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All-Concrete LNG



Small Scale LNG

Arup Energy
Brian Raine

• Arup Introduction
• ACLNG Introduction
– Tank Details
– Design Assurance
– Basis of Design
• Construction
• Schedule
• Costs
• Conclusions
Introducing Arup
Arup is an international firm of consulting engineers, providing
engineering design, planning and project management services for

building consulting infrastructure

with over 9000 staff working in over 40 countries

through 86 offices.
..and LNG storage experience..
Foundations Offshore Liquefaction Outer Containment

Offshore LNG Receival Onshore Tanks


The Case for Concrete

Demand for alternative LNG tank design

• Demand for LNG storage tanks worldwide is increasing.

Steel prices are increasing and procurement times are
• The public is concerned about safety. R Hoffmann,
Chairman of NFPA 59A has stated “..the usage of concrete
in LNG tankage results in a system that is fire and terrorist
• Current competition in the LNG storage tank market is
limited by the tank solutions on offer. An alternative design
will open up the market to wider range of contractors.
Why All Concrete LNG (ACLNG)?
• Sequential construction makes conventional
tanks slow to build
– ACLNG has more parallel working
• Tanks are on the critical path for import terminals
– target schedule saving of six months sought
• ACLNG widens the choice of tank vendors
– less reliance on proprietary designs from small
number of specialist vendors
• ACLNG increases local content and reduces the
need for specialist materials and services
– target cost saving 10%
• Potential to reduce import duties on materials
ACLNG – Tank Details
ACLNG Tank Details – Full Containment

The essential differences between

the ACLNG and a conventional
9% Ni-steel tank are:

• Primary container constructed

from pre-stressed concrete
without a liner
• Non-metallic vapor barriers
• Weather-tolerant base
insulation system
All other components of the tank
are the same.
ACLNG Tank Details – Single Containment

Single Containment offers savings

by eliminating 9% Nickel:
• Primary container constructed
from pre-stressed concrete
without a liner
• Non-metallic vapor barrier to
• Reinforced Concrete outer
shell for weather protection

All other components of the tank

are the same.
ACLNG Tank Details – Single Containment

Potential to use a carbon steel

outer shell
• Primary container constructed
from pre-stressed concrete
without a liner
• Non-metallic vapor barrier to
• Carbon steel outer shell to
resist overpressure

All other components of the tank

are the same.
Tank Details – Construction

• Slipformed or jump-formed CONCRETE DISTRIBUTION



• Formwork systems by YOKE JACKROD


– Structural Systems (Australia) WORKING DECK

– Gleitbau (Austria), RMD (UK), Slipform


– Skanska (Sweden) HANGING


– Scanada (Canada)
– Slipform International (HK)
• Slipforming is an engineered
• Slipforming has less
construction joints
Hook, UK
Tank Details – Construction (2)

• LNG tanks are now

being slipformed, for
– South Hook
– Sines
– Hammerfest
– Isle of Grain
Tank Details – Wall vapor barrier

IWR Cryocoat HR • Vapor barrier developed with ICPS

and DIAB for cryogenic use
• Approved by major oil and gas
company for secondary liner
applications to LNG tanks
• Two-component coating material
• Automated application system
• Adheres to grit-blasted concrete to
provide methane and water-vapor
proof coating
• Could be used to water-proof
Divinycell® blocks
Tank Details – Bottom insulation

• Schedule savings dependent

upon improved construction
sequence in which bottom
insulation is laid in an external
• Bottom insulation must be
weather tolerant and installation
methodology must seek to
exclude moisture
• Closed cell insulation with low
water absorption such as
Divinycell or Foamglas can be
ACLNG – Design Assurance

Basis of Design
Basis of Design

• Safety Assessment
• Establish performance criteria for elements that are different
– Codes and Standards
– Materials
– Strength
– Serviceability
• Validate the design against these performance criteria
– Liquid tightness
– BOG handling
Safety Assessment

• HAZOPs have been completed at every stage of development

• Review of common mode failures identified :
– differential soil settlement (appropriate levels of analysis)
– workmanship & materials testing (appropriate levels of
quality control and supervision)
• Tanks are not significant contributors in overall terminal QRA
due to their excellent performance

• The ACLNG is at least as safe as a traditional 9% Ni-steel

Codes and Standards
• ACLNG design satisfies:
– NFPA 59A : 2006 (does not preclude concrete indeed was used for
previous double concrete tanks)
– BS EN 1473 : 2007 (recognizes primary containment in concrete)
– BS 7777 (now replaced by EN 14620)
– EN 14620 :2006 (replaces BS7777 but does not cover primary
containment in concrete, but does provide performance criteria for vapor
• Concrete design has been carried out to British or other national
standard used for oil & gas applications with supplementary
provisions for the inner container design
• Recent developments by ACI at request of NFPA has led to
preparation of ACI 376 – “Design and Construction of Concrete
Structures for the Containment of Refrigerated Liquefied Gases
Materials - History of cryogenic concrete

• First unlined cryogenic tank for liquid

oxygen (-183ºC) in 1952
• Preload system of wire-wound post-
tensioned concrete LNG tanks
developed with carbon steel liner
• Constructed LNG tanks:
– 2nr Barcelona 1969 & operational
– 2nr Philadelphia 1974
Photo courtesy Enagas – 1nr Cumberland,RI 1975
– 2nr Barcelona 1981 80,000m3
• Significant material testing • Why were no more tanks of this type
carried out in the late 70s built?
and early 80s to investigate
the cryogenic properties of
ACLNG – Design Assurance

Design Validation
Reference design specification
Location N/A
Tank Type Full & Single Containment
Roof Concrete Dome (Full)
Stored volume (Gross) Varies
Boil off gas rate 0.05% per day
Density of LNG 470 kg/m3
Operating Basis Earthquake (1:475 year) Peak Ground Acceleration
(PGA) = 0.25g
Safe Shutdown Earthquake (1:10,000 year) PGA = 0.5g
LNG Pump Net Positive Suction Head 1.675 m
Ullage 1.000 m
Maximum internal pressure 290 mBar
Hydrotest 125% max product load
Boil-off gas and permeation rates

• Boil-off-gas (BOG) = 0.05%/day

• Typical concrete intrinsic permeability 10-18m2
• LNG boil off volume = 80m3 LNG/day
• Permeation of LNG through primary = 2.8%BOG
• Polymeric vapor barrier satisfies latest proposals for
permeability rates for secondary container of
0.5g/m2/day, refer to En 14620
Single Containment Tank general
arrangement & dimensions

ACLNG Sizing - Single Containment
Stored volume 10,000 m3 40,000 m3 80,000 m3 125,000 m3 160,000 m3
Inner Tank inside 25.0 42.0 55.5 68.0 74.0
diameter – A
LNG Liquid Level – B 22.0 31.2 35.0 36.1 38.8
Outer Tank diameter 28.0 45.0 58.7 71.3 77.5
Outer Tank height to 19.8 32.4 34.4 41.0 44.0
Ring Beam – D
Dome Height – E 3.8 6.1 8.0 9.7 10.5
Tank Wall Thick (m) 0.5 0.5 0.6 0.65 0.75
Tank Base Slab (m) 0.65 0.5-0.65 0.5-0.65 0.5-0.65 0.5-0.65
H/D (i.e. B/A) 0.88 0.74 0.63 0.53 0.52
Full Containment Tank general
arrangement & dimensions


ACLNG Sizing - Full Containment
Stored volume 10,000 m3 40,000 m3 80,000 m3 125,000 m3 160,000 m3
Inner Tank inside 25.00 42.00 55.50 68.00 74.00
diameter – A
LNG Liquid Level – B 22.00 31.18 35.00 36.10 38.80

Outer Tank diameter 30.02 47.02 60.87 73.57 80.02

Outer Tank height to 25.00 42.00 55.50 68.00 74.00
Ring Beam – D
Dome Height – E 3.8 6.1 8.0 9.7 10.5
Tank Wall Thick (m) 0.5 0.5 0.6 0.65 0.75
Tank Base Slab (m) 0.65 0.5-0.65 0.5-0.65 0.5-0.65 0.5-0.65
Outer Wall (m) 0.50 0.50 0.60 0.65 0.75
H/D (i.e. B/A) 0.88 0.74 0.63 0.53 0.52
Numerical Analyses
ACLNG Tank Heat transfer analyses

• Cooldown condition (transient to 12 days)

General Features
• Spill condition (transient to steady state reached)
• 80,000 m3 capacity
• Inner tank (IT): ID 30.0 m
• Outer tank (OT): ID 32.1 m

• Inner tank: P+SSE dominant in design

• Outer tank: P+OBE dominant in design

• FE analyses considered whole assembly

• Material properties f(T) in [-165 degC- 20degC]

• Sequentially “coupled field” analyses

• Parameters worked out from first principles

Design Validation - Liquid tightness
• 3D solid finite element (FE) model of primary container to
demonstrate compliance with performance criteria
• half model with symmetrical boundary conditions
• linear elastic and nonlinear concrete cracking material
models used
• self weight, base prestress, wall prestress, uniform
temperature reduction, content and OBE pressures
loadcases analysed
Hoop pre-stress
• Hoop prestress dictated by the dominant seismic condition
Stress Problem
• Thermal gradients act as thermal loads
(incl. pre-stress, self weight, hydrostatic
loads, etc)
• Use “Unsymmetric” matrix solver

• E and α = f(T)

• Complex post-cracking material model

– Concrete damaged plasticity
– Tension stiffening which allows to define
strain-softening behavior for cracked
concrete (derived from fracture energy)

• Assessment is based on criteria adopted for

tensile stress eg.
– No-tensile stress @ OBE (ACI 376) or
– Tensile stress < 2MPa ( )
Heat Transfer during COOLDOWN

• Typically a transient Fourier problem

• Requires an “extracted” flux to simulate

Cooldown movie
cooling to -165 deg C
• “Extracted” flux is calculated via first
principles and by integrating twice the
Fourier problem
• Once bottom of inner tank reaches -165 deg
C the specific heat @ -165 is set to a very
high value so that “extracted” flux does not
lower T below -165 deg C
• Bottom of OT held at 5 deg C (numerically)
• K, Cp = f(T)

• IT bottom reaches first -165 deg C after 9


“Cooldown” phase is relevant for

Inner tank (IT) behavior
Heat Transfer during SPILL Condition
• A transient Fourier problem
Spill movie
• Liquid spill “connected” to -165 deg C
numerically via heat transfer coefficient
• Vapor heat transfer above the liquid surface
“connected” to a temperature of -70 deg C
numerically via calculated convection film
• Transient problem runs until a pre-defined
steady state condition is reached (change of
<1.4x10^-6 deg C/hr..… v. conservative)

• Steady state condition reached after 8.6


“Spill condition” phase is relevant for

Outer tank (OT) behavior
ACLNG Tank – Design Conclusions

• OBE and SSE performance governs sizing and

prestressing requirements
• Thermal gradients at Cooldown have been
checked – acceptable
• Spill condition on outer wall – as per tradit’l sol’n
• Liquid permeation through primary container very
• Limiting condition likely to be inner tank sliding in
severe seismic (Zone 4) / poor ground.
ACLNG - Construction
Construction Sequence – (1)
Construction Sequence – (2)
Construction Sequence – (3)
Construction Sequence – (4)
Schedule comparison - Deep Piled Full
Containment - ACLNG vs. 9%Ni

Stored volume 10,000 m3 40,000 m3 80,000 m3 125,000 m3

ACLNG EPC 14 mo 20 mo 26 mo 28 mo
Schedule comparison – Single Containment
for Deep Piled Small ACLNG

Stored 10,000 m3 40,000 m3 80,000 m3 125,000 m3

EPC 12 mo 19 mo 24 mo 26 mo

Assumes FEED & Bid but no pre-procurement

Cost Estimating
• Like-for-Like EPC Cost based on 2007 Gulf
Coast Rates
– Piling included
– Costed to include Cooldown but excludes LNG pumps
– 35% Indirects
– Normalized at 160,000m3
• Typical Rates
– Concrete
• $450-800 per m3 unreinforced
• $1,200 / te reinforcing supply, fix
• $3200 / te prestressing supply, fix
– Steel
• $10,000 / te 9% Nickel supply & fabricate
• $4,000 / te Carbon Steel supply & fabricate
Cost comparison ACLNG vs 9%Ni
Cost comparison ACLNG vs 9%Ni
Cost comparison ACLNG vs 9%Ni

• Cost Saving
– ACLNG vs 9%Ni
– 10-15% Full
– 15-25% Single
• Small Scale LNG Tank
– 10-80,000 m3
• 80,000 m3 looks to be an
efficient arrangement for
developments in terms of
Cost / m3 LNG stored.
ACLNG – Conclusions
• ACLNG is a technically acceptable storage solution
• The benefits are
– Flexibility
• Single and Full Containment
• Choice of construction materials
– Faster schedule –
• >6 months for 160,000 m3 Full Containment
• No pre-procurement
– Cheaper – at least 10%
• Favored for small-scale liquefaction projects in Australasia
• Good potential for receival and peak-shaving