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A Midwest US refinery using a 600,000-cSt antifoam in their delayed coker was experiencing silicon carryover in the streams exiting the main fractionator. Base case coker liquid product samples were collected at identical periods in the drum cycles while filling both Drum A and Drum B.

Drum A samples showed silicon levels of 58.0, 38.8, and 5.5 ppm in coker naphtha, light coker gas oil (LCGO), and heavy coker gas oil (HCGO), respectively. Drum B samples showed silicon levels of 33.8, 28.7, and 1.8 ppm in coker naphtha, LCGO, and HCGO, respectively.

Representatives from Baker Hughes, a GE company (BHGE), were asked to collaborate with the refinery staff to review the system and then present recommendations. After a joint analysis by both parties, it was agreed that a newly developed product, FOAMSTOP™ low catalyst impact (LCI) antifoam, would be evaluated. Additional sets of naphtha, LCGO, and HCGO samples were collected to monitor silicon levels, using the same sampling protocol developed to generate the baseline data.

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Challenges & Results


  • Silicon carryover in coker liquid streams


  • Reduced silicon carryover up to 88%
  • Improved refinery operations
  • Extended hydrotreater catalyst life