Evaluation and optimisation of energy savings opportunities on a petrochemical site

Type: Master project (30 credits)

Period: 2016 Spring

Student: Alessio Santecchia

Assistant: Elfie Méchaussie

Company: INEOS


The objective of the project is to carry out a thorough site energy review and study in deep details several energy savings opportunities identified in a preliminary work on an existing industrial site in Hull, UK.


A preliminary “grey-box” energy study has been carried out in Summer-Autumn 2015 within the framework of an EPFL semester project, providing the required elements to comply with the UK legislation (energy audit defined by the ESOS scheme). Several energy savings opportunities were identified and evaluated through an approximative operational/investment cost analysis.


Site energy review

  • white box energy balance of Oxide Hull site (data reconciliation tools, models)

Detailed energy planning (non-binding recommendations)

  • review and validation of energy measures presented in ESOS audit report
  • planning report in support of onsite implementation
  • substantiation for ISO 50001 certification


  • The energy study is repeated at white box level, indicating that relevant energy balances, profiles and recommendations are presented at unit level, thus entering the process details.
  • The energy planning is performed based on the data collected from the ESOS study.
  • The project aims to study in deeper detail the energy savings opportunities identified in the ESOS audit frame and to refine and validate/reject each opportunity in order to enable the site team to plan and implement reliable energy savings actions.
  • The study as described will be carried out by an EPFL student, performing an internship at the Hull site for a period of 3-4 months.

Work realisation:

The student will have access to all necessary data and information through the collaboration with on-site engineers and operators, and is embedded within the broader context of two PhDs. All projects make use of the IPESE developed OSMOSE tool, and the prospect of developing further methods and tools to reach the set targets are taken into consideration (Matlab, Vali, Aspen, etc.).

A research plan will be defined in the early stages of the work, to be validated by all concerned parties. The student will report regularly in view of progress update, feedback and input. Local project leaders and onsite engineers are first lines of contact. Weekly meetings are recommended in the early stages of the project, periodic telecons with the supervising team are welcomed.

After the first months, the student will present an intermediary report to the EPFL industrial project leadership team. A thesis report will be written and presented at the end of the internship duration and will be reworked in a final report and presentation in order to discuss, validate and finalise the project.