Case study - analyzing
A chemical intermediates facility was experiencing operational challenges with a partial condenser that operates downstream of two parallel reactors and three effluent coolers. The knockout percentage from this unit represents the yield of product successfully extracted from the reactor effluent stream. Historically, the knockout percentage is lower than desired, along with being unpredictable due to fouling that necessitated regular shutdowns for cleaning. The net effect is lost production and profit.
Koch-Glitsch and EFT analyzed over a decade of operating data. Together, the team identified several key variables of interest, primarily associated with the operation of the upstream reactors and effluent coolers, to enable this unit to maximize production and minimize downtime.
The optimum effluent cooler operating temperatures, partial condenser coolant temperature, and reactor feed rate and composition were identified, and a live dashboard monitor was deployed that enables engineers and operators to monitor this process in real-time. In addition, this review provided new insights into the process and helped eliminate previous theories regarding the unit’s operation.