Boreal Laser of Canada is a leading manufacturer and innovator of laser based gas detectors and analyzers. Working with many of the largest industrial users and best research organizations in the world, Boreal’s GasFinder technology has been proven in numerous safety, environmental and process control applications. Boreal products are robust, reliable and low maintenance and are often used in safety critical applications. With hundreds of installations in over 40 countries worldwide, Boreal Laser is recognized as the industry leader in open path laser gas detection. 

Applications in nitrogen fertilizer industry are:

Safety and Leak Detection 

* Sour Gas production and processing (H2S/CO2) 

* Natural gas production and processing (CH4) 

* Natural gas pipelines and transportation (CH4) 

* Nitrogen plants, fertilizer manufacture (NH3)

* Compressor and high pressure pumps (NH3)

* NH3 loading stations and shipments (NH3)

Environmental 

* Agricultural CH4 and NH3 emissions 

* Greenhouse Gas emissions reduction verification (CH4, CO2) 

* Stack monitoring of prilling tower and granulation section (NH3, urea dust) 

* Carbon Capture and Storage (CO2) 

* Facility fence line monitoring (NH3)


News

The UreaKnowHow.com Fertilizer Training Program

The UreaKnowHow.com Fertilizer Training Program

The Urea-Know-How.com Fertilizer Training Program is a 2-Day Training Program designed for Engineers and Managers, Marketing and Business Development Managers and Safety, Health and Environmental Managers. You will learn about the various types of fertilizers, the various fertilizer production technologies and fertilizer finishing technologies with its pros and conts, the role of fertilizers, the market trends and players in the fertilizer business, how your products and services fit in the fertilizer market and the hazards of the various fertilizers and fertilizer production technologies. The UreaKnowHow.com Fertilizer Training modules will also be part of the Fertilizer Academy.  Click here to find out all details

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UreaKnowHow.com presents at LRSV 2021

UreaKnowHow.com presents at LRSV 2021

At LRVS 2021, we will be presenting on, “Safety Incidents with High Pressure Rotating Equipment in Urea Plants”.
Here’s what to expect: This paper elaborates the most critical safety incidents including its prevention and mitigation measures.
To minimize / avoid incidents that do repeat, we recommend making use of the Center for Chemical Process Safety: Risk Based Process Safety Management approach.
Also proper attention must be paid to the right design, fabrication, installation, inspection, repair and operational procedures. Involve experienced and knowledgeable urea experts as owner’s engineers in your projects and training programs.
Treat safety and reliability as your number one priority.
Remember, LRVS2021 will be taking place from the 14-15th September!
For the video click here

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UreaKnowHow.com presents at AIChE Ammonia Safety 2021 Virtual Conference

UreaKnowHow.com presents at AIChE Ammonia Safety 2021 Virtual Conference

A century of ammonia synthesis technology - with an emphasis on continual progress in ammonia plant safety - is the theme of AIChE's 65th Annual Safety in Ammonia Plants and Related Facilities Symposium on  - . Experts from around the world will discuss the latest advances related to the safe production and use of ammonia, case studies, and lessons learned. UreaKnowHow.com will present a paper with the title: The #1 Safeguard for Any Urea Plant. As of January 2021, UreaKnowHow.com has collected and analyzed more than 135 serious urea incidents. Based on this analysis, what is the most important, or the number one, safeguard, for any urea plant? It is the leak detection system for loose liners of the high-pressure equipment. In just two recent years (2018 and 2019), at least six serious incidents have occurred whereby the available leak detection system failed! It is really a miracle no casualties were involved. This paper explains why a proper leak detection system for loose liners of high-pressure equipment is crucial. This paper also explains why most existing systems are not acceptable anymore by illustrating their shortcomings in several incidents. The paper will conclude with how a modern state-of-the-art leak detection system, The #1 Safeguard for Any Urea Plant, should be designed. The goal of this paper is to convince urea plant owners to upgrade existing leak detection systems to state of the art standards and improve the safety and reliability level in our industry. For the video click here

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How a vacuum system is able to detect clogging in the tubing ?

How a vacuum system is able to detect clogging in the tubing ?

When talking about active leak detection systems, one can distinguish a pressurized system, in which an inert carrier gas stream flows through the leak detection circuits and a vacuum based system, where one pulls vacuum pressure behind the liner. All liner compartments are connected in a logical and economical manner via tubing to the ammonia analyzer.
In a pressurized system a flow indicator should be installed to detect clogging.
In a vacuum system vacuum pressure exists in the complete leak detection system; the achieved vacuum pressure is a result of the capacity of the vacuum pump and the amount of ambient air leaking in via the tubing connections. It is unavoidable that some ambient air will enter into the system.
Once a clogging does occur somewhere in a section, the part between the clogging and the vacuum pump / ammonia analyzer will remain under vacuum pressure and under detection. However, the part between the atmospheric ball valve and the clogging will rise in pressure until atmospheric pressures has been reached. This allows for a detection of clogging also in a vacuum system as described below ...

Click here for the full explanation

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What is reason #7 to choose for a vacuum system ?

What is reason #7 to choose for a vacuum system ?

We recommend to use a vacuum based leak detection system for several important reasons:

Reason #1: No risk of liner bulging (refer to FAQ 6)
Reason #2: Direct coverage of the complete carbon steel surface of a compartment (refer to FAQ 7)
Reason #3: A vacuum system is less prone to clogging (refer to FAQ 9)
Reason #4: A vacuum system does not restrict the leaking flow and does not built-up pressure or introduces risks for backflow (refer to FAQ 10)
Reason #5: A vacuum system also works when there is only one leak detection hole in a liner compartment (refer to FAQ 11)
Reason #6: A vacuum system also works when there are clogged grooves or no grooves (refer to FAQ 12)
Reason #7 is: A pressurised system requires a dedicated ammonia analyser for each high pressure equipment item whereas a vacuum system needs only one ammonia analyser for all high pressure equipment items to realise the same reliability.

Click here to find out why.

 

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UreaKnowHow.com welcomes SULVARIS as our Sponsor

UreaKnowHow.com welcomes SULVARIS as our Sponsor

A Revolutionary AgriTech Company

Focused on crop input technologies for the future of sustainable and regenerative agriculture, with the goal of contributing to global ESG initiatives.

  • Sulvaris has successfully developed and commercialized its leading enhanced efficiency Micronized Sulphur Technology (MST®) with Nutrien, the largest global fertilizer producer and retailer.
  • Sulvaris is also currently developing its disruptive carbon technology platform, which is focused on carbon capture combined with a high-performance crop nutrient delivery mechanism aiming to provide farmers with superior crop yields, return on investment, and environmental stewardship.
  • Sulvaris has commercialised the technology to produce MAP+MST® with Nutrien being marketed as SmartNutritienTM

Urea + Micronized Sulphur Technology (MST®is a proprietary patented technology that economically micronizes elemental sulphur to less than 10-micron average size. Click here to read more.

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What is reason #6 to choose for a vacuum system ?

What is reason #6 to choose for a vacuum system ?

High pressure urea equipment consists of a carbon steel pressure bearing wall, which is protected against corrosion by a protective layer. This protective layer is typically an overlay welding or a loose liner. Any leak in a loose liner will lead to a dangerous situation in that a large surface of the carbon steel pressure bearing wall underneath the leaking loose liner compartment will be exposed to the extremely corrosive ammonium carbamate. Experience has shown that ammonium carbamate can corrode carbon steels with very high corrosion rates up to 1,000 mm (40 inch) per year.

When talking about active leak detection systems, one can distinguish a pressurized system, in which an inert carrier gas stream flows through the leak detection circuits and a vacuum based system, where one pulls vacuum pressure behind the liner (refer to FAQ 5)

It is a real challenge to avoid clogging as urea easily crystallises at any temperature even above its melting point due to its polymerisation behaviour forming biuret, triuret etc. with high melting points. This is the main reason that we strongly recommend to upgrade any passive leak detection system (FAQ 3).

We recommend to use a vacuum based leak detection system for several important reasons:

Reason #1: No risk of liner bulging (refer to FAQ 6)

Reason #2: Direct coverage of the complete carbon steel surface of a compartment (refer to FAQ 7)

Reason #3: A vacuum system is less prone to clogging (refer to FAQ 9)

Reason #4: A vacuum system does not restrict the leaking flow and does not built-up pressure or introduces risks for backflow (refer to FAQ 10)

Reason #5: A vacuum system also works when there is only one leak detection hole in a liner compartment (refer to FAQ 11)

Reason #6 is: A vacuum system also works when there are clogged grooves or no grooves.

But why is that ?

Click here for the answer.

Click here for all latest information.

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UreaKnowHow.com welcomes SPRANA as our Sponsor

UreaKnowHow.com welcomes SPRANA as our Sponsor

SPRANA provides Process Analytical Technology solutions for on-line/in-line/at-line analysis and monitoring of industrial processes based on Machine Vision and Applied Spectroscopy. Automatic defect inspection turn-key systems (Hardware and Software).

The state of the art solution for on-line analysis of the composition of Urea Ammonium Nitrate.

NIRSpec UAN analyzer can measure not only the concentrations of the main UAN components: Urea, Ammonium Nitrate and Water, but also the concentration of the unwanted by-product Biuret, which is becoming an increasingly important quality parameter of UAN. Accurate continuous/real-time measurements and the unique capability of measuring the concentration of Biuret enable a better control of the quality of the UAN in the production process. The analytical technology is based on the Near Infra-Red spectroscopy and the state of the art proprietary multivariate calibration. Several references are successfully in operation.

The BENEFITS are...Read more

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What is reason #5 to choose for a vacuum system ?

What is reason #5 to choose for a vacuum system ?

Active leak detection systems can either be a pressurised or a vacuum system (refer to FAQ 5). We recommend to use a vacuum leak detection system for several important reasons.
Reason #1 is: No risk of liner bulging (refer to FAQ 6)
Reason #2 is: Direct coverage of the complete carbon steel surface of a compartment (refer to FAQ 7)
Reason #3 is: A vacuum system is less prone to clogging (refer to FAQ 9)
Reason #4 is: A vacuum system does not restrict the leaking flow and does not built-up pressure or introduce risks for backflow (refer to FAQ 10)
Reason #5 is: A vacuum system also works when there is only one leak detection hole in a liner compartment.
But why is that ?

Click here for more information

Click here for all latest information

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What is reason #4 to choose for a vacuum system ?

What is reason #4 to choose for a vacuum system ?

Active leak detection systems can either be a pressurised or a vacuum based system (refer to FAQ 5). We recommend to use a vacuum based leak detection system for several important reasons.
Reason #1 is: No risk of liner bulging (refer to FAQ 6)
Reason #2 is: Direct coverage of the complete carbon steel surface of a compartment (refer to FAQ 7)
Reason #3 is: A vacuum system is less prone to clogging (refer to FAQ 9)
Reason #4 is: A vacuum system does not restrict the leaking flow and does not built-up pressure or introduce risks for backflow
But why is that ?
The validity of this fourth reason has been proven by Incident 19-005, details about this incident can be found via the following link:...

Click here for more information

Click here for all latest information

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What is reason #3 to choose for a vacuum system ?

What is reason #3 to choose for a vacuum system ?

We recommend a vacuum based leak detection system for several reasons:

Reason #3: A vacuum system is less prone to clogging.

In case of a liner leak and operating a vacuum system, the vacuum pump of the leak detection system will pull the leaking ammonia to the ammonia analyser. After the leak detection circuit in which the leak occurs has been determined, one is able to dilute the leak in this line with air via the vacuum pump by opening the atmospheric ball valve and in that way one dilutes the leaking fluid and reduces (eliminates) the risk for clogging!

Click here to read more

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AmmoniaKnowHow.com - Online Roundtable - Corrosion Issues in Ammonia and Urea Plants: Causes, Consequences and Safeguard Solutions

AmmoniaKnowHow.com - Online Roundtable - Corrosion Issues in Ammonia and Urea Plants: Causes, Consequences and Safeguard Solutions

On the 25th of March, AmmoniaKnowHow.com will hold a webinar to discuss corrosion issues in ammonia and urea plants. Industry experts and specialists will share their experience. Incidents and case studies will be presented together with the latest technologies for corrosion prevention and mitigation. AmmoniaKnowHow.com webinars are an opportunity for participants to get together in an interactive setting to examine issues related to operation and maintenance of ammonia and urea plants.

Amine_Experts
E2G
IGS
NTT Consultancy
UreaKnowHow.com

Register Now via this link

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We are at 2000 Round Table Discussions!

We are at 2000 Round Table Discussions!

UreaKnowHow.com has reached the impressive milestone of 2000 Round Table discussions. 2000 active Round Table discussion with totally more than 9500 posts or an average of 5 posts per discussion and 2-3 new posts per day. This means everybody who posts a question, for sure will get a reply making the UreaKnowHow.com Round Tables a very valuable information source and place to share experiences.
We thank all participants for their valuable contributions and support and like to highlight and thank very much the 10 most active participants:...Click here to read more

 

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How a vacuum LDS system is able to distinguish a false indication from an ammonia cloud in the atmosphere from a real liner leak ?

How a vacuum LDS system is able to distinguish a false indication from an ammonia cloud in the atmosphere from a real liner leak ?

High pressure urea equipment consists of a carbon steel pressure bearing wall, which is protected against corrosion by a protective stainless, titanium or duplex steel layer. This protective layer can be an overlay welding, an explosive cladded layer or a loose liner. Any leak in a loose liner will lead to a dangerous situation in that a large surface of the carbon steel pressure bearing wall underneath the leaking loose liner compartment will be exposed to the extremely corrosive ammonium carbamate. Experience has shown that ammonium carbamate can corrode carbon steels with very high corrosion rates up to 1,000 mm (40 inch) per year.

When talking about active leak detection systems, one can distinguish a pressurized system, in which an inert carrier gas stream flows through the leak detection circuits and a vacuum based system, where one pulls vacuum pressure behind the liner. We recommend a vacuum based leak detection system for several reasons.

But how can a vacuum system distinguish a false indication from for instance an ammonia cloud in the atmosphere from a liner leak ?

Click here to read more

Click here for all latest related information.

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What is reason #2 to choose for a vacuum system?

What is reason #2 to choose for a vacuum system?

This question 7 is in continuation of question 6 in which we started explaining why an active vacuum leak detection system is superior over an active pressurized system. Active leak detection systems can be either a pressurized system, in which an inert carrier gas stream flows through the leak detection circuits most probably only via the machined leak detection grooves present in the carbon steel and a vacuum system, where one pulls vacuum pressure underneath the liner.

We recommend a vacuum based leak detection system for several reasons:

Reason #2: Direct detection of the complete carbon steel surface

Click here to read more

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The State-Of-The-Art Ammonia Terminal

The State-Of-The-Art Ammonia Terminal

Since 100 years ago the industrial production of ammonia began for the widespread agricultural and industrial application. Safety hazards and risks have been identified and for a large extend resolved.

Nowadays ammonia is used more and more as a very efficient hydrogen energy storage, carrier and carbon free fuel. This means that more and more people will get involved with this potentially toxic substance. How will the public and the authorities react?

Are the previously known safety regulations sufficient for the storage / bunkering of ammonia?

We say no, it can be better, more safe and reliable.

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What is reason #1 to choose for a vacuum system?

What is reason #1 to choose for a vacuum system?

We recommend a vacuum based leak detection system for several reasons:

Reason #1: No risk of liner bulging

A first reason is that when using a vacuum system there will be no risk for liner bulging and damage due a to too high pressure in the leak detection system behind the liner. Be aware that the relatively large liner compartments are welded to the carbon steel pressure bearing wall. These large areas allow only a very limited pressure difference between each side of the liner.

Some vendors try to avoid this risk of bulging by switching off the leak detection system when the pressure in the synthesis section is below a certain value. In our view this is not a good solution because...

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Which kind of active leak detection systems exist ?

Which kind of active leak detection systems exist ?

High pressure urea equipment consist of a heavy carbon steel pressure bearing wall, which is protected against corrosion by a thin corrosion resistant layer; this layer is in the most cases made out of stainless steel or a duplex. This protective layer can be an overlay welding, an explosive cladded layer but is in most cases a loose liner.

Any leak in a loose liner will lead to a dangerous situation because a potentially corrosive fluid can be spread and trapped in the gap between the carbon steel pressure bearing wall and the loose liner. This area will then be exposed to the extremely corrosive ammonium-carbamate.

Real situations have proven that ammonium-carbamate can corrode carbon steels with very high corrosion rates up to 1,000 mm (40 inch) per year. But also stainless steels will show accelerated corrosion because of lack of oxygen. That means that it is an absolute must to have a detection system present that already warns for al leak in an early stage. Then one can only conclude that an active leak detection system is required...

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Why flushing with steam or condensate is NOT a good practice ?

Why flushing with steam or condensate is NOT a good practice ?

To check if a leak detection system is not facing any clogging or to unclog a leak detection system, some plants practice a flushing procedure with steam or water.
This is not recommended and even dangerous! Introducing water can lead to corrosion. Corrosion, as known, is an electrochemical reaction so corrosion can only take place when water is present.

Without water no corrosion.

The corrosion product will block the passage ways and can also block the leak detection holes.
A more threatening form of corrosion that can occur is  stress corrosion  cracking  of the carbon steel pressure vessel wall.

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UreaKnowHow.com will present at CRU's Nitrogen+Syngas 2021 Virtual Conference

UreaKnowHow.com will present at CRU's Nitrogen+Syngas 2021 Virtual Conference

For 33 years, CRU's Nitrogen + Syngas conference has provided an annual platform for the global industry to meet, network, and learn. Every year, 740+ producers, licensors, and materials and equipment providers attend to ensure they have knowledge, understanding and professional connections required to improve their production, maximise profitability, and maintain safe, reliable, and environmentally responsible operations.
In 2021, due to the pandemic, Nitrogen + Syngas will go ahead - as a virtual event. The tried and tested virtual platform allow CRU to deliver an interactive environment for all participants to meet, learn and network. The only virtual element of the conference is the venue - the conference still offers real insight, real networking, and real business opportunities.
UreaKnowHow.com will present a paper with the title: How to Improve Safety and Reliability of the High Pressure Synthesis Section of Urea Plants. The paper draws conclusions from a detailed analysis of the more than 130 serious incidents of the UreaKnowHow.com Urea Incident Database.
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