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Using Fouling Resistances Vs Adding Area Margins

shell and tube plate and frame air coolers fouling resistance area margin % area

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#1 srikar


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Posted 18 April 2019 - 01:02 PM

Hi everyone,

I have been dabbling with the utilization of area margin Vs fouling resistance on shell and tube heat exchangers for some time now. I haven't seen any trend acrosss industry although some of customers are asking to use area margins instead of fouling resistance. Having said that, most customers continue to prescribe fouling resistance and i am in habit of using the same owing to concerns of over specification with area margin.


In applications where we have good experience (like amine reboilers or lean rich amine exchangers, in my case), we know what should be % area margin if we were to stop using fouling resistance. 


So, repeating my question, is it better to use fouling factor or area margin? I can appreciate its not a simple answer, but hopefully you guys can throw light on nuances of it. 


Ps: I did see HTRI is prescribing use of area margin.



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