Today let's look at another key player in the midstream sector of the oil and gas industry, manufacturers of fuel additives. They are operating in an era of striking changes and tighter margins, one in which environmental legislation to reduce emissions and improve fuel economy is having a great impact.
One of our customers, a worldwide manufacturer of fuel additives that helps improve the refining process and boost the performance of gasoline and other fuels, needed to satisfy the EPA 60.18 mandate, requiring them to maintain 300 BTU/SCF lower heating value (LHV) of their waste stream to their flare at times. They also needed to provide a direct, real time measurement of the LHV with either a Gas Chromatograph (GC) or a calorimeter and have the data available, since the EPA would no longer accept a calculated BTU value.
Before discussing the analyzer they chose, let's take a look at their process. The Company runs different batch processes. The waste streams from these processes consist mostly of isobutylene and propylene and are all vented to steam‐assist flares. They enrich it with natural gas if required. They use Doppler ultrasonic flow meters to measure the flow rates and have calculated the heat content based on flow measurement of waste gas and supplemental gas. Due to the nature of their batch processes they wanted an analyzer with a fast response time and required a high range measurement for their heavy hydrocarbons.
Although the EPA did not specifically recommend our CalorVal BTU Analyzer, they did say that the CalorVal’s LHV readings would be acceptable in lieu of a GC or other calorimeter. So they chose to install it on their flare header. After the installation they compared the calculated BTU readings to the readings of the CalorVal. They matched to their satisfaction, so much so that they purchased an additional analyzer as a backup.