Abstract：Increasing stringent environmental regulations and the increased processing of inferior crude oils require that refineries reduce fresh hydrogen consumption. This can be achieved by purification of the hydrogen. However, the energy consumption for purification must be considered in the system. The study balances both factors to determine the optimal purification feed flow rate (PFFR). The pinch concept is used to relate the hydrogen utility savings (HUS) and the purification feed flow rate. The cost versus PFFR diagram includes the pressure swing adsorption (PSA) cost with an HUS cost versus PFFR line and a purification cost versus PFFR line to identify the optimal PFFR and the limiting PFFR. The hydrogen network of a petrochemical enterprise is optimized using this method with the results showing that the limiting PFFR is 4.8 mol/s, the optimal PFFR is 60.74 mol/s , and the annual cost can be decreased by 2.41×106 US$/a.
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