Fouling in crude unit exchangers and heaters is a common problem for many refiners, leading to reliability issues, increased fuel costs and lost throughput.  Dorf Ketal’s technical approach and innovation can provide best in class programs for solving these crude unit fouling limitations:

Raw Crude Exchangers:  The exchanger system upstream of the desalters, often referred to as the cold train, frequently experiences inorganic fouling.  With some opportunity crudes, such as are in LTO’s, the cold train can experience deposition due to sand/silica.  The typical approach for controlling cold train fouling is through the application of desalter wash water upstream of the cold train.

Desalted Crude Exchangers:  The exchanger system downstream of the desalters, often referred to as the hot train, can experience fouling deposition due to both organic and inorganic mechanisms.  Incompatibility, low velocity & temperature can result in asphaltene deposition, while poor desalting can lead to inorganic deposition.

Crude Heater:  The fouling in the crude heater is generally an extension of the fouling mechanisms that are prevalent in the preheat exchangers.  Foulants that have begun to form upstream will agglomerate and adhere to the high temperature tube surfaces in the heater.  Vaporization and mechanical issues can also play a role in the coking potential of a crude heater.

Dorf Ketal innovations deliver:

  • Effective fouling prediction using unique monitoring tools
  • Fouling control with novel product chemistries
  • Improved reliability with reduced exchanger cleanings
  • Reduced emissions while lowering fuel gas/oil firing


Delivering profitable, reliable results.
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