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Division of Refining
1801 K Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20006
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tion may conflict; or for the infringement of any patent resulting from the use
of an API publication.

Copyright © 1974 American Petroleum Institute


This chapter describes environmental conditions at the probable site of refinery

construction and the effects of these conditions on plume rise, atmospheric dis-
persions, and ground level concentrations. Meteorological aspects are discussed
at some length. Ground level concentrations of pollutants should be determined
from the most accurate existing predictive techniques prior to actual construction.
This will ensure that specific requirements are not exceeded.
In evaluating plume rise and atmospheric dispersion, an eclectic approach is
used. The result is one formula for the determination of plume rise and one set of
formulas for the determination of ground level concentrations. For refineries
located where abnormal conditions are not encountered, these equations represent
a suitable tool for the design engineer to use in estimating ground level concentra-
tions and thereby determining the required stack heights. (High-velocity vents
are not covered by these equations.)
The predictive techniques presented herein are applicable to estimating atmos-
pheric dispersion at a single source of emission over uncomplicated terrain, when
mean wind speed and direction can be determined. The equations enable determina-
tion of ground level concentrations for an elevated source and for a ground level
source. Predictive techniques for estimating atmospheric dispersions of emissions
from multiple sources are also included. Dispersion coefficients are most applicable
to ground level releases, but they have been applied to stack releases as well. Within
the layer in which diffusion occurs, it is assumed that stability characteristics
remain constant.
When designing a refinery facility, neither this approach nor any textbook
approach is sufficient in cases of unusual atmospheric conditions or irregular
topography. Handling these conditions requires a high degree of expertise and
may involve the use of other predictive aids, such as wind tunnels .

• iii


6. J Typical Regulatory Requirements .... 6-1
6.2 Environmental Conditions at Construction Site ................. . 6-1
6.2.1 Temperature ..... 6-1
6.2.2 Wind Motion and Turbulence .. 6-2
6.2.3 Lapse Rate....... ..................... . 6-3
6.2.4 Stable and Unstable Air ..... 6-3
6.2.5 Inversions ... 6-4
6.2.6 Influence of Local Terrain .. 6-4
6.3 Behavior of Plumes .. 6-5
6.3.1 Plume Types and Characteristics ... 6-5
6.3.2 Influence of Wind Fluctuation .... 6-6
6.3.3 Plume Dilution and Diffusion .. 6-6
6.3.4 Effects of Obstructions, Eddies, and Downwash ... . 6-7
6.3.5 Plume Rise and Plume Rise Formulas ................... . 6-7
6.3.6 Limitations and Reliability of Predictive Techniques .............. . 6-8
6.3.7 Behavior of Flare Plumes .. . ............ . 6-9
6.4 Atmospheric Dispersion Theories 6-11
6.4.1 Background ... 6-11
6.4.2 Basic Formulas .................................. . 6-11
6.4.3 Parameters and Dispersion Coefficients ..... 6-13
6.4.4 Influence of Atmospheric Conditions ... 6-13
6.4.5 Dispersion of Aerosols and Particulate Matter ... 6-14
6.4.6 Multiple Sources.......... ...... ...... ........ . 6-16
6.4.7 Wind Tunnel and Other Studies ...... .... . 6-16
6.4.8 Limitations and Reliability of Predictive Techniques ... 6-17
6.5 Cooling Tower Plume Rise.. ............... . 6-\8
6.5.1 B a c k g r o u n d . . . ............ ... 6-18
6.5.2 Analysis of Plume Rise and Plume Behavior... 6-18
6.5.3 Plume Condensation and Precipitation. 6-20
6.5.4 Minimizing Visible Plumes... ......... . 6-21
6.6 Sample Calculations .... 6-24
6.6. J Refinery Boiler Stack ... 6-24
6.6.2 Process Heaters and Stacks .... 6-24
6.6.3 Catalytic Cracking Units ... 6-27
6.6.4 Flares...... .... . 6-28
6.6.5 Storage Tanks .... . 6-29
6.6.6 Product Loading .. . 6-30
6.6.7 Roof Vents .... 6-33

• v


Typical Regulatory Requirements These publications define the contaminants and describe
their properties and their effects on human health and
1': i,'c!cr~d Air Quality Standards, or the current welfare, animals, and vegetation. The human health
_,::1"011[\, are outlined in the Federal Register. I * category includes toxicology data and effects on the
',,' .1."C standards appear in tabular form in the Air respiratory and nervous systems. Standard test methods
.\ " r \ ('irS of May 3,1971, and are reproduced in are also included.
i ,doic 6-1 also gives the levels at which the
.. ""'1,111 contaminants affect human health and

6.2 Environmental Conditions at Construction

Department of Health, Education and Site
,,",,: .• :,' '.1' ",ued a series of six publications on the

."If',,[ " \ i r l)uality Criteria, t The subject of each

".~, "';:"1 I', olle of the six common contaminants:

The three most important factors of weather in all
parts of the world are temperature, wind, and precipita-
tion. For our purpose, however, the primary concerns
. !!\ ilks.
are temperature and wind.
:1 ,']l)Jl0xide.
"!;lil'al Oxidants, 6.2.1 TEMPERATURE
Temperature can vary widely because it is influenced
by geographical location and seasonal change. The
i ',(IS on pages 6-33 and 6-34,
rI, 'Tl1 :)'Jperintendent of Documents. U.S. Govern~ lowest and highest recorded readings in the United
: ';lIi,':, Washington, D,C, 20402. States are - 66 F and + 134 F at Yellowstone Park and

I able 6-1 ~Federal Air Quality Standards and levels at Which Effects Show in Humans
Federal Air Quality Standards Levels at Which Effects Show'
~~~--------"-~- .. ---~-
Primaryt Secondaryt Human Health Welfare§
fIn);.:uIJIt:\ .
Annu~l~ ~~llJl1t:tric mean, [J.g per ell m 75 60 80 60
'h., ... ·Ilr Cl)nc, :1.g per ell mt 260 150 200 150
. s.uur (h,des:
Annu.d ,lfIth aver. f.Lg per ell m 80 (0.03 ppm) 60 (0.20 ppm) 115 85
'h, ~-~-hr (llne, ag per ell mil 365 (0.14 ppm) 260 (0.1 ppm) 300 285
\f,l, ;-hr cune. tJ.g per ell m!1 1,300 (0.5 ppm)
C.l.t~·n \1t1no\l-l .'
\ . ut::.
~':lr ('{me, mg per ell ml!
J\ I'il[ ":unc, mg per ell mil
10 (9 ppm) 10 12
40 (35 ppm) 40 58
"x"'h,hcmical Oxidants'
0:- ' .
t'·nr l11ax. :1.g rer ell mi i 160 (0.08 ppm) 160 130 100
If • ..!r".Jrthln~'
"..1.\ -'·hr ('!.)·nc 6-9 am,
. ..:. per cu m 160 (0.24 ppm) 160 100
", -,
'''cn (hides:
,d .trith aver, iJ.g per eu m 100 (0.05 ppm) 100 117 4701J[
• '" 1\ ~l\'l'r, 'J..g per ell m 118
Fnkral criteria.
hv June I, 1975.
~ l'lllit unenforcement.
Ili,-,.lnd crops.
1 " h<' ~"<'<'cded more than once a year
'<cd \'1\ d,lIllagC to vegetation unly. .


the lowest temperatures occur around sunrise. Diurnal •

Death Valley, respectively. Temperature may also vary
variations are most pronounced in desert areas and
considerably on a diurnal basis. least pronounced in moist, wooded areas. Thus daily
The most fundamental temperature variation is
temperature variations for wooded areas may not
caused by the annual change in the angle of incidence
exceed 10 F, while those for desert areas may be as
of sun rays (i.e., the slow decrease in air temperature
much as 120 F.
when moving from the equator to a latitude of 90
degrees at the poles). One other fundamental variation,
apart from the seasonal variation, is caused by the 6.2.2 WIND MOTION AND TURBULENCE
presence of large land masses or large oceans. Thus the
greatest seasonal and diurnal temperature variations Wind may be defined as the movement of air in a
occur near the largest land masses, which absorb heat more or less horizontal direction. Turbulence is
rapidly in the summer and radiate (lose) heat rapidly in irregular air motion caused by eddies superimposed
the winter. This is especially true for most interior upon a general flow. Air currents, as contrasted with
sections of the United States and Canada. wind, denote vertically moving air columns.
The horizontal distribution of air temperature for The irregular heating of the earth produces irregular
large or small areas is shown by isotherms (lines drawn heating of the air at the surface, which, in turn, causes
on maps to connect points of equal temperature). On irregularity in pressure. Although these pressure varia-
a world map, the isotherms show an irregular distribu- tions are relatively small, they cause wind. The velocity
tion, which varies greatly from summer to winter and of the resultant wind is directly proportional to this
from one continent to another. pressure differential.
General weather data for the United States and Although pressure gradient is the predominant factor,
Canada (including temperature and temperature ranges, there are other factors that influence the magnitude and
precipitation, and wind velocities) are given in API direction of air movements in both a horizontal and
Bulletin 2513. 2 More complete climatological data vertical direction. Vertical air movements, or air cur-
for a greater variety of locations are furnished by the rents, are discussed in Paragraphs 6.2.3 and 6.2.4. •
U. S. Environmental Data Service, Environmental In any locality and for any particular season the
Science Services Administration (Commerce Depart- frequency and intensity with which the wind blows from
ment). Data available include standard 30-year averages any given direction are fairly constant. These data are
of temperature, precipitation, and wind velocity. available as wind roses (wind charts) and will show, for
Wind rose data are also available. example, that the wind will blow from the Southwest
for 45 percent of the time at an average velocity of Seasonal Variations 15 miles per hour. The other 55 percent of the time
wind direction is distributed among the other 15 points
At any location, seasonal temperature variations are
of the compass and includes a period of calm.
caused primarily by the angle of incidence of sun rays
to the earth. In the summer, sun rays are more nearly For control of air pollution, the following information
is valuable:
perpendicular than in the winter. As the rays become
more perpendicular, the hours of daylight and the total
I. The constancy or persistency of the wind from a
radiant energy received (insolation) increase.
given direction over a period of time.
Seasonal temperature variations range from a low at
the equator, where the monthly average temperature 2. The variation of the horizontal wind speed and
variation may not exceed 5 F for the entire year, to a direction with height. (Where the ground is reasonably
high in northerly latitudes, where average monthly level, the effects of ground friction on wind will nor-
temperature variations may exceed 100 F. mally cancel out at a height of 1,500 to 2,000 feet.
Figure 6-1 3 shows the effect of ground friction.) Diurnal Variations
Although horizontal changes are normally less
Daily temperature variations are caused by radiant significant in areas a way from urban centers, this may
energy received from the sun during the day and dis- not be true in cases of irregular ground terrain or
sipated by the earth surface at night. These variations unusual thermal effects. Since air is a fluid, its move-
are usually greater in summer than in winter and are ment in a horizontal direction is usually characterized
naturally at a minimum when the sky is covered. by laminar or streamline flow, unless disruptive influ- •
On land, the highest atmospheric temperatures are ences are present. Disruptive influences tending to
usually experienced between I :00 I'm and 4:00 pm; cause turbulence include:

tion from one locality to another and periodically shows

considerable variation within the same locality.
From the point of view of meteorology and of dis-
persion of gases, further classifications of the lapse rate
are required. These classifications refer to air that is in
vertical motion:
1. Dry adiabatic (constant heat content) lapse rate refers
to a change in air temperature due to a change in
pressure of the air in vertical motion. Rising air expands
due to decreasing pressure causing the temperature to
faiL Falling air compresses causing the temperature to
rise. This rate of temperature increase or decrease is
constant for air that is dry (not saturated) and has a
value of 5.5 F per 1,000 feet (10 C per kilometer).
2. Moist or wet adiabatic lapse rate refers only to
rising air saturated with moisture at that temperature.
This rate is 3.2 F per 1,000 feet (5.8 C per kilometer).
'liND SPEED (m/sec.) Descending air always warms at the dry adiabatic
,'!(\I1:11 drag reduces the wind speed close to rate. The occurrence of saturation in the atmosphere
'" "-,\ ! 11,lt ((lund at the gradient level. The profile modifies the adiabatic relationship between temperature
III I'> -..table is usually steeper than that found
and pressure by the value of the latent heat of evapora-
tion (or condensation), which explains the lower
<>-, - U"ln~e of Wind Speed Profile with Stability.
adiabatic lapse rate for moist air.
Typical examples of lapse rates for air that is not
in vertical motion are given by Donn. 4 These examples
,C[,. lIillCh can be caused by natural
also indicate the effects of inversion (increase in air
:"":trilles (hills or irregular ground temperature with increasing altitude). An understand-
"rlilicial barriers (buildings and in- ing of lapse rate is important because the relationship
between the existing lapse rate and the adiabatic lapse
"I'([,;)n. which occurs when the land rate determines whether the atmosphere is stable or
""leT I pr colder) than the air itself and unstable. It should be noted that the existing lapse rate
for air not in vertical motion can and does vary widely,
while the values for dry and moist adiabatic lapse rates
m.. "", "r Ir,'nts. which are usually indicative of (as in vertical motion) are always constant.
chane", I'rontal disturbances may be strong
.JnJ ,Ire qU11e common in some areas, relatively

tUrtluklll ;Ilr motion influences effective stack The atmosphere is either stable or unstable depending
Jill' [lossibility of turbulence should upon its ability either to resist or to augment vertical
C1:Je\.lt.!crl"d : 11 [ill..' "tack design.
motion, Atmospheric stability or instability is directly
related to temperature gradients or lapse rates. If the
existing lapse rate is less than the adiabatic lapse rate,
the air is stable, if it is greater, the air is unstable. There
1:~"" . ,:,' cdll he dclined as the vertical temperature are various degrees of conditional stability and neutral
V ... "'~: ':: ck" tl) the vertical temperature distribu- ,t', bility in which the existing lapse rate is greater than
::"""piJere, The temperature of the atmos- the moist adiabatic lapse rate, but less than the dry
I',tlls, or "Ia pses," with increasing adiabatic lapse rate. Also, if a rising parcel of unstable
'" :",' ,,( the increasing distance from the air enters a new stratum where the existing lapse rate is
"'rface of the earth, The normal or lower than the adiabatic rate, the previously unstable
: Ie' is 3,5 F per 1,000 feet (6.5 C per air will become stabilized at that height.
,:11 that is not in vertical motion. This In a mass of stable air there is little or no vertical
:','rCltllre gradient shows considerable varia- activity to sweep it aloft. Smoke, dust, minute water

droplets, and other airborne prod ucts collect in the

lower atmosphere to limit visibility. The presence of
fog, smog, mist, or haze is indicative of stable air.
Under such conditions, smoke from industrial stacks,
after losing its initial heat and velocity, will trail off in
a horizontal plane. Automobile exhaust and other
lapse rate. This results in extreme air stability. Under
these conditions plumes generally tend to disperse
downward, thus decreasing effective stack height.
Since most elevated inversions are higher than 500 feet,
this would apply to most stacks. If a stack is designed
for a location with a condition favorable to inverSIOn,

fumes will lie close to the surface. two design possibilities should be considered:
In unstable air the vertical lifting sweeps aloft smoke,
dust, and other haze-producing products. Good I. Design the stack with sufficient height so that the
visibility is an indication of instability. stack exit will be above most inversion layers.
For the purpose of further estimating atmospheric 2. Design the stack exit gas velocity and exit gas
dispersion, atmospheric turbulence is categorized into temperature so that the plume will rise above inversion,
the following six types which are coded to correspond or will at least provide good penetration.
to Table 6-2:
Frequently the inversion layer is sufficiently high so that
I. Extremely unstable (A).
neither of these alternatives is possible.
2. Moderately unstable (B).
With most stacks a critical wind velocity causes
3. Slightly unstable (C).
maximum ground level concentrations of pollutants at
4. Neutral conditions (D).
moderate wind speeds. Under these conditions, in-
5. Slightly stable (E).
6. Moderately stable (F). creasing the physical stack height further elevates the
plume, thus reducing ground level concentrations.
Table 6-2 details the relationship of atmospheric Increasing stack gas velocity or temperature has no
turbulence to weather conditions. significant effect on these ground level concentrations.

Table 6-2-Relation of Turbulence Types to Weather

Daytime Insolation Nighttime Conditions
~-----.-~-.~-------... ,----~------... Local terrain can have a pronounced influence on
Surface Thin Over-
Wind cast or < 3/8 weather and weather characteristics such as air stability.
Speed Strong Moderate Slight > 4/8 Cloudiness' A wind proceeding over a level area changes direction
(m/sec) Cloudi- on reaching hills, high structures, or mountains so that
ness *
2 A A-B B the obstruction can usually be cleared. Air that is
2 A-B B C E F
4 B B-C C D E
forced to rise to pass over such obstructions mayor
5-6 C CoD D D D may not become unstable depending upon the speed of
6 C D D D D ascent, humidity conditions, and contrast between the
"'The degree of cloudiness is that fraction of the sky above the local apparent
horizon that is covered by clouds. The neutral class (D) should be assumed for cooling rate of the rising air and the lapse rate of the
heavy overcast conditions, day Of night.
surrounding air. In the Los Angeles area the incoming
cool marine air does not have sufficient momentum to
clear the mountains, resulting in inversion and very
6.2.5 INVERSIONS stable air.
As discussed previously, the type of terrain-rocky,
Temperature inversions occur when the temperature sandy, or wooded-influences the magnitude of daily
of the air increases with altitude. A common cause of temperature variations. The smaller the daily tempera-
inversion is rapid cooling of the ground at night by ture variation, the greater the tendency toward stable
radiation. The surface air is then cooled by convection air.
so that the air temperature some distance from the Areas of strong topographic relief also experience
ground is higher than the air temperature at or near air currents (breezes). These breezes are usually upward
ground surface. Inversion can also be caused by air during the day when the valley floor is relatively warm,
masses, or fronts, and occasionally by turbulence. and downward at night when the obstruction cools
In Los Angeles it is caused by cool marine air forcing faster than the sheltered valley below.
its way under warmer continental air. Both masses of The major effect of local terrain on weather is the

air are then trapped by the adjacent coastal mountains. extent to which it introduces instability into air move-
When an inversion occurs, the existing lapse rate is ments or promotes turbulence and eddy currents.
negative, and therefore always less than the adiabatic These in turn directly affect gas dispersion.

plume alternately ascends and descends or descends

and ascends after leaving the stack.
TYP<S .l'IND CHARACTERISTICS 2. Coning is characteristic of neutral or near neutral
stability. This plume occurs at moderate wind speed
,'eel iously, atmospheric dispersion and and has the shape of a narrow cone and a regular spread.
are dependent upon and gov-
"':I11CS The horizontal centerline of the plume is usually
,l"'~ conditions in the atmosphere. The inclined slightly downward.
':1l'rle conditions are stability, neutrality
, , 'II, "nU instability. These major conditions 3. Fanning is characteristic of stable conditions. This
" I hc relationship between the existing condition is desirable as there is little vertical diffusion,
,i 1:1" adiabatic lapse rate, as previously even for long distances of plume travel.

. ,'I plumes can result from these atmos- 4. Fumigation is characteristic of inversion above stack
", 'Ii '. and it is possible to categorize the level. Under these conditions the plume tends to dis-
'. I h,)ugh the following descriptions are perse downward but is prevented from upward disper-
'I :lrc generally applicable, particularly
sion by the inversion layer.
'.[.lllvely low plumes (e.g., below 1,000
5. Lofting is characteristic of inversion below stack
I.,", ;lrc graphically portrayed in Figure
level. It is the reverse of fumigation and somewhat
similar to fanning, although it occurs at a lower wind
, :, ,",:lracteristic of unstable conditions. The velocity.




- -- - - - --- ---- ---- ---

Figure 6-2-Characteristic Forms of Smoke Plumes from Chimneys.


Analyses of these plume types indicate that in-

stability is usually less desirable than stability or near-
neutral stability. This is true because air turbulence
may cause plume concentrations to appear on the
ground in relatively close proximity to the stack.
Fumigation involving a high inversion is probably the

least desirable condition because vertical upward
dispersion is inhibited and light to heavy ground
concentrations may appear over large areas. NOTE: A plume in a hypothetical field of small turbulent
Complete analyses cannot be based on atmospheric motions will move in a relatively straight line, with a gradual
increase in its cross section.
conditions alone but must include an evaluation of the
effluent gas and other parameters such as wind speed Figure 6-3-Plume Dispersing in a Field of Small Eddies.
and wind shear and the effect of any obstructions.


The previo'i~ discussion of plume characteristics is

presented in terms of atmospheric condition (stability
or instability). Although this property is probably the
most important overall indicator of plume character-
istics (particularly for conditions such as fanning or
fumigation), wind movement and any associated
turbulence constitute other important variables. Wind NOTE: If the eddies are all very large compared to the plume
shear, a measure of change in horizontal wind speed dimensions, the plume will grow very little in size, but it will

meander wildly.
and direction with height, must also be considered.
Wind and associated characteristics affect plume Figure 6-4-Plume Dispersing in a Field of Large Eddies.
dilution, plume diffusion, and plume rise, although
these terms are to some extent interrelated.


Bosanquet 5 states that plume dilution caused by

wind is an important factor in overall dilution and
varies directly as a function of the wind velocity. The
wind speed serves to alternate the concentration of
particles as they are released from the stack. If other
parameters remain constant and the wind s peed doubles,
the number of particles in a given downward direction NOTE: The typical daytime atmosphere has eddies of an
is halved. infinite variety of sizes, and a dispersing plume both grows and
meandero;; as it moves downwind.
In addition to dilution, wind turbulence and its
effect on diffusion must also be considered. The eddy Figure 6-5-Plume Dispersing in a Field of Varied Eddies.
diffusion coefficient is proportional to the product of
wind velocity and a function of the existing turbulence.
A plume increases in diameter as a result of turbulence Various mathematical equations for diffusivity have
acting on its outer circumference. As the eddies result- been proposed notably by Bosanquet. However, these
ing in turbulent motion increase in size, a point is are usually of little practical value because the degree
reached where they affect the entire plume, causing and type of turbulence and the various parameters
irregular motion downwind while having little effect on involved do not permit accurate evaluation. Smith
plume diameter. In normally turbulent air where notes that "a statistical evaluation of the problem is
various sizes of eddies coexist, a combined effect is
experienced. These three conditions are illustrated
in Figures 6-3, 6-4, and 6-5. I
often satisfactory if care is taken in choosing the
parameters." 3 Even this representation applies only
for relatively short distances downwind.



Under normal conditions a plume will rise above

',[ruction can play an important role in deter- stack height because of its kinetic and thermal energy.
<> ::c !,lllme rise and dispersion because it can disturb This energy is expended in moving the plume in a
,d the air flow. This disturbance or deflection vertical direction upward. The kinetic energy is the
, ,.1' :'!ll me dilution and diffusion. stack gas velocity, while the temperature differential
" ,iiscussion, obstructions include not only tall (above atmospheric temperature) provides the thermal
,.II! r,', and natural irregularities in the earth surface, energy, imparting the effect of buoyancy. These energy
factors and the corresponding heights may be described
','''graphical features such as valleys and shore-
by the symbols H, and H., respectively, and together
"HI-water effect). Natural irregularities include
HI depressions and unusual ground roughness. as :1 H, also termed the plume rise. The effective height
,,::,wres located in large urban areas not only of a stack can be measured by the following equation:
.I",'C Il)pographic effects, but can produce thermal H = Hs + t!.H (I)
" \'.cli. Generally, the effects of obstructions are Where:
" "I ilat is, they tend to result in down wash and
H = effective height of stack.
Hs = stack height.
,:<1 '!round concentrations. Further, the degree
t!.H = plume rise.
'\ :'''IV is a function of the ratio of stack height to
''',,':,on height; increasing ratios decrease the The plume rise is affected by many parameters and is
I, "1' the obstruction. usually inversely proportional to the wind velocity.
II'liLtions produce two separate effects-down- The effective height of a stack is a convenient tool
"'1 Ind downwash-both of which bring a portion
and one parameter for measuring atmospheric dis-
persion. In some cases it can also be used in determining
:., lline to ground level while it is still in fairly
penetration into stable air masses. This is not true,
II'll ted form. Downdraft is usually associated

however, if the air mass is extremely stable (e.g., an

,,'," ,upported by, or closely adjacent to, build- inversion) partially because many of the parameters
,!I,d involves a downward flow of exit gases on involved are difficult to measure accurately.
"ie of the building. Downwash occurs when Almost all plume rise formulas show that plume rise
, 'L'~ is the obstacle and refers to the downward is inversely proportional to wind speed although the
':t" icC Side of the stack. Tall, narrow fractionat- degree of proportionality varies with atmospheric con-
'\1 crs or other nearby stacks can also cause ditions and with the particular authority. A typical
",\ 11 \\ ,l '.:/1. plume rise formula is given by Lucas, Moore, and
I" '" oid these dual effects, Hawkins and Nonbebel 6 Spurr, 7 in which the plume rise (:1H) in feet (Z ''',,)
ro'tliialc that there should be a minimum stack height is inversely proportional to the wind velocity ([1.) in feet
per second and is expressed by the equation:
.HId that stack effluent velocity should be greater than a

'''tIC,t! \cioeity, which is a function of the wind velocity. J:Q!4

Zmax = -- (2)
1 he rule regarding stack height is that minimum stack [1.
height should be two and one-half times the height of
:x = a constant with a value of 5700 in neutral
,.dpeent structures. Further, when there are many atmosphere.
,trllLtures and obstructions that can produce severe Q = heat emission, in megawatts.
dects. stack height calculations should be checked by iJ. = wind velocity, in feet per second.
"'can, of 1\ ind tunnel tests. It is evident that the greater the wind shear, the more
()n 'tack effluent velocity, the rule states that stack rapidly the plume assumes horizontal characteristics,
,'liluent 'elocity should be 1.3 to 1.5 times the wind while vertical rise practically ceases.
\ CloeHy, Because wind velocity is a variable function, Several authorities 8.9 such as Moses and Stram have
:1 ;,',In he assumed that a stack velocity of 1.4 times the
compared, calculated, and observed plume heights
(the calculated height being obtained from various
"·IIIe! ,clocity for 98 percent of the time provides
empirical and theoretical formulas). In general, these

"ite-icilt protection against downwash. To obtain this
comparisons indicate that all formulas are approxima-
Till,':1i stack exit velocity, either a venturi nozzle design
tions at best and no one formula is universally applic-
:1 Ihe stacK exit or an inward coning of the stack at the able.
·t.tck exit can improve velocity at the expense of a Briggs 9 found that buoyant plumes follow the "¥3"
'!""11 I'rcssurc drop. Law for a considerable distance downwind of the stack
(but not exceeding ten stack heights). This can be
expressed as:

t..H = (l.6F)li(x)%
This formula is on the conservative side, thus pre-
senting a slight safety factor. It should be reasonably
accurate for unstable conditions by using a factor of
1.1 or 1.2 and for stable conditions by using a factor
of 0.8 or 0.9. These factors are recommended by

Holland. 12 Conditions of extreme stability (inversion)
F = value proportional to the rate of buoyancy
(heat) emission. or extreme instability (turbulence) present the usual
x = horizontal distance downwind of the stack. problems.
I'- = wind velocity. The critical wind speed for any given atmospheric
stability condition is that speed which causes a maxi-
A regression formula 4 was developed to which the mum ground level concentration of the pollutant.
other formulas were compared. This regression formula
Equation (4) and formulas of other authorities indicate
is generally applicable to the total data available, most
that the plume rise (t..H) is an inverse function of wind
of which involved wind speeds in the range of 9 to
speed, conversely, the greater the wind speed, the greater
22.5 mph (4 to 10 m/sec). This formula is not generally
the effect of dilution. These two forces are counter-
applicable to wind velocities outside this range nor to
acting. There is a point of equilibrium between these
a wide variety of stacks where local conditions have a
two counteractive effects where the maximum ground
pronounced or predominate effect.
level concentration occurs. This intermediate wind
Anderson, et al., conclude that "no rational choice
speed-the critical wind speed-varies with conditions
can be made between various proposed empirical
of atmospheric stability. This wind should be used for
plume rise formulas" 10 for the determination of effec-
design purposes. A method for determining critical
tive stack height. It is the consensus that this observa-
wind speed is indicated in Paragraph 6.6.2.
tion is valid for all formulas, empirical and dimensional,
that have been published to date.
Nevertheless, the quest for accurate formulas con- 6.3.6 LIMITATIONS AND RELIABILITY OF
tinues apace so that the engineer can design in com-
pliance with applicable specifications. The most precise
dimensional analysis is that presented by the U. S.
Atomic Energy Commission II (these formulas have
been reproduced by Anderson, Hippler. and Robin-
son 10 in their work for API). These formulas treat

All authorities generally agree that none of the plume

rise formulas presented in the literature are uniformly
applicable. As will be shown, the degree of applica-
bility is related to the parameters in the equation, but

momentum-dominated plumes and buoyancy-domi- accuracy is largely determined by local meteorological
nated plumes separately. In each category. for both conditions, which are not adequately expressed in the
calm days and windy days, the values of parameters available formulas. In the following table,lo a com-
are given for stable conditions and unstable conditions. parison is made between observed and theoretical
Most of the constants contained in the formulas have plume rise.
not been determined. These determinations must be
made experimentally on the basis of actual observation Formula Range of Ratios of Calculated
of plume rise. to Observed Rise
The formula by Holland 12 involves a less rigorous Bosanquet, et al. 0.44 to 1.13
Sutton 1.21 to 1.85
approach thaI' most formulas for an ctl"ective stack Priestley 0.60 to 1.32
height determination. Several authorities 10.13, recom- Meade 0.77 to 1.21
mend this formula on the basis of reasonable accuracy NOTE: Buoyant source, windy day.
under various conditions. This formula is for neutral
or slightly unstable conditions:

wd [ 1.5 + 2.68
I1H = iJ: (I0-'p) (T.' --i,-T") I]
I ( 4)
Variations of ±50 percent between calculated and
observed values of :lH can occur, especially for adverse
Where: meteorological conditions (e.g., a strong inversion).
,\' stack exit velocity. in meters per second. This does not necessarily signify that the parameters in
d stack diameter. in meters. the equations are in error, although constants and

I'- wind velocity at stack height. in meters per
second. exponential values do vary. It can indicate inadequate
atmospheric pressure. in millibars. or inaccurate measurement of the parameters or that
atmospheric temperature. in degrees Kelvin. the measurements changed with distance downwind.
stack temperature. in degree, Keh in. Ideally, dimensionalized or empirical formulas with

,'onstants should be developed for the area It should be noted that under normal flare operation,
," consideration. sulfur dioxide emission is negligible when compared
". 'c·lop equations with suitable constants, con- with emissions from refinery stacks in which sulfur-
,I [h~ accuracy of the plume rise equations with containing residual fuel oils have been used. Sulfur
::,'" to wind velocity in neutral or near-neutral dioxide assumes serious proportions only when there
1"115 of >lability. Generally, the equations are is an emergency condition such as the loss of a com-
,,'lW[[C in low to moderate wind velocities-that pressor or the shutdown of the sulfur pidnt.
,:',1 lllPh (2.3 to 9.1 m/sec). The accuracy tends This discussion is concerned with lighted flare
cI ':11 'e somewhat for lower or higher wind veloci- operation under design conditions. If the flare is
!" is not generally important because t1H is a unlighted, dispersion is governed by the criteria dis-
"I" Ilii'h figure for low wind velocities, thus cussed in this section and in the subsequent section
'" II" '! !!round concentrations. At high wind (see Paragraphs 6.4. I through 6.4.8).
:', dilution effects preclude high concentrations, The calculations of plume rise and atmospheric
1 "line of the plume is occasionally swept to dispersion from stack effluents are relatively com-
,l:lnd. plicated. These calculations are even more complex for
III,' rl'asoning with reference to wind velocities flared gas, in which case the stack effluent gas is burned
IIp[llleS to unstable air except that the factor prior to final dispersion and heat release is external
I ".,jiIV usually produces an increase in average to the flare stack.
'. !'!'I~ilt. This is reflected in equation (4) by use of An empirical approach to the problem of plume rise
:111' ;'1 1,1 or 1.2 applied to t1H. Unfortunately, is given in the following equation:
., ,':I;,rl\, with strong instability, the higher stack H = Hs + t1FL + t1H (5)
'I ""'1' 'lot overcome the effect of looping, which Where:
"'[lei uce undesirable ground concentrations at H effective height of plume rise.
I',ilort distances downwind from the stack. Hs = actual stack height.
t1FL = vertical component of flare length.
It a I reg uent occurrence.
t1H = plume rise after burning is complete.
,',:[I"t deviation from these equations is
", '1',','0 wilen there is an inversion above the stack The following paragraphs show that the accuracy of
, :.ilion) where the most precise results should determination of t1FL and t1H is su bject to question.
""hlC, 1'<0 formula wiII accurately indicate the Practically, the flare length can be assumed to be
"c!1elration or breakthrough of an inversion 120 times the flare stack diameter, as indicated in
.. '.IClllon (4) recognizes this by use of a factor API RP 521. 14 This figure is directly applicable at
I ',lJ, I r inversion conditions are frequent or 0.2 sonic velocity, which is the usual basis of design.
II 'C'. ,'1,' 1IIIersions are occasionally experienced, the The flare length varies with velocity and flame tempera-
u,-" III '.\ hat may be termed an inversion factor is ture, which is related to the material being burned.
tr..:"mmencied. Such a factor would depend on local The flare length also varies with the value of Cp/C,
mctenr,)loglcal conditions and cannot be quantified, the ratio of specific heats. It is apparent that the true
t-ut IIllulJ involve an increased stack height or increased flare length may be greater than or less than the value
\t~,·~ ,'\il velocity, or both. If these factors are such shown.
that the plume rises above the inversion layer, the layer To determine the vertical component of flare length
",II act II> a protective shield. (t1FL) a correction must be made for the horizontal
component, which is related to the angle of incidence
of the flare to the horizontal. This angle is influenced
by the relation of wind velocity to exit gas velocity.
Two methods are presented in API RP 521,14 and the
I,.: Illalor potential contaminant from a flare is recommended method involves the use of the graph
''':iur dio\idc (SO,), and this contaminant is related to shown in Figure 6-6, from which ~t1 Y (vertical com-
"'t ;'I,)rngen sulfide (H,S) content of the flared gas. ponent) can be obtained.
I'H[I"ulllk matter (smoke), odor, and plume visibility The second determination is that for t1H, the burned
,i,,) contribute to pollution. These pollutants can flare gas plume rise. This is calculated by using
1,1111 he eliminated to a large extent by proper Holland's formula: 12

.. """ion techniques and by the use of steam to effect
""'k",e combustion. Infrequently heavier hydro-
r "IIlh. ,uch as phenolics, and alkylation residues
t1H = :d [1.5 + 2.68 (IO-ap ) (T.:';:-, T}/J (6)

"l,lllllll~ hydrofluoric acids may also be present. This formula is applicable at the theoretical or imagi-

0.9 ./
.-- ~.6.LX

0.8 / b,L
b,X - 5~;; (i-t)
--l 0.7
b, Y =

+E~~12J 0.5 11

b,X= b,!

[I +E ~~)2J

~I--l 0.5
\\ b,1=
I E.6.X


'" ?L
B- ---- ~

o 0./ 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9 1.0 1.1 /.2 1.3

Figure 6-6-Approximote Flame Distortion Due to lateral Wind on Jet Velocity from Flare Stack.

nary stack height, Hs + : ,. FL, as shown in Figure 6-7. He = heat of combustion.

It is apparent that 11', the stack exit velocity, is con- Hr = heat losses by radiation.
siderably less than at flare stack elevation, while d, the
flare diameter at the imaginary stack height, may be The complexities involved in this method of determina-
three or more times larger than at the original stack tion are obvious; therefore, T" is normally determined
height. Equation (6) is applicable to neutral or slightly by measurement or approximation.
unstable conditions with suitable corrections for sta- Research data over a considerable period of time
bility or instability (see Paragraph 6.3.5). have produced no cohesive or comprehensive data and
It is apparent that the parameters in equation (6), no real basis for a reasonable approximation of relevant
when applied to a flare plume, are difficult to determine parameters at imaginary stack height. These parameters
accurately (except i~. wind velocity). Thus, include stack flare diameters and velocity, as well as
stack exit temperature. Thus, it was stated in 1967
T" = TI + He - Hr (7) that the considerable effort and expenditure "to develop
Where: a calculation procedure for predicting dispersion from
Tn = imaginary stack exit temperature.
TI = temperature of combined inlet gases prior to
elevated flares cannot be justified." )5
Although equation (6) may have serious limitations
as to accuracy, it is the only one available. If future


tribute to the vertical component of rise. Turbulence

is defined as "the random character of the velocity of a
fluid-in contrast to the constancy of such a velocity
in steady streamlined flow." 16 Wind turbulence is
always present with eddies varying from small to large
scale. The strength and time intervals of these eddies
range from large in highly unstable regions to small in
highly stable meteorological regions. It is apparent that
no mathematical derivation (formula or set of formulas)
yields an absolutely accurate value for ground level
concentrations. Also the dispersion parameters that are
available in the literature are average values for a
definite period of time. These parameters can become
....._ _ . " ~ .. r'f~ctive Stack Height, H. less accurate if modified to another time base .
Even if all parameters could be accurately deter-
mined, a physical impossibility, the relationship of
','111.t he method may these parameters to time and distance is variable rather
,I ,'1 concentrations
,,'\ than fixed. The predictive calculations of the ground
,,""tltute a problem). concentrations (on which design is based) must not
"!llur dioxide or other represent either overestimations, which result in
',"'''Ied ,n the following unnecessarily expensive design, or underestimations,
_ - ,. . ",,;' ,'! ,II'"~ by using effective which may result in ground concentrations above the
,1'1.111 "n ( I ). accepted standards.
Reasonable accuracy can be obtained, particularly
when practical limitations are applied to time involved
. -• • • UI\Dl!r510n 1 neories and distance downwind. Wind tunnel models and other
meteorological studies can be useful under certain
conditions to augment calculated results (see Paragraph
6.4.7). This is particularly true for complex situations,
such as the disturbance of plume flow resulting from
,;; c 1',lS,il fuel contains
structural obstructions or topographic irregularities.
.. "mitted into the
, "II' concern with these

,II, " primarily at what 6.4.2 BASIC FORMULAS

" lliey come in contact
"111 ,hurt-term and long-
The basic formulas have been well presented by
, •• 1 i'IC\ iously, these con-
various authorities including Sutton and Bosanquet,
,,'ceI certain prescribed while modifications to these formulas have been in-
dicated by Pearson, Pasquill, Turner, and Gifford. In
,I ',lirly predictable tra- general, these formulas do not vary greatly and involve
,'"" hoth downwind and expressions of the probability curves developed by
",'IIIi\. however, it is sub- Karl Gauss. The so-called Gaussian curves were
'1l1l1 forces resulting in
originally applied to indicate deviations from presumed
" 'ill'cading of contam- known values, involving either experimental or
""lined somcwhat impre- statistical studies.
'c' \ lliues of a frequency

"lilt concentration) from the The Gaussian curve has been found applicable under
',' "liues. Dispersion is most conditions for the determinations of downwind
",Ill, Whcn diffusion occurs, atmospheric concentrations resulting from a stack
,I Ill\)\'C from a region of plume. The dispersion equations herein assume a
"I' lower concentration. Gaussian distribution in both horizontal and vertical
III"table atmospheric con- planes-that is, the equations incorporate deviations
k IIlCtlC energy and thermal on a probability basis, ~!I (horizontal) and ~, (vertical),
i,,~ pluille-all of which con- and have been developed from the work of Ogura,

Frenkiel, Pasquill, and Gifford. The major differences

in the various dispersion formulas involve the dispersion
coefficients and the way they vary with atmospheric
stability and distance downwind. The formulas herein
are recommended since the standard deviations are
related graphically to a more comprehensive definition

concentration at any particular point In
space, in grams.
distance downwind.
distance crosswind from x-axis.
vertical distance above ground.
uniform rate of emission, in grams per

of atmospheric conditions and only two dispersion second.
parameters are involved.
cr y = standard deviation of plume diffusion in the
The Gaussian distribution curve as applied to the cr, = standard deviation of plume diffusion in the
distribution of atmospheric contaminants is shown in vertical.
Figure 6-8, in which y (value of the relative concentra- tL = wind velocity, in meters per second.
tion) varies from to 100 percent when plotted against
values of x - x/cr. The deviation values or dispersion co-
For concentrations calculated at ground level,
equation (8) simplifies to:
efficients, cry and cr" are discussed later in this section.
The value of x represents any point directly downwind
of the plume flow, and x represents the distance in
X(x,y,O;H) = ~L
cry cr, tL
exp [ - !

~ (~),J
meters from x. Characteristics of the Gaussian dis-
tribution curve are described in greater detail by exp [ - (9)
Turner. IJ
The Gaussian curves retain the same general bell- A still simpler equation can be applied to ground
shape at any distance downwind, but with increasing level concentrations calculated along the centerline of
distances downwind the curves become flatter and the plume (i.e., y = 0):
wider. It should be noted that these curves refer to
distribution of contaminants only, as induced by
X(x,O,O;H) = _(l~ exp [ - !2
cry cr, tL
dispersion-that is, the dispersion coefficients.

For a ground-level source with no effective plume
The equations for determining the concentration of
rise, the resulting equation is:
gas or particles are given below. The effective stack
height (H) is determined by estimating plume rise and Q
X(x,O,O;O) = r. - - (II)
adding the physical stack height. All equations are for cr 11 cr z [J.
particles equal to or less than 20 microns in diameter.'
The accuracy of the mean value of X so determined is
The equations are for a single source of emission at
proportional to the accuracy of the mean value of the
effective stack height (H)t when there is no particle
wind velocity (tL) and is also directly related to the pre-
deposition or reaction at the surface. The equations
cision involved in choosing the diffusion coefficients.
are as follows:
Since diffusion (or dispersion) coefficients are based on
X(x,y,z;H) = _ .Q (Y)']
7:2 cru cr~ (1.
exp [- '-
2 cr"
a 10-minute sampling time, shorter sampling times
yield somewhat higher values for ground level con-

[ 2'(2-H)'] + exp [1(-+H)'Jl

centration, while longer sampling times result in
{exp- ~-;:- - 2 f ~:- (8) decreased concentrations. For slightly unstable and
neutral conditions, the higher values approximate
'See Paragraph 6.4.5 for discussion of particles up to 44
microns and 60 microns in diameter.
I percent for 3 minutes, while longer sampling times
may yield lower concentrations approximating 50 per-
tNote that when H ~ 0, as for a ground level release source,
value for H is equal to the plume rise (tlH). cent for 4 hours. These variances occur because a
plume meanders and increases in diameter as it travels
10 downwind. As a result, cry increases with sampling time.
The concentrations given previously are averages
0.7 and can be exceeded under certain conditions. It can
0.6 be shown that maximum concentrations occur when
cr, = Hh/f. This maximum value is obtained by the
0.3 equation:

0.0 Xmax
2Q ) (cr,)
= ( e 7r.~H2 ;.-;:
Figure 6-8-Gaussian Distribution Curve. e = the base of the natural logarithm, 2.718.

l11e value of the effective stack height varies with wind In concluding this section on equations, it should
,pecd and stability conditions. Inversion lids, especially again be emphasized that for practical purposes there
,ct appreciable heights (2,000 feet or over), do not is little difference in the various proposed equations.
",Jrmally present a problem since their effect on plume
",persion is negligible except at appreciable distances 6.4.3 PARAMETERS AND DISPERSION COEFFICIENTS
'rom the source. This is not true in the special case of
,,". crsion break-up fumigation. The parameters in equation (13) are the determinants
I nversion break-up fumigation can occur on sunny of the calculated concentrations at any point in space
"l1omings following cool nights; this produces a mild downwind of the source. The parameters are Q, H,
','.crsion. The radiant heat absorbed by the earth heats IJ., X, y, z, and cr u and cr,; all except cry and cr, have been
.,Ir adjacent to the ground by convection so that the previously defined. It is obvious that the accuracy of
"lire layer under the inversion is mixed vertically. the calculated concentrations depends on the accuracy
,oer these conditions, relatively high concentrations with which these parameters are determined. Param-
•:"e found at ground levels for periods ranging up to eters x, y, and z can be accurately determined: Q and
'Ile hour. IJ. should present no serious problem, although H can
be troublesome as previously indicated.
,he ground fumigation concentration at a near
Probably the most difficult parameters to determine
':lXimum value can be approximated by:
accurately, particularly if atmospheric stability con-

z,(x.)"O;H) =
IJ.crylh l
exp [ - ~ (_L)]
ditions are not precisely known, are the standard
deviations (dispersion coefficients) of plume concentra-
: Vlrere: tion distribution, :J y (horizontal) and cr, (vertical).
In addition to varying with atmospheric turbulence,
0'0 = the value of cry for stable conditions plus Ys these factors also vary with wind speed and surface
the effective height of emission.
topography and increase with distance from the source.
ill H + 2:J. = h + !:J.H + 2cr •. The data presented later assume relatively open country
and a height not exceeding several hundred meters
Turner's term :J II! is used in equation (13) rather above the ground. The values plotted are more accurate
Ikm cr" so that estimated calculations for XI will not be for suburban than for urban areas.
",,,htly higher than actual concentrations. Under Several authors relate these deviations to only three
""nigation conditions, additional horizontal spreading sets of turbulent conditions (e.g., low, average, and
.:curs when vertical diffusion is limited by an inversion moderate) while others, including Sutton, recognize
layer. Equation (13) is applicable to conditions down- four sets of stability conditions. The six stability or
wind of the stack, but not for areas close to the stack turbulence conditions proposed by Pasquill are
base. Its greatest applicability is for relatively long described in Paragraph 6.2.4. This is a more sophisti-
downwind distances, perhaps greater than 5 or 6 cated approach (see also Table 6-1) and is used by
kilometers. CONCA WE: 8 Anderson, Hippler, and Robinson; 10
Equations (I) through (13) can be programmed for ~urner; 13 and many others. Obviously, the actual
the computer to provide both rapid and accurate stability conditions may be at any value (e.g. halfway
solutions to problems. There are many advantages of between moderately unstable and slightlY unstable).
this modern technology; probably the most important The standard deviations, cr, and Gu , are expressed in
is savings in time particularly, when dealing with meters as functions of the distance downwind for each
multiple sources. In turn, the time saving permits of six different meteorological conditions. Graphs for
better economic evaluation of the processing options these conditions are shown in Figures 6-9 and 6-10.
available (e.g., whether a reduction in the number of These graphs represent diffusion caused by horizontal
stacks is economical or enables the refiner more readily forces (e.g., variations in wind direction) and vertical
to meet air quality standards). Complicated economic forces (e.g., atmospheric stability and instability). The
studies of this type are not practical when computer accuracy of assessment of stability conditions and the
programs are not available. validity of the graphical representations determine
For relatively simple problems, Turner 13 has devel- the accuracy of the calculated concentrations.
oped a solution for exponents, in which the exponential
function is reduced by table to a simple mathematical 6.4.4 INFLUENCE OF ATMOSPHERIC CONDITIONS
multiplier. This method is recommended when a
-' computer program is not available or for occasional
usage of the equations.
Atmospheric conditions and the methods of defining
and estimating them are of paramount importance in



3xl0 3 r--,--rTTTnn~~-,-rTY~,-~-,-rTTrrn

iL 103 UJ
~ 2
0 5 LL

z ~
10 2 ~-----,~~~~----~~~~~----~
In 2 z
a: o
In 10 2 a:
UJ 2
C 0..
5 A· Extremely unstable !!!
...J A - E~trernely unstable
c 101 bL.,.,tC-.."c.--7C-+--
~ B • Moderately unstable
B _ Mod.rately unstable
z C - Slightly unstable <t e- Slightly unstable
0 2 (.)
N 0- Neutral
~ a: E· Slightly stable
:r 101 UJ
b>o b N 2
4 X 100 L.----1----1.....L.LLI.l.li.__-'--'-J-J..1..U-'"-_'--.J-J-W.J....L.I.J

102 2


Figure 6-9-Loterol Diffusion, ~y, vs. Downwind Figure 6-10- Vertical Diffusion, cr" vs. Downwind
Distance from Source for Posquill's Turbulence Distance from Source for Posquill's Turbulence
Types. Types.

determining actual ground level concentrations and accuracy, the use of six stability conditions provides
in developing the equations used for predicting ground adequate coverage for the existing variations in atmos-
level concentrations. This is apparent by the terms pheric stability.
used in the equations. All environmental sites (refineries) are subjected to
The predicted ground level concentration is affected at least two of these conditions (e.g., slightly unstable,
by the wind speed with which it varies inversely, by the C, and neutral, D) for a major period of time. At some
effective stack height (H), and by the dispersion co- refineries, three or four of these conditions may be
efficients, cry and ~,: frequently encountered. Atmospheric conditions at a
given location and time can change by one or more
I. Effective stack height, H: The ground level con-
classes when moving from ground level to a height of
centration varies inversely as an exponential function
perhaps 2,000 feet. If the condition changes by only
of the stack height. The parameter, H, in turn, is
one class (e.g., slightly unstable, C, to moderately
related to atmospheric stability and instability as
unstable, B), the predicted ground level concentration
discussed previously.
can change by a factor of 2 or more. Accordingly, it is
2. Dispersion coefficients, ~y and cr,: The ground level essential to determine accurately the stability condition
concentration varies inversely with the dispersion co- immediately above stack height at time of discharge.
efficients, cry and cr,. These, in turn, are related to the Anderson, Hippler, and Robinson state that even
six atmospheric stability conditions (Figures 6-9 and though these stability classifications are almost entirely
6-10) and to the distance downwind from the source. empirical, they represent the best known approach for
predicting the dispersion of pollutants. 10 Practically all
In view of the importance of atmospheric stability,
recent literature on this subject is in agreement.
it might be in order to review the stability factors A to
F, discussed previously (see Table 6-2). Pasquill has
categorized atmospheric turbulence into six types 6.4.5 DISPERSION OF AEROSOLS AND

ranging from A, extremely unstable with high turbulence, PARTICULATE MATTER
to F, stable with practically no turbulence. In view of
the large number of parameters in the dispersion An aerosol may be defined as a suspension of fine
equations and the difficulty in achieving quantitative solid or liquid particles. The Air Quality Criteria

\lanual 17 defines particle as "any dispersed matter,

'0lid or liquid, in which the individual aggregates are
Llrger than single small molecules (about 0.0002 micron u
i" diameter) but smaller than about 500 microns." w
I One micron, 1iJ" is one-thousandth of a millimeter.) ~'

In this chapter, aerosols and particulates are divided u

'iltO three size classifications related to diameter only:
1. Small (arbitrarily defined as particles up to I 0iJ,): u
hsentially no fallout is experienced, and the standard I-
,tmospheric dispersion estimates are entirely applicable. ~IOO
.'. Medium (arbitrarily defined as particles ranging from IJ..
! IJ," to 60iJ,): Some fallout may be experienced, par- o
10- 1
ticularly for stable atmospheric conditions and for long >-
,;ownwind distances.
3, Large (arbitrarily defined as particles larger than 3/0-2
''(J:"l: Some fallout is predicted under all conditions.
',:lrge particles do not normally occur in stack emissions
:'rom refinery processes. (!) 10- 3
The rate of free fall of any particle is defined by l-
Stokes' Law. Stokes' Law takes into consideration the I-
I'article density for the particle size involved. This (f)

,'tlnsideration is important but can be disregarded for

,he purposes of predicting ground level concentrations. 10-5~~~~~WL-W~~~~~~~
;tokes' Law is applicable only to spheres. Although 10- 1 100 10 1 10 2 103 104
particle emissions are of many geometric configurations, DIAMETER OF PARTICLE,
;he particles can be considered, for simplicity, to be MICRONS
'oneres of the size that have the same settling rate as the
Figure 6-11 -Settling Velocity of Porticle vs. Diometer
':clual particles. Utilizing this law, the settling velocities of Porticle.
of particles in still air at 0 C and 760 mm pressure and
with a density of I g/cu em can be plotted graphically
against the particle size as shown in Figure 6-11. or larger have significant fallout. The range of 20iJ, to
Figure 6-11 shows that a particle with a diameter of 44iJ, has not been carefully explored.
10',J. has a settling velocity of only 0.3 em/sec, which is With regard to refineries, particles resulting from gas
cquivalent to a wind speed of approximately 0.007 combustion can be assumed to be smaller than 5:J.,19
mph. For a 60:J. diameter particle, the settling velocity A considerable variation is noted for particles emitted
is approximately 10 cm/sec, which is equivalent to a from oil-fired boilers (e.g., 10 to 99.5 percent by weight
wind speed of 0.2 mph. of emissions is reported as smaller than 5iJ,). In this
It is apparent from these data that small particles case essentially 100 percent of the particles is smaller
have a minuscule fallout rate. Medium particles, than 44iJ,. Some oil-fired combustion processes may be
particularly those smaller than 44iJ" have a low fallout less efficient than oil-fired boilers. In other refinery
ratc which can generally be disregarded. Thus Smith 3 combustion processes (e.g., a CO boiler) the stack
uses a fallout factor of less that 20 percent for emissions emissions are usually subjected to particulate removal
from elevated sources in which the mass median particle processes, such as cyclones or precipitators, which
diameter is less than 20iJ" even for long distances down- effectively reduce both emission and particle size.
wind. Csanady 18 has established that deviations of less It has been shown that occasionally for medium
than 5 percent can be expected if particle diameters particles (l0iJ, to 60iJ,) and usually for larger particles
arc smaller than 601". fallout can occur. If vector analysis is applied to those
In summary. some fallout is experienced in the particles that may be affected, the combination of
medium-sized range-small in the lower part and convective velocity and terminal velocity results in
significant in the higher part. Generally, particles 20iJ, what has been described as a "tilted plume." If this
or smaller have negligible fallout, while particles 44iJ, effect does exist and assuming similar particle densities,

larger particles will fall out first, followed by particles On the other hand, to determine the concentration
of decreasing size. Medium particles, even if present at a point due east or due west of any of the seven
as a small percentage of the total count in refinery stack stacks, the contributions from all seven must be
emissions, can assume a major role on a weight basis, considered.
and thereby affect a "weight" calculation. The contributions from each source are obtained by
the atmospheric dispersion equations, as previously
6.4.6 MULTIPLE SOURCES indicated. It is apparent that this method can involve a
varying number of calculations, depending on wind J
Multiple sources, as defined in this context, include direction and velocity for each of three or more con-
only sources within the refinery. For multiple sources taminants (particulates, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen iJ
outside the refinery, reference is made to Anderson, oxides). Such calculations, even if programmed on a
et al. 10 and to Turner. 13 computer, can easily be time consuming, particularly
To determine the concentration at any given location, if the refinery is located in a populated area. Depending
a reasonably accurate method involves determining the on conditions, a calculation of this type is probably
individual contribution made by each of the multiple reasonably accurate.
sources. For practical purposes, any source or stack A less accurate method, more suitable for determining
1,250 feet * or more removed at a perpendicular distance ground concentrations further from the refinery (at
from the x-axis (direction of wind flow) can be elimi- least I mile downwind), involves only one calculation
nated from consideration since such contribution would for any given wind direction and velocity for each
be negligible. The x-axis can also be defined as the line contaminant. With this method, the multiple sources
joining the major source and the point of calculation. are considered as one source in the atmospheric dis-
A typical refinery area with seven stacks (location of persion equation. Again, only those stack sources are
stacks arbitrarily chosen) is shown in Figure 6-12. The considered that are at a horizontal distance (upwind)
three groups of stacks (S I and S2; S3, S4, and S5; and of 1,250 feet or less from the x-axis. The variable Q
S6 and S7) are more than 1,250 feet apart. It is assumed represents the total contaminant emission for all sources

that all stacks emit approximately equal amounts of the involved and H, the effective stack height, is determined
pollutant under consideration. For a north wind, the as a weighted average for all individual effective stack
concentration at a location 5,000 feet due south of heights under consideration. The dispersion coefficients
SI and S2 involves the contributions of SI and S2 only. ax, ail' and a, are determined for this weighted effective
Similarly for a location due south of S3, S4, and S5, stack height, the distance being the average distance of
only these stacks are considered, and the same reasoning all contributing stacks. The concentration so deter-
applies for a location due south of S6 and S7.
mined represents an estimate, which may be useful for
"'For heavy contaminant sources emitting more than 25 tons predictive purposes. In the extreme case, where there
per day, this distance should be extended possibly to 3,000 feet
or more. are sufficient sources to consider the uniform area
source, these concentrations are dependent upon cr,
only, thus increasing the accuracy of the estimate.
The foregoing approximations are applicable only to
N stacks discharging above the layer of heavy ground-
induced turbulence. Short stacks are unpredictable and
increasing their number increases the magnitude of
potential error.


'"'" OS4 The continuing development of basic plume rise and

dispersion formulas (including methods of predicting


standard deviations of plume spread) provides increased
accuracy of calculated data, particularly where there are
no complications of terrain, however, this technique is
1- 5000 FT. -I not infallible. Wind tunnel studies are a convenient
Figure 6-12- Typical Refinery Area. means for obtaining data on dispersion of stack

b. c'[Jccially in those situations where theoretical 6.4.8 LIMITATIONS AND RELIABILITY OF

, produce the least accurate results, as in dealing PREDICTIVE TECHNIQUES
:,,'ulld-induced turbulence. The techniques and
.lil""' of this method are described elsewhere. 1o The equations for determining ground concentration,
-d l'lnnel studies can be used effectively for
'/., contain three terms-the effective stack height, H,
~:,.'ted building structures, a mUltiplicity of stacks,
and the dispersion coefficients, a y and a, (standard
, i,>!'ographic effects, and wide ranges of stack deviations of plume concentration). These three terms
,;:i,\cllv-all of which can influence plume stability play a major role in determining the accuracy of the
,!;'rcr,ion. The relatively simple cases of single predicted results. * To the extent that errors occur in
,1I,charging at high exit velocities above the these three terms for the six stability conditions, the
laver are more accurately assessed when using results in predicting ground concentrations will also be
!cd :md empirical formulas, since performance in error. Reliability limitations of plume rise are also
r-: I'cll:r than predicted. related to errors in wind direction (i.e., the determina-
tion of the x-axis) and the variation of wind direction
""',c' I!,cre is no temperature gradient in most wind
with height. Reliability limitations for dispersion
lile buoyant effect produced by the thermal and
coefficients were discussed previously in this section.
,'llcri!Y of an actual stack plume cannot be
In Figures 6-9 and 6-10 the important horizontal and
.lte,1, rhus the wind tunnel studies are limited to
vertical dispersion coefficients (a" and a,) are related
'" IIII,ch building configuration, stack structures,
to distances downwind from the source. These curves
:,,!','crarl1ical irregularities have a marked effect
are intended to apply to open country, represent a time
Accordingly, every effort should be
period of about 10 minutes, and involve the assumption
"' IIlC scale model to reproduce the basic struc-
that there is no fallout from the plume as it moves
.."d lorographic effects.
downwind. It is generally conceded that no fallout
h:liJcr. wind tunnel studies are more effective at occurs with particles of 2011, although the presence of
" Ililld ,peeds (i.e., speeds equal to or greater than
some particles in the range of 20iJ. to 6011 does not
':Ic." ncr second) where thermal or convective seriously affect predicted results.
r.'.".:, ::, lile air streams are small compared with the The equations for these conditions are generally
:·."",:Ii mass velocity effect. Structurally the wind
believed to be the best estimates available. It is con-
t",,,.: . !!\uid have a long test section with a distance
ceivable that they may overestimate the actual ground
upwind equal to at least ten stack concentration (i.e., result in overdesign). Thus for
elevated sources under very light winds on a clear night,
studies are applicable to existing it is possible that there will be no noticeable ground
which usually contain multiple stacks, concentration. Conversely, plume dispersion from low-
where additional construction is con- level sources and built-up areas will be higher than for
These studies augment the basic formulas. open, level country and actual ground concentrations
Jilliculty in using theoretical and empirical equa- may infrequently exceed the predicted values.
alone for calculating or predicting ground con- Quantitative information that shows levels of ac-
,Ctnlralinns has been detailed in the literature.3 curacy of prediction is scarce, particularly for tall
\I, IIlU tunnel techniques are used in determining the stacks. Also, tall stacks present the problem of deter-
c!frcl< of varying rates of wind velocity on stack velocity mining wind velocity and dispersion parameters at the
tII<.i the etfects of unusual structural or topographical elevation of the effective stack height. This has resulted
C'OnJnions with specific reference to conditions of in some arbitrary assumptions and has precluded
Pound intercept. A recent wind tunnel model study rigorous treatment of the problem. Accordingly,
;""(,'rrned for a North American refinery visually accuracy of prediction is questionable, especially under
.!< C10 Il'lrated the foregoing. The study recommended unusual atmospheric conditions such as a strong
,~.Jnce, In stack heights to secure a down wash-free area inversion above stack level. Research continues on the

·"T the minimum desired radial extent. When these development of new diffusion models, which are
anticipated to yield more accurate values for dispersion
''''''nln'endations were subsequently effected, the
". ':'dl'd results rroved to be satisfactorily accurate.
Nevertheless, the predicted results obtained by these
, '..'I' ,tudies, such as meteorological studies of the
equations are of a higher order of accuracy than would
""'cd site. may have a more practical impact than have been possible ten or twenty years ago. Jn the
.. I tllnnel studies, although standardization of these
*To some extent, concurrent errors in opposite directions for
'!C" rnav he more difficult. H on the one hand, cry and cr z on the other. tend to cancel out.

, ,
future even better accuracy can be anticipated as more stitute a visibility hazard and can represent an icing
accurate values are determined for dispersion co~ hazard during the colder periods of the year. Thus a
efficients by means of suitable field experiments. low to moderate wind speed, an ambient air temperature
The use of wind tunnel and other meteorological of 25 F to 60 F and a relative humidity of 70 percent
studies, especially for the purpose of augmenting pre~ or above may cause fogging (and/or icing). Under
dictive techniques, is also advisable and was previously certain conditions, cooling tower plumes may merge
discussed. Wind tunnel studies properly conducted can with stack plumes. This will affect downwind concen-
serve as excellent tools for new refineries or for complex, tration of contaminants, possibly in an adverse manner.
existing refineries where new construction is proposed. Mathematical models and actual experience have
In existing refineries, whether or not new construction indicated that plume rise is directly proportional to the
is contemplated, there is no substitute for sampling and diameter of the plume discharge.21 On this basis, a
analysis to determine actual ground level concentrations. single large tower for a given capacity is more effective
This serves to indicate the degree of error, if any, in in reducing visible plume formation than several smaller
previous calculations and to indicate the magnitude of towers, particularly if the latter are of relatively low
any corrections that should be applied to the standard elevation. Also, mechanical-draft cooling towers dis-
dispersion coefficients. Sampling and analysis are valid charging small diameter plumes at low elevations and
only to the extent that the refinery is the sole source. at relatively low velocities are more prone to fogging
Otherwise, it is difficult to predict the refinery con~ conditions than natural-draft towers.
tribution to a definite ambient air concentration. Well Mathematical models designed to predict plume
planned tracer studies can assist in these cases. behavior and concentrations have been correlated with
actual behavior and ground concentrations with reason-
able agreement. The data involved were based on tall
6.5 Cooling Tower Plume Rise natural-draft towers and on mechanical-draft cooling
towers. The predictions herein should nevertheless be
applicable to refinery cooling towers because of the

Petroleum industry cooling towers were originally

largely spray (atmospheric) towers of the counterflow
type. When induced-draft cooling towers were devel-
lower effective emission height. As for industrial stacks,
suitable allowance should be made for topographic or
structural irregularities. .
oped, they were originally the counterflow type, but 6.5.2 ANALYSIS OF PLUME RISE AND PLUME
today crossflow towers are more common and are BEHAVIOR
finding extensive application in petroleum refineries.
Tall natural-draft towers (i.e., hyperbolic type) have not There is a general similarity between the conditions
been widely used in North America, and there arc no affecting plume rise and plume behavior for industrial
known refinery installations. stack plumes and cooling tower plumes, although some
In the operation of cooling towers, water cooling is differences do exist. One important difference is that
usually accompanied by the emission of a plume and t'"Ie larger plume from a cooling tower is related to a
a water drift or spray. As the saturated warm air leaves large effective discharge diameter. A smoke plume
the tower and mixes with cooler ambient air, there is a issues from a stack with a diameter ranging from 5 to
tendency to form a cloud (i.e., to condense the moisture 15 feet, while a vapor plume may be many times larger.
content into a visible plume of minute fog droplets). Further, a cooling tower plume contains no con-
The drift results from physical entrainment of liquid taminants except possibly hydrocarbons and will
particles or droplets into the rising saturated air. usually evaporate while traveling downwind.
While evaporation losses are approximately the same
Kaylor, Kangos, Petrillo, and Tsai 22 have prepared
for different types of towers. drift losses are higher for
two mathematical models for predicting plume behavior
mechanical-draft towers than for natural-draft towers
based on low and high wind conditions. The low wind
due in part to the higher velocities of ascending air.
As visible plumes travel downwind they increase the model involves the turbulent jet method in which plume
humidity, and occasionally the precipitation, of the area buoyancy is a dominant factor. In the high wind
through which they travel. Eventually, dilution and model, the mathematical model is based on the work
dispersion serve to evaporate the droplets and the of Pasquill and Gifford and the Pasquill-Turner
plume disappears some distance downwind of the stability categories previously considered. In this
tower. Plume-induced fogs from cooling towers con- method, plume buoyancy is considered low or negligible. f

I h~," \,,0 set, of wind conditions, low and high,

I!1J' he further defined as follows:
iI,'" \',Ind: \""ind velocity is relatively low, so that
c:c ""leliC and thermal energy effects of plume rise
r.1\I,t be con,idered,
: High \,,1 nd: Wind velocity is relatively high and I
z z,
"lul11e rise (j. H) is relatively minor.

I ;:c line of demarcation between low and high wind is I

:1,'rl11ally a ratio of cooling tower exit velocity to wind
-t'ceu velocity or a ratio of 2: I. Higher ratios are low
'1I11d. lov.n ratio'> are high wind.
I I1def low wind conditions, the cooling tower plume
;i'C' oecau'>e of the kinetic energy supplied by natural

'I Induced drafts, because the plume temperature is Figure 6-13-Cooling Tower Plume in Low Wind
,!I'll\'e am bicnt. and because plume diameter is rela- Condition.
IlIl'ly large. Thi, is especially true in the case of a
L,,~e plume, which has a smaller surface-to-volume
r:tll,) than a small plume. In the large plume, there is Dispersion Method for High Wind Conditions
"'I1,idcrably less surface mixing, and hence a greater
1"l1dency to mamtain its temperature and reach a The dispersion method is used for moderate or high
c"ll1parallvely higher altitude. wind conditions and involves the Pasquill-Gifford
eq uations. This method generally disregards plume
6,5.2.1 Turbulent Jet Method for Low Wind Conditions buoyancy but assumes a Gaussian distribution of plume
in the vertical and horizontal planes and a conservation
For the low wind condition, Kaylor, et aI., 22 utilize of heat and mass within the plume boundaries. A sketch
t he work of Fan 21 and of Abraham 24 and postulate that of the dispersion model is shown in Figure 6-14.
1 he cooling tower plume for low or moderate wind The difference between H, the effective plume height,
'clocity a"sumes thc characteristics of a round, buoyant, and Hs, the cooling tower exit height, may be indicated
'1lrbulent jd. as j.h, which is not defined. In petroleum refineries,
The turbulent jet method involves the fol:owing where cooling tower exit heights do not exceed 60 to
basic as,umptions: 80 feet, a fairly accurate estimate of j.h is 15 to 25
percent of Hs, or an average of 20 percent. The variable
I. Plume-induced turbulence prevails.
j.h does not vary greatly but tends to decrease in pro-
2. Round. buoyant, turbulent jet theory applied. * portion to the ratio of cooling tower exit velocity to
3. Mixing and cntrainment mechanism takes place wind velocity.
of dispersion mechanism. In the dispersicn method, equations (7) through (12)
are applicable for calculating travel and diffusion of
4. Gau"ian distribution for heat, moisture, density,
cooling tower plumes. The previous discussion of
and velocity profiles.
parameters and standard deviations and the infl uence
5. Heat. moisture, buoyancy, and momentum con-
The paramders shown in Figure 6-13 are obtained by u
numerical solution of differential equations. The plume
under llIost cond itions (except certain types of inversion)
appears ,ullicj~lltIy buoyant so that it will not reach
the ground, except possibly in very low concentrations,
and will ultimately cvaporate. It is difficult to predict
the clfect of a low inversion (e.g., 500 to \,000 feet),
which IHay present some problems. Fortunately, an
illvcr,ioll at this height is an infrequent occurrence.

>J<L"rl~(.; quantity of heat dispelled from tower increases impor- Figure 6-14-Cooling Tower Plume in High Wind
tam:c 01 huoyancy of plume. Condition.

of atmospheric conditions is also relevant (see Para- it is assumed that the tower is equipped with a drift
graphs 6.4.3 and 6.4.4). eliminator, which substantially eliminates physical
Kaylor, et aI.,22 verified the mathematical models carry-off of entrained water.
by observation of visible plume behavior. These com- In the paper by Overcamp and Hoult,26 it is shown
parisons show reasonable correlation which can, on that "the condensation of the water vapor cannot cause
the average, be represented by: Observed plume length rain unless the plume mixes with the aerodynamic
= 35 (0.91) (predicted plume length). wash of the tower, bringing the droplets in contact
The actual observations were taken from three sources with the ground."
including a mechanical draft tower with five cells and Basically, rain formation occurs when minute water
a natural draft cooling tower. This tower was a hyper- droplets condense. A raindrop reaches the ground
bolic type but, as previously indicated, the general before it evaporates, while a cloud particle does not.
conclusions should also be applicable to low or medium By this definition, a raindrop has a minimum size of
height towers. approximately 200 microns. In the effluent vapor
In an article by Westlin, Brenchley, and Smith, 25 the plume, condensation is the dominant process for water
PasquiIl-Gifford-Turner method, using Gaussian dis- droplets in sizes up to 40 microns. It can be shown
persion coefficients, is also used in developing a plume that the average length of residence in the plume is
length equation. Field test data indicate that an 100 seconds or less, which is insufficient time to form
excellent correlation is obtained with a multiple regres- droplets larger than 40 microns. Thus Overcamp and
sion coefficient greater than 0.8. In this article, however, Hoult conclude that the condensation process in a
high wind condition is defined differently and is related vapor plume is not conducive to the formation of an
solely to wind velocity-that is, to a wind velocity appreciable number of the larger raindrops. This con-
greater than 1m/sec (7.5 mph). The Kaylor article cl usion was also reached by earlier authorities, Blum
defines high wind condition in terms of a ratio. The (1948), Bront (1952), and Chilton (1958).
Westlin article is based on results from a crossftow- The effect of wind velocity (cross-wind effect) is
induced cooling tower. important in determining whether interaction occurs
As previously indicated, wind tunnel studies are between the visible plume and the aerodynamic tower
advisable for complicated building structures, for a wake. If interaction occurs, there will be ground f
multiplicity of smoke sources or plume sources, or both, precipitation; if no interaction occurs, the plume will
and for unusual topographic effects which might disrupt rise and ultimately disappear downwind. The critical
the normal flow pattern. Wind tunnel studies usually variables to determine whether interaction occurs were
disregard any buoyant effect and are more effective at found by Overcamp and Hoult to be:
higher wind speeds. Accordingly, wind tunnel models
1. Speed ratio, R.
seem to be ideally suited for predicting cooling tower
plume behavior in high wind conditions. Although the R = U/IL
cost of these studies normally precludes their use, they Where:
should be considered when the possibility of hazardous
U = plume exit velocity.
fogging or icing conditions exists.
IL = wind speed.

6.5.3 PLUME CONDENSATION AND PRECIPITATION 2. Froude number. (This may not be valid for Froude
numbers greater than 3.0.)
Plume condensation is the transference from invisible 3. Reynolds number. (This may also be a factor but
to visible plume and occurs when the saturated vapors can usually be disregarded.)
are cooled below the dewpoint. It is of practical
significance to deduce whether the condensate remains If the speed ratio, R, is below a critical value, inter-
in the atmosphere as a vapor plume or cloud, or action occurs. The critical value varies as a straight-
whether there is further condensation to form rain. line relationship with the Froude number-that is, the
The evaporative cooling tower evaporates a small critical val ue decreases as the Froude number decreases.
percentage of the water to be cooled, thus releasing its For a given tower exit velocity, the higher the wind
latent heat of vaporization and cooling the water. The speed the lower the speed ratio, thus the possibility of
rate of evaporation can be quite high, and if only a
small portion of the evaporated water is condensed,
it will precipitate in the form of rain. In this discussion
interaction increases.
The conclusions reached include where the plume
struck the ground (2 to 4 tower heights downwind) and


. ""c,w,tation, where applicable to tall natural- drift eliminators were assumed at 0.2 percent, but
;\"""" iOwers. It is reasonable to assume that this value is probably high).
.:.;.:.1::," d()\\nwind (in terms of tower height) and
,ro, li:c total precipitation would be approxi- 3. Increase the height of plume rise to the extent
:.c ,ame for lower height refinery cooling practical without heating effluent air.
'.111,' estimates of the severity of precipita- These methods are generally more applicable to new
_-:r" n"'lie for a 500 megawatt plant. These are tower construction.
I" I·igure 6-15.
Mathematical models indicate that aligning cooling
."1 n " relative humidity of 90 percent, an exit
towers with existing wind increases the effective stack
"",.llnrc elf 40 C (104 F), and an ambient tempera-
height and, hence, decreases fog concentration at ground
~ (. 125 F), the precipitation would be 0.1
level. A reduction in drift decreases the total amount
of water to be evaporated and therefore minimizes
"ne'L1sions are interesting apart from pre- fog-forming tendencies. The higher plume rise elevates
",l;sibilities. A noninteracting plume will the plume to an area of more stable wind, usually
'Ie'lind fog hazards will be minimized; an higher velocity and lower humidity, thus promoting
',:1"" plume will result in lowered visibility and plume dissipation .
."':"1I, cOllditions at or near the ground. Superheating the effluent air, thus increasing its
moisture-holding capacity, also results in a higher
MINlioAlZING VISIBLE PLUMES effective plume height. These two characteristics
facilitate dispersion before the formation of a visible
plume (i.e., before the air mixture is cooled to the dew
111" towcrs in high humidity conditions have a
. ~'.:,T,(\ I,) rrod LIce fog when the effluent air is cooled point). Various methods can be used to accomplish
", dew point. These visible plumes normally this dispersion. The use of burners represents one
., .[,"bient temperatures of 25 to 60 F and at a possibility, but probably the most practical method
. ,'. ,'i' 70 percent or higher, Temperatures below
involves a heat exchange with the incoming hot water .
, lI,ay cause icing, The return hot cooling tower water is passed through
finned heat exchangers, while the effluent air is passed
.,1 IlIdllOds can be used to minimize or even
around them. This is shown in Figures 6- I 6 and 6- I 7,
.. ·!;Ie Ihe plume, Probably the most positive method
which are taken from an article by Buss. 27
'C!Pcrheating the effluent air. This method is
·"d laler in greater detail. Other methods include
The principle involved is evident from an inspection
: ';\ii()\ving: of the psychrometric charts, in which dew point temper-
ature, represented as a curve, is related to dry bulb
\II~I) the length of the cooling tower with the direc- temperature and to the maximum moisture content of
(Wil ()f the prevalent winds. dry air. If an anticipated mixture of ambient air and
cooling tower effluent air is assumed, the heating
, Employ drift eliminators to reduce drift to a val uc required to maintain the mixture temperature above
"f n()5 percent or lower. (Values of drift loss with the dew point can be determined. The degree of mixing
depends upon many meteorological factors, and heat-
and mass-transfer values cannot be readily determined;
0.15 therefore, depending on the degree of fog elimination
cr: RELATIVE HUMIDITY desired, a factor of safety should be employed.
.... 90% Using the incoming hot water as a source of heat has
u 010 --- 40% several disadvantages:
;: I. Increases the capital investment.
a: 0.05 2. Increases the operating expense.
:" 3. Increases the pressure drop through the tower.

0.0 An advantage of such an installation is that pre-

) -15
25 cooling the hot water will increase the cooling capacity
of the cooling tower or result in a lowered effluent water
Figure 6-15-Precipitation Estimates. temperature.





Figure 6-16-CounterAow Tower.

6-22 •





Figure 6-17 -erossflow Tower.


6.6 Sample Calculations Problem 2


Determine the point of maximum downwind con·
centration. The following data are taken from Figure
In a refinery having a single boiler stack 75 meters
high and operating under the given conditions, what is I. At stability condition B, the point of maximum down-
the effective height of the stack r'or stability condition C? wind concentration is 0.8 km for an effective stack
(See Problem 1.) Also, what is the point downwind of height of 107.3 km.
maximum ground concentration (see Problem 2), and
2. At stability condition C, the point of maximum
what is the ground level concentration at this point for
downwind concentration is 1.3 km.
three stability conditions-B, C, and D? (See Problem
3.) The contaminant is sulfur dioxide (SO,). 3. At stability condition D, the point of maximum
downwind concentration is 3.4 km. Assumptions Problem 3
1. Fuel is fired at the rate of 120 bbl/hr (20 tons/hr).
Calculate the ground level concentrations at these
2. Sulfur content of fuel is 1.0 percent by weight.
points. The value of Zmax can be determined from the
3. Stack exit velocity is 12 m/sec. equation:

4. Diameter of stack is 3 meters. Zmax = QZiJ. X 2.[J.

5. Wind speed is 3.4 m/hr (6.0 m/sec). Where:
6. Atmospheric pressure is 1013 millibars. Q = uniform emission rate of pollutants.
iJ. = wind velocity.
7. Stack exit temperature is 540 F (561 K).
The value of Q is determined from the sulfur burned.
8. Ambient temperature is 68 F (293 K). Thus, (
20 tons/hr X 0.01(% sulfur) = 0.2 ton/hr Problem 1 or 400 bbl/hr
Given the molecular weights of sulfur dioxide and
Calculate effective stack height by using Holland's
sulfur, 64 and 32, respectively:
Q = ~~ X 400 bbl/hr X 454 glIb
j.H = v/[1.5 + 2.68 (l0-3 p ) V" ~"Ta)dJ 32
= 101 g/sec of SO,
360 sec/hr

At stability condition B:
= ~)
[1 5 + 268 (10- 3)(1013) (561-=- 293) 3J
.. 561
Zm" = 1.35 X 10-5 X l~1 = 2.3 X 10-4 g/m' of SO,
= 6 [1.5 + 2.68 (10- )(1013) (~4)3 J

At stability condition C:

= 6 [1.5 + 8.145 (~~D J - I 15 X 10-5 X'

Zmax-. !Q
6I -- -I' 9 X 10 -g/mo
4 I 3 f SO 2

= 6 (1.5 + 3.98) = 32.3 meters At stability condition D:

Whence, effective stack height is:
. X 10 -6 X
Zm,"x = 70 lOl
6 12
= ' X10- 4 g./ m , 0 fSO 2
75.0 + 32.3 = 107.3 meters
NOTE: For a clear. sunny day, at a wind speed of 6.0 mj
sec, stability condition is C. For unstable conditions Stack emissions from process heaters vary from
the value of j.H (32.3 m) should be multiplied by 1.15, those of boiler stacks, even though the same fuel is
whereas for stable conditions. it should be mUltiplied
by 0.85.
used, because of differences in operation and design.
Many process heaters use natural draft, whereas most f

\2 ~

0 or:



• >-
2 ~
E ci;
cT ~
a "

"- 0
,..;i « ~






I -0

I ""

1 i.!. •
'., ~ w~ 'xew x


large boilers use forced draft. Also, many refinery

boilers burn gas as well as fuel oil, while process heaters
are more often gas-fired and generally use a higher
percentage of gas. To allow for greater variation in the
combustion value of gas, more air is used in process
Q _ (\50,000) (0.25%) (0.129Ib/cu ft) (454 g/Ib) (29~\
- 60 sec/min
= (375L~8~) (0419)
= 154 g/sec
(375) (2~.6)

heaters; excess air may be as high as 40 percent.
Finally, process heater stacks are usually lower than
6,6,2,2 Problem I
boiler stacks because the lower height provides a
chimney effect and a slightly negative combustion box Holland's equation is used to determine effective
pressure. stack heights, which can be calculated for various wind
The concentration of nitrogen oxides (NO x ) is usually speeds as follows (see Table 6-3):
higher in a process heater stack because higher tempera-
tures enable the conversion of nitrogen to oxides. Com-
bustion box temperatures and stack temperatures are
~H = 1'/ [1.5 + 2.68 (lO-'p) C'~, Ta) d J
higher in process heaters than in boilers. Heater stacks 150,000
)', = stack exit velocity 2980 ft· mm
range in temperature from 700 to 1,000 F. 50.3
Sulfur dioxide and carbon dioxide concentrations are
lower in process heaters primarily because of the 15.1 m/sec
dilution supplied by additional excess air. In the case
of carbon dioxide, an additional factor is the carbon: Substituting,
hydrogen ratio of gas, which is lower than that of
fuel oil. ~H = 15.1 ~2.44)[1.5 + 2.68G~~~)eO~~0293)2.44J
Consider a process heater with a stack height of
164 feet and a stack exit diameter of 8 feet. The stack 3~8 [1.5 + 2.71 (~~) 2.44J
emits 150,000 cubic feet per minute of gas at 800 F and
the gas analysis shows 0.25 percent NO x (as NO,)*,
2.9 percent 0" 77.5 percent N 2 ; the balance is water
vapor. The average wind speed is 15 mph (6.7 m/sec).
On a sunny day, the ambient temperature is 68 F. Thus
the stability category is C.
36.~ (5.3)

Table 6-3-Effective Stack Heights

j.H h + j.H

Calculate the critical wind speed (problem I). For a (m/sec) (01) (m)
wind speed of 15 mph, calculate the maximum ground 1.0 195 245
2 98 148
level concentration of NO x and the point of maximum 3 65 115
concentration (problem 2). Calculate the ground level 5 39 89
6.7 29 79
concentration of NO x 1.25 miles downwind from the 8 24 74
stack (problem 3). 10 20 70

It is apparent that the critical wind speed is approxi- Assumptions
mately 5 m/ sec, or 11 mph. A more precise critical
wind speed can be obtained by plotting maximum
I. Stack height is 164 fcet (50 meters). concentration vs. wind speed (see also Turner B). The
2. Stack temperature is 800 F (427 C) (700 K). critical wind speed corresponds to the highest maximum
concentration on the curve. (See Table 6-4.)
3. Ambient temperature is 68 F (20 C) (293 K).
4. Molecular weight of NO, is 46 grams per gram mole Table 6-4-Maximum Concentration as a Function
and weight is 0.129 pounds per cubic foot at N.T.P. of Wind Speed at Stability Condition C
5. Atmospheric pressure is 10 13 millibars. .... H Z'tJ./Qrnax QI . . ZIlH\X
(m/sec) (m) (m2) (g/m) (g/m:l)
1.0 245 2.4 X 10-" 154 3.7 X 10-'
*Jt is assumed that all oxides of nitrogen are included in the 2 6.4 X 10-"

148 77 4.9 X 10-'
0.25 percent NO" analysis. The primary components of NO" are 3 115 1.0 X 10-" 51 5.1 X 10-'
NO and NO, and are usually updated as NO" which has a molec- 5 89 1.8 X 10-" 31 5.6 X 10-'
ular weight of 46. To the extent that the average molecular weight 6.7 79 2.3 X 10-:' 23 5.3 X 10-'
of NO, differs from that of NO-, the solutions in Problems I. 2, 8 74 2.7 X 10- 5 19 5.1 X 10-'
and 3 would require modification. 10 70 2.9 X 10-" 15 4.4 X 10-'
DISPERSION OF GASES 6-27 Problem 2 Assumptions

At a wind speed of 15 mph (6.7 m/sec), the maximum I. Stack height is 200 feet (61 meters).
concentration of NO x is 5.6 X 10-4 g/ml and will be
found at a downwind distance of 0.9 km (Figure 6-18). 2. Stack temperature is 800 F (427 C) (700 K).
3. Ambient temperature is 68 F (20 C) (293 K). Problem 3
4. Wind speed is 4 m/sec (8.9 mph).
To determine the NO x concentration at a distance of 5. Atmospheric pressure is 10\3 millibars (N.P).
2.0 kilometers (1.25 miles) downwind of the source at
the centerline of the plume and at ground level, the 6. Stack diameter is 12 feet (3.66 meters).
equation is: 7. Gas discharge is 600,000 cubic feet per minute
Z(x,O,O;H) = Q
7C'cr y cr z [J.
exp [ - 2! (H)'J
z 8. SO, in exit gas is 1,000 parts per million (0.1 per-
154 cent by volume).
Z(2000, 0,0 ;H) = (3.1416) (200) (lIS) (6.7)
9. S02 emitted is 0.1827 pound per cubic foot (N.T.P.)

exp [ - ~ C~~),J 10. Particulate emission with no precipitator is 154

Where: grains (10 g) per SCF.
x = 2000 meters at stability condition C
~ II = 200 meters II. Particulate emission with an electrostatic precipi-
cr. = 115 meters tator is 15.4 grains (1.0 g) per SCF.

z(2000, 0,0;79) =
(4.84)(10=5) exp [I
- 2 (0.69) 2J Problem 1
z = (3.2 X 10-4) (7.88 X 10-')
Calculate maximum downwind concentration of
= 2.5 X 10-4 gicu m
SO, and the point of maximum downwind concentra-
This is equivalent to 250 micrograms per cubic meter. tion. Use Holland's formula to obtain the effective
stack height.
j,H = v~d [1.5 + 2.68 (10-'p) C-'-j.,Ia) dJ

In a catalytic cracking unit, the catalyst regulator is Where:
equipped with two stages of internal cyclones in the v., = stack exit velocity = 60,0.000 X __ L_
regenerator, and the catalytic off-gases are then pro- 113.1 60 X 3.28
cessed in a carbon monoxide (CO) boiler. In general, = 26.9 m 'sec
for all catalytic cracking units having CO boilers, the

II CO content in the tail gas will be essentially zero.

The CO boiler inlet gas will contain an average of
9.5 percent CO for a fluid bed and 6.0 percent CO for
an hourly bed. 28


~6.9~3.66)[1.5 + 2.68 (1.013)C()().ffit93 )3.66J
24.6 [1.5 + 2.71(0.581) (3.66)] = 24.6 (7.26)
j Under the following conditions, assumed for a fluid
i bed unit during a 50,000-barrel day, calculate the maxi- 178.6 X 1.10 = 196 meters (at stability con-
mum ground level concentration of S02 at a wind dition B)
speed of 4 m/sec (8.9 mph) and determine the location. Thus,
(See Problem I.) The day is bright and sunny, stability H = H, + j,H = 61 + 196
category B. = 257 meters (effective stack height)
Under the same conditions, calculate the particulate
concentration at ground level at distances of 0.5 mile Determine Q, quantity of S02 emitted in g/sec.
and 2.0 miles, and displaced horizontally 0.25 mile
(0.25 mile from x-axis). Calculate these concentrations Q = ((>OQ.000)(O·20Il(0.1:~7 Ib/cuftl (4}_~lll)G~~)
for emissions if no electrostatic precipitator is present
(see problem 2) and if an electrostatic precipitator is
600 ~~.95) (0.419 829.5 (0.419) 347 g/sec
connected to the CO boiler (see problem 3).


Xm.x = (QX:J (;) = 2.7 X

= 2.39 X 10- 4 glcu m

2.7 X 10-'sqm
) x (2000,400,0;257) = 0.049 exp [ - 1/2 (1.38)'J

exp [ - 1/2 (1.09)'J

= 0.049 (3.86 X 10-1) (5.52 X 10-1)

1.1 X 10-2 g/cu m (at 2.0 km
The location of maximum downwind concentration downwind and 0.25 km from
of SO, at ground level, for stability condition Band x-axis)
an effective stack height of 257 meters, is 1.7 kilometers
(Figure 6-18). Problem 3 Problem 2 As indicated in the preceding data, the precipitator

generally reduces particulates by approximately 90
Determine the particulate concentrations if no pre- percent overall, the reduction being greater for larger
cipitator is present. To calculate downwind concentra- size particles. The effective stack height, H, is still 257
tions, the effective stack height, H, and the total quan- meters and Q is only 10 percent of its former value
tity emitted, Q, must be known. H has been calculated (i.e., 4190 g/sec).
as 257 meters.
_ (600,000 cu ft/min)(10 g/cu ft) (?93)
Q - 60 sec/min 700 z(800,400,0; 257) = 2.74 X 10- 1 g/Cll m
= 100,000 (0.419) = 41,900 glsec x(2000,400,0; 257) = 1.1 X 10-3 g Icu m
In the preceding examples, it is assumed that par-
The eq uation to determine particulate concentration

ticulates behave as gases. This is substantially true
at a finite distance is:
after the particulates pass through a precipitator
because the remaining particles are primarily small
X(x,y,O;H) = TO _Q- exp [ - I (l')'J
cr"O',1L 2 cry (under lOlL); although some medium-sized particles
(lOlL to 60IL) are present. If no precipitator is present,
exp [ - ~ (~YJ more particles are in the medium range, and possibly
some in the large range (over 60IL). The large particles,
For stability condition B, at 0.8 km downwind, cry = and to some extent the medium particles, suffer fallout
130 m and crz = 85 m. For 2 km, cry = 290 m and resulting in the so-called "tilted pI ume." Thus, down-
cr, = 235 m. wind readings without a precipitator are higher than the
values shown, especially for X(800,400,0 ;257), which
41,900 [ I (400)2J is now shown as 2.74 X 10- 5 g/Cll m
x(800,400; 257) = 7: (130) (85r (4) exp - 2 130

exp [ -1 e;n'J 6.6.4 FLARES

Calculate the total effective height of a flare plume

= 0.30 exp [ - 1/2 (3.08)'J under the following conditions:
I. Stack height is 150 feet (45.7 meters).
exp [ - 1/2 (30.2)2J
2. Stack diameter is 2 feet (0.61 meters).
= 0.30 (8 71) (l0- 3) (1.05) (10- 2)
3. Wind velocity is 15 mph (22 ft/sec) (6.7 m/sec).
2.74 X 10-' g leu m (at 0.5 km down-
wind and 0.25 km from x-axis) 4. Stack exit velocity is 0.2 sonic velocity or 1000 X
0.2 = 200 ft/sec (61 m/sec).
Z(2000,400,0 ;257) = 41,900 4) exp
(290)(235f( [I
- 2 (400)'J

The total effective height of the plume, H, is determined
exp [ -1 G~~YJ H = Hs + J.FL + J.H

inaccurate, there is an indication that plume rise, after

! Is = stack height. burning is complete, is of a low order of magnitude.
'... fL vertical component of flare length (to To compute sulfur dioxide concentration, use the
yield imaginary stack height). example given in Paragraph 6.6.3, substituting 82.2
.~ f! = plume rise above imaginary stack height meters as the effective height of flare plume rise.
using Holland's equation.
;, has been shown that j.FL can be determined with 6.6.5 STORAGE TANKS
degree of accuracy, but j.H is an approximation
.;t hcst. regardless of the formula used. There is reason
Calculate total annual storage loss for regular
;. helieve that j.His a relatively low figure, numerically. (or premium) grade gasoline at I \.0 pounds Reid
Vapor Pressure when stored in a 125-foot by 48-foot
tank (97,700 barrels), comparing fixed-roof tanks
lis = 45.7 meters. (Problem I) with floating-roof tanks (Problem 2).
. L = constant X stack diameter (API RP 52 I)
120 X 2 = 240 feet (73.2 meters). Assumptions

J.FL = FL (~~l). I. Annual average temperature is 52 F.

2. Annual throughput is 2,000,000 barrels.

i ,0 obtain ;::;~~, the ratio of wind velocity (IL".) to stack 3. Annual average wind velocity is 10 miles per hour.

. il velocity ([.I.,,) must be calculated: NOTE: The sources of loss and the formulas for
tankage loss are described in some detail in the API
~'W = ~ = 0.110 Manual on Evaporation Loss, specifically Bulletins
[.1.0 200 2517 29 and 2518. 30 These bulletins discuss evaporation
,d from Figure 6-6, loss from floating-roof and fixed-roof tanks, respec-
tively and also include relatively simple nomographs
= 044
. that can be used in lieu of the equations. The method
for determining true vapor pressure (TVP) from Reid
Vapor Pressure (RVP) for any given temperature is
.1FL = 240 (0.44) = 105.6 feet (32.3 meters) given in API Bulletin 2513. 2
,'" obtain .1H from the Holland equation, the
[,)llowing data were assumed for the imaginary stack Problem 1: Evaporation Losses of Fixed-Roof
height: Tanks

I. Flare diameter is 7 feet (2.13 meters). a. BREATHING Loss

, T. (temperature of total gases) is 600 F (589 K).

L!/ = 0.024 C4./~P)'"" (D)'73 (H)051 (T)O '0 (FpHC)
3. Tn (ambient temperature is 40 F (278 K).
4. p (pressure) is 1013 millibars. L" breathing loss, in barrels per year.
P vapor pressure of liquid at bulk temperature,
5. Flare velocity is 22 ft/sec. in psia.
6. Flare velocity (vertical component) is 22 X 0.44 = D = tank diameter, in feet.
H = average outage, in feet.
9.7 ft/sec (2.96 m/sec). T = average daily ambient temperature change,

.1H = V~d[1.5 + 2.68 (lO-"p) C' t,J'n) dJ

in degrees Fahrenheit .
Fp = paint factor:

I = 26.'1 [l.~ + 2.68 (\.013) G~~) 2. \3 ]

\.39 for aluminum.
\.00 for white.
C = adjustment factor for small diameter tanks.
= 0.94 [1.5 + 2.72 (0.53) (2.13)1 P = 5.0 pounds.
0.94 (1.5 + 3.1) = 4.3 meters D = 125 feet.

H 24 feet.
H = 45.7 + 32.2 + 4.3 = 82.2 meters (270 feet) T 16 F.
Fp = 1.15 for white paint in poor condition.
Although some of the preceding assumptions may be C = 1.0.

Then, Thus,
L!I = 0.024 (9\)"'8 (125)173(24)0.51(16)050(1.15)(1.0) W = (0.OOO448)e'0~~5000) 7 bbl/yr t,
= 1495 bbl/yr Total loss of floating-roof tank is:
b. FILLING Loss 200 +7 = 207 bbl/yr
F = 0.OOO3PVK, Conclusions
Where: The fixed-roof loss will be 4495 barrels per year.
F filling loss, in barrels per year. The floating-roof loss will be only 207 barrels per year.
P vapor pressure of light at bulk temperature,
in psia. 6.6.6 PRODUCT LOADING
V = volume of liquid pumped into tank, in
barrels per year. Determine the loading loss experienced when loading
K, turnover factor (t = throughput in turnovers a tank truck with 10,000 gallons of 1l.0-pound RVP
per year, V/tank capacity). gasoline at temperatures of 40 F and 60 F by splash
Then, loading, subsurface loading, and vapor recovery.
F = (0.0003)(5.0)(2,000,000)(1.0) Assume average saturation of truck vapor space of
= (0.0015)(2,000,000) = 3,000 bbl/yr 30 percent.
Total loss of fixed-roof tank is: Volumetric loading losses with relation to gasoline
TVP are shown graphically in Figure 6-19. 31
1495 + 3000 = 4495 bbl/yr
0.4 Problem 2: Evaporation Losses of Floating-

Roof Tanks


L" = K f (D)15 ( 14.7 _
)O.7( VW)0.7

L" = standing-storage loss, in barrels per year.
Kr = tank type factor: "'
0.045 for welded tanks.
0.13 for riveted tanks with pontoon roof and
single seal.
D tank diameter, in feet (for tanks less than 150
ft in diameter). 0.0
P vapor pressure liquid at bulk temperature,
in psia. 12
V". = average wind velocity, in miles per hour.
Thus, 10

= (0.045)(125)1'\ (5' 2)°7(10)07

LI/ >
9.7 8

= 200 bbl/yr (NOTE: Multiplying factor 1.0) "':::;z

0 6
<{ t:
b. WITHDRAWAL Loss '" !i
W = 0.000448 D ., .', r< '" ~p\li~id'V ...;i' I •.

2 .'1",; ~, 'linll'TLl! l'iUI;!I:=~

Where: o 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
W= withdrawal loss, in barrels per year.

V volume of liquid withdrawn from tank. In
barrels per year. Figure 6-19 -Gasoline Correlation for Tank Cars and
D tank diamcter, in feet. Tank Trucks.
III !!;
_I_II ~IE 1I·1i
OVER 100°F

« =


\) ~
z +-


o 20,000 40,000 60,000 80,000 100,000


Figure 6-20_ Thermal Breathing Requirements for Various Tank Capacities.


I 6-31






o 20,000 40,000 60,000 80,000 100,000 120,000


Figure 6-21_ Venting Capacity Requirements at Various Pumping Rates.

6-32 •

I 'c following data are taken from Figure 6-19. All Example
10""' tor splash loading have been arbitrarily in- Consider the specific case of a I OO,OOO-barrel welded
. : <d h\' 50 percent to allow for losses by entrainment.
cone roof tank flash below 100 F with a maximum
filling rate of 5,000 bbl/hr and a maximum emptying
Splash Loading Subsurface Loading
rate of 2,000 bbl/hr. The following estimates are taken
'.1' "nund')) 11.0 11.0 11.0 11.0
"t"[-.Ilu[e F 40 60 40 60 from Figures 6-20 and 6-21.
· I' ,;'(lllnds) 3,8 5.6 3.8 5.6
IlflH.'tnc loss a. STEP 1
'"[(i.'nt) 0.100 0.175 0.042 0,062
Pressure Vacuum
i\ \ (d umetric (cu ft/hr) (cu ft/hr)
~ (:'t.'rcent) 0.150 0.263 0.042 0.062
Thermal requirement, 100,000 bbl 60,000 60,000
.dlt)nq 15.0 26,3 4.2 6.2 Filling requirement 60,000
Emptying requirement 11,200
Total cu ft/hr 120,000 71,200
!"t!Om loading is slightly more efficient than sub-
.f I;ICCloading. Vapor recovery systems have efficien- b. STEP 2
to 95 percent of splash loading losses, ass um-
. ,,!' ')() Assume that the welded cone roof tank (100,000 bbl)
.. ,) entrainment. Therefore, losses approximate has a pressure setting of 0.75 ounces per square inch
,'lit i percent of the total splash loading losses. (OSI) and a vacuum setting of 0.50 OS!. (All vac-
uum settings are 0.50 OSI.)
~.6.7 ~OOF VENTS C. STEP 3
For a pressure setting of 0.75 OSI, the maximum
:, 'calculate vent sizing, determine the following: required capacity must be achieved at 0.50 OSI buildup
"!I1acity requirements for: above the pressure setting, or 0.75 + 0.50 = 1.25 OS!.
Similarly, the vacuum setting is 0.50 + 0,50 = 1.00
a. Pressure-thermal expansion plus maximum OSI. Therefore, the vent must be sized for:
filling rate. 1. Pressure setting of 0.75 OSI and 120,000 cu ft/hr
b. Vacuum-thermal contraction plus maximum at 1.25 OS!.
emptying rate. 2. Vacuum setting of 0.50 OSI and 71,200 cu ft/hr
at 1.00 OS!.
",'"ure and vacuum settings.
Vent ratings for these conditions are available from
1. Size of required vents, the manufacturer's data.


• "National Primary and Secondary Ambient Air Quality "Meteorology and Atomic Energy, ed D. Slade, U.S. Atomic
Siandards," Federal Register 36 [84] Environmental Protection Energy Commission, Division of Technical Information (1968),
Agency (1971). " J. Z. Holland, "A Meteorological Survey of the Oak Ridge
'API Bu/l, 2513, Evaporation Loss in the Petroleum Indus- Area," Atomic Energy Commission Rept ORO·99, Washington,
I'",'-C£l£lses and Conlrol (1959). D.C. (1953).
'M. E. Smith, Recommended Guide for the Prediction of '" 0, B. Turner, Workbook of Atmospheric Dispersion Esti-
flit, Dispersioll 0/ Airborne Effluents, 1st ed., Am. Soc. Mech. mates, Revision, U.S, Dept. of Health, Education, and Welfare,
Engrs. (1968). Public Health Service (1970),
H API RP 521 Guide for Pressure Relief a"d Depressuring
, W. L. Donn, Meteorology, 3rd ed., McGraw-Hill Book Co.,
Inc., New York (1964). Systems, Sept. (1969).
I;, The Dispersion of Gases from Elevated Refinery Flares,
· C'. H. Bosanquet, "The Rise of a Hot Waste Gas Plume."
1. I",,/ilute of Fuel 30 [322] (1957). CONCAWE working group, presumably unpublished (1967).
,; R. B. Hawkins and E. A. Nonbebel, "Chimneys and the Dis- '" F. Pasquill, Atmospheric Diffusion, D. Van Nostrand Co.,
persal of Smoke," J. Institute of Fuel 28 [530] (1955). New York (1962).
" Air Quality Criteria for Particulate Matter, U.S. Dept. of
, W, S. Lucas, 0, L. Moore, and C. H. Spurr, "The Rise of Health, Education, and Welfare, National Air Pollution Con-
Hot PI limes from Chimneys," Institute J. Air and Water Pol/u- trol Association, Washington, D.C., Jan, (1969).
Ii"" 7 [473J (1963). '" G, T. Csanady, "Turbulent Diffusion of Heavy Particles in
, The Calculation of Atmospheric Dispersion from a Stack, the Atmosphere," J, Atm, Sci. 20, 201-08 (1963).
CONCAWE (1966). "R. L. Duprey, Compilation of Air Pol/utant Emission

" G. A. Briggs, "Plume Rise," USAEC, Division of Technical Factors, U.S. Dept. of Health, Education, and Welfare, Environ-
II, [ormation, USAEC TIP 25075. mental Health Services (1968) .
, .. G. E. Anderson, R. R. Hippler, and G, D. Robinson, "An ,,, G. R. Lord and H. J, Leutheusser, Wind Tunnel Study of
Evaluation of Dispersion Formulas," Final Rept. prepared by Sarnia Refinery, Imperial Oil Enterprises, Ltd., Sarnia, Canada,
Travelers Research Corporation for Am. Petrol. Inst. (1969). Dec, (1965).

"D. H. Brown and H. J. Sneck, "Cooling Tower Plume pirical Study of the Length of Cooling Tower Plumes." 65th
Rise," Am. Power Conference, 33rd Annual Meeting, Chicago, Assn. Mtg. APCA, Florida, June (1972).
Illinois, Apr. (1971). "T. J. Overcamp and D. P. Haul!, "Precipitation in the
"F. B. Kaylor, J. D. Kangas, J. L. Petrillo, and Y. J. Tsai, Wake of Cooling Towers," Atmospheric Environment, Vol. 5,
"Prediction and Verification of Visible Plume Behavior Asso- 751-65, Pergamon Press.
ciated with Wet Plume Discharge," 65th Meeting, Air Pollution "J. R. Buss, "How to Control Fog from Cooling Towers,"
Control Assoc., Miami Beach, Florida, June 18-22 (1972). Power 112, 72-3, June (1968).
"L. N. Fan, "Turbulent Buoyant Jets into Stratified or "Catalytic Cracking Emissions-An Industry Survey, Am.
Flowing Ambient Fluid," Cal. lnst. Tech., Report No. KH- Petrol. lnst., June (1972).
R-15 (1967). "API Bull. 2517, Evaporation Loss from Floating-Roof
"G. Abraham, "The Flow of Round Buoyant Jets Issuing Tanks (1962).
Vertically into Ambient Fluid Flowing in a Horizontal Direc- '" API Bull. 2518, Evaporation Loss from Fixed-Roof Tanks
tion," 5th Inter. Water Pollution Research Conf., July-August (1962).
(1970). " API Bull. 2514, Evaporation Loss from Tank Cars, Tank
"P. R. Westlin, D. L. Brenchley, and P. J. Smith, "An Em- Trucks. and Marine Vessels (1959).

, .



constant in Lucas, Moore, and Spurr formula.' Tl = temperature of combined inlet gases prior to
stack diameter, in meters. combustion, in degrees Fahrenheit.
Briggs formula, a factor proportional to the I'- wind velocity, in feet per second or meters per
rate of buoyancy (heat) emission. second.
/ '/. flare length of flare plumes. I'- particle size, in microns.
cJL vertical component of flare length, FL. I'- = wind velocity at stack height, in meters per
If effective height of a stack. second.
if = effective height of plume rise. U plume exit velocity (cooling towers).
,II.\' stack height.
V" = stack exit velocity, in feet per minute.
plume rise above stack height.
w stack exit velocity, in meters per second.
!fe heat of combustion.
//r heat losses by radiation. Xmax maximum downwind ground level concentra-
i.[ heat emission, in megawatts (Lucas, Moore, tion, in grams per cubic meter.
and Spurr formula). XI'-) relative maximum concentration.
( Q
standard deviation of plume diffusion in the max

horizontal. X concentration in grams per cubic meter at any

= standard deviation of plume diffusion in the particular point in space. Usually used with
vertical. coordinates x, y, and z, and effective stack

atmospheric pressure, in millibars. height, H.
Q heat emission, in megawatts. XI ground fumigation concentration.
Q uniform emission rate of pollutants. x = distance from source at any point directly
f? speed ratio of plume exit velocity to wind downwind of plume flow.
speed (cooling towers).
x distance from x, in meters.
atmospheric temperature, in degrees Kelvin.
stack temperature, in degrees Kelvin. y distance crosswind from x-axis.
imaginary stack exit temperature, in degrees z distance (vertical) above ground.
Fahrenheit. 2 m" plume rise above stack height; similar to :1H.

NOTE: This appendix does not include symbols for evaporation loss equations for fixed- and floating-roof
tanks. These are defined separately in the loss calculations in Paragraph 6.6.5 .

• 6-35

3M-March 1974