Operational Strategy and Planning for Raw Natural Gas Refining Complexes: Process Modeling and Global Optimization

Bing J. Zhang , Qing L. Chen , Jie Li, Christodoulos A. Floudas

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    Abstract

    Optimal operational strategy and planning of a raw natural gas refining complex (RNGRC) is very challenging since it involves highly nonlinear processes, complex thermodynamics, blending, and utility systems. In this article, we first propose a superstructure integrating a utility system for the RNGRC, involving multiple gas feedstocks, and different product specifications. Then, we develop a large-scale nonconvex mixed-integer nonlinear programming (MINLP) optimization model. The model incorporates rigorous process models for input and output relations based on fundamentals of thermodynamics and unit operations and accurate models for utility systems. To reduce the noncovex items in the proposed MINLP model, equivalent reformulation techniques are introduced. Finally, the reformulated nonconvex MINLP model is solved to global optimality using state of the art deterministic global optimization approaches. The computational results demonstrate that a significant profit increase is achieved using the proposed approach compared to that from the real operation.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalAIChE Journal
    Early online date11 Jul 2016
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2016

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