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Decarbonisation Technology – Monitoring Technology for Ethylene Crackers and Steam Methane Reformers

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Read our latest article in Decarbonisation Technology, where James Cross discusses digital solutions and infrared technologies to help steam cracker and SMR operators improve temperature homogeneity and fuel efficiency

November 2021 Issue"Bold strategies to reduce carbon emissions are being released with growing regularity, often with aggressive targets and recommendations. For example, in August 2021, the UK government released a low carbon hydrogen strategy, built around blue and green hydrogen, to meet what it terms legally binding commitments to net-zero emissions. The US government is now proposing a 52% reduction in US greenhouse gas emissions from 2005 levels by 2030, far sooner than previous pledges. The new economic and technical regulatory environment means that refineries and petrochemical industries must radically change in the long term and make significant improvements in efficiency in the short term. A sensible place to start is with the optimisation of their most carbon-intensive fired heater processes.

Two of the largest and most carbon-intensive refinery and petrochemical fired heaters are steam methane reformers (SMR), which largely supply hydrogen to refineries for ammonia/ methanol production, and steam crackers for ethylene production. Steam methane reformers emit around 800 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year, and steam crackers are estimated to produce 260 million tonnes of CO2 emissions per year."

Read the full article on pages 77 - 81 in the Decarbonisation Technology November Issue.