Crude oil is the basis of many chemicals, fuels, oils and other products such as plastics and fabrics. No matter the final product, petrochemical processing relies on careful control and monitoring of moisture, oxygen and often hydrogen.
Moisture has a detrimental effect on plant operation and efficiency as well as on the final quality of the products. Excess moisture in processes also results in damage to equipment through corrosion as well as increased overheads for maintenance and shutdowns for repairs.
Oxygen is a both a potential contaminant which reduces quality in the final products and also poses a safety risk. Most of the chemicals and processes require inert atmospheres to avoid the risk of fire or explosion. However, lack of oxygen poses the risk of asphyxiation for workers: careful control and alarms are important.
Hydrogen is used in a number of petrochemical processes, such as to lower the content of diesel fuel, in isomerisation reactors and as recycle gas to catalytic reformers. The process moisture analyzers and oxygen analyzers from Michell Instruments are all certified for in hydrogen applications.