Lowering refinery emissions to 1/3 of federal requirements with Alfa Laval Compabloc

When a major US refinery set out to modify their plant to achieve higher efficiency, they chose to voluntarily comply with standards that regulate emissions to less than 1/3 of federal requirements. Eight new Alfa Laval Compablocs helped them reach this and other goals.

DATE 2023-11-28

“We have a close relationship with the company,” says Mr Chris Wajciechowski, market development manager at Alfa Laval. “So we worked with their process development engineers to help them save space and money and cut down on fouling. Also – not least – to significantly improve the performance of their process for cutting particulate and sulfur emissions from fluid catalytic cracking (FCC).”

“The Compabloc offers considerable advantages over shell-and-tube heat exchangers in all of these respects,” continues  Mr Wajciechowski. “And because these are big installations, our biggest Compabloc model, the Compabloc CPX 120, was the right choice for the DuPont BELCO® pre-scrubber and the CANSOLV® amine stripper reboiler installations. The remaining three Compablocs were installed in other critical positions on the CANSOLV® unit.”



The Compabloc is a high-efficiency all-welded compact heat exchanger designed for aggressive or hazardous process services. It is available in seven sizes with heat transfer areas ranging between 0.7 to 840 m2 (7 to 8 950 sqft).



  • Improved cooling helps meet ambitious emissions targets
  • Compact design cuts floor space, foundations, piping and installation work
  • High alloy means no corrosion
  • High turbulence minimizes fouling
  • Easy access for easy maintenance
  • Costs lower and outcome better 

Company challenge

A major US refinery sought to lower emissions from fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) to less than 1/3 of federal requirements. In addition limited space was available, the risk of fouling was high and cost savings were desired.


The Compabloc welded plate heat exchanger is suitable for operation in chemically aggressive environments and for handling high-temperature fluids. With no gaskets between the corrugated
heat transfer plates, maintenance is straightforward and efficient.
Features include:

  • High performance - up to five times higher thermal efficiency than shell-and-tube heat exchangers
  • Compact size and low installation costs
  • Maximum reliability thanks to robust, all-welded design
  • Corrugated plate pattern ensuring highly turbulent flow
  • Minimal fouling
  • Easy cleaning
  • Available in many corrosion-resistant materials
  • ASME and PED-coded design for up to 42 barg (600 psig)/750 ºF (400 °C)