Systems Consulting


Becht Engineering provides expert services in design, design review, troubleshooting, fitness for service, repair and failure analysis of atmospheric and low pressure storage tanks built in accordance with API 620 and API 650.  Consulting assistance is provided to refiners on the application of API 653 Standard, and development of risk-based programs for cost effective inspection and maintenance of existing aboveground storage tanks.

A senior specialist in this area is Arcot “Radha” Radhakrishnan, who is a former member of the API Committee on storage tanks.  We also have provided highly experienced field staff to consult on and oversee tank cleaning and repair, as well as the construction of new storage tanks.

We also teach a two day course on storage tanks, covering API 620, API 650 and API 653. For details regarding our training courses, click here.

Offsite and Utilities

Becht has the expertise to provide design basis, basic designs and optimization for cooling water, boiler feedwater treatment, steam/power generation and distribution, compressed air, flare gas recovery, fuel gas and fuel oil systems, tankage, blending and product receiving/loading systems.  We also model process plant firewater systems, including determining demand requirements, and evaluating system performance.Becht specialists provide practical recommendations to improve reliability.  Further, we troubleshoot and correct operating problems such as waterhammer problems in steam systems.

Instrument and Control Systems (I&CS)

Becht has staff from the technician level who can perform loop checks  for new facilities  to senior staff who have developed or  supervised  the  development of the planning and design documents for facility-wide distributed control systems (DCS) for new systems or system upgrades  for implementation by EPC contractors. Many have experience as lead I&CS specialist for the pre-startup checkout and startup of new facilities worldwide.

Our senior specialists have reviewed contractor/vendor I&CS planning and design documents and have participated in Factory Acceptance Tests and Hazard and Operability Reviews (HAZOP) as part of their project support activities


Power generation and distribution of electricity within the plant and adjacent facilities is reviewed to assess opportunities for more efficient utilization; particularly, when major changes to existing processing units and/or new process units are to be installed.  Review of contractor relay coordination studies, short-circuit analysis, large motor selection, and lightning protection are a number of areas where Becht specialists can provide support.

In addition, a periodic review of the reliability of electrical components and electronic control systems to evaluate opportunities reduces the failure rate or costly preventive maintenance.

Cogeneration of steam and power is highly attractive at most locations to improve energy efficiency and increase reliability of critical steam and power users. Power reliability also is dependent on dual supply and distribution facilities.


Process Analyzers are an integral part of Quality Control; however, they are usually high maintenance. Proper selection and location for response time are critical for accurate results. Locating the analyzer within the process unit must be evaluated against higher installation costs for electrical area classification and environmental considerations versus locating the analyzer remotely in a control environment but perhaps slower response time. Becht Engineering can help you decide!

Litigation Support

  1. Mechanical consultation to support litigation involving a pipe elbow rupture resulting in significant damage to refinery. Provided expert opinions on inspection findings and fitness for service.
  2. Rotating Equipment consultation to support litigation involving major Olefin’s centrifugal compressor mechanical seal failure resulting in unplanned downtime.
  3. Project Consulting expert opinion, deposition, and testifying supporting for a major plant retrofit project. The retrofit project was a cost-reimbursable contracting strategy.
  4. Heavy Lift consultation for major crane overhaul incident resulting in loss of life at a Refinery.
  5. Process Technical and Maintenance Turnaround expert reports to support causal analysis for Refinery loss of containment due to contaminant intrusion into piping network.
  6. Mechanical expert opinions and testimony on failures of buried double containment piping system (court, arbitration and mediation).
  7. Heavy lift expert report and testimony for a crane collapse in a major metropolitan city
  8. Materials causal analysis and expert opinion as part of litigation on refinery heat exchanger loss of containment resulting in loss of life.
  9. Expert report and testimony in Federal Court with respect to infringement of a double containment piping system patent
  10. Mechanical expert opinion as part of arbitration on damages from a vessel explosion. Findings involved feasibility of repair of equipment damaged by pieces ejected versus wholesale replacement.
  11. Process Safety Management guidance on Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) case for Petrochemical facility.
  12. Expert Report – When an EPC contractor was fired from an ore tailings project and sued for past due invoices, they were countersued for alleged damages. Expert report showing alleged damages were due to owner actions, the actions of the subsequent EPC contractor, or were otherwise baseless led to quick settlement.
  13. Investigation and expert report showed that expert reports by others for subrogation purposes alleging that a refinery fire and explosion was caused by a pump were factually wrong.
  14. Expert report and testimony on buried propane storage tank vehicular damage and consequential fatality.
  15. Expert report and testimony on personal injury lawsuit related to a reactor that had a release due to a decomposition reaction.


Becht’s team supports pre-trial and in-trial oral testimony in support of litigation cases, as well as testimony in arbitration and mediation hearings.

Expert Opinion

We are engaged to support review and issuance of findings and counter opinions to the opposing party affidavit. This can range from review and commentary to thoroughly documented counter-arguments.  At times Becht suggests further analysis such as independent materials testing to support counter-arguments.

Causal Analysis

Our cross-functional teams visit the facility, interview appropriate personnel and review documentation in order to independently analyze cause. Becht’s team is highly experienced in their respective fields bringing focused knowledge where required – e.g. petrochemical high-pressure compressor seal expertise.  Becht’s deliverable is a consolidated report of findings and supporting documentation.

Owner’s Project Support

Becht Engineering provides services in the area of capital projects from front-end engineering through startup.  Becht’s many staff, field, and management resources help ensure a successful project in terms of safety, budget, schedule, and quality. We have staffed project team positions within an owner’s organization by filling positions such as project and construction managers, construction safety, project engineers and process operators.  Many of the staff are retirees – consulting with us after long careers with industry majors.  They are available to participate in constructability reviews and progress assessments, fill short term gaps or staff longer-term roles. Given the depth and breadth of our large resource pool, we can fill positions with specialists who have specific experience in the unit(s) under maintenance or construction.


Becht Engineering can provide resources with an owner’s perspective to help ensure your turnaround is successful with respect to safety, quality, cost and schedule.  We have seasoned professionals and work processes to successfully manage, plan, review and supervise plant turnarounds.  Becht has provided up to 32 owner’s resources on major turnaround efforts in the past.


Becht Nuclear Services serves the nuclear industry and provides expert engineering support in the areas of mechanical and structural analysis, qualification, and integrity assessments, resolution of materials, corrosion and welding issues, thermo-hydraulics analysis, transients and vibration diagnostics and resolution, life extension, equipment qualification, fracture analysis, and accident analysis.

Becht Nuclear Services provides immediate, around-the-clock support in helping operating plants resolve mechanical and structural integrity issues, in a safe and reliable manner.

Led by George Antaki, PE, Becht Nuclear Services Chief Engineer the Becht Nuclear Services staff consists of foremost industry experts in mechanical and structural engineering, corrosion, metallurgy, and welding.  We pride ourselves in solving problems and preventing their recurrence in a timely and cost-effective manner.

The Nuclear Services staff are located in Aiken, South Carolina; Richland, Washington; and Liberty Corner, New Jersey.

Let Becht Turn Your Problem
Into Peace of Mind