Project Synopsis

Design of an Air Blower system to convey coke from a petroleum refinery Coker unit.

Project Summary


The client operates a circuit of multiple refineries in the U.S. and throughout the world. A recent project on the Fluid Coker unit designed by corporate office central engineers did not account for changes in air requirements to transport product coke to storage. Process Engineering Associates, LLC (PROCESS) was contracted to execute a process design for the air blower and utility systems, manage the vendor bid process, and interface with the contract construction company to ensure mechanical design met the process objectives. PROCESS was also asked to assist the client in evaluating the economic justification for the blower in relation to a potential future project that could possibly impact the blower process design basis. Project tasks included:

  • Development of a process design basis
  • Preparation of a compressor vendor bid package
  • Evaluation of vendor blower quotes compared on a life cycle cost basis
  • Evaluation of the economic sensitivity of changing the process design basis
  • Preparation of project documentation.

For the development of the process design basis, PROCESS reviewed historical process data, conducted statistical analyses, and performed compression calculations to determine the correct process design basis for the blower system. PROCESS prepared a vendor bid package, submitted it to vendors for quotes, and then reviewed the bids for technical quality and pricing. PROCESS then evaluated each bid using a life cycle cost analysis to take into account the on-going maintenance costs of each option as well as the initial capital installation costs.

PROCESS was then approached by the client to perform a separate economic analysis of the sensitivity and viability of the blower project to a different design basis that would result from a potential future project. PROCESS evaluated the credits for the blower based upon the timing of the new project and evaluated the blower options in relation to the new project timing. PROCESS determined that the best economic solution was for the client to rent a temporary blower system until the design basis for the new project could be determined. This resulted in reducing the client’s capital expenditures if the new project is implemented.

The information resulting from this project, including the process design basis, compressor specification, vendor proposals, economic evaluations, and supplemental project information, was summarized in a project report submitted to the client.

Industry Type

  • Petroleum Refining

Utilized Skills

  • Process Engineering

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