New technologies can help refineries make more aromatics

12 June 2014 00:34 Source:ICIS News

HOUSTON (ICIS)--GTC Technology can offer refineries a way to make more aromatics, giving them more flexibility between gasoline and petrochemicals production, a manager for the company said on Wednesday.

"We can make the refinery more like a petrochemical company, and in doing it they will make more money," Charlie Chou, GTC petrochemical licensing manager, said during the second annual ICIS US Aromatics and Derivatives Conference in Houston.

The company offers GT-aromatisation and GT BTX-Plus units which can be integrated into refineries. Both technologies allow an increased production of aromatics like benzene, toluene and xylenes (BTX).

Aromatics demand has been growing and is expected to continue doing so, he said.

"When people have declining gasoline [demand], and crude oil and want to keep making money, they can make petrochemicals," Chou said.

The GT-aromatisation technology uses C4 and C5 feedstocks to produce about 20% light naphtha, 37% off gases and 43% aromatics. GTC has units in about 10 refineries, Chou said.

The GT-BTX Plus technology uses feed from a fluid catalytic cracker to produce a large proportion of aromatics – around 60%. The company has about five units planned or under construction at refineries, Chou said.

The second annual ICIS US Aromatics and Derivatives Conference runs through Thursday.

By Jessie Waldheim