Upgrading of Heavy Crude Oil with W-Zr Catalyst


The main problem of new crude oil reserves is the incipient increase of heavy crude oils in the American continent, i.e. USA, Mexico, Canada and Venezuela. These types of crude oils require several treatments before refining. One of these treatments can be hydrocracking. In this petroleum refining process, it is possible to modify the heavy crude oils to light crude oils. In this paper, we try to use hydrocracking to improve the quality of raw heavy crude oil, through some chemical transformations C-H binding rupture using a catalyst containing active metals such as tungsten and zirconium (W-Zr). After the crude oil was hydrocracked in presence of this novel bimetallic catalyst, the hydrocracked products showed lower content of asphaltenes, resins, sulfur and nitrogen. Also positive changes in the viscosity of crude oil measured as a decreasing of this value were observed. The American Petroleum Institute (API) gravity was significantly increased 6 units. Consequently, all these changes confirmed that the upgrading of the heavy crude oil was successful.

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Schacht, P. , Díaz-García, L. , Aguilar, J. and Ramírez, S. (2014) Upgrading of Heavy Crude Oil with W-Zr Catalyst. Advances in Chemical Engineering and Science, 4, 250-257. doi: 10.4236/aces.2014.42028.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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