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Draining Drum Problem

Home Forums Coking Draining Drum Problem

This topic contains 4 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Anonymous 10 years ago.

  • Author
  • #1704

    Freddy Martinez

    During the water draining from the drum, we have some plugging in the pipe. Sometimes, we can´t even open the valve in the draining pipe. The charge pipe is upward and the draining pipe is downward, sloped 45 degrees. There is a plugging in the pipe of draining water near the valve. The draining valve has  purging steam, but it is not enough to avoid some plugging. We are studying to inject some steam using RO upstream the draining valve in order to avoid plugging by coke deposition or formation from the charge. What is it in other refineries ? Any proposal solution ?

  • #4507


    adding steam after the switch is important to avoid plugging. sometimes, you cannot avoid plugging, so you have to remove valve and unplug it.

  • #4506

    Claus Graf

    It depends on your particular arrangement. I have seen drain lines that dump into the pit a few feet away from the bottom head (through a hole in the concrete deck). Other coker arrangements have the drain lines from different drums dump into a header and then drain either into the pit/pad or the settling maze.
    Can you provide more info on your particular arrangement?
    Regards, CG

  • #4505


    i am assuming there is another isolation valve between your charge and drain valve?

  • #4470

    Mike Kimbrell

    Incomplete draining of the coke drum can result in very serious safety hazards. Burns from hot water out of both the top head and bottom head have caused fatal injuries from drums that were not adequately drained. 
    Good practices that help prevent a plugged feed line that will then prevent draining the drum properly include maintaining a forward flow in the feed line with steam as the feed is switched to the alternate drum. Performing the little steam (to the fractionator) and then big steam (to the blow down system) steps as recommended by the licensors will minimize the unconverted oil that is in the lower portion of the drum and could then plug the feed line or coke bed near the feed line. Keeping the drum hot during the coking phase is another practice that minimizes the unconverted oil in the drum at the time of the switch. Properly steam sweeping the section of line between the switch valve and the inlet isolation valve clears the resid out of that section of line so that it will not plug. Keeping the blocking steam pressure higher than the process pressure will prevent any resid from leaking past the block valves and plugging the line inadvertently. 
    If all these steps are done properly, the likelihood of plugging the feed line and being unable to adequately drain the drum of water will be low. Procedures to handle the rare case when the feed line is plugged should be in place to manage that hazard. 

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