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August 1, 2017

A lower cost option for increasing capacity

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Crude overflash hydrocracking

One approach to reducing the dependency on the fuel oil market has been to revamp or install more conversion capacity in refineries. Such projects have been an extremely cost-effective way for a refinery to shift its product slate.

The International Maritime Organization has announced a global sulfur cap of 0.5% on marine fuels starting January 1, 2020. This has put small and simple refineries at a comparative disadvantage relative to larger competitors as they face a disproportionate rise in compliance costs. We think that this will have significant implications for both operations and capital investment decisions.

Integrate and save
One of the most effective ways to adapt while reducing investment costs is to maximize use of existing equipment and to optimize operations.

That’s why we developed a process to help simple skimming refineries without a vacuum distillation unit to integrate a conversion unit to help keep costs down. The unit is designed to be integrated with the crude unit or diesel hydrotreater. 

The unit’s feed is part of the crude tower overflash stream, which is already drawn from the crude tower to measure tower performance.

The technology provides some significant positive features to boost capacity and manage a shifting feedstock slate.

What’s in it for you?

  • No crude tower revamp
  • Low capital cost vacuum column section
  • Low capital cost hydrocracker
  • No fired heater required, thus no emission trouble
  • A fraction of low value fuel oil is converted to high value products

Talk to us. We’re here to help
Topsoe has deep experience with designing and building solutions that help refineries unlock value depending on their specific processing goals. We can help by studying your plant to determine the feasibility of adding extra conversation capacity and feedstock slate flexibility to your plant. These are just a few of the areas worth investigating before you invest in new equipment and processes:

  • Cost-benefit analysis
  • Plot availability
  • Hydrogen and sulfur balances within the refinery
  • Emission loads
  • Retrofit requirement within the refinery


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To find out more about how we can support your business, let’s talk.

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