Carbon monoxide (CO) boilers play an important role in the petroleum refining industry, completing the combustion of CO in the flue gas generated by the regeneration of fluidized cracking catalyst. The heat released by the CO combustion is used to generate steam for use in the refinery. The flue gas flow path can have a significant effect on the thermal efficiency and operation safety of the boiler. In this paper, a CO boiler which had been experiencing low thermal efficiency and high operation risks was studied. A three-dimensional (3D) computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model was developed with detailed description on the combustion process, flow characteristics and heat transfer. The results obtained from the model have good agreement with the plant measurement data. The heat transfer between the tubes and the combustion flue gas was optimized by adding a checker wall.

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