Environmental Sustainability Study of Refinery Wastewater System Using Pinch Technology

Lawrence C. Edomwonyi-Otu, Isaac Okewu, Paul C. Okonkwo

Keywords: Pinch technology, wastewater, sustainability, optimization, refinery, pollution

Issue II, Volume II, Pages 20 - 36

Pinch technique was employed to study the potential of environmental sustainability

in a Nigerian Refinery wastewater system. This was achieved by considering nine major water

using units: cooling tower, ion exchangers, laboratory, SWS Desalter, FCC SWS, caustic

treating, in-house water, fire service and boiler blowdown. In each of the operations, the water

flowrate, and the inlet and outlet contaminants concentration were determined. The Pinch

analysis software plotted the concentration interval diagram for quick determination of the

mass load, cumulative mass load and the pinch point. The water pinched at BOD of 110ppm

with average outlet contaminant concentration of 210ppm. About 50% reduction was observed

for required fresh water flowrate after the water reuse optimization. Wastewater generation

was also reduced by 38% considering reuse technique and 49% for regeneration reuse option.

The final regeneration outlet concentration obtained was found to be 48ppm and within

acceptable environmental standard.

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