Catalyst selection affects the performance of the unit in terms of pressure drop, activity, selectivity and stability and, consequently, the throughput and productivity of a unit, including, potentially, the profitability of the refinery complex.
Selection of the best catalyst for the unit starts with writing the correct enquiry document (request for quotation), including all relevant criteria in terms of the required mechanical integrity, activity, selectivity and stability. The selected catalyst needs to be inspected upon arrival at the refinery site, prior to loading, and must meet the mechanical and chemical guarantees provided by the supplier. It needs to be loaded by specialised companies, using best practices, state-of-the-art equipment and trained personnel. Once the reactor has been loaded, it needs to be started up in accordance with the supplier’s instructions. Critical steps need to be discussed beforehand to avoid improvisation during this critical phase. Once the unit has been started up and lined out and other refinery units are also in normal operational mode, the freshly loaded unit needs to be subjected to a performance test run to determine whether the actual performance is in line with predicted performance.
Catalyst Intelligence can assist in writing the correct enquiry, evaluating the offers, preparing for inspection, loading, starting up and conducting the performance test run. Procedures will be documented and findings recorded in a report.
At the end of its life cycle, the catalyst needs to be unloaded, packaged and sent for regeneration and rejuvenation or metals recovery. Catalyst Intelligence can assist in finding the right catalyst service provider, setting up the analytical strategy to determine contamination levels and advising on regeneration and reuse, or metal recovery.
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