Q & A > Question Details
What the causes of naphtha diluted in water boot of overhead? visually water boot carbonized and foaming.
09/12/2013 A: Eric Vetters, ProCorr Consulting Services, ewvetters@yahoo.com
If I understand the question, you are wondering what causes hydrocarbon contamination of the overhead boot water. Typically naphtha ends up in the boot water because the boot and or drum is undersized relative the volume of water that is collected. The residence time is too low in such a case to allow the hydrocarbon to fully separate from the water before it exits the vessel. I have seen one instance in a vacuum tower separator where a lot of oil was being emulsified with the water resulting in high oil losses to the wast water system. In this instance a injecting a small dose of emulsion breaker in the vacuum tower overhead drum solved the problem. I have not heard of that being done in a crude tower overhead though.