Furnace refractory repair online to prevent refinery maintenance shutdown

Fired Heater Shutdown Prevented with Hot Refractory Repair

A refinery in the U.S. has discovered serious refractory integrity concerns on its CCR unit. The refractory ceramic fiber was missing in a furnace. As a result, the outer steel shell was damaged due to the exposure to the high temperatures in multiple areas of the roof and sidewall.

IGS Hot-Tek team was invited to repair the damaged refractory roof areas, using Hot-Tek Hot Refractory Repair Services, while the unit was running at full capacity.  All quoted areas of the furnace roof were repaired, along with two additional damaged areas, discovered during the project.

Refinery Furnace Infrared Images Reveal Problem Areas

This U.S. Refinery is a downstream energy company with assets in petroleum refining, logistics, convenience stores, asphalt, and renewables with a capacity of fewer than  150,000 barrels per day. The Refinery produces types of gasoline, distillates, and propane products.

The Hot-Tek team took infrared images of the hot spots on the CCR fired heater roof during the pre-job meeting.

Temperatures of over 1500°F/815°C were being reached at the bridge wall, relatively high for a CCR fired heater. Material selection utilized in the previous repairs was not sufficient for these elevated bridge wall temperatures.

CCR heater temporary refractory repair

Hot-Tek #1 & #2 Repair Area.
Repaired using Hot-Tek Module Style on the ceiling of the installed dog boxes.

Infrared inspection of the CCR heater temporary refractory repair
CCR heater temporary refractory repair

Hot-Tek #3 Repair Area.
Repair performed utilizing the Hot-Tek Basket Style Repair on the existing ceiling.

Infrared inspection of the CCR heater temporary refractory repair
CCR heater temporary refractory repair

Hot-Tek #4 Repair Area.
Repair performed utilizing Hot Tek Basket Style Repair on the side of the Dog Box and existing ceiling.

Infrared inspection of the CCR heater temporary refractory repair

Imminent Shutdown Prevention with a Hot-Tek Solution

The busy refinery maintenance manager was looking at a permanent solution to this problem while avoiding a shutdown, which would have severe consequences to their revenue and operations.

Hot-Tek repairs damaged Roof Areas on the CCR Heater
Damaged Roof Areas on the CCR Heater

IGS Hot-Tek team repaired the damaged refractory roof areas, using Hot-Tek Hot Refractory Repair Services, while the unit was running at full capacity.  We repaired all quoted areas of the roof, along with two additional damaged areas that we discovered during the repair.

Learn more about Hot Refractory Repair

Hot-Tek Hot Furnace Refractory Repair Solution

We repaired the damaged areas using two techniques; IGS Hot-Tek’s unique basket style repair and the larger module repair. The larger damaged furnace roof areas we cut into sections and removed. Then, we installed prefabricated modules in place. Higher alloy plates and hardware along with higher temperature ceramic fiber created a long-term repair solution for the refinery.

Step-by-Step Hot-Tek Repair Solution

Hot-Tek Furnace Repair #1 & #2 using Hot Tek Module Style on the ceiling of the installed dog boxes

1. Cutting the Tiles and Leaving an Area for Support

We cut the first tile using a plasma cutter and removed it from the furnace ceiling. Approximately 1”-2” area of the original furnace shell we left for support for the new Hot-Tek Module. After installing the module temporarily, our Hot-Tek team then moves to the next tile.

CCR shell tile cut and removed from the ceiling

2. Installing Prefabricated Hot-Tek Module

Our team installed a prefabricated Hot-Tek module and tack welded it into the place.

A prefabricated Hot-Tek module was installed and task welded into place.

3. Large Module Installed in Another Section

The installation of the large module was completed in the next roof section. The module and technician were tethered for safety.

Installation of large module was completed in the next roof section. The module and technician are tethered for safety.

4. Module Fitted and Welded in Place

We fitted and fully welded the module in place with an alloy rod for dissimilar metal welding.

The module was fitted and fully welded in place with alloy rod for dissimilar metal welding.

5. Hot-Tek Basket Solution

We repaired a large damaged roof area with 16” square alloy Hot-Tek baskets.  We welded these baskets together to form the new “ceiling” of the roof.

A large damaged roof area was repaired with 16” square alloy Hot-Tek baskets.

6. Pouring New Refractory

We laid pourable/pumpable refractory into the large opening.  After curing, the surface becomes cool to the touch. Once cool, we welded an alloy plate over the refractory.

Hot-Tek Pourable / Pumpable refractory was laid into the large opening.

Hot-Tek Repair #3 Performed Utilizing the Hot-Tek Basket Style Repair on the Existing Ceiling

1. Cut to Verify Obstructions

We made an initial cut in the roof to verify any obstructions.

An initial cut was made in the roof to verify any obstructions.

2. Slit Made for Hot-Tek Basket Installation

After verification, we made a larger slit into the roof for the installation of the baskets.

Slit made into the CCR roof for the installation of Hot-Tek baskets.

3. Baskets or Plates Placed in the Opening

We placed Baskets or Plates in the opening, securing any loose roof refractory, and welded it in place before backfilling with pumpable refractory.

Baskets or Plates were placed in the opening, securing any loose roof refractory

4. Completing the Repair

We extended the plasma cut opening while the unit was running. IGS can also repair vertical surfaces utilizing a similar technique.

Refractory repairs completed by Hot-Tek

5. Fiber Lined Baskets Installed

After the cut was made, we installed fiber lined baskets, cooling the surface area immediately.

After the cut was made, fiber lined baskets were installed, cooling the surface area immediately.

The Result – Hot-Tek Hot Refractory Repair Solution

IGS team performed the Hot-Tek project within the agreed schedule of 8 days. Refinery continued operations in full capacity, completely unaffected by the repairs taking place. A shutdown would have cost the refinery millions in lost production.