Friday, March 28, 2014

Note to self

What did the carrot say to the wheat?
” ‘Lettuce’ rest, I’m feeling ‘beet.’ “
What did the paper say to the pen?
“I feel quite all ‘write,’ my friend.”
What did the teapot say to the chalk?
Nothing, you silly . . . teapots can’t talk!
~Shel Silverstein

Do not play jack
With the Jaguar cat--
You’ll never ever best her.
If she don’t win,
She’ll start to whine.
If she gets an eight,
She’ll pick up nine--
She’ll say she didn’t,
But you’ll know she’s lion--
She’s such an awful Cheetah.
~Shel Silverstein

I heard that Katrina
The Cook was a witch,
But me, I’m such
A stupid kid,
I yelled, “Hey! Katrina,
Make me a sandwich,”
And ZAP--
She did!
~Shel Silverstein 

How many slams in an old screen door?
Depends how loud you shut it.
How many slices in a bread?
Depends how thin you cut it.
How much good inside a day?
Depends how good you live ‘em.
How much love inside a friend?
Depends how much you give ‘em
~Shel Silverstein

Everything leaks

It's just a fact of life that if you have kilometers of piping and hundreds of gaskets, something is going to leak. We expect things to leak.

Refrigerant loops, just like your refrigerator at home, are supposed to be closed loops. It just circulates in a compression cycle forever. If you look at the refrigerant circuit at a natural gas liquefaction facility (huge pipelines, some of the largest in an LNG train), there's basically no reason to drain anything in operation. But you can expect refrigerant make-up to be supplied every week on the order of tens of tons. Obviously small in comparison to the system inventory, but quite a lot considering it's all being lost through leakage.

Steam circuits (used for heating) are also closed loops. The condensed steam that goes through any heat exchanger against hydrocarbons are sent through an elaborate system for cleaning before being boiled again. The default assumption is that there are constantly leaking exchangers, otherwise there'd be no need to spend millions of dollars on a continuous purification system when you could just install a hydrocarbon detector that trips the plant.

Cooling water circuits don't need this kind of cleaning. The water drains out pitch black after months of circulation.

So I guess what I'm saying is, if any PR promises that some petro pipeline stretching across a continent isn't going to leak, don't believe it. It will leak, the question is just how much.