Silo Holds Mysteries

Readers ponder why an old tank failed.

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Lastly, let's consider new construction. If something was done to the foundation around the tank, or the feeding system at the bottom of the silo was changed, this might have caused a problem. Obviously, if this was done, then management will want to rethink the migration of the new bagger to another silo.
Dirk Willard, senior process engineer
Middough Consultants, Holland, Ohio

An old bank of three Freon chillers provides cooling throughout our plant (Figure 1). The units are manually controlled. Operators frequently turn on too many units in preparation for anticipated heat loads, causing trips in the chillers that delay production because of upward temperature swings. As part of a corporate-sponsored energy campaign, funds are available for the chillers. Where would you start? How can we get more out of these old units?

Send us your comments, suggestions or solutions for this question by October 14, 2011. We'll include as many of them as possible in the November 2011 issue and all on Send visuals — a sketch is fine. E-mail us at or mail to Process Puzzler, Chemical Processing, 555 W. Pierce Road, Suite 301, Itasca, IL 60143. Fax: (630) 467-1120. Please include your name, title, location and company affiliation in the response.

And, of course, if you have a process problem you'd like to pose to our readers, send it along and we'll be pleased to consider it for publication.

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