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A cfd study comparing different feed nozzle arrangement within an empty spray section in a coker fractionator

  • Coker Fractionator is the main equipment in a Delayed Coking Unit
  • It receives the effluent from the Coke Drums and separates them into distillates
  • Products specifications are achieved in coker fractionators and the interest in this subject has increased lately

To predict the fluid dynamic behavior in a coker fractionator washing zone and analyze the influence of vapor distribution on the heat and mass transfer efficiency, considering different number of inlet feed nozzles

  Phase Inlet characteristics Spray section
Case 1 vapor one inlet none
two inlets
three inlets
Case 2


ideal 30º
  • Eulerian-Lagrangian approach
    1. Continuous phase: vapor (Eulerian)
    2. Dispersed phase: liquid droplets distribution (Lagrangian)
  • Takes into account the influence of the liquid flow within the vapor phase flow
    1. Allows to predict the spray distributor arrangement and geometry improvement cities

Petrobras - Brazil


Case 1: Number of inlet feed devices

  • Coker fractionator tower simulation can change the number of inlet feed device among one, two or three inlets
  • CFD results indicated that two inlets feed device provides the highest homogeneity of vapor under normal operational conditions of all cases studied

Case 2: Spray section configuration

  • Ideal vapor condition was set to optimize a hollow cone spray distributor by rotating the base distributor in 30 and 45 degrees
  • CFD results indicated that no great difference has been observed between the analyzed conditions, but 30 degrees provides higher liquid-vapor distribution within the washing zone