Southdowns was commissioned by the Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) in 2017 to undertake a site study of the risk of workers at the Mina Al-Ahmadi Oil Refinery to noise induced hearing damage.
Located 50 km south of Kuwait City, the Mina Al-Ahmadi Refinery is one of the largest oil refineries in the middle east, with an area spanning 1,332,000 m2 and a petroleum production capacity of 730,000 barrels per day. Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) carried out an in-house study of personal noise exposures, which highlighted exceedances of permissible health limits.
Attended source term noise measurements of each major mechanical noise source were obtained across the refinery. This involved the derivation of source terms for over 500 items of plant within 30 oil and gas processing units. Noise sources included pumps, condensers, pipes, compressors and valves.
The noise source terms derived by direct measurement and/or calculation were used to support the development of a large scale desk top model of the complete site. Modelled noise sources included external point and area sources, compressor enclosure façades.
Noise contour plots were generated to identify areas where state occupational noise exposure limits were exceeded. Rank ordering of sources, generic mitigation options and basic design proposals were identified for each of these working areas, including acoustic enclosures, pipework insulation and vent silencers.