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National Fertilizers Limited (NFL) - Miniratna (Cat-1) company is a major Indian producer of
chemical fertilizers, organic fertilizers and industrial chemicals. NFL, incorporated in 1974, is
India's largest Central Public Sector Enterprise (Government of India Undertaking) in Fertilizer
Sector with a turnover of over Rs. 7500 crores. Coming under the administrative control of
Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, it is the second largest producer of the key fertilizer Urea
in India.NFL has five gas based Ammonia-Urea plants viz Nangal & Bathinda in Punjab,Panipat
in Haryana and two at Vijaipur (Madhya Pradesh).
National Fertilizers Ltd, Vijaipur unit is one of the four units of M/S National Fertilizers
Limited. With the commencement of commercial production of the Expansion project the gas
based unit at Vijaipur now comprises of two 1520 ton per day (tpd). The gas is being received
from the HBJ gas pipe line being operated by M/s Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL). For
both streams of Ammonia plants the consultants have been M/S Haldor Topsoe of Denmark. In
order to further reduce energy consumption & augment capacity of the Vijaipur Plant, Company
has revamped both the plants at Vijaipur as a result. The annual installed capacity of Vijaipur
Units have been enhanced by 3.40 LMT (16% in case of Vijaipur -I and 23% in case of VijaipurII ) with the total capacity of the company has been increased from 32.31 LMT to 35.68 LMT.
For the production of urea, there are two plants for the production of ammonia. There is a
centralized controlling and monitoring system in the Distributed Control System room. The
control system consists of controllers, indicators, recorders, computing relays and manual control


Ammonia is produced from a mixture of Hydrogen and Nitrogen, where the ratio of H2 to N2
shall be approximately 3:1. Source of Nitrogen is atmospheric air and H2 is provided by raw
water or the hydrocarbons of the natural gas supply from Gas Authority of India Limited.
Besides these two components, mixture also contains inert gases and methane to a limited
degree. Basic principle for production of ammonia is illustrated below:

Natural Gas
Raw Water
Atmospheric Air
Electric Power

Ammonia Plant


Production of Ammonia and Carbon Dioxide is carried out in following steps which are
discussed in detail in the further parts of the report:

Desulphurization of Hydrocarbon feed and Steam Reforming to convert it into raw

synthesis gas.
Purification of raw gas which includes conversion of Carbon Monoxide to Carbon
Dioxide and Hydrogen to increase H2 yield. It also includes removal of CO2 in the G.V
section and conversion of residual CO and CO2 to CH4 and H2 in the Methanator.
Compressing pure synthesis gas and passing it into Ammonia Synthesis Loop where it is
converted into Ammonia (NH3). It is then passed to the NH3 wash section to remove all
the impurities and purge gases.
Process condensate stripping section removes contaminates like CO2 and CH3OH before
entering into the demineralized water unit.
Steam required for the process is generated at different pressures to provide High
Pressure, Low Pressure and Medium Pressure Steam for different processes.
Apart from this, Ammonia plant incorporates a closed cooling water system, flare system,
ammonia storage unit, boiler feed water treatment system and an effluent treatment plant.

Natural Gas feedstock may contain a minimum of 50 ppm (by volume) sulphur compounds
which must be desulphurized, before entering into the reformer as the reformer catalyst as
well as low temperature CO conversion catalyst are very sensitive to sulphur.
Desulphurization takes place in two stages: 1) Hydrogenation 2) H2S Absorption.
Hydrogenation takes place in the hydrogenator at a temperature of 390oC. The H2S
absorption takes place in the two ZnO absorbers connected in series.
After desulphurization, the content of sulphur is lowered to less than 0.05 ppm (by volume).

The natural gas feedstock is passed to the two preheater coils in the waste heat section, where
it is preheated to 390oC before entering the HDS reactor (Hydrogenator). Hydrogen required
for the process is supplied as synthesis gas from the synthesis gas compressor and added to
the natural gas downstream the preheater. It is important to maintain the temperature range
because at lower temperatures hydrogenation process is not complete and at higher
temperatures, polymerized products are formed.
Presence of water vapour and CO2 will influence the absorption equilibrium in the absorption
vessels and with CO and CO2 present in the hydrogenation gas, following reactions takes

HDS-Reactor is equipped with a catalyst bed containing 8.9 m3 of Ni-Mo based catalyst.
Operating with a gas containing sulphur, catalyst will pick up sulphur to about 6% by weight.
At this point equilibrium exists between the sulphur in the catalyst and sulphur in the gas.

The catalyst makes the following reactions possible:

R is the radical of hydrocarbon.

From the hydrogenator, hydrogenated natural gas is led into two in series connected ZnO
absorbers. Each ZnO absorber has a catalyst bed containing 13.8m3 of zinc oxide catalyst.
ZnO reacts with the hydrogen sulphide and with carbonyl sulphide to form ZnS.

Equilibrium composition for the reaction between zinc oxide and hydrogen sulphide is
determined using the following expression:

In the reforming section, the desulphurized natural gas is converted into raw ammonia synthesis
gas by catalytic reforming of the hydrocarbon mixture with steam and air. The steam reforming
process can be described by the following reactions:

Reaction (1) describes the mechanism of reforming of higher hydrocarbons to lower and lower
hydrocarbons and finally resulting in methane, which is reformed according to reaction (2). The
reaction takes place in two steps in the two reformers, one primary and one secondary reformer.
In the primary reformer, the necessary heat of reaction is supplied as indirect heat by firing
whereas in the secondary reformer the heat is supplied as direct heat by combustion of the gas
mixture with air.
The introduction of air at the same time provides the nitrogen required for ammonia synthesis.
Amount of air is generally fixed to maintain H2 to N2 ratio close to 3.0. As the methane acts like
an inert gas in the ammonia synthesis, it is desirable to reduce the methane content of the raw
ammonia synthesis gas to as low a level as possible, in order to keep the inert gases low. The
methane content of the synthesis is governed by the equilibrium of the reforming reaction (2).
According to reaction (2), lower methane content can be obtained by increasing the
temperature, lowering the pressure, or by adding more steam. On the other hand, a relatively
high reforming pressure results in considerable saving in the power consumption for the
synthesis gas compression. An operating pressure of approximately 35 kg/cm2g in the reforming
section gives a reasonable economic compromise.
In the primary reformer, hydrocarbon and steam mixture is preheated to 5000C and passed
downwards through vertical tubes containing catalyst. The primary reformer is a fired heater
where the sensible heat and the heat of reaction are transferred by radiation from a number of
wall burners to the catalyst tubes. In order to ensure complete combustion of the fuel gas, 5%
excess air is used. The hydrocarbons in the gas which leaves the primary reformer, has converted
into methane with approximately 10 mole % methane (on dry basis).

There are a total of 288 reformer tubes and 576 burners installed in two radiant sections loaded
with catalysts. The upper part of reformer tubes is loaded with prereduced catalyst and lower part
of the reformer tubes is loaded with catalyst. The two types of catalysts are characterized by a
high activity due to a high nickel surface area, a high thermal resistance and very low silica
content. Methane in the presence of steam is converted into hydrogen and carbon dioxide at
different temperature ranges in the upper and lower part of the reformer tubes. The formed
hydrogen reduces the nickel oxide to metallic nickel and this reduction progresses down through
the catalyst tubes.
Sulphur is a sever poison to the reformer catalyst, as sulphur reacts with the metallic nickel,
forming nickel sulphide. It deactivates the catalyst and increases the risk of carbon formation.
Thermodynamically carbon formation is not possible in the given operating conditions of the
primary reformer but if the catalyst loses activity, due to poisoning, maloperation or aging,
carbon formation may occur. Carbon formation decreases the activity of the catalyst. Also due to
carbon formation, catalyst particles lose their mechanical strength.
In the secondary reformer, the process gas is mixed with air. Partial combustion takes place in
the upper part of the reformer and causes a considerable increase in the temperature. From the
combustion chamber the gas passes down through the catalyst bed, where the last part of the
reforming is carried out with simultaneous cooling of the gas. The temperature of the process gas
leaving the secondary reformer is about 900oC and the methane concentration is approximately
0.30 mole % (on dry basis). The exit gas from the secondary reformer contains about 13 mole %
CO and 7.3 mole % CO2 and consequently there is a theoretical risk of carbon formation
according to the Boudouard reaction.

The cooling of the process gas is carried out in the waste heat boiler, where the heat is used for
producing the main part of the high pressure steam necessary in the ammonia plant. The boiler is
designed to obtain the rapid cooling but a too high heat transfer coefficient on the process gas
side is to be avoided, as it may cause film boiling on the steam side which decreases heat transfer
coefficient significantly.
Catalyst in the second reformer is a nickel catalyst. Catalyst bed rests on a layer of alumina
lumps and on the top of the catalyst bed a layer of alumina balls and alumina bricks protects the
catalyst from agitation and direct flame contact. Activated catalyst must never be exposed to air
at a temperature greater than 100oC, as this will cause spontaneous heating, which due to snowballing effect, may lead to overheating and destruction of catalyst.

Process gas leaving the reforming section contains approximately 13.0 vol % carbon monoxide
which is converted into carbon dioxide and hydrogen by means of the shift reaction:

The equilibrium reading from left to right is favored by lower temperature and more water
vapour while the reaction rate increases with higher temperatures. There is a optimum
temperature for the shift reaction which depends on the activity of the catalyst and the quantity of
gas handled. Shift reaction takes place in three shift convertors, namely high temperature,
medium temperature and low temperature convertors, with process gas cooling after each
During normal operation the following conditions prevail:

High Temperature CO Conversion:

The high temperature CO convertor, contains a total of 92m3 of chromium oxide promoted iron
oxide catalyst in the form of pellets in two catalyst beds. The catalyst is installed in its highest
oxidized state and the reduction (activation) of catalyst is carried out by means of process gas
containing hydrogen. Catalyst is operated at a temperature range of 330O-470O C.
Sulphur, chlorine and inorganic salts are poison for the catalyst. However, since the reforming
and low temperature shift catalysts are much more sensible to these contaminants, they are
always removed to a level well below the tolerance limit. Also the catalyst is pyrophoric, it shall
be handled with care during unloading.

Medium Temperature CO Conversion:

The medium temperature CO convertor has been provided with two catalyst beds containing
112m3 of the catalyst. The catalyst is copper, chromium and zinc based catalyst, which can be
operated in the temperature range of 200O-350O C. The operating temperature should be kept
around 15o higher than the dew point of the process gas, to prevent pore condensation, which
would cause an apparent decrease of activity. The activation of the catalyst is carried out with
nitrogen containing1-2% H2.
Sulphur and chlorine are the most serious poisons for the catalyst. A layer of 500mm ZnO is
installed on the top of the first bed as a safeguard against sulphur. Even after this the catalyst is
poisoned by sulphur, then its regeneration takes place by means of controlled oxidation in a
mixture of steam and air, followed by a reduction. In case of chlorine poisoning, catalyst is
washed with demineralized water after the oxidation. Spent catalyst is pyrophoric and has to be
deactivated before handling.

Low Temperature CO Conversion:

The low temperature CO convertor has been provided with two catalyst beds containing 88m3 of
the catalyst. The catalyst is copper, alumina and zinc based catalyst, which can be operated in the
temperature range of 170O-250O C. Activation of the catalyst is carried out by means of
hydrogen with nitrogen as carrier gas at a temperature between 170O-220O C. Under no
circumstances must the hot catalyst be exposed to liquid water, as it would destroy the catalyst.
Also since the catalyst is pyrophoric in its reduced state, special precautions have to be taken
during unloading.

Measurement of catalyst activity:

A consequence of the decreasing catalyst activity is an increase of the approach to the theoretical
conversion. The difference between actual and theoretical conversion can be calculated by
measuring the reaction coefficient and then comparing it with the equilibrium temperature at the
actual temperature.
Reaction coefficient is calculated by the following formula:

Carbon Dioxide Removal Section

The process gas leaving the shift section has about 17-17 volume % carbon dioxide content. CO2
is removed by absorption in an aqueous Hot Potassium Carbonate (HPC) solution containing
25-30 wt. % potassium carbonate (K2CO3) partly converted into potassium bicarbonate
(KHCO3). The reaction ate is kept high by the combining effects of high temperature and an
added DEA (diethanolamine) activator.

The absorption reaction takes place in the CO2 absorber and the outlet process gas now contains
approximately 0.10 vol % carbon dioxide. This section is known as G.V. Section.

CO2 Absorption:
The CO2 absorber is provided with four beds. Both upper beds contain 1.5 stainless steel slotted
rings whereas both lower beds contain 2 stainless steel slotted rings. The CO2 rich process gas
is introduced at the bottom of the CO2 absorber, where it flows upwards against a flow of HPC
solution. The HPC solution is introduced at two levels, approximately 20% of the solution, in
form of split stream, is introduced at the top of the absorber and the main stream (remaining
80%) is introduced between the upper and lower beds.
The inlet temperatures of the HPC solution are 60o and 114oC respectively, and the outlet
temperature of the CO2 enriched solution is 116o respectively.

CO2 Regeneration:
The rich HPC solution coming from the bottom of the CO2 absorber is depressurized from 27
kg/cm2g to 8 kg/cm2g through an expansion turbine or alternatively through a valve manifold.
The expansion turbine drives an alternator and the power recovery corresponds to 540-600 kW.
The solution leaving the expansion turbine is sent to the rich solution vessel in order to remove
gas released from depressurization. The liquid solution is then introduced at the top of the CO 2
regenerator. The regenerator is provided with three identical beds containing 2 stainless steel
slotted rings. As the HPC solution flows downwards through the regenerator, the carbon dioxide
is stripped off by means of steam which, together with reboiler, also provides the necessary heat.

The regeneration follows the opposite reaction that of absorption. The operating pressure of the
regeneration is just above the atmospheric pressure at the top of the regenerator and it increases
slightly down through the column. From the flash tank the lean HPC solution is returned to the
absorber by means of circulation pumps. The removed CO2 passes through a separator before it
is sent to the urea plant or is vented. The content of the carbon dioxide in the gas is 99.0 vol %
and the rest are inerts.

GV Section overview in the DCS system


The final part of the gas purification is the methanation, where residual carbon oxides are
converted into methane, which act like an inert gas in the ammonia synthesis loop. This part is
important as it helps to convert the residual carbon oxides because of their poisonous
characteristics in the ammonia synthesis loop. The methanantion takes place in the methanator,
and the reactions involved are the reverse of reforming reactions:

The determining parameters for the methanation reaction are:

Activity of the catalyst.

Temperature of the process gas
Pressure of the process gas
Steam content of the process gas.

Low temperature, high pressure and low steam content tend to favor the methane formation.
However the equilibrium conditions are within the temperature range of 280O-400O C, so
favorable that is practically only catalyst activity that determines the efficiency of the
methanation. The activity of the catalyst increases with the increasing temperature, but the
lifetime of catalyst is shortened. As indicated above, the two methanation reactions are
exothermic and in normal operation the temperature rise is in order of 10o C. The critical part of
the methanation takes place in the upper bed of the methanator and therefore this bed is provided
with four thermocouples.
Methanation Catalyst:
The methanator, in two beds, contains a total of 60m3 of catalyst. Upper bed contains 30m3 of
Nickel catalyst containing approximately 27% nickel. The methanation reaction starts at about
250oC, causing a temperature increase in the catalyst beds. The catalyst is very sensitive to
arsenic, sulphur and chlorine compounds. The increase of temperature depends on the content of
CO and CO2 in the process gas, but generally temperature difference will be approximately
60oC/ % CO2 converted
75oC/ % CO converted.

Ammonia synthesis takes place in the ammonia synthesis converter according to the following

This reaction is an equilibrium reaction and therefore only partial conversion to ammonia takes
place by passage through the catalyst bed. The ammonia conversion is favored at high pressure
and low temperature. Optimum level of temperature range is generally decided so as to obtain
the maximum conversion because at higher temperature equilibrium composition of ammonia is
too low and at lower temperatures the reaction rate will be too low. The ammonia synthesis loop
has been designed for a maximum pressure of 245 kg/cm2g and normal operating pressure of
210-220 kg/cm2g. Normal operating temperatures will be in the range of 360O-525O C for the
first bed and of 370O-460O C for the second bed.
Heat liberated by the reaction is utilized for HP steam production and preheat of HP BFW. Since
only 30% f the feed is converted into ammonia per pass, unconverted synthesis gas is recycled
by means of recirculator. The converter effluent gas is cooled stepwise in waste heat boiler,
boiler feed water preheater and the hot heat exchanger. The synthesis gas is cooled in the water
cooler and then in cold heat exchanger. The final cooling to 12o C takes place in ammonia


Condensed ammonia is separated from the circulating synthesis gas in the separator. The gas
from the separator is again recirculated to ammonia converter. The make-up synthesis gas is
introduced between the two ammonia chillers and the purge gas is removed after the first
ammonia chiller. Water vapor concentration in the make-op gas is in the range of 200-300 ppm.
It is removed by absorption in the condensed ammonia.
Ammonia conversion:
The ammonia synthesis converter is a series 200 Topse Radial Flow Converter, without lower
heat exchanger. The main parts of the converter are the pressure shell and the basket. The basket
contains two catalyst beds and an interbed heat exchanger. The two catalyst beds contains a total
of 108m3 of KMIR catalyst, which is a promoted iron catalyst containing small amounts of ninreducible oxides. The catalyst is distributed with 29m3 in the upper bed and 79m3 in the lower
bed with a small particle size. This result in very high catalyst activity and a negligible pressure
The main part of the recirculating synthesis gas is introduced into the converter through two
main inlets at the bottom of the pressure shell and the gas passes upwards through the annular
space between the insulated basket and the pressure shell. At the top of the converter, the gas
passes the tube side of the interbed heat exchanger. The gas which leaves the first catalyst bed is
led through the second bed and into the centre tube from which it is returned to ammonia loop.
The catalyst is activated by reducing the iron oxide surface layer to free iron with simultaneous
formation of water. The reduction is carried out with circulating synthesis gas and the desired
temperature level is obtained by the use of the start-up heater. The process is generally operated
at the lowest possible temperature of catalyst operation to prolong catalyst life.
All compounds containing oxygen, like CO, CO2, H2O are poison to the catalyst and small
amount of it causes decrease in the catalyst activity. Sulphur and phosphorus compounds are
severe poison for the catalyst.
The approximate composition of the converted gas is shown below:



The purpose of the refrigeration is to carry out the various cooling tasks of the ammonia
synthesis loop. The primary task is to condense the ammonia and cool the make-up, purge gas,
let-down gas and inert gas. The refrigeration circuit comprises of 7 chillers operating at three
chiller levels, a flash tank, a refrigeration compressor, an ammonia condenser and an

The three chiller levels have been distributed as follows:

The high chiller level (7.4 kg/ cm2g, 18.8o C), where cooling of make-up synthesis gas
and condensation of ammonia from converter effluent gas takes place.
The medium chiller level (4.7 kg/ cm2g, 7.5o C), where final condensation of ammonia
from the mixture of make-up synthesis gas and converter effluent gas takes place.
The lower chiller level (0.2 kg/ cm2g, -30o C), where ammonia is recovered from the
purge gas, let down gas and inert gas by condensation.

The flash vessel represents the connection between the ammonia synthesis loop and the
refrigeration circuit and it has two purposes:

To flash off inert gases.

To cool down the ammonia product.


Parameters affecting ammonia conversion:

Gas Composition
The gas composition of the make-up synthesis gas and the circulating synthesis gas is at
normal operations as follows:

The gas composition is determined by content of ammonia and inert gases, the hydrogen
to nitrogen ratio and the purity.

Ammonia concentration at converter inlet

A low ammonia concentration at inlet gives a high reaction rate and thus a high
production capacity. The ammonia concentration is dependent on the operating pressure
and the cooling level in the refrigeration chillers.

Inert Gas Level

High amounts of inerts reduce the reaction rate. Hence it is favorable to keep the amount
of inerts as low as possible.

Hydrogen/ Nitrogen Ratio

Ideally H2: N2 ratio is maintained close to 3:1 for proper conversion. Generally the ratio
shall be within the range of 2.95-3.05. The ammonia synthesis loop is designed for
operating at a H2: N2 ratio of 3.0, but special conditions makes it favorable to operate the
loop at a slightly different ratio in the range of 2.5-3.5.
When the ratio is decreased to 2.7-2.9, the reaction rate is favorably increased but falls
for ratios below 2.5. Thus the H2: N2 ratio is maintained constant.

Reaction Temperature
The temperature in the catalyst beds is maintained at a certain minimum temperature to
ensure a sufficient reaction rate. If the temperature is low, reaction rate becomes very
low. It is desirable to keep the catalyst temperature as low as possible to prolong the


catalyst life and therefore a catalyst inlet temperature of 10oC above the minimum
temperature is a recommendable compromise.

Circulation Rate
The capacity of the ammonia synthesis loop with regard to production rises with
increasing circulation rate. However, the ammonia production per cubic metre of
circulation synthesis gas, which is proportional to the temperature difference between
converter outlet and converter inlet, will decrease.

Operating Pressure
The ammonia synthesis loop has been designed for a maximum pressure of 245 kg/cm2g
and normal operating pressure of 210-220 kg/cm2g. The pressure is dependent on
production rate, circulation flow, inert level, ammonia concentration at converter inlet,
H2/N2 ratio and catalyst activity.



The ammonia wash section removes and recovers the major part of the ammonia contained on
the off gas from the loop. The off gas consists of the purge gas, the et down gas and the inert
gases, which are purged from the ammonia accumulator, and it enters the ammonia wash section
at a pressure of about 15 kg/cm2g and a temperature of 20oC. The processes used in the ammonia
wash section comprise absorption of ammonia with water and a subsequent distillation of the
enriched ammonia water solution.

The off gas containing ammonia is introduced at the bottom part of the absorber, where it is
washed in the counter current with water introduced at the top of the absorber. The purified offgas leaving the absorber at the top, contains approximately 0.2 mol % ammonia, whereas the
ammonia water solution leaving the absorber at the bottom contains approximately 10 Wt. %
ammonia. The absorber has been provided with two beds containing 1.5 stainless steel slotted
rings. The approximate inlet and outlet compositions of the off gas are shown below:


The ammonia water solution leaving the absorber is pumped through the rich/lean exchanger,
where the solution is preheated and entered into distillation column. The column is provided with
one upper bed containing 0.35 m3 of volume and two lower beds containing 0.24 m3 of volume
with 1.0 stainless steel slotted rings.
The necessary heat of distillation is provided by preheating and through reboiler, where heat is
generated using MP steam. From the reboiler, lean solution is returned to the absorber, after
passing the rich/lean solution exchanger and the lean solution cooler.
The distillation is carried out at a pressure of 19.7 kg/cm2g and a temperature of 50oC of
ammonia at the top of the distillation column, having less than 1 vol. % water content. The
gaseous ammonia is condensed and major part of the ammonia is refluxed back in the distillation
column. The rest of the ammonia is sent for liquid storage.
Operation of the Ammonia Wash Section:
During normal operation of the ammonia wash section, the ammonia content of the purified offgas has to be close to 0.2 mole %. An increased content can be detected by periodical analysis of
samples, if inefficient operation is detected it may be due to the following reasons:

Low circulation rate

Insufficient Regeneration (Distillation)



During operation of the ammonia plant, small amounts of ammonia are formed in the secondary
reformer and small amounts of methanol are formed in the MT and LT CO converters. Together
with CO2 present in the raw synthesis gas, these compounds enter the process condensate
according to the following equilibrium reactions:

The methanol is physically dissolved in the process condensate. In order to reduce the
consumption of regeneration chemicals in the demineralization unit, the above mentioned
compounds are stripped off. The process condensate stripping is carried out the CO2 stripper in
the process condensate stripper. The principle of process condensate stripping is shown below:


CO2 Stripping:
In the CO2 stripper, the major part of the process condensate and from the GV overhead
condensate is flashed off. The CO2 stripper placed above the process condensate stripper has a
2m packed bed with 2 stainless steel slotted rings.
The Benfield overhead condensate (now termed as GV condensate) is introduced at the top of the
stripper after being preheated to 95oC in the overhead condensate exchanger. The CO2 is
liberated by means of the steam partly generated by the depressurization of process condensate.
The depressurized process condensate is introduced at the bottom of the CO2 stripper, where
major content of CO2 is flashed off. The combined stream of condensate leaves the CO2 stripper
at the bottom as is introduced at the upper part of the process condensate stripper (tray 20).
Process Condensate Stripping:
In the process condensate stripper, the impurities CO2, NH3 and CH3OH are stripped off by
means of LP stream. The gaseous overhead product is condensed in condensate stripper O/H
condenser and afterwards collected in the condensate stripper O/H separator. In the overhead
system, the impurities are concentrated by keeping a high reflux ratio.
In order to balance the whole condensate system, a small part of the O/H condensate is sent by
means of the condensate recycle pump to the reforming section, where it is added to process
Operation of the stripping section:
The quality of the purified process condensate may be determined by analyzing samples taken at
the sample point. In case of too high content of the above mentioned compounds, it is necessary
to improve the stripping by increasing the steam input.
If the boiler feed water unit trips, provision has been made to pass the condensates to the cooling
tower unit. A primary reformer trip stops the recycle condensate flow by stopping the pumps.


Apart from the processes mentioned above, there are some auxiliary systems that play a key role
in the production, storage and safety of the plant. These systems are mentioned below in brief:
Steam Generation System:
This section includes all facilities necessary for preheating and deaeration of
demineralized water, pumpage, preheating and distribution of BFW and production
superheating and distribution of steam. The high pressure steam is produced in the
process WHB. During normal operation the ammonia plant is autonomous with regard to
steam production and steam consumption. However, during plant startup, shut down and
emergency, the steam production is adjusted by auxiliary boiler.
It also includes chemical dosing unit, BFW distribution unit, auxiliary steam generation
unit, a blow down system and a HP/MP steam conversion system.
Cooling Water Unit:
The cooling tower area of ammonia plant comprises:
1. 5 cooling towers including a cold water basin and four pressure sand filters.
2. Three cooling water pumps with drivers.
3. Chemical dosing units
Cooling Towers: The hot cooling water coming from the process and utility areas is
introduced to the cooling towers by means of two headers and a distribution basin.
The induced draught cross-flow cooling towers are equipped with 126 decks of
pressure impregnated pinewood splash bars. When the cooling towers are operated,
part of the cooling tower is lost due to evaporation and blow-down and to compensate
for this loss, make up raw water is added.
Cooling Water Pumps: Each of the pump is able to handle 50% of design capacity.
The pumps are of single stage type, provided with an internal sealing water system.
Chemical Dosing Units: To maintain pH of the circulating cooling water within
specified limits, sulphuric acid is added. Zinc sulphate, sodium chromate are used as
corrosion inhibitors. To prevent wooden components from deterioration, fixed
quantity of sodium pentachloride is used in cooling water basin. A chlorination unit
has been provided to control the growth of algae and bacteria.

Flare System:
The ammonia plant has been provided with a flare header system to which all vents
containing inflammable gases have been connected. The flare header system finishes with
a 36 inch header connected to the flare stack. The flare stack is of a smokeless type and

has been provided with three constant burning ignition pilots and a molecular seal. The
pilot burners are ignited by means of a flame front generator. When burning gases
contain higher hydrocarbons, there is a risk of incomplete combustion due to lack of
oxygen. Therefore, a smoke suppression arrangement in the form of a steam manifold
with jets encircling the flare tip has been installed.
Ammonia Storage and Dispatch Unit:
In case the urea plant cannot utilize all the liquid ammonia produced, it is possible to
pump the ammonia to the ammonia storage. The 10000 MT ammonia storage tank is
made of low temperature steel plates, where the cylindrical parts are insulated with
approximately 100 mm polyureathane foam. The roof is insulated with mineral wool
suspended from the roof inside the tank. Furthermore, tank is raised above the ground,
allowing free air passage preventing frost formation at bottom.
Ammonia storage and dispatch unit has been provided with a vent system to avoid
emission of gaseous ammonia from safety valves and vent valves. The vent system ends
up with an ammonia flare.
Demineralized Water Storage and Polishing:
The demineralized water preparation unit comprises three demineralization lines and
three condensate polishing lines. In both the demineralization and the condensate
polishing section, two lines are foreseen to be in operation, while the third is either
regenerating or acting as standby.
Process condensate is pumped by the stripped condensate pump of which one is operating
and one is stand by, to the filtration section. This section comprises three pressure sand
filters operating in parallel and the filters have been designed to remove any residual
turbidity and precipitate from the water. Each filter has been provided with graded sand
and gravel bed and a top layer of manganese dioxide. The manganese dioxide shall
oxidize and remove any ferrous ion and ferric ion.
The next step in the water treatment is the cation exchanging which takes place in three
cation exchangers. The cation exchangers remove all cations from the water and in turn
throw equal mineral acidity in the water. From the cation exchangers the water is taken to
degassing towers where all the bound and unbound carbon dioxide is stripped off the
water. It is then passed to anion exchanger which removes the free acidity and the major
part of the reactive silica from the degassed water.
The residual silica and the remaining traces of ions are removed in the three subsequent
mixed bed ion exchangers and the demineralized water is then mixed with polished
turbine condensate and transferred to demineraized water storage tank.
Turbine condensate polishing line: The turbine condensates from the condensers are
pumped to the condensate heater. When entering the condensate polishing unit, the

condensate passes the condensate filters where it is sent through mixed bed ion
exchangers. It is then sent to demineralized water storage tank.
Chemical Dosing Units: Sulphuric acid is used for regeneration of the cation and the
mixed bed ion exchangers. The sodium hydroxide is in diluted form used for regeneration
of anion and mixed bed ion exchangers.
Effluent Disposal Unit:
The effluent disposal unit is designed for pre-treatment of waste from the chemical sewer
and separation of oily water, in waste water and slop oil. Oily water runs through
concrete channels, from the plant to the oily water basin. Here oil and water are settling
and two phases with oil on top will emerge. The oil is skimmed off in the oily water
discoil unit and transferred to slop oil tank.
The slop oil tank is provided with a drain back to the slop oil basin. The waste water from
the slop oil basin is pumped to the neutralization basin to which also the waste from the
chemical sewer is sent.
Here provisions for neutralization have been made. In order to neutralize the waste either
sulphuric acid or caustic soda is added under manual ph control. When neutralized the
waste water is pumped by the neutralization effluent pump.
Instrumentation Air Preparation Unit:
The instrumentation air unit has been designed to provide instrument air and service air
for both the ammonia line and the various utility units. Instrument air will in normal
operation be delivered from the 5th stage of the process air compressor and dried before
entering the grid. The unit comprises of two air drying units and provisions for importing
instrument air from outside and one emergency storage vessel.
Instrument Air Drying: Before use, the instrument air needs to be dried and this takes
place in the two instrument air drying units. Each unit comprises two adsorbers, equipped
with silica gel, an electric heater, a cooler, a separator and some filters. Moist air is
passed through one of the adsorption towers where the water vapor is adsorbed by the
silica gel in the dessicant bed. When leaving the adsorber, the dried air is passed through
a filter and is then ready for use as instrument air.
Instrument Air Grid: The produced instrument air is distributed to all process and
utility units through a header system and in order to ensure a stabilized header pressure,
the header system has been provided with three instrument air receiver vessels which are
installed at the end of each header.


The safety policy of the Company includes the following objectives to eliminate
industrial accidents:
To completely integrate safety with production, maintenance and other functions
of the plant.
To provide safe working conditions, proper and adequate tool equipments and
protective devices.
To see that employees are at all times kept familiar with the general and special
practices for the safe conduct and follow them in work.
To see that the implementation of safety measures and recommendations are in all
cases, carried out by the employees.

To achieve the objective of No Accident Company, Safety and Fire department of

NFL, Vijaipur Unit has taken innumerable steps under the guidance of Mr. I.S
Panchpal, Chief Manager, Fire and Sfety, NFL Vijaipur.
To motivate the staff and invoke the importance of safety among them, they have taken
various steps such as putting safety awareness posters throughout the plant, organizing
workshops and lectures to educate the staff about the role of safety in increasing the
productivity and also holding various awards for the staff for following good safety
It has taken steps to report any near miss accidents, faults within the plants. Also it has
been made compulsory to wear safety helmets while working within the plants. Each
supervisor and each worker has been provided with the personal protective equipments
before carrying out any task.
Since it is a chemical plant, safety from corrosive chemicals is all the more important.
For this the supervisors are provided with the MSDS of the respective chemicals used, its
health and environmental hazards and what to do in case of accidents.
Thus overall a very stringent safety policy is been followed in the plant and this is
responsible for having them achieve a Zero Accident Company and one of the safest
workplace status.