Project Synopsis

Detailed process evaluation of a fume incineration system to reduce rising fuel costs at a fuels blending facility. Simulation Diagram

Project Summary


The client contracted Process Engineering Associates, LLC (PROCESS) to perform a detailed process evaluation of a fume incineration system at the client’s fuels blending facility.  The primary purposes of the project were to determine technically-feasible alternatives for reducing the system’s rapidly escalating supplementary fuel costs, to perform an alternatives evaluation of the technically-screened alternatives, and to perform design for the selected alternative such that the client could procure the hardware required for the selected process modification.

The following project tasks were completed:

  • Process design basis development and current operation process simulation
  • Alternatives technical screening and technical/economic evaluations
  • Process simulation development for the modified process
  • Detailed equipment specifications preparation
  • Capital cost estimate development.

Development of a process design basis primarily involved determining the current status of the fume incineration system.  To this end, PROCESS gathered as much information as possible regarding fume stream flow rates and compositions, fuel consumption rates, and system operating temperatures and pressures.  Computer process simulations of existing system operation were then developed using licensed commercial process simulation software.  The following technically feasible system modification alternatives were then evaluated:

  • Replacement of the existing system with a regenerative thermal oxidation system
  • Replacement of the existing system with a carbon adsorption system
  • Addition of a heat recovery exchanger to the existing system
  • Reduction in air flow to the system via new fume source hoods
  • Reduction in air flow to the system via an increase in cross-ventilation.

After detailed technical and economic evaluations of the above alternatives, the addition of a heat recovery exchanger (recuperative heat exchanger) was selected as the best alternative for reducing unit fuel consumption.  A computer process simulation of the modified fume incineration system was then developed for the purposes of designing/sizing the heat recovery exchanger, modeling modified system flow hydraulics for the purpose of designing a new induced draft (ID) fan for the system, and demonstrating the projected fuel savings associated with the new exchanger.  PROCESS then prepared detailed equipment specifications for the heat recovery exchanger and ID fan, evaluated the vendor proposals, and selected the vendors for equipment supply.  A purchased equipment cost estimate for the modifications was developed based on the vendor bids.

PROCESS projected that the modified system would result in a 65% fuel savings for the client; the client confirmed this fuel savings value based on operational data at a later date.

Industry Type

  • Fuels Blending

Utilized Skills

  • Technical and economic evaluations
  • Front end engineering design (FEED)
  • Fume incinerator process simulation
  • Heat exchanger simulation
  • Heat exchanger design

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