Erosion corrosion failure on elbow distillate heater system in the petrochemical industry

Nizhamul Latif, M. S. Johny Wahyuadi, Triwibowo, Rini Riastuti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This research focuses on the mechanism of erosion-corrosion failure in the petrochemical industry's radian outlet pipe of the distillate column feed heater. Aim to determine the cause of leaks in the inlet & outlet piping systems and radiant tube heaters from the effects of operations related to flow, pressure, temperature, erosion, and corrosion. This research evaluates the operational process and mechanical properties to understand the causes of thinning to avoid recurrence in the future. Erosion corrosion was the leading cause of elbow failure. Fluid erosion plays a dominant role in the failure process, while electrochemical corrosion plays a dominant role in corrosion pits formation. Further characterization methods need to understand corrosion mechanisms, including mechanical properties, metallographic examination, CFD analysis, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and energy spectrum analysis (EDS). The root cause of premature leakage at the elbow is a feed composition change and the design. Including indications of increasing corroded content of Sulfur and chloride, compounds with the current fluid flow rate even though the pressure temperature and capacity conditions maintain according to the design.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4235-4241
Number of pages7
JournalMaterials Today: Proceedings
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2022


  • Distillate heater
  • Elbow
  • Erosion corrosion
  • Failure
  • Petrochemical industry


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