The HDPE unit in a major petrochemical plant was experiencing loss of heat transfer efficiency on a vertical heat exchanger with 4700 tubes, and they were forced to conduct a quick turnaround over the period of just one week. The problem was that almost 35% of the 4,700 tubes were fully plugged and the remaining tubes had a heavy residual polymer scale. No contractor had ever previously cleaned the tubes in this condition back to near design efficiency, let alone in less than one week. The client was facing the reality of having to restart the unit without having achieved the desired level of cleaning.
After our job walk, we opted to utilize three Hydrokinetic units operating simultaneously on this job with crews operating the equipment continuously for 24 hours a day, unplugging and cleaning 1,950 tubes per shift on average. We exceeded our clients expectations and reduced cleaning time to less than three shifts from the proposed 13 shifts window they had allocated to us, achieving the desired level of cleaning to perform MFL inspection. The client was very impressed with the speed, safety and quality of execution, and has elected to utilize our services annually and referred us to other affiliates who were experiencing similar problems with heat transfer equipment.