February 2008

Special Report: Clean Fuels

Use new catalyst technologies to process ultra-low-sulfur diesel

Innovative dewaxing methods can be used to improve cold-flow properties for 'clean' diesel in cold winter climates

Duker, A., Sud-Chemie AG

Most European refineries are able to produce diesel with sulfur levels below 10 ppm wt. This ability to produce ultra-low-sulfur diesel (ULSD) involved large investments over the last years. These lower-sulfur fuels also greatly contribute to a cleaner environment. However, in countries with cold winters, more challenges are associated with <10-ppm sulfur diesel. Cold-flow properties of ULSD (see Table 1) are challenged at low temperatures due to the presence of normal paraffins (n-paraffins). Straight-chain paraffins form crystals at low temperatures and are the leading cause for blocked filters in motors and fuel lines. Several processing methods can be used to remove these paraffins

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