Fouling related issues cost a typical 100KBD refinery $1-2M per year compared to those with a HX Monitor exchanger management system. Fouled exchangers cost money due to increased energy use and lost production when furnaces become a constraint, and exchanger cleaning incurs direct costs of chemical or mechanical cleans as well as production downtime or slowdowns to carry out cleaning activity.
Monitoring heat exchanger performance and using that information to optimise the cleaning cycles poses several challenges:
- Reconciliation of the plant data (mass and heat balance, and exchanger performance) is complex, and correcting for variations in crude type, production rate is essential to truly untangle fouling issues from the noise of other changes to the system
- There are non-intuitive interactions between cleaning options, in a system with several fouled exchanger cleaning, a given exchanger will change the business case for cleaning the next.
- Homemade spreadsheet tools for calculating fouling performance quickly become complex to use and difficult to maintain as key staff change roles.
HX Monitor provides a system for exchanger monitoring, which is a plug-in to the Petro-SIM platform. This provides a single environment for monitoring a preheat train along with the distillation column. This results in a single version of the truth being used for both monitoring systems, and allows the rigorous distillation column model to help with mass balance reconciliation and generation of accurate stream properties for the exchanger models. HX Monitor has an exceptionally robust built-in reconciliation algorithm, and automatic systems to calculate the impact of cleaning single or combinations of exchangers.
Real time monitoring and optimisation of utility systems offers scope to reduce energy costs by up to 5% without incurring capital investment.
Reduce energy costs by 10-30% and minimise the capital spend when designing or revamping heat exchanger systems, by using SuperTarget to perform Pinch-based analytics.