Hydrofluoric acid alkylation poses particular challenges to process operators, requiring special care in the handling of HF Acid, a lethal, highly corrosive fluid that poses a potential hazard to plant equipment, the people who work on site and the wider environment should a leak occur.
HF Alkylation combines olefins (primarily a mixture of propylene and butylene) with isobutene in the presence of a hydrofluoric acid catalyst to produce alkylate: a high-octane additive and critical safety component that offsets the high vapour pressure of the ethanol mandated in today’s low-sulphur unleaded petrol and gasoline supplies.
As reviewed online by World Pumps, HMD Kontro’s next generation pumps have been refined using new materials and technologies to provide an effective solution. The result of close collaboration between UOP Honeywell, the leading licensor of HF alkylation technology and using an innovative development process, the HMD Kontro HF pump features a high integrity pump casing manufactured from Alloy C22 (ASTM A194 Gr. CX2MW).
This has been tested using new methods of Non-Destructive Examination (NDE) and has been proven to offer the necessary resistance to corrosion to meet NDE standards. In addition, the pump’s secondary containment system is rated to 40 bar (580 psi), eliminating the possibility of leakage into the environment, and reducing operational risks and the associated costs to meet the industry’s stringent environmental and health and safety goals.
Preventing HF Acid Harming Employee Health and the Environment.
Operators of the Hydrofluoric (HF) acid alkylation process will know all too well that the pumping of HF acid is an application that presents a set of totally unique challenges.
Working in collaboration with UOP (Honeywell), we have been able to develop proven sealless pumps exclusively for use in HF alkylation units. An innovative approach using alternative materials and a new method of NDE (Non-Destructive Examination) specifically for pumps entering the HF Alkylation process.
Above: Short video introducing the new HF alkylation units.
Due to the hazardous nature of HF acid in the alkylation process, it must be treated with the utmost care and so HF alkylation units demand a fluid handling solution of the very highest standard. This makes magnetic drive pumps eminently suitable. By comparison, pumps featuring failure-prone mechanical seals can leak harmful process fluids, negatively impacting employee health, the environment and productivity. HMD Kontro sealless pumps offer the highest level of safety and reliability with absolutely no leakages, for complete fluid containment.
The Benefits of HMD Kontro Pumps for HF Acid
HMD Kontro has developed a pump design specifically for the HF alkylation process that contains key features and includes an identified core scope of equipment. This package must be supplied, as a minimum, on all pumps destined for an HF alkylation unit and contains the following benefits: