Expert Details

Expert in Petroleum Processing Chemistry and Oil Products Compositional Chemistry

Expert ID: 731617 Texas, USA

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ExpertVeal was the lead process chemist supporting Acid Gas Amine Treating units in Shell US and Canadian Refineries and for Shell Canada Gas Plants. ExpertVeal also provided technical support Canadian Gas plants operating Shell licienced Amine systems (SCOTT and Sulfinol-D &-M). He directed a three year RD&T project that identified all soluble and insoluble impurities accumulated in the 65 refinery and gas plant amine systems he supported. The source chemistry for each impurity class was established and process control options were evaluated. Basis this work, amine solution hygiene guidelines and monitoring tools were established for each type treater and application. The compositional results correlated with process histories provided the basis for Design Rule modifications and Corrosion Control Documents for each treater type and application.

Expert developed amine training courses presenting the underlying design chemistry for Acid Gas Amine Treating, the process chemistry driving each of the process steps within a unit, the "real world" impurities driving solution hygiene issues and the process chemistries for known operational problems and hardware failures. The developed training material was designed to allow courses to be configured to specific groups, operators and/or engineers, and can be focused on general Acid Gas Treating (Refinery applications) or on a specific application (Sulfinol-D in a gas plant). Expert has continued to provide this training in his post-Shell consulting career.

ExpertVeal has spent 25 years within the Shell Oil family of companies and eight years as a private consultant applying process and compositional chemistry knowledge to petroleum processing and oil products problem solving. He developed and directed the centralized Shell Oil Products Refinery Support Process Chemistry team structured to support Process Engineering activities and provide non-routine chemistry support to refinery
operations, oil product quality issues and natural gas processing. The activities that Expert directed included specilized field sampling and sample preparation techniques designed to provide accurate and complete composition characterization of on-line process streams dividing petroleum streams/samples into repeatable fractions that could be analyzed by standard laboratory procedures. Dr. Veals extensive background in petroleum
analysis allows him to access, utilize and analyze the data from a wide range of commerically available analytical techniques to obtain a compositional breakdown of petroleum samples and apply the results to development of cost effective process solutions.

Expert utilized his academic and applied petroleum experience and knowledge to develop short courses for several solution chemistry based refinery and gas plant process steps. He peroidically gave these courses to plant operation staff and too new chemists and chemical engineers for staff development.

ExpertVeal developed a specialized knowledge in the area of in-use fouling and deactivation of petroleum hydrotreating catalyst and utilizing that knowledge developed process chemistries for spent catalyst reclaiming.

One of the focuses of Expert's post-Shell consulting is understanding and managing the ingress of well working and pipeline additive chemical packages into refineries and natural gas process plants. This work has included characterization of impurity ingress and development of management options at 10 locations over the last eight years.

In the last eight years Expert has also provided expert witness consultation in 10 cases followed by deposition and expert opining in the four cases that went arbitration or trail.

In addition to being Petroleum Process Chemistry team leader, he was also the Process Chemistry PATSO (ProActive Technical Support to Operations) for Refining RD&T. In this role, he provided compositional chemistry expert support to the Process Engineering groups supporting each of the refinery's Basic Process Units (BPUs). It was his responsibility to understand the design process chemistry of each refinery unit and to know, or be able to
determine, the chemical composition of each process stream in the BPUs. When refinery problems occurred, he and his team determined whether chemical composition was with in assumed design boundaries. And if compositional changes were observed, he provided process chemistry support to resolve any operational issues and understand potential economic impact of required changes.

A refinery consulting focus has been to provide operational support and training for wet chemistry based legacy treating systems such as Streford, Bender/Merox sweetening and caustic based extraction systems.

Expert utilized his academic and applied petroleum experience and knowledge to develop short courses for several solution chemistry based refinery and gas plant process steps. He peroidically gave these courses to plant operation staff and too new chemists and chemical engineers for staff development.

As a core function of Expert's Process Chemistry team was to develop of a detailed understanding of the chemical composition of all petroleum process streams, related fouling deposits and and oil product impurities. Problem solving requires that observed components be analyzed as a function of the whole sample, it is also important to accurately determine what is not present and, in petroleum systems, the sum of a class of compounds
is generally more important than any individual component. These are all complex mixtures that can not be compositionally profiled by a single analytical technique, even using the most advanced Mass Spec. instrumentation. ExpertVeal developed structured sampling and preparative separation techniques that allow samples to be quantitatively separated into critical component classes and recovered for detailed instrumental analysis.
These include profiling multiphase samples, determining trace contaminates, identifying manufactured chemicals in petroleum streams and profiling chemical classes to determine source and processing histories.

In his RD&T Refinery chemistry support role, Expert was responsible for determining the source chemistry for contamination driving gasoline quality including corrosion. In this role, Expert determined the source chemistry, contamination mechanism and corrosion chemistry driving soluble sulfur corrosion of silver based fuel senders. He established the limitations of Cu Strip testing for this type of corrosion and helped establish silver strip (or silver wool in canada) as a routine QA/QC tool for soluble sulfur corrosion.

Expert also established the source chemistries and control options for refining impurities driving fuel injector corrosion and fouling events. He also established an understanding of the impact of ethanol blending on the acceptable levels of typical (and variable) process impurities relative to corrosion and fouling issues.

Expert provided the compositional chemistry background and monitoring data for several root cause investigations relating to observed and potential gasoline storage tank corrosion investigations.

As the Petroleum Porcessing and Oil Products Chemistry Consultant for Shell Global Solutions-US, one of ExpertVeal's primary responsibilities was to understand to typical/design composition for all major petroleum products, esp. transportation fuels and to understand what compositional properties drove each product specification and performance test requirement. When finished products "failed" a required product performance test, ExpertVeal
determined the specific components (and/or) impurity driving the failure and determined its likely source. If the problem originated in a Shell refinery, Expert identified the likely process source and provided technical support for future source control.

ExpertVeal provided on-going support to diesel, turbine fuel and Marine #6 oil product quality issues that resulted from introduction of high levels heavy crude into selected Shell US refineries.

ExpertVeal developed in-house short courses that correlated known/expected refinery process impurities with specific product quality tests. The training included non-routine screening tests that would allow lab staff to relate observed test failures to a specific refinery process step and provide operational information to engineering staff.

Canadian Natural Gas Plant Fouling Issues. He has consulted with a Canadian Gas Companies to determine the source of chronic fouling in three of their Gas Plants. Utilizing specialized field sampling, sample preparation and gathering system knowledge he identified the ingress of oil field chemicals into field compressors as the primary fouling driver. His characterization of the ingress mechanism allowed the plant fouling issues to be managed through field source control (improved settling and liquids separation plus filtration at compressor inlets). Contract Dispute Crude Oil Processing. He identified the chemical fraction in the contested crude that was driving tower corrosion and determined that the provided TAN was not predictive of corrosion potential. Using past experience, He identified other "in commerce" crudes with similar compositional fractions and utilizing their processing histories, he demonstrated that the distillation tower metallurgy was not compatible with the crude in question. Operation Issues with Natural Gas Mole Sieve Unit. Several large mole sieve towers at a Louisiana Gas Plant were deactivated when toll processing natural gas. He was engaged to determine the process chemistry for the deactivation and to determine if the toll processed gas was the fouling source. He established the compositional chemistry of the bed fouling material and was able to trace it back to a liquids surge when a gathering system pipeline was brought into service. He also was able to show that if the line had been pigged prior to start-up, the fouling would have been prevented.
Chronic Foaming in a Amine (MDEA) Unit processing Natural Gas. He utilized specilized testing and sample preperation procedures to show that the foaming was being driven by the ingress well working (sandstone tracking) chemicals. He established the ingress mechanism and reduced the ingess levels through changs in the management of liquids up-stream of field compression. He also conducted lab studies that identified a commerical Activated Charcoal with high retention capacity for the components driving the foaming. Cost effect operation has been achieved through continued AC use and his recommend changes to rich and lean amine particle filtration. Canadian Gas Plant Condensate Quality Issues. Produced stabilized condensate was periodically failing the pipeline required Cu Strip test. Reactive sulfur compounds, the typical driver for CuStrip failures, could not be correlated to failures. He determined that test "failures" were due to test strip surface coating, not corrosion, and that ingress of commercial field chemicals and petroleum heavy ends were selectively producing the Cu Strip coatings. He demonstrated that the Silver Strip test, a more sensitive test for reactive sulfur used in MoGas testing, did not detect corrosion or yield an observable coating. He also identified pigging driven pipeline sludge carryover to field compression as the foulent source. And, identified modification of pigging procedures, additional sluge catching capacity and use of an Activated Charcoal that targets the coating components as process solutions.

Expert may consult nationally and internationally, and is also local to the following cities: Dallas, Texas - Fort Worth, Texas - Arlington, Texas - Plano, Texas - Garland, Texas - Irving, Texas - Grand Prairie, Texas - Mesquite, Texas - Waco, Texas - Carrollton, Texas

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Year Degree Subject Institution
Year: 1973 Degree: Post-Doc Subject: Chemistry Institution: Univ. CA @Irvine
Year: 1972 Degree: PhD Subject: Chemisty Institution: University of North Caroline @Chapel Hill
Year: 1968 Degree: BS Subject: Professional Chemistry Institution: South Dakota State University

Work History

Years Employer Title Department Responsibilities
Years: 2005 to Present Employer: Undisclosed Title: Pres/CEO, Principle Chemist Department: Responsibilities: He is a process chemistry consultant to the Refining and Natural Gas Processing industry with a focus on process and compositionachemistry based operational and product quality problem solving. All work in Canada is carried out through Acero Engineering Inc. as is any support to Acero 3rd party customers any where in the world.
Years: 1980 to 2005 Employer: Shell Oil Co. Title: Petroleum Processing & Oil Products Consultant Department: Shell Oil Products US & Shell Global Solutions - US Responsibilities: He was Petroleum Process Chemistry team leader for Shell Oil Products (US) RD&T providing compositional chemistry and non-routine problem solving support to petroleum refining and marketing in North America. After integration of RD&T into Shell Global Solutions, assumed role of Petroleum Processing & Oil Products Chemistry Consultant.
Years: 1977 to 1980 Employer: Waters Associates, Milford MA Title: Project MGR HPLC Injection Systems Department: New Product Development Responsibilities: He was responsible for redesigning and reintroduction of an HPLC Auto-sampler (The "WISP") that systemic problems when first introduced. He identified required design changes, directed the engineering team making the changes through manufacturing and lead marketing effort to reposition the instrument in the market place. This included training field service on the retrofit and doing field seminars for major customers.
Years: 1976 to 1977 Employer: IITRI, Chicago IL Title: Staff Chemist Department: Analytical Separations Responsibilities: Developed analytical monitoring and GC separation methods supporting contract RD projects related to power plant emissions and hydrazine based aircraft fuels.
Years: 1973 to 1976 Employer: Battelle NWL, Richland WA Title: Project Leader, Analytical Support Department: Inhalation Toxicology Responsibilities: He was responsible for development of analytical monitoring techniques that were used to establish exposure dose levels in large scale animal trials relating to biological effects Cigarette smoke inhalation and in prrojects related to the development of Chemically Active IUDs.

International Experience

Years Country / Region Summary
Years: 2006 to 2006 Country / Region: Egypt/Middle East Summary: He provided gas plant start-up trouble shooting support for a Canadian joint venture facility. The plant hardware did not operate as designed and feed compositional issues were suspected. He shipped and utilized specialized sampling equipment and directed in-country analytical support resources to identify core processing issues and identify process and operational fixes including changing up-stream additives and reconfiguring process separation vessels.

Additional Experience

Expert Witness Experience
In the last eight years, he has provided process chemistry based depositions and expert witness opining in four cases and provided pre-trial expert witness consultation in six additional cases. The 10 cases involved seven different law firms and included class action, insurance settlement, contract, and intellectual property disputes.
Training / Seminars
while at Shell he was responsible for development and presentation of in-house technical short courses relating to the design and operational chemistry of wet chemistry based refinery and gas plant processes. These included Sulfuric Acid Alkylation, Acid Gas Treating with Commercial Amine system, Caustic Treating of Transportation Fuels (sweetening and extraction systems), and Source Chemistry and Management of Corrosion and Fouling Impuries in Process Stream.
Vendor Selection
He was responsable for evaluation and recommendation of process stream filtration media including working with vendors to identify the most cost effective options for general processes and to optimize specific applications. Evaluated Chemical Additive packages for potential impact on down stream operations and product quality issues.
Marketing Experience
His experience in non-routine process and product quality problem solving provides insights into specific impacts of up stream well working and pipeline activities to down stream refinery and gas plant operations.
Other Relevant Experience
His experience in "on-site" and "in-the-field" data based non-routine problem solving has resulted in a suite of specialized sampling and sample preperation procedures for petroleum streams. They have been developed to insure a representative samle, to determine the presence targeted impurities and to yield a compositional understand of the entire sample.

Fields of Expertise

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