August 29th, 2023
Keep your internals in top operating conditions, using this checklist as a planning guide
By Robert Lasser, Vice President, Tower Division
Tower internal and drum maintenance is essential for keeping operations running smoothly and at peak efficiency. Designed for mass-transfer and separation process requirements, your internals work in demanding conditions, continuously being exposed to temperature changes, pressure, erosion, corrosion and more.
Reach out ahead of your actual outage to Houston-area Woven Metal Products (WMP), a state-of-the-art fabrication facility, specializing in tower, drum and reactor internals and custom fabrication. Working together, we can help you prepare for a practically painless maintenance and turnaround outage, with superior operation results.
When you’re planning maintenance for these internals, keep this checklist of questions in mind.
1. How old is the tower or drum?
Knowing the age of the products we are working with or within is helpful as we plan what to do and what may or may not need replaced.
2. At what capacity is your tower or drum running?
Knowing your capacity limits, concerns and needs, our team can make recommendations to improve process flow capacity. Working together, WMP can help your existing tower or drum meet your unit’s higher rates.
3. At what capacity do you want your tower or drum to run?
Based on existing flow capacity and your desired future capacity, we can propose design improvements. By utilizing different internal equipment choices, such as tray or packing styles, or mist eliminator types, upgraded internal changes can improve your process flows, normally without major design modifications or replacement of your existing tower or drum.
4. Are you interested in de-bottlenecking options?
Our team can review your existing process internals and suggest improvements.
5. Are you interested in replacing old trays with newer improved trays?
Based on current flow and desired future flow, our team may suggest improved tray options that can give you additional capacity and efficiency — without modifying the tower or drum.
If your old tray panel openings are enlarged from spin wear, you can use WMP’s patented tray deck repair washer to cost-effectively fix the problem. WMP’s patented washer simply bends into your existing enlarged tray valve hole, allowing the field crew to quickly repair existing panels during turnaround discovery without welding, panel replacements, special tools, or extra labor. This keeps your outage on track and within budget, avoiding significant panel replacement delays and large unplanned expenses.
Check out our Tray Tower Video Demo.
6. Are you interested in process flow improvements?
Sometimes changing internals can improve capacity, efficiency, and often have significant long-term operational cost savings, making their investment payback short.
7. When was the last time (or known time) the internals were replaced?
Knowing how long the product runs have been historically can help us effectively plan what should be replaced and how often.
8. Do you have any prints, pictures or recent inspection reports of your tower or drum?
In many cases, we may have a plant’s existing and historical prints on file, saving you time and potentially money and hassle. Ask, and let’s see!
Regardless of your situation, WMP can review your current internals and process conditions to recommend the best equipment solution. When our team updates your internal equipment items, we utilize the latest 3D and 2D modeling packages, so your record drawings will be helpful and accessible in the future.
We’re in the business of providing solutions for our customers, and we’d love to work with you to help your plant run at peak performance. Get in touch with our team at wovenmetal.com/contact or call 281-331-4466.