Shell – Deer Park, TX Refinery Turnaround
Matrix mobilized into the Shell Deer Park Refinery in early May of 2015 to begin an infrastructure expansion prior to the replacement of the drums on the single derrick, two drum structure. There was an extensive pre-turnaround period in which Matrix expanded the existing structure to prepare for the installation of the new coke drums, which were 18” in diameter greater than the existing drums. This period consisted of relocating and replacing existing beams and structural members, installing breakout spools for easy removal, cutting and replacing grating and floor plate that would remain permanent in the structure after the replacement of the drums, as well as installing beams and devices “Banana Effect” that would be pertinent to the safe removal of the derrick, and eventually both drums.
Using the TC-36,000 nicknamed “Big Red”, the turnaround began with the removal of the bottom two delta valves from the second level of the structure, as well as the top delta valves from the sixth level of the structure. Modified the cutting water line for derrick removal, and installed (2) new 6” 2,500 lb flanges due to line erosion. From this point the 628,000 lb. derrick structure using the lifting beams installed by Matrix during the pre-turnaround phase. Once the derrick was removed, it was set onto a temporary support structure that was constructed by Matrix during the pre-turnaround phase. At this time both existing drums, weighing in at 890,000 pounds each, were removed. The new drums, weighing in 1.1 million pounds each, were then installed. The derrick was then lifted once again and reconnected. After receiving the delta valves back from a local outside shop they were reinstalled. The 24” & 20” flanges at the top nozzles were changed from ring joint to raised face to coincide with the new drums. Matrix fabricated (2) new 9cr 14” spools to be installed at the bottom nozzles of the drums. Matrix had to cut and install new breakout spools during the turnaround ranging from 24” to 1-1/2”. Helped capital projects demo and fabricate a 24” 9cr spool with various sized branches.
"Because of Matrix's expertise, we were also able to make design changes that prevented issues that could have negatively impacted the project and resulted in significant cost increases." -- Project Engineer Adam Lecompte, Shell Deer Park Refinery
Shell's Production Unit Operations Manager Tim Bogle agreed. "You have to make sure your team has the right players and the right skill sets," he said. "There has to be a high degree of ownership by everyone involved because when challenges arise - and they will - it's the quality of your team that will make or break the event."
"In a typical turnaround, the pre-work and planning is done before contractors are engaged, and that can cause complete communication breakdown," he said. "In this case, having Kim Henry, Jackie Golden, Shane Skiles and the whole Matrix team on-site and engaged from the start made all the difference." -- Shell's Turnaround Event Manager Jimmy Mendler
Carambat agreed. "Start to finish, it was impossible to identify where project planning ended and the turnaround event began. It was seamless, and when you can accomplish that, it's gold," he said. "Matrix and the entire team did an incredible job." --Wes Carambat, Shell Deer Park Site Turnaround Manager
Scope of Work
- Infrastructure expansion and coke drum replacement
- Replacement drums were 18" greater in diameter than existing drums
- Installation of 2 new 6” 2500# flanges due to line erosion
- Existing drums: 890K lbs each
- New drums: 1.1MM lbs each
- Fabrication and installation of 2 new 9cr 14” spools