Determining the emission rates of volatile organic compounds and modeling their dispersion from the petroleum and chemical storage tanks of the largest oil terminal in the southwest of Iran

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Environmental Engineering, Ahvaz branch, Islamic Azad University, Ahvaz, Iran

2 Department of Chemical Engineering, Mahshahr branch, Islamic Azad University, Mahshahr, Iran


This study aimed to investigate the air pollution caused by volatile organic compounds (VOCs) with an emphasis on benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX). Due to surface evaporation from the storage tanks of the largest petroleum and chemical product terminal in the export port of the southwestern Iran, the field measurements of the emission sources were performed using the TANKs 4.0.9d software, and VOC emission modeling was performed using the PHAST software. Among 36 point sources (32 external floating roof tanks and four internal floating roof tanks), the emission rates of the VOCs of the storage tanks were determined using the TANKs 4.0.9d software in the area of 3.8 km2 during 12 months (March 2017-January 2018). The highest rate of VOC emissions from the tanks was observed in July, with the highest temperature and wind speed in the region. According to the results, the total emission rate of the VOCs from the storage tanks was 881.74 ton/year, and the highest emission rate was observed in the external floating roof tanks (865.7 ton/year; 98.18%). The contribution of the internal floating roof tanks was 16.04 ton/year (1.81%), and the highest and lowest VOC emission rates in the export port were observed in the light naphtha tank No. 67 and jet naphtha storage tank (56.73 and 4.18 ton/year), respectively. In addition, the highest and lowest BTEX emission rates from the storage tanks were observed in the gasoline tank No. 62 and jet naphtha tanks No. 93 and 94 (0.37 and 0.05 ton/year), respectively.


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