February 2007

Special Report: Clean Fuels

Optimize your hydrocracking operations

The hydrocracking experience for a Gulf Coast refinery illustrates potential problems with poor catalyst selection

Rashid, K., Saudi Aramco

Demand for white-oil products (gasoline and diesel) is increasing at an all-time high, while the demand for black-oil products such as fuel oil is declining. Consequently, refiners are taking more steps to convert black oil into white-oil products. Hydrocracking is the forefront processing method for such efforts. Hydrocracking can significantly improve refining margins by upgrading low-value products into higher-value, high-demand products. By applying hydrocracking, refiners can maintain a favorable balance between white-oil and black-oil products while achieving an optimum refinery throughput. The following examples explore the theory, process details and challenges associated with this

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