Isomerization in a variety of process configurations alters the arrangement of atoms to convert normal butane into isobutane, and normal pentane and hexane into high-octane gasoline components. Isomerization is similar to catalytic reforming in that the hydrocarbon molecules are rearranged, though isomerization only converts normal paraffins to isoparaffins. This process enables petroleum refineries to increase the quality of the gasoline components they produce.
Near the end of the process, reactor effluent is cooled and separated into the liquid-product known as isomerate and a recycle hydrogen-gas stream. Isomerate is caustic-washed and water-washed, acid stripped, and stabilized before going to storage.
Magnetrol® has produced an applications brochure for the petroleum refining industry detailing level measurement challenges and solutions for each step of the refining process. This blog post is part of an occasional series exploring each application in detail.
Level Measurement Challenges and Considerations
During the washing and stabilizing process, stabilizer bottoms and wash tanks require level monitoring. This monitoring ensures that the isomerate is treated properly and that waste products do not re-enter the isomerization system.
In addition, the isomerization process involves a high-pressure environment that can be difficult to measure. Level instrumentation must be able to withstand these high pressures and challenging process conditions.
Level Measurement Solutions
MAGNETROL has produced reliable, accurate level measurement solutions for isomerization:
- For point level:
Model A15 displacer-actuated level switch
- For continuous level:
Eclipse® Model 706 guided wave radar transmitter or E3 Modulevel® displacer-actuated transmitter
- For visual indication:
Atlas or Aurora® magnetic level indicators can be supplied with switches or transmitters
For more information on level measurement solutions for isomerization and other petroleum refining applications, download the petroleum refining brochure.