September 2021

Special Focus: Refining Technology

Improve kerosene mercaptan sweetening with fluoropolymer-cartridge liquid-liquid coalescers

Many refineries are experiencing new problems related to the formation of stable emulsions and poor separation due to the increased use of lower-cost opportunity crude oils that have a high total acid number (TAN), higher gravities and more sulfur content.

Wines, T. H., Gorin, A., Pall Corp.; Rios, J., Trucko, J., Honeywell UOP

Many refineries are experiencing new problems related to the formation of stable emulsions and poor separation due to the increased use of lower-cost opportunity crude oils that have a high total acid number (TAN), higher gravities and more sulfur content. Various naphthenic acids, pipeline flow enhancers and injected corrosion inhibitors will distill off in the kerosene cut from the crude distillation unit (CDU). The kerosene is often treated with caustic (sodium hydroxide or ammonia) and a fixed-bed catalyst, using a proprietary mercaptan oxidation processa for mercaptan sweetening. Sodium naphthenates will form after caustic treatment, and may foul the porous structure of the mercaptan ox

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