Berthold's solution for the fluid catalytic cracking processes (FCC)

Grphic of Fluid catalytic cracking unit FCC process

Level and density measurement of catalyst fines in fluid catalytic cracking (FCC)

Catalyst fines have to be removed from the regenerator flue gas to fulfill regulatory requirements and to protect downstream equipment. Thus cyclonic separators are used to filter out the remaining catalyst fines. The solid particles settle down at the bottom of the separator, where their level is controlled by radiometric level systems from Berthold. The non-contacting technology is ideally suited for this kind of application since dust and temperature have no impact on the measurement performance.

Customer Benefit

  • Improved catalyst removal
  • Reliable process control
  • Ideal utilitzation of vessel capacity


  • Continuous level measurement, typically 2...4 m measuring range
  • Installed at the bottom conical part
  • Typical arrangement uses Cs-137 point sources and scintillation rod detectors
  • Non-contacting, non-intrusive technology
  • No re-calibrations, no maintenance required

SIL certified option

The SENSseries LB 480 detectors are certified for use in SIL2 applications. Even SIL3 is achieved with homogenous redundancy. The certificate covers all measurement applications, from high level or low level alarms to continuous level measurement and density measurement. Thus safe operation of critical oil and gas processes is guaranteed.

More about SIL


Long-term stability

A reliable measurement, requiring no maintenance and re-calibration, is vital for the operation of a process and is therefore, our highest priority. Berthold’s detectors operate absolutely stable irrespective of changes in ambient temperature. Even drastic temperature shifts, e.g. from winter to summer don’t irritate the measurement drift. Our patented method for detector stabilization compensates for temperature influences and aging.

Detector Stability

Radiation Interference Protection (XIP)

With this feature, radiometric welding checks do no longer interfere the measured value. The measured value is frozen until the radiation interference detection is over. A digital output signalizes the detection of radiation interference. All Berthold level and level switch measurements are equipped with XIP.

More about XIP


Further applications

Vessels that use radiometric devices in the FCC besides cyclone separators are electrostatic precipitation hoppers and fractionator tower bottom level. The radiometeric level measurement on the fractionator tower bottom is unaffected by the changing percent catalyst fines like differential pressure. This increases the reliability of the level potentially proventing tray damage if level gets too high, or pump damage if level gets too low.


Radiometric Measurement Whitepaper

English | PDF | 1.8 MB