Improving Life-Cycle Management of PSA Vessels

by Katelyn J. Gustoff / August 2016

 

Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) technology is widely used for the economical purification of gases. Typical PSA operation includes regular pressure cycles to preferentially trap impurities, leaving a high-purity product to recover. Due to this cyclic operation, fatigue is the dominant damage mechanism for PSA vessel populations. This damage manifests as cracking in the pressure-boundary which can resultantly dictate equipment life. This webinar will outline challenges with the life-cycle management (LCM) of PSA vessels with particular focus on in-service inspection planning, equipment reliability, and extending design life. As little industry guidance is currently provided in post-construction documents, an analytical evaluation with a basis in fatigue and fracture mechanics will be provided as a solution to effectively schedule and focus inspection resources while supporting equipment Fitness-for-Service, or the extension of the service life of PSA vessels. As part of the analytical approach, predictive crack growth estimates offer guidance to balance inspection expenditures with the risk inherent to fatigue damage accumulation. As most PSA vessels operate in a hydrogen environment, a model characterizing accelerated crack growth rates will be discussed with this approach. Lastly, as it is imperative to pair analysis with proper inspection techniques, commentary on available inspection methods will be provided.

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