CFD Analysis for NOx-Control in a Refinery

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Courtesy of Spraying Systems Co.

Refineries are required by law to reduce the emission of nitrous oxides (NOX) to the atmosphere. Spray nozzles are key components in the gas conditioning equipment used to control the humidity and temperature of the gases, providing controlled volumes of liquid with predictable drop size and consistent spray coverage. Knowing these values is vital for the optimization of gas conditioning processes.

In addition, the placement of nozzles is often times misunderstood and therefore inaccurate. While immense care is taken to optimize placement, this often leads to failure due to the inability to predict spray performance in the application environment. This process can be facilitated by using computational fluid dynamics (CFD).

In this case study, CFD is used to identify problem areas that would have caused wetting on walls and eroded metal sections from the heavily catalyst-laden process stream. In the end, adjustments were made to original nozzle placement suggestions in order to optimize the gas conditioning process.

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