The Monitor

Production Process Insights

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Jeff McKinney

As an industry manager for chemical and petrochemical refining, Jeff is an expert in those markets and is experienced in power generation as well. Jeff is focused on serving these key markets and sharing information on how Sentry sampling and monitoring products and systems can meet any petrochemical or chemical application, anywhere. He is responsible for our market strategy and product offerings, and is always interested in exchanging information on specific industry applications and solutions that meet customer needs.
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Recent Posts

Steam Sampling 101: Basics and What Really Matters

Posted by Jeff McKinney on 6/7/17 2:00 PM

What does it take to design a practical and reliable steam sampling system? Find out what you need to know to practically implement steam sampling guidelines in your process environment. 

Steam sampling is sometimes viewed as a necessary evil in a process plant. However, the absence of steam due to a boiler shutdown makes for a bad day at a refinery, petrochemical or specialty chemical plant. But one size doesn’t fit all, and a number of variables must be considered to design and implement a practical, reliable steam sampling system.

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Topics: Power, Hydrocarbon Processing, Steam & Water

Safely Cool High Temperature Samples in Plants Without Water

Posted by Jeff McKinney on 12/7/16 11:15 AM

Analysis of process steam and condensate are important aspects of any chemical processing or refining operation. Impurities in these systems such as silica, sodium, and chloride, or deviations from target pH values, can wreak havoc on a plant’s operations. Online analyses of parameters such as pH and cation conductivity are commonly performed to monitor the condition of process water and steam.

In order to achieve accurate analysis, EPRI, ASTM and ASME recommend cooling of water samples to 77°F (25°C) to ensure consistent, accurate analysis. Unfortunately, cooling water temperatures in process plants commonly exceed 100°F (38°C). While this is acceptable to provide rough cooling, it is insufficient to properly cool samples for online pH, cation conductivity or similar analyzers.

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Topics: Power, Steam & Water

Sample archiving of plastic pellets automated

Posted by Jeff McKinney on 5/31/16 10:08 AM

One common petrochemical process is the creation of preproduction plastic pellets, which are raw plastic that is heated and reformed into a wide variety of plastic products. Plastic pellets can range in size from 1 to 5 mm, and they can end up as wraps, sheets, bottles, containers, tubs, furniture, garbage cans or other items of all shapes and sizes.

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Topics: Hydrocarbon Processing

How to Sample Cryogenic Liquids Safely

Posted by Jeff McKinney on 5/4/16 8:23 AM

In the petrochemical industry, it often is necessary to ship and store product that would be gaseous at ambient conditions – such as liquefied natural gas (LNG) or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) – as liquid. The product is stored or transported cold to minimize its volume.

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Topics: Hydrocarbon Processing

How To Safely Sample Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG)

Posted by Jeff McKinney on 3/29/16 8:00 AM

A range of petrochemical liquids and gases are stored and transported under high pressure, including liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). LPG is a two-phase liquid – a gas that is pressurized, stored and transported in its liquid phase, with high vapor pressures. Operators and the environment both face risks if unsafe LPG sampling solutions are employed.

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Topics: Hydrocarbon Processing

How to best obtain representative samples from your process stream

Posted by Jeff McKinney on 12/3/15 2:13 PM

Running an efficient operation requires analysis of controlled, real-time data obtained through representative sampling within a production environment. This data is needed to provide the critical insights needed to control and optimize processes. Representative sampling is the act of capturing fresh product from the process stream for analysis.

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Topics: Hydrocarbon Processing