A ‘CRACKING’ GOOD IDEA?
The first shipment of US shale gas has just arrived in Scotland. A tanker carrying 27,500m3 of ethane from US shale fields docked at Grangemouth, the refinery and petrochemicals plant owned by Ineos.
The company said the gas would replace dwindling North Sea supplies and secure the future of the plant's workforce.
Most people imagine shale gas as something you burn to create electricity and energy. What Ineos will do with it at Grangemouth is take ethane from the gas and create plastic pellets for general manufacturing. The US shale gas means Ineos can push Grangemouth back up to full production with weekly deliveries creating a "virtual pipeline" that will allow them to keep supplies topped up. If allowed, fracking could transform Britain's industrial heartland in the way it has revived America's Rust Belt, although concerns surrounding the potentially devastating impact such a practice can have on the environment do make it a very controversial subject; industry at the expense of the environment has always been a contentious issue.
Less contentious however, are the benefits Sonic Horns can bring to sites, such as the one at Grangemouth, with gas cracking towers. In 1999 Ineos (then BP Chemicals) installed nine Primasonics Sonic Horns, Model PAS-230, in each of their gas cracking towers to prevent the build-up of fine particulate. These units have been operating successfully ever since, some 17 years now with minimal or no maintenance thus aiding these cracking towers to operate 24/7 at peak performance.
Happily, our horns are both helpful to industry and environmentally friendly so their use never need be a subject of controversy.
The Gas Cracking Towers at Ineos
One of the nine installed PAS-230 Primasonics Sonic Horns