemed completed within two to three hours. Due to the success of the decontamination process, the tubes could be extracted easily. Post circulation hydro-blasting was also rendered unnecessary circulation with FQE Solvent-H removed all heavy deposits.

 

Quote from the operations staff:

This is the cleanest we have ever seen these exchangers
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