Engineering News

UOP, Albemarle, Petrobras To Commercialize Upgrading Tech
October 02, 2008

UOP LLC on Wednesday announced that it has signed a technology cooperation agreement with Petrobras and Albemarle Corp. to demonstrate and further commercialization of UOP's Catalytic Crude Upgrading (CCU) process technology.

Under the agreement, UOP will provide the technology, equipment and system design. Albemarle will provide an improved Fluid Catalytic Cracking (FCC) catalyst to be used in the process. Petrobras, which has already run the process in its pilot plant, will offer knowledge and experience with FCC catalyst as well as heavy crude processing.

"Commercializing technology today often requires the cooperation of several companies to provide the diverse skills and assets necessary," said UOP Director of Refining Process Technology and Equipment Ashis Banerji. "The combined capabilities of Petrobras, Albemarle and UOP will ensure that CCU technology meets the quality and performance needs of our customers."

"With the increasing demand for heavy oils and the decreasing availability of suitable, cost effective diluting agents, we believe that the CCU technology will be a key factor in meeting the world's future demand for crude," said Albemarle Vice President of FCC Scott Martin. "Albemarle's proven capabilities in FCC catalyst development fit perfectly with the needs of this technology, and we are pleased to add to our portfolio of clean energy solutions through this agreement."

"Petrobras has demonstrated the CCU technology in our pilot plants in CENPES development center and developed the catalytic system solution through our long term partnership with Albemarle in FCC catalyst. Our company is excited about our role in the future deployment of the CCU Technology," said Alipio Ferreira Pinto Jr., Downstream R&D General Manager at CENPES for Petrobras.

UOP developed the CCU process in 2005 as a cost effective option to upgrade heavy crude oils and bitumen-derived crude. The process reduces the viscosity of the crude allowing it to travel easily through pipeline transport without the use of external diluting agents.

The UOP CCU Process is available for license today.

UOP LLC, headquartered in Des Plaines, Illinois, USA, is a leading international supplier and licensor of process technology, catalysts, adsorbents, process plants, and consulting services to the petroleum refining, petrochemical, and gas processing industries. UOP is a wholly owned subsidiary of Honeywell International, Inc. and is part of Honeywell's Specialty Materials strategic business group.

Source: UOP LLC

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