Owing to the success of the residue fluid catalytic cracking unit (RFCCU) revamp project in 2014, CR3 Thailand (CRAT) was awarded another RFCCU cutting project with the same client in Thailand. All external piping and cyclones of the RFCCU had to be replaced during this client’s major turnaround (TA) in November 2019.

Utilising two methods, we made a total of 31 large cuts; 20 were hydro-abrasive (all tie-in cuts) and 11 by diamond wire (all demolition cuts). These included an access window, large-diameter refractory lined pipe, square crossover duct connecting the upper and lower external cyclones and the cyclones themselves.

All of the cuts were scheduled to be completed within 13 days. CRAT started cutting once the RFCC unit was hydrocarbon free and had cooled down to 60 degrees Celsius.

To ensure minimal downtime, CRAT had personnel working ahead of the cutting teams, preparing the location for the next planned cut. This helped to reduce our schedule significantly.

During the TA, the client asked us to support additional work packages. Several new pieces of equipment required trimming back prior to installation with our 36”, 42” and 52” clamshells.

Even with some significant standby time for crane-lifts and scaffold modifications, we completed the entire scope of 31 cuts plus all additional clamshell cuts on time and most importantly, without any incidents. The client was again very pleased with the quality of the cuts along with our safe and professional working practices.