Another milestone realized of an open constructive discussion amongst urea producers and all licensors. More that fifty participants attended the workshop, which was this time according a Q&A (Questions & Answers) format. That means each participant could bring up their questions and all others could answer and share their experiences. The feedback from the participants was therefore very positive and we are very pleased that we have realized this milestone of an open constructive discussion between licensors. This will surely increase the safety and performance of the urea industry. Click here for the complete report.

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What is reason number 7 to choose for a vacuum system ?

What is reason number 7 to choose for a vacuum system ?

We recommend to use a vacuum based leak detection system for several important reasons:

Reason #1: No risk of liner bulging (refer to FAQ 6)
Reason #2: Direct coverage of the complete carbon steel surface of a compartment (refer to FAQ 7)
Reason #3: A vacuum system is less prone to clogging (refer to FAQ 9)
Reason #4: A vacuum system does not restrict the leaking flow and does not built-up pressure or introduces risks for backflow (refer to FAQ 10)
Reason #5: A vacuum system also works when there is only one leak detection hole in a liner compartment (refer to FAQ 11)
Reason #6: A vacuum system also works when there are clogged grooves or no grooves (refer to FAQ 12)
Reason #7 is: A pressurised system requires a dedicated ammonia analyser for each high pressure equipment item whereas a vacuum system needs only one ammonia analyser for all high pressure equipment items to realise the same reliability.

Click here to find out why.

 

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UreaKnowHow.com welcomes SULVARIS as our Sponsor

UreaKnowHow.com welcomes SULVARIS as our Sponsor

A Revolutionary AgriTech Company

Focused on crop input technologies for the future of sustainable and regenerative agriculture, with the goal of contributing to global ESG initiatives.

  • Sulvaris has successfully developed and commercialized its leading enhanced efficiency Micronized Sulphur Technology (MST®) with Nutrien, the largest global fertilizer producer and retailer.
  • Sulvaris is also currently developing its disruptive carbon technology platform, which is focused on carbon capture combined with a high-performance crop nutrient delivery mechanism aiming to provide farmers with superior crop yields, return on investment, and environmental stewardship.
  • Sulvaris has commercialised the technology to produce MAP+MST® with Nutrien being marketed as SmartNutritienTM

Urea + Micronized Sulphur Technology (MST®is a proprietary patented technology that economically micronizes elemental sulphur to less than 10-micron average size. Click here to read more.

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What is reason #6 to choose for a vacuum system ?

What is reason #6 to choose for a vacuum system ?

High pressure urea equipment consists of a carbon steel pressure bearing wall, which is protected against corrosion by a protective layer. This protective layer is typically an overlay welding or a loose liner. Any leak in a loose liner will lead to a dangerous situation in that a large surface of the carbon steel pressure bearing wall underneath the leaking loose liner compartment will be exposed to the extremely corrosive ammonium carbamate. Experience has shown that ammonium carbamate can corrode carbon steels with very high corrosion rates up to 1,000 mm (40 inch) per year.

When talking about active leak detection systems, one can distinguish a pressurized system, in which an inert carrier gas stream flows through the leak detection circuits and a vacuum based system, where one pulls vacuum pressure behind the liner (refer to FAQ 5)

It is a real challenge to avoid clogging as urea easily crystallises at any temperature even above its melting point due to its polymerisation behaviour forming biuret, triuret etc. with high melting points. This is the main reason that we strongly recommend to upgrade any passive leak detection system (FAQ 3).

We recommend to use a vacuum based leak detection system for several important reasons:

Reason #1: No risk of liner bulging (refer to FAQ 6)

Reason #2: Direct coverage of the complete carbon steel surface of a compartment (refer to FAQ 7)

Reason #3: A vacuum system is less prone to clogging (refer to FAQ 9)

Reason #4: A vacuum system does not restrict the leaking flow and does not built-up pressure or introduces risks for backflow (refer to FAQ 10)

Reason #5: A vacuum system also works when there is only one leak detection hole in a liner compartment (refer to FAQ 11)

Reason #6 is: A vacuum system also works when there are clogged grooves or no grooves.

But why is that ?

Click here for the answer.

Click here for all latest information.

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UreaKnowHow.com welcomes SPRANA as our Sponsor

UreaKnowHow.com welcomes SPRANA as our Sponsor

SPRANA provides Process Analytical Technology solutions for on-line/in-line/at-line analysis and monitoring of industrial processes based on Machine Vision and Applied Spectroscopy. Automatic defect inspection turn-key systems (Hardware and Software).

The state of the art solution for on-line analysis of the composition of Urea Ammonium Nitrate.

NIRSpec UAN analyzer can measure not only the concentrations of the main UAN components: Urea, Ammonium Nitrate and Water, but also the concentration of the unwanted by-product Biuret, which is becoming an increasingly important quality parameter of UAN. Accurate continuous/real-time measurements and the unique capability of measuring the concentration of Biuret enable a better control of the quality of the UAN in the production process. The analytical technology is based on the Near Infra-Red spectroscopy and the state of the art proprietary multivariate calibration. Several references are successfully in operation.

The BENEFITS are...Read more

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What is reason #5 to choose for a vacuum system ?

What is reason #5 to choose for a vacuum system ?

Active leak detection systems can either be a pressurised or a vacuum system (refer to FAQ 5). We recommend to use a vacuum leak detection system for several important reasons.
Reason #1 is: No risk of liner bulging (refer to FAQ 6)
Reason #2 is: Direct coverage of the complete carbon steel surface of a compartment (refer to FAQ 7)
Reason #3 is: A vacuum system is less prone to clogging (refer to FAQ 9)
Reason #4 is: A vacuum system does not restrict the leaking flow and does not built-up pressure or introduce risks for backflow (refer to FAQ 10)
Reason #5 is: A vacuum system also works when there is only one leak detection hole in a liner compartment.
But why is that ?

Click here for more information

Click here for all latest information

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What is reason #4 to choose for a vacuum system ?

What is reason #4 to choose for a vacuum system ?

Active leak detection systems can either be a pressurised or a vacuum based system (refer to FAQ 5). We recommend to use a vacuum based leak detection system for several important reasons.
Reason #1 is: No risk of liner bulging (refer to FAQ 6)
Reason #2 is: Direct coverage of the complete carbon steel surface of a compartment (refer to FAQ 7)
Reason #3 is: A vacuum system is less prone to clogging (refer to FAQ 9)
Reason #4 is: A vacuum system does not restrict the leaking flow and does not built-up pressure or introduce risks for backflow
But why is that ?
The validity of this fourth reason has been proven by Incident 19-005, details about this incident can be found via the following link:...

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What is reason #3 to choose for a vacuum system ?

What is reason #3 to choose for a vacuum system ?

We recommend a vacuum based leak detection system for several reasons:

Reason #3: A vacuum system is less prone to clogging.

In case of a liner leak and operating a vacuum system, the vacuum pump of the leak detection system will pull the leaking ammonia to the ammonia analyser. After the leak detection circuit in which the leak occurs has been determined, one is able to dilute the leak in this line with air via the vacuum pump by opening the atmospheric ball valve and in that way one dilutes the leaking fluid and reduces (eliminates) the risk for clogging!

Click here to read more

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AmmoniaKnowHow.com - Online Roundtable - Corrosion Issues in Ammonia and Urea Plants: Causes, Consequences and Safeguard Solutions

AmmoniaKnowHow.com - Online Roundtable - Corrosion Issues in Ammonia and Urea Plants: Causes, Consequences and Safeguard Solutions

On the 25th of March, AmmoniaKnowHow.com will hold a webinar to discuss corrosion issues in ammonia and urea plants. Industry experts and specialists will share their experience. Incidents and case studies will be presented together with the latest technologies for corrosion prevention and mitigation. AmmoniaKnowHow.com webinars are an opportunity for participants to get together in an interactive setting to examine issues related to operation and maintenance of ammonia and urea plants.

Amine_Experts
E2G
IGS
NTT Consultancy
UreaKnowHow.com

Register Now via this link

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We are at 2000 Round Table Discussions!

We are at 2000 Round Table Discussions!

UreaKnowHow.com has reached the impressive milestone of 2000 Round Table discussions. 2000 active Round Table discussion with totally more than 9500 posts or an average of 5 posts per discussion and 2-3 new posts per day. This means everybody who posts a question, for sure will get a reply making the UreaKnowHow.com Round Tables a very valuable information source and place to share experiences.
We thank all participants for their valuable contributions and support and like to highlight and thank very much the 10 most active participants:...Click here to read more

 

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How a vacuum LDS system is able to distinguish a false indication from an ammonia cloud in the atmosphere from a real liner leak ?

How a vacuum LDS system is able to distinguish a false indication from an ammonia cloud in the atmosphere from a real liner leak ?

High pressure urea equipment consists of a carbon steel pressure bearing wall, which is protected against corrosion by a protective stainless, titanium or duplex steel layer. This protective layer can be an overlay welding, an explosive cladded layer or a loose liner. Any leak in a loose liner will lead to a dangerous situation in that a large surface of the carbon steel pressure bearing wall underneath the leaking loose liner compartment will be exposed to the extremely corrosive ammonium carbamate. Experience has shown that ammonium carbamate can corrode carbon steels with very high corrosion rates up to 1,000 mm (40 inch) per year.

When talking about active leak detection systems, one can distinguish a pressurized system, in which an inert carrier gas stream flows through the leak detection circuits and a vacuum based system, where one pulls vacuum pressure behind the liner. We recommend a vacuum based leak detection system for several reasons.

But how can a vacuum system distinguish a false indication from for instance an ammonia cloud in the atmosphere from a liner leak ?

Click here to read more

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What is reason #2 to choose for a vacuum system?

What is reason #2 to choose for a vacuum system?

This question 7 is in continuation of question 6 in which we started explaining why an active vacuum leak detection system is superior over an active pressurized system. Active leak detection systems can be either a pressurized system, in which an inert carrier gas stream flows through the leak detection circuits most probably only via the machined leak detection grooves present in the carbon steel and a vacuum system, where one pulls vacuum pressure underneath the liner.

We recommend a vacuum based leak detection system for several reasons:

Reason #2: Direct detection of the complete carbon steel surface

Click here to read more

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The State-Of-The-Art Ammonia Terminal

The State-Of-The-Art Ammonia Terminal

Since 100 years ago the industrial production of ammonia began for the widespread agricultural and industrial application. Safety hazards and risks have been identified and for a large extend resolved.

Nowadays ammonia is used more and more as a very efficient hydrogen energy storage, carrier and carbon free fuel. This means that more and more people will get involved with this potentially toxic substance. How will the public and the authorities react?

Are the previously known safety regulations sufficient for the storage / bunkering of ammonia?

We say no, it can be better, more safe and reliable.

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What is reason #1 to choose for a vacuum system?

What is reason #1 to choose for a vacuum system?

We recommend a vacuum based leak detection system for several reasons:

Reason #1: No risk of liner bulging

A first reason is that when using a vacuum system there will be no risk for liner bulging and damage due a to too high pressure in the leak detection system behind the liner. Be aware that the relatively large liner compartments are welded to the carbon steel pressure bearing wall. These large areas allow only a very limited pressure difference between each side of the liner.

Some vendors try to avoid this risk of bulging by switching off the leak detection system when the pressure in the synthesis section is below a certain value. In our view this is not a good solution because...

Click here to read more

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Which kind of active leak detection systems exist ?

Which kind of active leak detection systems exist ?

High pressure urea equipment consist of a heavy carbon steel pressure bearing wall, which is protected against corrosion by a thin corrosion resistant layer; this layer is in the most cases made out of stainless steel or a duplex. This protective layer can be an overlay welding, an explosive cladded layer but is in most cases a loose liner.

Any leak in a loose liner will lead to a dangerous situation because a potentially corrosive fluid can be spread and trapped in the gap between the carbon steel pressure bearing wall and the loose liner. This area will then be exposed to the extremely corrosive ammonium-carbamate.

Real situations have proven that ammonium-carbamate can corrode carbon steels with very high corrosion rates up to 1,000 mm (40 inch) per year. But also stainless steels will show accelerated corrosion because of lack of oxygen. That means that it is an absolute must to have a detection system present that already warns for al leak in an early stage. Then one can only conclude that an active leak detection system is required...

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Why flushing with steam or condensate is NOT a good practice ?

Why flushing with steam or condensate is NOT a good practice ?

To check if a leak detection system is not facing any clogging or to unclog a leak detection system, some plants practice a flushing procedure with steam or water.
This is not recommended and even dangerous! Introducing water can lead to corrosion. Corrosion, as known, is an electrochemical reaction so corrosion can only take place when water is present.

Without water no corrosion.

The corrosion product will block the passage ways and can also block the leak detection holes.
A more threatening form of corrosion that can occur is  stress corrosion  cracking  of the carbon steel pressure vessel wall.

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UreaKnowHow.com will present at CRU's Nitrogen+Syngas 2021 Virtual Conference

UreaKnowHow.com will present at CRU's Nitrogen+Syngas 2021 Virtual Conference

For 33 years, CRU's Nitrogen + Syngas conference has provided an annual platform for the global industry to meet, network, and learn. Every year, 740+ producers, licensors, and materials and equipment providers attend to ensure they have knowledge, understanding and professional connections required to improve their production, maximise profitability, and maintain safe, reliable, and environmentally responsible operations.
In 2021, due to the pandemic, Nitrogen + Syngas will go ahead - as a virtual event. The tried and tested virtual platform allow CRU to deliver an interactive environment for all participants to meet, learn and network. The only virtual element of the conference is the venue - the conference still offers real insight, real networking, and real business opportunities.
UreaKnowHow.com will present a paper with the title: How to Improve Safety and Reliability of the High Pressure Synthesis Section of Urea Plants. The paper draws conclusions from a detailed analysis of the more than 130 serious incidents of the UreaKnowHow.com Urea Incident Database.
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In Memoriam Jan van der Werf

In Memoriam Jan van der Werf

Jan van der Werf died peacefully Monday morning November 30, 2020 at an age of 76 in his hometown Sittard-Geleen.

With a career of 55 years at Stamicarbon, Jan was enjoying his work with whole his heart. Jan did know where he was talking about, he knew what was urea as he was involved in numerous commissioning and start-up projects. Jan started up one of the first CO2 stripping plants under difficult circumstances in the former DDR, the first PoolCondenser plant in Bangladesh and left his footprint in many other countries like North Korea, Thailand, Romania, USSR, Japan, USA, Myanmar, China, Mexico and Alaska. Jan also worked at several high level management positions in Stamicarbon, always pushing forward innovations and breakthroughs in our industry; amongst many others Safurex® and Full Life Cycle support.

Everywhere we came, people asked how Jan was doing. Jan was open, friendly, flexible and always in a good mood, Jan was really a great manager and colleague, with both feet on the ground, one between his colleagues, his door was always open, Jan was always striving for cooperation and teambuilding. We and we believe many other colleagues owe Jan a lot. Jan was always in to discuss technical issues, strategical topics and life in general, preferably with a pint of beer.

Jan, we will miss you.

We send condolences to Wilma, Guido and Petra and the entire van der Werf family.

Jo Eijkenboom
Mark Brouwer
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Why is a passive leak detection system not acceptable anymore?

Why is a passive leak detection system not acceptable anymore?

In a passive leak detection system an indication of a leak in the liner only shows up when the leak emerges from the leak detection hole. Or, in case the leak detection hole is connected via tubing to for example a bottle with a phenolphthalein solution, when the colour of the liquid in the bottle changes. The detection occurs at a later moment then when the leak occurs in the liner. Time passes (dwell time) between the moment the leak occurred and the moment the leak emerges at the leak detector or when a field operator notifies the leak. The latter case is even worse as the dwell time can be much larger. During that dwell time the risk that the leak detection path gets clogged is realistic. That means that there will be a serious threat to the integrity of the carbon steel pressure bearing wall... Click here to Read more.

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FERTILIZER INDUSTRIAL SERVICES Owner's Engineer

FERTILIZER INDUSTRIAL SERVICES Owner's Engineer

As experienced professionals in fertilizer industry, we discovered a necessity to fill the gaps in technology knowhow required in various fertilizer industry projects. This is Fertilizer Industrial Services' foundational business strategy.
We are specialized in fertilizer production technologies covering process, mechanical, instrumentation, process safety and project management disciplines. Our services include design review, plant commissioning and startup, operation support, ammonia tank de-commissioning for inspection, plant revamp support and project management consultancy.
We have the unique ability to seamlessly link design, completions, commissioning and operations. That seamless link is provided by our people, an unrivalled group of independent experts. This team supported customers in the industry for new and existing fertilizer plants for more than 15 years.
We work with fertilizer manufacturers, operators, technology licensors, EPC companies and PMC consultants covering short term or long-term projects.
More info below:
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When does one need a proper Leak Detection System ?

When does one need a proper Leak Detection System ?

AMMO LASER Leak Detection System -
The #1 Safety Measure with a Guaranteed Pay Back
We are pleased to inform you about all the details via our Frequently Asked Questions
Question #2: When does one need a proper Leak Detection System ?
Click here for the answer

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