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Fractionation: Understanding Your Column from First Principles

Presented by Kindra Snow-McGregor

20 October 2020, 10:00 am CDT (GMT - 5:00)

Fractionation is required to produce saleable liquid hydrocarbon products from extracted NGLs, often referred to as Y-grade in North America.

This webinar will discuss fractionation columns that separate the NGLs into the various liquid product commodities. The first step in understanding column operating parameters is to understand product specifications and how those specifications relate to the required column operating conditions. Understanding multicomponent distillate phase behaviour is the key to understanding what sets column operating pressure, and subsequently required reboiler temperature.

We will discuss the three primary operating objectives of fractionation facilities:

1. Meet product specifications
2. Keep operating costs at a minimum
3. Maximize stable production / profitability

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Webinar Objectives

 >>   Discuss liquid product specifications and why they are important

 >>   Describe multicomponent phase behavior

 >>   Explain why phase behavior is the key to understanding fractionation column operation

 >>   Understand how stabilizers / fractionation columns work

 >>   List the purpose for the condenser, reboiler and external reflux

 >>   Describe what controls column pressure and bottoms operating temperature

What will attendees learn?

 >>   Typical liquid product specifications

 >>   How fractionation columns separate the key components into a distillate and bottoms product stream

 >>   The primary column control points

 >>   Understand how reflux ratio controls the overhead product composition

 >>   Discuss why lowering the column operating pressure is an opportunity in reboiler (fuel gas) savings


Who Should Attend?

This webinar is directed towards Supervisors, Operators, and Facilities Engineers working in facilities that have fractionation trains associated with their operations. The seminar will also benefit anyone who wishes to update themselves on the primary operating principles of fractionation columns and phase behaviour.

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About the Presenter

MRS. KINDRA SNOW-MCGREGOR is the Technical Director of Oil and Gas Processing with PetroSkills | John M Campbell. She has a master's and bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering and Petroleum Refining from the Colorado School of Mines, and over 22 years of experience in the oil and gas industry. She has served as the technical lead on several significant projects in the industry for clients such as BP, ExxonMobil, ConocoPhillips, Occidental, QatarGas, and XTO. Mrs. Snow-McGregor has been active in the gas processing / midstream industry for many years and is on the Board of Directors for the GPSA. In addition, she serves on the GPSA Engineering Data Book Editorial Review Board. She has published 9 technical papers at international conferences and is a coinventor on two technology patents in the gas processing industry.