Insights from industry

Thermal Fluids in Chemical, Oil and Gas Applications

In this interview, Dyron Liverman, Oil and Gas Chemical Processing Sales Engineer from Paratherm, talks to AZoM about their range of thermal fluids and expertise in the chemical, oil and gas industry.

Please tell us about Paratherm’s range of thermal fluids and your expertise in chemical, oil and gas applications.

Paratherm Heat Transfer Fluids product offerings include both mineral oil and synthetic-based fluids for liquid phase service to meet the heating or cooling demands of the system to transport temperatures ranging from -127°F (-88°C) up to ~675°F (357°C). Each fluid has its own chemistry blend that are chemically equivalent to most well-known brands, have environmentally safe fluids options, and include fluids designed for long life expectancy. My personal experience has been focused on gas processing applications such as acid gas removal or “Gas Sweetening”, amine regeneration, fractionation trains, glycol dehydration, and any other application that require a heating media for responsive, precision temperature control. Overall, Paratherm is in a unique position to serve the oil, gas, and chemical processing application requirements with an unprecedented level of service, in-depth level of detail to minimize downtime due to hot oil system failure, and diverse product offerings all from one supplier.

Image Credit:Shutterstock/LukaszZ

What makes Paratherm’s range of fluids different from others on the market? Tell us about the key benefits?

The benefits of Paratherm’s range of fluids compared to others on the market are:

  • The ability to provide compatible top off fluids to most competitive fluids at a competitive price.
  • NO minimum purchase for all of our fluids. ­­­­
  • Products always in stock with strategic inventory placed in key locations
  • Compatible system cleaners for both mineral oil and synthetic fluids. These cleaners are effective at removing sludge and restoring efficiency to fouled systems
  • The ability to supply urgent demands
  • The ability to offer in house analytical services for routine condition monitoring of your thermal fluid, regardless of brand. Paratherm fluid analysis includes a full report with results, recommendations, and follow-up consultation. Results are trended to track changes and to help identify system or operating issues before they become detrimental to production.
  • Help troubleshoot problems within your hot oil system.
  • Consultation on system design
  • Diverse product portfolio to meet operating requirements from -127°F up to 675°F.

What makes Paratherm’s fluids attractive to the Biodiesel and Petrochemical industries?

Biodiesel:

Paratherm has the ability to supply Paratherm™ NF which is an NSF approved food grade fluid designed for highly efficient operation between 120°F and 600°F. Paratherm NF has a history and wide usage in bio-oils processing that has been specified and employed in numerous edible-oil plants, often replacing steam or synthetic vapor-phase fluids in a distillation process known as oil deodorization. The properties that made this specific heat transfer fluid attractive to the bio-oil industry explains why it is being specified for the transesterification process in several Biodiesel plants going online now, and several more under construction…

Petrochemical:

Whether for heating reactors and maintaining high temperatures or for extreme process cooling/exothermic heat removal at the lower end of the scale, Paratherm has the fluids and the experience to serve a wide range of applications in the petrochemical and chemical processing industries.

Image Credit:Shutterstock/jaj

How do they benefit from Paratherm’s fluid?

These key points below explain why Paratherm is attractive to the Biodiesel industry:

  • High Temperature Capability: Unlike many other hot oils, Paratherm™ NF is rated for film temperatures up to 650°F—enabling the 550°F to 600°F process temperature range shared by Bio-oil distillation and Biodiesel glycerine production.
  • Food-Grade Status: Unlike synthetic alternatives, Paratherm™ NF is registered and considered non-toxic—which could be important to downline users of glycerin by-product. Paratherm NF has no irritating odor and no special recycling or disposal requirements.
  • Availability: Paratherm is stocked in 6 North-American regional warehouses and many global warehouses for routine supply and super-fast availability in emergencies - even evenings and weekends. When an unforeseen system problem leads to a need for replacement fluid tomorrow morning, or this afternoon, Paratherm can deliver.
  • Tech Support: Paratherm customers call Paratherm—not just about fluids, orders, and shipments, but about their systems. Paratherm’s team of engineers know hot-oil systems well and routinely help customers troubleshoot their process operations. For example, when a major biodiesel plant had an exchanger breach, Paratherm assisted with the diagnosis of the problem and recommended procedures for repairing the system and rehabilitating the contaminated thermal fluid. This involved a step-by-step boil out and partial fluid replacement to restore critical properties to optimal ranges. The fluid in this system has been running with routine fluid analysis for over 25 years.

These key points below explain why Paratherm is attractive to the Petrochemical and Chemical processing industry:

Paratherm thermal fluids are used in distillation applications, jacketed equipment, mixers, dryers, condensers, laboratory equipment, heat exchangers and more, Paratherm’s nine heat transfer fluids are engineered to handle a range of conditions and circumstances to deliver lasting performance in demanding conditions. These additional conditions Paratherm Thermal Fluids can handle are:

  • Single-fluid heating and cooling options
  • Food-grade options
  • Non-aqueous, non-glycol cooling fluids
  • Non-sludging
  • High Flash and Fire Point
  • Cryogenic Range
  • Synthetic/Aromatic

Paratherm also offer system-cleaning liquids to:

  • Clean mineral-oil systems during normal operating conditions
  • Clean systems running synthetic/aromatic fluids, during normal operating conditions

Paratherm provides heat transfer fluid, system cleaning fluids and technical services to gas processing, alternative fuels, petroleum refining and used oil recycling. Why is Paratherm the chosen supplier and provider for these applications?

Our response times and attention to detail sets us apart from our competitors by listening to the needs of the customer. In addition, we have our own state-of-the-art in-house lab to test fluids to give a quick response for any potential concerns

What role does Paratherm and the Thermal Fluids play in clean technology and renewable energy sector?

Thermal fluid systems are inherently more efficient than steam systems. Steam systems are notoriously leak prone and are more energy intensive overall.Thermal fluid systems can use air preheaters or economizers to preheat combustion gases and/or fluid prior to entering the heater, resulting in less overall energy consumption.

Thermal fluids are used in waste heat recovery processes, resulting in better recycling of thermal energy and more efficient manufacturing processes.Thermal fluids are candidates for cooling advanced technology cooling, resulting in more efficient processes and less wasted energy.

Paratherm offers clean technology with our food grade (NSF approved) thermal fluids that are safe for the environment and even one product, Paratherm NF, that is used heavily and preferred in the food industry for its safe rating with incidental human contact.

ACTIVE SOLAR

In active (pumped) SWH systems, more often a separate loop containing a heat transfer fluid will transfer heat to the water using a heat exchanger. The heat transfer fluid in these systems is usually a freeze protected solution of a glycol and water, with a corrosion inhibition package. Non-aqueous heat transfer fluids, such as Paratherm™ LR, could also be used here. Contact Paratherm for details on advantages.

POWER GENERATION AND THERMAL STORAGE

Heat transfer fluids are also utilized in solar energy generation, in concentrators such as parabolic, linear Fresnel, and trough-based systems. Several heat transfer media can be utilized, depending on the mechanical design and temperature requirements of the application.

Synthetic/aromatic heat transfer fluids are used to provide uniform heat for steam in turbine generators

POLYCRYSTALLINE SILICON

Finally, high temperature heat transfer fluids are used extensively in the manufacturing processes for polysilicon, the material used to make photovoltaics, in a process similar to that used in production of computer chips.

Photovoltaic solar (PV Solar) panels are the familiar black panels with the bluish tinge, all solid state, that are placed on roofs and in deserts to generate electricity directly from sunlight. Probably the most familiar example is the solar patio light, which absorbs solar energy by day and then automatically lights path and patio by night.

The Polysilicon process which can consist of the Siemens Reactor process or Fluid Bed (FB) reactors, in which heat transfer fluids can be used in the purification phase to raise temperature of catalytic reaction to convert silicon tetrachloride (STC) to trichlorosilane (TCS). This phase can be referred to as the Hydrogenation phase of the process.

These units purify metallurgical grade silicon (MGS) to electronic grade silicon by hydrogenation of MGS and STC to make TCS. The resulting TCS is purified by crystallization and distillation. Heat transfer fluids are used in this distillation process as well.

Other heat transfer fluids are also used in the cooling phase of polysilicon production, at low temperatures. The use of cryogenic-range heat transfer fluids such as Paratherm CR is beneficial in this phase. The fluid cools the molten silicon poured from crucibles into the molds making monocrystalline ingots for solar cells and photovoltaics.

PARATHERM FLUIDS FOR SOLAR APPLICATIONS

Low Temperature Liquid

Heating & Cooling Fluid

High Temperature Fluids

Paratherm™ CR

  • Higher Flowrates at -90ºC in thermoprocessing

  • Lowers Equipment Operating Temperatures by 10ºC

Used in polycrystalline production

Paratherm™ LR

  • Water Sensitive Products

  • Non-Corroding Water/Glycol Replacement

  • Higher Flash Point–Rated Combustible, Not Flammable

  • Low-Temp Start-up

Alternative to glycol-based fluids

Paratherm™ HR

  • Synthetic/Aromatic

  • Gas processing

  • Chemical processes

  • Waste-oil recovery

  • Biodiesel production

  • Plastic processing

Used in polycrystalline production and thermal solar applications.

Paratherm NF®

  • Batch Processing

  • Electric Immersion Heaters

  • Food Grade

Used in thermal solar applications

Note: Paratherm does not manufacture, support, or distribute glycol-based heat transfer fluids.

Image Credit:Shutterstock/Fotoldee

Where can our readers go to find out more?

Please see our websites below for additional information on our products and services.

- https://go.paratherm.com/

- www.paratherm.com

About Dyron Liverman

Dyron Liverman is an Oil & Gas and Chemical Processing Sales Engineer for Paratherm Heat Transfer Fluids responsible for maintaining relationships and business development with the Oil & Gas and Chemical Processing Industries in North America. He has been focused on connecting with existing and new customers within his territory. Dyron has been actively holding a series of on-site Lunch and Learns devoted to highlight Paratherm’s products, services, and educating the industry on proper safety & maintenance best practices.

Dyron is a graduate from North Carolina State University with Bachelor of Science Degrees in Chemical Engineering & Biomolecular Engineering as well as Paper Science Engineering. Dyron enjoys watching sports and staying active by working out and playing basketball.

He will continue to reside in the Houston area to best serve his main industries. Feel free to contact Dyron with your heat transfer fluid needs +1 713-213-7409 or [email protected].

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are those of the interviewee and do not necessarily represent the views of AZoM.com Limited (T/A) AZoNetwork, the owner and operator of this website. This disclaimer forms part of the Terms and Conditions of use of this website.

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