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Insulation of storage tanks

Tekening W Storage tank.jpg 

Storage tanks

The availability of raw materials, fuels and the storage of end products is critical in almost all fields of industry. Generally, large tanks are used for raw materials, fuels and end products. Small tanks or vessels are used to temporarily store (semi) products. To conserve the substance and ensure the stability and safety of the production process, it is important to keep the temperature inside the tank between certain temperature limits  

 

Purpose of insulation

Therefore, insulation of storage tanks is a major factor in the functionality of storage facilities. It also serves the following purposes:

  • Costs savings: Insulation significantly reduces the heat and the so-called breathing losses of the substance. The pay-back time for the hot insulation is, even at lower temperatures (30oC), usually less than 1 year, whereas the life time of the insulation may be many years.
  • Environment: In addition to the cost savings achieved, reduced heat losses will also lead to lower CO2 emission. Reduced breathing losses of hazardous substances is beneficial to our environment.
  • Process control: Insulation will prevent tanks from freezing or being heated by solar radiation. It will also reduce the cooling of the stored substance, preventing it from setting and remaining in a solid form. In both cases case additional heating or cooling may be applicable.
  • Safety: A fire resistant insulation reduces the risk of a fire outside the tank igniting a flammable medium. It is also protection against contact by minimising the surface (contact) temperature of the tank.

Rockwool Multiboard for tank walls

Storage tanks are located outdoors, so it is important to select a material with a low thermal conductivity and excellent water repellent properties. ProRox SL 930 (Rockwool Multiboard), is mainly used to insulate tank walls. Applying a less water repellent, non pressure-resistant insulation like Wired Mats is not generally recommended.

 

Rockwool CRS for tank roofs

A common assumption is that the still air above the hot fluid acts as insulation of the tank roof. Insulating a tank is not easy. Corrosion of the tank roof, especially, can easily occur if the insulation is not properly installed and maintained. Therefore, many companies tend not to insulate the tank roof. This assumption is, however, not entirely correct. Due to the difference in temperature between the hot fluid and the non-insulated tank roof there is fairly strong convection, which results into considerable heat losses. Tank roof insulation is feasible if the proper insulation material and mounting and fixing methods are applied. If foot traffic can occur, a pressure-resistant slab such as ProRox SL 580 (Rockwool CRS) is applied for the insulation of the tank roof.

 

Rockwool Hydrocarbon Slab for fire protection

Substantially more aggressive and intense than cellulosic fire, hydrocarbon fires are typified by burning oil, fuels, chemicals, plastics etc (i.e. hydrocarbons). Standard thermal insulation systems will not withstand the intense fire loads. Rockwool Hydrocarbon Slab has been developed to provide protection against the fierce heat conditions of hydrocarbon fires.




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