UOP Offers Refiners Packing Option to Strip FCC Catalysts
Refiners have responded to increasing demands for olefins, gasoline or distillate by increasing the raw oil throughput in their fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) units and by implementing other FCC technologies, that intensify catalyst circulation. UOP LLC’s (Des Plaines, IL; www.uop.com) AF spent-catalyst stripper technology, which features trays and grids (U.S. Pat No. 6,740,227 and 6,680,030, respectively) that improve both the yield and selectivity of FCC products – now includes a packing option. The first commercial application of AF packing is expected to be operational in spring of 2005 at a major U.S. refinery.
AF spent-catalyst stripper technology can be applied to any FCC unit and stripper styles to enhance catalyst-oil contacting operating at catalyst fluxes consistently above 120,000 Ib/ft^sup 2^h,” says UOP’s refining marketing manager, Mark Houdek. One large FCC unit that was revamped to the AF tray design realized a delta coke reduction of 0.04 wt.%, which lowered the regenerator temperature by 14°F, and improved conversion by 2.3 vol.%. In another case, a small FCC unit installed AF grids and improved conversion by 3.0 vol.% and gasoline yield by 2.8 vol.%. “Most applications of AF technology afford a return on investment in a matter of months,” affirms Houdek.
Copyright American Institute of Chemical Engineers Jul 2004
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