I have been working in the refining area almost 18 years. It is an industry that has had several ups and downs in this time period, and I’m hopeful that I am into the second half of my career. In January, 2008, I joined Astron International, Inc, as Vice President of the newly created Refining Consulting Division.
I have willingly headed down the path of being, in the words of a friend of mine, Johnny One-Trick, an FCC specialist first and foremost, with a smattering of general knowledge in enough other areas to get me by with solid understanding. I started my career in the Marathon organization, working several FCC units, with heavy tech service and operations experience. I then went to work an MW Kellogg (now KBR) in the FCC design and service area. In 2001, I went to Engelhard Corporation and eventually became the Marketing & Technical Service Manager for their FCC team.
I will be showing up frequently on the Refining Online website, with one of my regular areas being this blog. I’ve decided that initially, my blog entries will be running a poll question for 3 – 4 weeks, then sharing the compiled results with the refining online community. I’m confident that dialogue on this site will help the entire industry and provide some clarity on issues facing us today.
At some point this year, I will also have several blogs dealing with some hard core technical nuts and bolts, but those are currently in development and probably will not be showing up until May or June 2008.
The first question for 2008 is a tangential repeat from a presentation that UOP did in the 2006 NPRA Principles & Practices FCC workshop. UOP did a survey of several customers asking about FCC shutdowns. Here is the follow-up question:
What were the causes of your last 3 FCC shutdowns?
– Scheduled turnaround
– Wet gas compressor failure
– Air blower failure
– Expander failure
– Other rotating equipment failure
– Utility failure (steam, power, instrument air, cooling water)
– Catalyst circulation failure
– Cyclone failure
– Main column/gas plant upset
– Human error
– Logistics (out of feed, catalyst, product storage)
– Other (please describe)
Please fill a quick survey by clicking the below link and let me know your answer.