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Zeeco’s Aftermarket team was asked by Tengizchevroil to review the design of a steam flare tip used at their refinery in Kazakhstan.

As a combustion equipment manufacturer, Zeeco is committed to providing the best solution for individual needs. Depending on the customer, the application or the area of installation those needs can vary between capacity, efficiency, longevity, operational ease or a host of other factors.

Zeeco’s Aftermarket team was asked by Tengizchevroil to review the design of a steam flare tip used at their refinery in Kazakhstan. The existing configuration was an internal steam-tube style flare tip where steam was used to aspirate air into the combustion zone for smokeless flaring. Due to the extremely cold environmental conditions, the internal steam injection method of the original configuration had detrimental icing issues. In sub-freezing temperatures, the steam condensed and froze inside the injection tubes. This caused the prevention of air reaching the combustion stream, harmful flame impingement to components of the flare tip, premature deterioration, significant and dangerous ice formations on the flare stack and other operational failures.

In the original manufacture’s design the operation of the flare tip was overlooked in favor of obtaining the highest smokeless rate. Even after the original tip failed due to icing issues, the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) replaced it like-in-kind and neglected to address the failure mode or the significant safety hazards.

Working with Tengizchevroil to ensure the required smokeless capacity was maintained, Zeeco designed a replacement flare tip. The revised Zeeco design eliminated the internal steam injection tubes, added significant insulation to the steam injection manifold, and provided simple operational parameters that successfully eliminated the icing issue.

As a result of the simplified Zeeco design, Tengizchevroil realized a monetary savings regarding the capital equipment costs and day-today operations of the replacement flare tip versus the design of the original equipment manufacturer. The first Zeeco flare tip operated successfully through the first cold season meeting Tengizchevroil’s expectations. Consequently, they regularly replace internal tube-style steam flare tips during plant turnaround opportunities with Zeeco Aftermarket flare tips.

The Zeeco Aftermarket Parts and Services group is unique to the combustion industry due to the design capabilities of the personnel, as well as the expertise in providing upgrades and retrofits to other OEM equipment. By taking a critical thinking approach plus effectively matching the needs of the plant to the capabilities of the equipment, Zeeco and Tengizchevroil successfully executed a design change that positively impacted safety, operations, and the end user’s bottom line.