The Uses Of Heat Exchangers In Oil Refineries

Crude oil distillation and subsequent refining processes in refineries require heat exchangers. Heat exchangers are used as reboilers, coolers, economizers, condensers, and preheaters. Onshore and offshore production sites pre-heat crude oil, heat tanks, dry gas, and renew TEG. The usage of heat exchangers in oil refineries is demonstrated by the examples below.

Circulation Evaporators at Distillation Columns

At distillation columns in refineries, circulation evaporators heat the bottom liquids and produce steam that is pumped back into the distillation tower.

Kettle re-boilers and thermosyphon re-boilers are two configurations available for heat exchangers. Re-boilers for kettles do not need static heights. Smaller filling volumes and faster reaction times are characteristics of thermosiphon reboilers. The plate packages can be removed and mechanically cleaned with openable variants.

Top Condensers at Distillation Columns

The remaining vapors in distillation columns are cooled and condensed by top condensers. When installed immediately at the column, they function as reverse flow condensers. Circulation condensers are positioned near the top of the column and function as flow-through condensers.

Economizers at Distillation Columns

Heat exchangers are used to warm the incoming fluid through the outflowing medium on distillation columns and in other stripping systems. Economizers or feed/ effluent interchangers are the heat exchangers that perform these functions.

Plate heat exchangers typically lend themselves to economizer applications because of their high heat transfer coefficients. The hot and cold sides’ temperatures are approached more closely.

Coolers of Refinery Products

Before being stored in tanks, the products that refineries produce through distillation and other processing steps are cooled.

For cooling lighter goods like gas and light gasoline (NAPHTHA), kerosene, and diesel fuels, heat exchangers are typically employed. The heat exchangers are configured in a fully welded style to need the least maintenance.

In high or low-pressure applications, such as coolers, fin-fan coolers, or any other tubed heat exchanger, the TORQ N’ SEAL® Heat Exchanger Plug should ideally be used to seal leaking tubes.

FPSO – Floating Production Storage and Offloading Unit

Oil and gas are produced, stored, and loaded using FPSO at offshore production sites. To heat oil tanks, ships must have heat exchangers. The crude oil or natural gas is processed partly on board in its initial stages.

Oil tanks are heated using heat exchangers made of individual plates or plate batteries. The heating medium water can be heated independently in a steam heater on the deck.

In tank heating circuits, heat exchangers function as steam heaters. The system’s low weight and low center of gravity work with the tanks’ heating plates to increase ship stability. When natural gas is dried on board, Plate & Shell heat exchangers either cool the gas below the dew point or function as glycol economizers in the glycol regeneration process.

You can rely on the knowledge and extensive equipment inventory of JNT Technical Services Inc. and Torq N’ Seal to assist you in creating the optimum configuration when it comes to planning and developing your heat exchanger maintenance plan.

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