Oil storage facility is a complex of constructions and devices for reception, storage, overload from one type of transport on another and issue of oil and petroleum products.
Oil storage facilities are divided:
- into distributive, entrepot and distributive-entrepot according to the nature of operations;
- into water (sea and river), railway, pipeline and deep according to the way of supply.
Depending on the total capacity of the tanks and containers for the storage of oil and petroleum products oil storage facilities are divided into three categories: I - more than 100 000 m3, II - from 20 000 to 100 000 m, III - up to 20 000 m3.
As a rule, oil storage facility is a tanks that is located on the ground and/or underground, as well as a platform for receiving/shipping of stored products on trucks (railway tanks, tank trucks, tankers) or in the pipeline.
Tank farms can be independent enterprises, as well as a member of the industrial, transportation, energy and other enterprises (TTP, river and sea ports). As a rule, they put ready petroleum into the storage unit.
Tank farm is a set of interrelated individual or groups of tanks for storage or accumulation of oil and oil products. Tank farms are equipped with technological pipelines, valves and pumps for inner transfers, systems of loss reduction products, security, extinguishing systems and automation tools.
Tank farms provide the uniform loading of long distance pipelines, accumulation of stocks of the emergency and strategic reserve, increase of reliability of systems of oil supply of a national economy as a whole.
Tank farms can be part of the oil fields, oil depots, head and intermediate pumping stations of the main oil pipelines, refineries, petrochemical complexes, as well as an independent company.
By the method of tanks placing tank farms are divided into:
elevated and ground tank farm, it is equipped with steel vertical cylindrical oil tanks with a stationary or floating roof;
semi-underground tank farm, it is equipped with concrete tanks with lining inside the steel sheet or without it;
underground tank farm, it can make significant reserves of products in small areas compared to ground or semi- underground ones;
underwater tank farm, it consists of underwater tanks or tankers.
Elevated, ground and semi-underground tank farms consist of groups of tanks. Distances between tanks in tank farms are limited according to sanitary and fire protection regulations and rules. Capacity of elevated, ground and semi-underground tank farms does not exceed 1 million m and is limited to the sizes of the taken-away territory.
Underground tank farms are built usually in salt caverns or in solid sedimentary rocks.
Underwater tank farms can be built in the concrete foundations of offshore drilling platforms.
Underground and underwater tank farms are fireproof and can eliminate product loss from evaporation.
The general trend in the construction and operation of tank farms are the following: improving safety and reducing wastage of products with a minimum of cost.