PDVSA restarts FCC unit at El Palito refinery

Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA) has completed maintenance on the cyclones system of the fluid catalytic cracker (FCC) unit at its 126,900-b/d El Palito refinery near Pto. Cabello, Carabobo state, the state-owned company confirmed.

The unit is now in the process of restarting, PDVSA said.

While the company said the restart process for the FCC is proceeding in accordance with established safety procedures, a timetable for the unit’s full return to service was not disclosed.

Other units at the refinery, as well as a connecting pipeline system and adjoining marine terminal, continue to operate normally, the company said.

The FCC came down for maintenance last month following the discovery of an internal fault in the unit’s cyclone system, according to a May 6 release from PDVSA.

The same unit was taken off line earlier in the year for preventative maintenance to correct leaks of air and water vapor in the starting line of the plant’s regenerator (OGJ Online, Jan. 21, 2014).

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