Gasification Plant Cold Service Insulation Replacement

  • Elastomeric Foam Insulation Meets Requirements of Demanding Gasification Application.

> Owner: Dakota Gas Company
> Location: North Dakota
> K-FLEX Solution: 5" FEF + Clad IN Jacket
> Installer: Gagnon, Inc

Dakota Gasification Company owns and operates the Great Plains Synfuels Plant, a coal gasification complex in North Dakota that produces pipeline-quality synthetic natural gas and related products. K-FLEX flexible elastomeric foam insulation* with a protective polymeric jacket** was the choice for cold service insulation in the rectisol area, an area that has operating temperatures down to -100°F. The elastomeric system was a replacement for a previously installed PUR with metal jacketing system that had resulted in significant ice accumulation.
To ensure Dakota Gas received the best possible insulation solution, K-FLEX served as a design partner through the project's planning stages and provided on-site installation support until the project was complete. The installation crew worked efficiently with 1" and 2" thick tubes and rolls to insulate the 200' tall x 10' diameter tanks and support pipes. Benefits from the FEF system included the ability for both on-site and off-site fabrication to achieve maximum time compression, a dust-free product for a clean working environment, a flexible and conformable product for installation of complex valves and flanges, easy handling and transportation up scaffolding floors, and the ability to cut from jumbo rolls to reduce inventory volumes and off-site warehouse space needed. 

The K-Flex FEF system’s microcellular closed cell structure and low water vapor permeability (<0.01 perm-in) plus the polymeric jacket’s high emissivity and 100% sealability has provided excellent thermal performance, with key benefits being no ice accumulation and proper process temperature control. Since the project’s completion, DGC has achieved lower process temperatures under the same chiller load, improving the gas purification process and extending the life of the catalyst by reducing sulfur use levels. 

Thermal performance elements from the K-Flex FEF system include: 
· No ice accumulation, improving personnel safety by eliminating the risk of falling ice (right). 
· Consistent surface temperature, indicating a properly installed and highly efficient thermal system with no thermal   bridges (below middle). 
· Lower process temperatures achieved under the same chiller load, reducing the amount of sulfer used and extending the life of the catalyst 

Thermal Imaging Data 
Ambient Temperature: 69°F 
Approximate Process Temperature: -100°F 
Section AR1 (FEF System) Surface Temperature: 62°F 
Section AR4 reflects PUR + Metal system 
Data collected by DGC, August 2013 
Process Temperature Data 
Approximate 10°F lower process temperature for FEF system
(right of gap) vs. PUR + metal system (left of gap). 

* K-Flex®  LS, K-FLEX ST

Data collected by DGC, November 2013



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