Saudi Aramco completes major turnaround and inspection at Ras Tanura Refinery

SA SA RARas Tanura is the oldest refinery on the Persian Gulf coast. (Image source: gabriel uribe/Pixabay)Saudi Aramco has completed a major turnaround and inspection (T&I) at Ras Tanura Refinery (RTR) located near the industrial port city Jubail in Saudi Arabia

Responsible for a significant portion of fuel production in the kingdom, production up-time of the RTR Gas Condensate Fractionation and the Platformer/Naptha Hydrotreater (NHT) units is of the essence at RTR.

The Fractionation Unit T&I was completed in 27 days,and the Platformer Unit T&I was completed in 32 days, against their benchmarks of 28 days and 35 days, respectively.

The RTR Gas Condensate Fractionation unit and the Platformer/NHT units were shut down for the T&I to carry out inspections and maintenance as per the Equipment Inspection Schedule (EIS) and to execute other maintenance and projects that require plant downtime. The plants are on a five-year T&I cycle.

The planning and preparation for the T&I started two years ago. It followed an internally developed process based on the ‘Corporate Maintenance Turnaround Manual.’ Milestones and deliverables were closely monitored and managed by the relevant division heads and department heads.

“In a challenging cost environment, the RTR team and management were very conscious of making decisions that optimize resource utilisation. The T&I was completed well below the business plan budgeted cost, and at a significantly reduced cost than was incurred in the T&I five years ago,” said the state-run oil and gas company in Saudi Arabia.

Among the projects, clean fuels tie-ins were completed, enabling RTR to support a sustainable future. Mercury removal project tie-ins and a platformer reactor bypass project implemented in the T&I will allow extended run lengths on the plants, thereby further supporting downstream supply stability. Major modifications, including retrofitting 96 internal reactor scallops, supporting improved reactor performance, and preventing future repairs were also implemented.

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