Energy efficient petrochemical production

The petrochemical industry is under huge pressure to lower carbon emissions while increasing production yield. With one of the largest portfolios on the market, Alfa Laval’s highly efficient heat exchangers currently prevent 4.1 million tonnes of carbon from entering the atmosphere via petrochemical plants annually. But that is not all. Our innovative heat transfer technology reduces water and material consumption, while also increasing overall production uptime in even the heaviest duties.

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Save energy with Alfa Laval

Recovering and reusing waste heat in energy intense applications like reactors, distillation columns, and absorption-stripping systems is a great way to improve energy efficiency in your petrochemical plant. But did you know that if you swapped to a state-of-the-art Alfa Laval plate heat exchanger the results are up to five times better than if you use a traditional shell-and tube heat exchanger? You can even reduce fuel and emission costs, use a lower grade steam, generate electricity from excess boiler capacity, and sell any excess heat.

Just take one of our Belgian chemical plant customers as an example. They installed an Alfa Laval Compabloc in their process to recover heat from the vapour that formed on their solvent recovery column. This recovered heat could then be used to preheat their process feed instead of steam. This simple switch meant that they could reduce their carbon emissions by 1,250 tonnes per annum.

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Increasing your production

With many interconnected process steps in a petrochemical plant, heat transfer bottle necks in one area can often impact the entire production flow. But, instead of rebuilding  your plant footprint to relive these problems, you can increase production and reduce your carbon emissions by upgrading your heat exchanger to a more energy efficient option.

A European amine producer did exactly that and all they had to do was swap their tradition shell- and tube heat exchangers for an Alfa Laval Compabloc. By doing so, they were able to sub-cool the condensed ammonia to a much lower temperature and increase the capacity of their distillation tower. In other words, they could save on space, weight, and unplanned downtime, while also increasing compressor capacity.

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Achieve more with less

If you use a compact heat exchanger in your petrochemical plant, then you know that you can achieve the same results with less. The small size of an Alfa Laval compact heat exchanger makes it possible for you to keep your existing structure, save on installation costs, and reduce the materials needed to protect the world’s depleting resources. So, if you’re looking at new boilers or cooling towers, make sure to check how Alfa Laval can improve your heat recovery first.

That is what a major South American cumene producer did when they were looking into upgrading their plant with shell-and-tube heat exchangers. They found out that installing a Compabloc for their reboiler position on the benzene distillation column would eliminate the need for expensive foundation and structural work, while also saving important space. They even managed to drastically reduce their steam consumption.

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Solving your cooling limitations

As temperatures continue to rise, so does the demand on the worlds cooling infrastructure. Whether freshwater is becoming a scarce resource, capacity no longer holds demand, or ambient temperatures are becoming too high, the simplest solution to increase production is to exchange your existing heat exchangers for a more efficient model. That way, you can work with higher temperatures, reuse any waste heat in place of cooling, and eliminate the risk of bottlenecks in your production.

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Energy Hunter – Hunting for waste energy

To improve energy efficiency, we all need to hunt down and reduce waste energy. Alfa Laval has the technology, expertise, and service to maximize your heat transfer efficiency. Use our new tool to calculate how much you can save today.

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