This article explains how Qatar Petroleum faced the difficulties using diethanolamine solvent in its operating acid gas removing unit and were resolved them by solvent swap.

Gas recycling department's specialized team conducted root cause analysis to identify the operating problems encountered using diethanolamine solvent. Furthermore, the team carried out techno-economic feasibility studies to establish selection of suitable solvent to minimize and control filtration, plugging and foaming in the acid gas removing unit.

In addition, the team asked different suppliers to submit selection of alternative solvent to compare benefits and viability of replacing diethanolamine solvent. After analyzing the benefits, specialty methyldiethanolamine (Aminosol CST 115) was selected among other alternative solvent and finally solvent swap was carried out. The result of replacing diethanolamine with specialty methyldiethanolamine reduced yearly maintenance and operating cost with a full amount of to 0.52MM QAR, yearly cost savings with a full amount of 1.5MM QAR and expected a payback period within 10.5 months.

This paper will discuss acid gas removing unit facility and process overview, root cause analysis, investigation and troubleshooting of operation problem and challenges, the selection of alternative solvent and operational benefits of solvent swap.

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