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21-09-2021

A day in a refinery

Written by Karst Beens

We have mentioned from time to time that we work with Shell in Germany. For these orders, we have to visit the refinery, of course. But not only for Shell, we also have to visit different refineries again and again for other customers. These visits are always similar, but it’s still exciting every time.

What is a refinery?

Before we explain what a day at a refinery is like, let’s explain what a refinery is.

In short, a refinery processes natural products into other high-value products. In the case of Shell or BP, this is mainly crude oil, which is processed into fuel or heating oil.

Flammable, toxic and corrosive substances are often used in this process. That is why preparation before a visit to the refinery is important. Not everyone is allowed to enter the site, and even on the site itself, not everywhere is free access.

The preparation

In order to be admitted to the grounds, a security check must be completed beforehand. This takes place online.

During the safety check, various videos of safety instructions are played. Afterwards, a short test must be taken in which the knowledge from the videos is tested. At the end, those who complete the safety check receive a certificate that allows them to enter the refinery.

But not only the certificate is a prerequisite for entry, a list of all items that are carried is also required. It is important to include the serial number of electronic equipment.

If all these requirements are fulfilled, the site may be entered. But this was not the last security precaution. Safety clothing must also be worn throughout the site.

The safety clothing consists of: Jacket, shoes and trousers, must be fireproof.

In addition, a helmet, gloves and safety goggles must always be worn on the premises.

The use on the site

Once all preparations have been passed, the grounds may be entered. There are many areas on the premises that are not open to everyone, not even to pass through. Therefore, it is important to follow the instructions of the caregiver or the entrance staff.

Once you arrive on the scene, everything is the same as in other operations.

With our drones, we can inspect different things at a refinery. For Shell, for example, we inspect and clean pipes. For this, we use our suction robot, which sucks sand from the bottom of the pipe. This means that the pipe no longer has to be left dry.

We also inspected various water tanks on the BP site for a wastewater company. More information on the inspection of (waste) water tanks can also be found in one of our older blogs.

A refinery offers limitless possibilities for us and we are still in the early stages of exploring them.

 


Do you have questions about our work and the opportunities in a refinery? Then contact us here.

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