Published December 2018
A flare system is an integral part of the safety and operations of a plant processing chemicals or hydrocarbons. In this review, we cover various aspects and a brief description of a flare system, including the types of flares, their advantages, and disadvantages; an overview of regulations covering flaring from chemical plants; essential components of flare systems, including burners, flare stack, flare header, knockout drum, instrumentation needed to operate the system; and other ancillaries like the vapor recovery and ignition systems.
We have also included a guide on how to size various components of the flare system. Although this review will not cover the detailed design, there is sufficient detail for a reader to independently and quickly size various components. An essential input to designing a flare system is the quantity and type of flared gases. Without going into a relief rate calculation, we cover quick methods of estimating the controlling relief rate. We also cover the costing of a typical elevated flare system. Because a flare system can vary enormously from facility to facility, we also include tools to quickly cost a flare system.
This review will be helpful to facility designers, environmental engineers, feasibility study managers, and technology managers to help them to include—realistically—the elements of capital and operating cost of a flare system in their respective designs and budgets.
It is important to note that this review is not an exercise in detailed engineering, but it does provide sufficient information for decision makers and stakeholders to quickly identify, size, and cost various elements of a flare system.