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BHS-Sonthofen implements largest ever candle filter plant for lean amine solution

Filtration of amine solution in cleaning of natural gas: Sonthofen machine manufacturer expands its product range with the construction of complete plants.

BHS-Sonthofen implements largest ever candle filter plant for lean amine solution

Erection of the new gas processing plant at the South Ýolöten natural gas field in Turkmenistan

BHS-Sonthofen delivered a compact candle filter plant to Turkmenistan in 2011. With an hourly capacity of 300 m³ of lean amine solution, it is the largest filter plant that BHS has ever built for this application. The project demonstrates once again that BHS has successfully accomplished the evolution from a manufacturer of individual filter components to a supplier of complete plants.

BHS has supplied the filter plant of modular design as part of the crude gas cleaning stage for natural gas production in the South Yoloten gas field, one of the world“s largest natural gas fields in the South East of Turkmenistan. It is used for cleaning and refining the crude gas in the „amine sweetening“ process step.

For Jürgen Maurer, sales director for the filtration technology division at BHS-Sonthofen, the order represents a milestone in the company“s history: „Whereas we previously used to supply mostly individual filter plants, we now additionally offer our customers the entire spectrum of plant construction from design through to commissioning – including the piping and steel structure, for example, as well as the complete process control engineering. We are thus opening up new market segments as we are now addressing a broader range of customers.“

Featuring a filter area of about 80 m2 each, the candle filters remove impurities such as piping debris from the lean amine, thereby protecting the actual core of the plant – the activated carbon filters, also supplied by BHS – from foreign matter. The candle filters regenerate approximately 150 m3 of lean amine solution per filter unit every hour.

The scope of supply also includes the pre-coat station, the activated carbon filter units, a downstream polishing filter, all pumps and fittings as well as the entire measuring and control technology. The plant is integrated into the customer“s process control system.

In the amine sweetening process, the sour gas contains impurities such as carbon dioxide (CO2) and hydro sulfide (H2S) are absorbed in an amine scrubber and adsorbed by an activated carbon filter. The amine suspension is clarified by the BHS filter systems. They filter solid particles – piping abrasion and dust for example – and thus considerably lengthen the life of the amine solution.

The plant was shipped to Turkmenistan in 2011 in fifteen 40-foot containers. The modular construction principle enabled the plant to be erected in a minimum of time.

Background: BHS candle filters

BHS candle filters are batch-operated filters with vertically arranged, candle-shaped filter elements. They are used for residue filtration, particularly for suspensions with a low solids content or with very fine, amorphous particles that are hard to separate.

BHS candle filters can be used in a very wide range of applications on account of their diverse modification potential; primarily in batch operation with dry discharge but also as slurry or wet-discharge filters in quasi-continuous operation.

The filter candles essentially consist of the perforated support grid with evenly spaced welded rods, a textile filter cloth selected to meet the individual requirements, and the internal filtrate discharge pipe. The unique design and the large, open cross-sections of the support grid and discharge pipes ensure good adhesion of the particles during filtration, a high filtrate flow rate and reliable cake discharge by gas blowback or backflushing from the filtrate side.

The candles are mounted on individual collection registers. This allows selected registers to be isolated from the filtration process without interrupting operation. It is also possible for the residue to be removed from specific registers or discharged in portions.

About BHS-Sonthofen GmbH

BHS-Sonthofen develops and manufactures machines and plants for mixing, crushing, recycling and filtration applications in the field of mechanical process engineering. The company focuses on customized solutions tailored to the specific requirements of individual industries.

For over 50 years, BHS has manufactured a wide range of filtration plants for solid-liquid separation in batch and continuous processes. These plants are used on a daily basis by over 1000 customers for highly diverse applications and are regarded as innovative, state-of-the-art solutions. A common feature of all BHS filters is that they work with a comparatively thin cake.

Well-known customers in the construction and building materials, mining, chemicals, pharmaceuticals and food processing industries as well as the environmental and waste management sectors and other major industries have been relying on machines and plants from BHS-Sonthofen for many decades.

BHS-Sonthofen GmbH has been an independent group of companies since 1996. Its history stretches back to an iron-smelting works founded 400 years ago on the site of the present-day company premises. Today, BHS-Sonthofen is a mid-sized global player with over 300 employees, 210 of whom work in Sonthofen. The group of companies is headquartered in Sonthofen, Germany, and has subsidiaries in the US, China and India.

For more information, visit

BHS-Sonthofen GmbH
Roland Schmid
An der Eisenschmelze 47
D-87527 Sonthofen, Germany
+49 8321 6099-231

Regina Reinhardt
Süsterfeldstrasse 83
52072 Aachen, Germany

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