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Apache’s Large Vessel Team Delivers BIG for Canadian Oil Sands Production

Apache Stainless Equipment Corporation, a manufacturer of ASME pressure vessels, was contracted to provide two large falling film evaporators for a Canadian oil processing operation. Apache’s “Large Vessel” fabricators/ welders manufactured the two evaporators, made from 2205 and 2304 duplex materials that were each 13 ft. in diameter and 127 long. Each evaporator has an empty weight of approximately 330,000 lbs. The total operating weight of each evaporator will be approximately 880,000 lbs.

Both evaporators were needed for the Canadian Oil Sands development to extract oil out of the ground. Oils sands, or tar sands are loose sand and sandstone that contain sand, clay and water, which is saturated with a viscous form of petroleum. Oil produced from the Canadian oil sands is referred to as crude oil.

Apache provided the evaporators used to separate the water from the oil. In the process, infused water is pumped out of the ground, cleaned and pumped back into the ground as steam. The steam breaks up and “melts” the oil off the sand trapped in the ground. The oil mixture is then pumped through the evaporators where Apache installed over 3,000 2” diameter tubes into each evaporator. Inside the tubes, the oil and water fluid is subjected to heated steam, which causes the water to turn to steam and the oil separates and falls down the tubes, hence the name falling film evaporator. The separated oil then collects in a pipe where the oil is extracted. The steam is used to go back into the ground as it is now clean to comply with environmental concerns. The process is a continuous loop.

The two large evaporators were delivered utilizing five transports. The evaporators were split in half for transportation purposes, as the heaviest portion containing the tubes weighed over ¼ million pounds for each evaporator. Apache is one of the few vessel manufacturers that can handle this size of evaporator. We have close to 350,000 sq. ft. manufacturing facilities and an extensive, cross-trained staff of experienced fabricators that are flexible to work on various types of vessels, applications and materials.

Located in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, Apache Stainless Equipment Corporation serves the fuel industry with many types of specialized tanks, including: distillation columns, evaporators, ASME vessels, API-650 vessels, clad vessels, custom mix tanks and storage tanks.


Apache Tank Donation Prepares MATC students for Bio-Engineering Careers

Madison Area Technical College engineering students presented their class project, a bio-diesel blending system, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison May 8th, 2013. Apache Stainless Equipment Corporation donated the tank used in the project and the biodiesel system will also be shown at collegiate fairs and educational outreach events.

The Madison College engineering students were tasked with developing a system that was capable of blending biodiesel with petro-diesel and fuel additives for improved performance in extreme seasonal temperatures. The students also had to design around safety, transportability, power and budget constraints. Apache was one of several equipment manufacturers to donate components to the project.

“Apache is committed to build strong community ties where we live, work and go to school,” says Ed Paradowski, Apache President, “being part of this project not only helps Madison College engineering students, it also helps with the overall promotion of education in the field of fabrication and manufacturing.”

As a group, students engineered the blending system from start to finish. Apache supplied a 60 gallon, pickle passivated stainless tank with a vent fitting according to their design and specifications. The welding, fabrication, plumbing and electrical was all accomplished by the introductory engineering students at Madison College.

Apache serves the biofuel industry with many types of specialized tanks, including: distillation columns, evaporators, ASME vessels, API-650 Vessels, clad vessels, custom mix tanks and storage tanks. The Apache facility in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin is fully equipped with machines and processes for shearing, forming, welding, rolling and in-house head making. The company also provides finishing capabilities, including automated mechanical polishing, electro-polishing and passivation. Another facility in Plover, Wisconsin produces carbon steel tanks and equipment.


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