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Catalysts 2019, 9(3), 216;

Hydrocracking of Athabasca Vacuum Residue Using Ni-Mo-Supported Drill Cuttings

Department of Chemical & Petroleum Engineering, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, Canada T2N 1N4
State Key Laboratory of Heavy Oil Processing, College of Chemical Engineering, China University of Petroleum, Beijing 102249, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 20 January 2019 / Revised: 1 February 2019 / Accepted: 7 February 2019 / Published: 26 February 2019
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Ni-Mo supported drill cuttings were used to catalyze the hydrocracking (HDC) of Athabasca vacuum residue (AVR) in an autoclave. Drill cuttings are a common waste product that are, depending on their origin, plentiful in acidic sites. The catalyst was prepared using the wet impregnation method. HDC was carried out at both low and high H2 pressure at 400 °C. Control thermal cracking (TC) and HDC runs with and without raw drill cuttings were performed to better examine the role of the supported drill cuttings catalyst. The quality in terms of viscosity and °API gravity, and the yield of various fractions making up the product oil were used to gauge the performance of the catalyst. Similar temperature and energy profiles between TC and HDC suggested strong overlap between the two different reactions, despite H2 presence. Nevertheless, supported drill cuttings runs at high H2 pressures promoted H2 consumption to a strong extent. Consequently, the liquid yield was the highest (~75 wt.%) and the coke yield was negligible. High temperature simulated distillation results revealed a residue conversion of ~55% for both low and high pressure HDC catalytic runs. The product oil quality with respect to viscosity and °API gravity was also found to be comparable between the low and high pressure HDC catalytic runs. Accordingly, no trade-off between liquid yield and quality was incurred at high H2 pressure. Effectively the supported drill cuttings drastically reduced coke formation, while maximizing the yield of the desired liquid product. View Full-Text
Keywords: thermal cracking; hydrocracking; asphaltene; maltene; drill cuttings; supported catalyst thermal cracking; hydrocracking; asphaltene; maltene; drill cuttings; supported catalyst

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Kaminski, T.; Sheng, Q.; Husein, M.M. Hydrocracking of Athabasca Vacuum Residue Using Ni-Mo-Supported Drill Cuttings. Catalysts 2019, 9, 216.

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