Dew Point Temperature

Definition - What does Dew Point Temperature mean?

Dew Point Temperature is a situation whereby air is no longer capable of holding the water vapor that is contained within it. At dew point temperature, water vapor condenses into liquid water and its temperature is equal to or less than the air temperature. In the petroleum industry, it is essential to prevent processes such as condensation so as to ensure that surfaces which are in proximity of combustible gases do not go below the acid dew point temperature.

Petropedia explains Dew Point Temperature

Dew point temperature causes acid smut emissions as well as triggers the corrosion process and can be harmful to the petroleum industry equipment. For instance, if a fuel that is sulfur free is burnt with 30% excess air, moisture starts to condense at 113°F (45°C), a situation referred to as water dew point. If a fuel with sulfur is burned under similar conditions along with water dew point, acid dew point takes place at about 240°F (116°C). During the combustion process, the sulfur contained in the fuel undergoes oxidation. This leads to acid dew point, which is the highest level of temperature where acid deposition can take place.

Therefore, appropriate operation surface temperatures in industries such as oil refineries should be maintained to prevent acid smut that can cause potential damages to the metal equipment such as triggering corrosion.

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