Jump to content



Featured Articles

Check out the latest featured articles.

File Library

Check out the latest downloads available in the File Library.

New Article

Product Viscosity vs. Shear

Featured File

Vertical Tank Selection

New Blog Entry

Low Flow in Pipes- posted in Ankur's blog

0

Cumene Production

cumene alkylation benzene propylene synthesis zeolite yields process optimization refinery

18 replies to this topic
Share this topic:
| More

#1 gegio1960

gegio1960

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 485 posts

Posted 19 February 2019 - 10:26 AM

Dear Experts,

I'm working to a refinery optimization model, investigating the economics for the introduction of a new Cumene unit (from Benzene and Propylene).

At present stage (screening study) it is not possible to obtain the attention of the Licensors.

Other than this site (https://www.cheresou...mene/?hl=cumene), I've already consulted various sources but the available data appears very very confused.

It seems that the most utilized processes are based on zeolite catalysts, with fixed beds reactors (for alkylation and trans-alkylation); the major Licensors of these technologies (process plus catalytic systems) are Honeywell/UOP and Badger/Exxon: the two alternatives appear quite similar.

There are no reliable data relevant to the following important aspects:

- operating conditions for the two reactors;

- specific quantities of the catalysts;

- yields.

I've started with the following guesses:

- alkylation reactor: 25 barg, 100°C, 100% benzene excess, 95% conversion to cumene, 2% yield of PIBPs;

- transalkylation reactor: 15 barg, 70°C, 50% conversion of PIBPs to cumene;

- no idea of the required catalyst quantities.

I would be very happy if someone could kindly comment/improve the above data on the base of his/her experience and knowledge.

Thanks and kind regards,

gegio



#2 PingPong

PingPong

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 1,308 posts

Posted 19 February 2019 - 03:25 PM

McDermott offers Versalis/Lummus Technology process for the production of high purity cumene:

Attached File  McDermott Versalis-Lummus Cumene.pdf   143.97KB   14 downloads

 

At present stage (screening study) it is not possible to obtain the attention of the Licensors.

What do you mean by "not possible" ?

 

Do licensors not respond to your questions?

 

 

If licensors do not respond that could be because you asked too detailed info that is normally subject to an NDA.

Or it could also be that your company has a bad reputation with these licensors......

 

I suggest you prepare a simple Request For Information (RFI) to be sent to the licensors.

In the RFI you explain the purpose of the RFI (info planning study, licensor selection, .....), specify the feeds, available utility conditions, ambient conditions, and product specifications.

Request simplified flow scheme, overall material balance (with component breakdown), utility consumptions, consumption of chemicals, annual cost of catalyst consumption, required plot space, experience list.

 

But do not request operating conditions, detailed material balance with all internal streams, catalyst quantities, equipment sizes or any other info that is likely subject to NDA.

 

Once you have good contact with one or more licensors you can try to obtain further info that you really need for your study, but do not give the licensors the impression that you are fishing for info out of curiosity. Don't over ask.


Edited by PingPong, 19 February 2019 - 03:40 PM.


#3 Bobby Strain

Bobby Strain

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 2,799 posts

Posted 19 February 2019 - 06:09 PM

What is the capacity? Where is it located? And the advice above is good, too. Lummus will usually respond to all queries.

 

Bobby



#4 Nikolai T

Nikolai T

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 123 posts

Posted 19 February 2019 - 09:36 PM

Hello,

 

Some abstracts are attached.

 

Nikolai

Attached Files



#5 gegio1960

gegio1960

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 485 posts

Posted 20 February 2019 - 02:52 AM

Thank you for the answers.

 

@ Nikolai

Unfortunately the attached docs don't answer any of my questions.

 

@ Bobby

Plant capacity is one of the optimization parameters. At present, the max allowable capacity has been chosen at 300 kty.

The site is not important. Anyway it is in the MEA region.

 

@ PingPong

The info included in the attached brochure are not very useful for an evaluation. It only says that they have a technology to offer.

In my experience Licensors start to work at a quite advanced stage of the projects... 

Anyway, I decided to not involve Licensors at this preliminary stage following the assumption that enough data would have been available in the public domain. Maybe I should change the approach....

 

For the time being, I remain convinced that other info are available...

 

Thanks and kind regards,

gegio


Edited by gegio1960, 20 February 2019 - 02:58 AM.


#6 PingPong

PingPong

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 1,308 posts

Posted 20 February 2019 - 04:25 AM

The Versalis/Lummus brochure was merely to show that they also offer Cumene technology, not to answer your technical questions.

 

I have done many planning studies through the decades and always contacted one or more licensors by means of an RFI.

 

However licensors get many requests from all over the world so they need to decide how much time to spend on which requests.

Clients that often contact them for all kinds of processes, which never resulted in paid work, will end up at the bottom of the pile.

Clients that ask confidential info, like the info you seem to be looking for, will not get that either. Especially clients in middle east, far east and India have a tendency to ask whatever they can think of and expect licensors to provide that detailed info.

 

To get licensor response, ask only what you really need to do your study.

I don't see why operating conditions, et cetera, would be relevant.

All three licensors have a lot of experience. They are not amateurs, so do not give them the impression that you feel the need to check their designs.



#7 gegio1960

gegio1960

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 485 posts

Posted 20 February 2019 - 04:49 AM

Dear PingPong,

I understood your point and this is the reason why I decided to not "disturb" the Licensors until the scouting phase is finished.

Since you've made a lot of planning studies, you perfectly know that Licensors' info are very useful but shall be carefully evaluated in order to avoid "surprises" and the only way to do that is a deep and "independent" knowledge of the process.

My questions come from this kind of experience and, in case the relevant answers are confidential, they, simply, won't be available and I'll continue to develop the study on my present and future assumptions, always dictated by the experience.

good luck!


Edited by gegio1960, 20 February 2019 - 04:52 AM.


#8 Bobby Strain

Bobby Strain

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 2,799 posts

Posted 20 February 2019 - 04:09 PM

This might help.

 

Attached File  PetChemHB2010Cumene.pdf   1.83MB   17 downloads

 

And you can scale utilities from this.

 

Attached File  PetChemHB2010Cumene.pdf   1.83MB   17 downloads

Attached Files


Edited by Bobby Strain, 20 February 2019 - 05:16 PM.


#9 breizh

breizh

    Gold Member

  • ChE Plus Subscriber
  • 4,420 posts

Posted 20 February 2019 - 11:35 PM

Hi ,

Consider the document attached , pages extracted from Chemical Processing handbook by John J . Mc Ketta.

 

Good luck

Breizh

Attached Files



#10 gegio1960

gegio1960

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 485 posts

Posted 21 February 2019 - 01:25 AM

Bobby and Breizh,

thank you for the documents and your personal efforts in helping me.

Hoping to make a good thing, I'll try to discuss the matter a little more.

As mentioned in the original post I've found a lot but confused information about this kind of plant.

The confusion has been created by the commercial introduction of zeolites at the end of the '90s.

Before that time the catalysts were "real" acids, like H3PO4 and AlCl3, and the predominant technology was called SPA (Solid Phosphoric Acid). It involved tubular reactors, very high temperatures (more than 400°C) and corrosive environment (and the consequent materials of constructions). The reactions were conducted in gas phase with very high Benzene / Propylene ratios.

Nowadays: 1) the reactors are multi-beds (4) separated by quenching systems; 2) the reactions are in liquid phase at lower temperatures and B/P ratio sligthly higher than 1; 3) no more acids in circulation and long life of the zeolites; 4) carbon steel is enough; 5) a little transalkylation reactor has been added (with zeolite, too).

The new (and old) technologies are depicted on the various files here attached by the valuable friends. While the docs for the old tech. are very rich of details, this is not true for the new tech. where, naturally, the Licensors try to mask some peculiar aspects although the techonologies appear very very similar (at least for Badger, UOP -these two utilized for the most part of the commercial plants- and Lummus cases).

As a result of the above, it is very difficult to make a rough but valuable estimate of the CAPEX/OPEX data requested to judge a potential investment. I tried to summarize this long discussion in the request of 3 items...

On this way, I would say that the best document available is the Sabic 2012 presentation originally attached by Breizh to the 2017 topic (and here above by Nikolai).

I remain confident that other pieces of info can be added...

Thanks

:)



#11 PingPong

PingPong

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 1,308 posts

Posted 21 February 2019 - 06:10 AM

As a result of the above, it is very difficult to make a rough but valuable estimate of the CAPEX/OPEX data requested to judge a potential investment.

I forgot to include it earlier, but in the RFI's that I sent out to licensors for my studies I also always included a request for a budget estimate of the ISBL TIC, including cost of initial catalyst fill. Licensors have no problem providing that.

 

This TIC estimate by the licensor is usually too low so you need to add 20 or 30 % to it to get a more realistic ISBL TIC.

 

That estimate will not be exact, but always much better than you can make based on the info that you are looking for.

 

On top of that you obviously need to add additional costs for: basic and detailed engineering costs, site preparation, new storage facilities, expansion of existing utility systems, expansion of electrical systems, expansion of DCS, et cetera.

 

I really think that you are wasting valuable time and should send an RFI to the above mentioned licensors.

Give them at least 2, preferably 3 weeks to provide the requested info.

After receipt of info always confirm receipt and thank them.

If as a result of study outcome, or client change of mind, the project is cancelled also inform them.



#12 gegio1960

gegio1960

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 485 posts

Posted 21 February 2019 - 08:42 AM

Thank you PingPong.

your position is very clear... although I would have preferred a help in encouraging people expert in this field to share a little part of their knowledge... without breaking any confidentiality, of course


Edited by gegio1960, 21 February 2019 - 10:12 AM.


#13 Bobby Strain

Bobby Strain

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 2,799 posts

Posted 21 February 2019 - 09:59 PM

What more do you believe you need? Of course, the SPA process is no longer a choice. And, it wasn't all that bad. Those with such a plant could switch to zeolite and double the capacity.

 

Bobby



#14 gegio1960

gegio1960

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 485 posts

Posted 22 February 2019 - 08:42 AM

Bobby,

essentially I tried to verify with the experts what is written somewhere about the zeolite processes

1) 70-100°C

2) almost stoichiometric ratio of the reagents.

these conditions appeared to me very far from the ones of the SPA process

up to now, regretfully, this verification has been impossible.

thank you for your help.

kind regards,

gegio



#15 Bobby Strain

Bobby Strain

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 2,799 posts

Posted 22 February 2019 - 05:04 PM

The Sabic paper looks to be sound. You really only have a choice between ExxonMobil/Badger and UOP. All the rest lack comparable experience. Good Luck. And forget about the SPA process.

 

Bobby



#16 gegio1960

gegio1960

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 485 posts

Posted 22 February 2019 - 11:41 PM

Bobby, I agree with you...but that was my starting point. 



#17 gegio1960

gegio1960

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 485 posts

Posted 23 February 2019 - 12:41 AM

since no one has mentioned the "italian version", i'm going to attach it

:-)

good luck!

Attached Files



#18 PingPong

PingPong

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 1,308 posts

Posted 23 February 2019 - 08:49 AM

since no one has mentioned the "italian version", i'm going to attach it

Not sure what you mean by "italian version".

 

This is basically the Versalis/Lummus process with the Versalis PBE-1 catalyst in it.

Versalis was formerly EniChem which in the past offered the Polimeri catalyst, hence the Polimeri/Lummus process in the PetChemHB2010Cumene.pdf  file that Bobby posted earlier. I suspect that both are basically the same catalyst, with minor improvements through the years, with another name.

 

It is confusing, all those name changes due to mergers, take-overs, or just for marketing reasons.

 

A similar problem with Lummus. Originally CE Lummus, then ABB took over CE and it became ABB Lummus. Then CB&I bought Lummus from ABB so it became CB&I Lummus, and last year it was taken over by McDermott.

CDTech is part of Lummus Technology, so now also owned by McDermott.

 

good luck!

Thanks, but it is not us that need good luck, it is you.

 

Hereby a chapter about cumene production from the book by Dimian & Bildea, hopefully it helps you a little bit:

Attached File  Dimian & Bildea 2008, chapter 6 Cumene.pdf   964.98KB   7 downloads

 

See also: Attached File  Preliminary Design of Cumene Producing Plant.pdf   558.47KB   7 downloads

 

Good luck!

:-)

 



#19 gegio1960

gegio1960

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • 485 posts

Posted 23 February 2019 - 09:05 AM

Thank you, PingPong.

Everyone needs good luck!

:)






Similar Topics