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BASF introduces Boroflex FCC catalyst for superior bottoms upgrading

BASF has launched Boroflex, the latest evolution of its residuum (resid) oil Fluid Catalytic Cracking (FCC) catalysts for the refining market. Boroflex is based on BASF’s unique Boron-Based Technology (BBT), and is designed to optimize refiners’ bottoms upgrading and distillate yields by providing maximum nickel contamination passivation.

In a 2016 paper, BASF researchers noted that:

Fluid Catalytic Cracking (FCC) feeds typically contain contaminant metals including Ni, V, Fe, and others. These metals catalyze a variety of unwanted secondary reactions. Being an especially active dehydrogenation catalyst, Ni presents a considerable challenge to refiners as it significantly increases H2 and coke yields. Even small amounts of contaminant metals in the feed deposit cumulatively on the catalyst and can result in high H2 and coke yields during FCC operation, which is a major concern for the refining industry. BASF has recently developed Boron Based Technology (BBT), which is aimed at minimizing the negative impact of contaminant metals (especially nickel) as well as improving the selectivity to valuable products.

—McGuire et al.

Boroflex commercial trials have confirmed its ability to deliver better bottoms upgrading and high distillate yields that increase refiners’ profitability to meet market demand for refined products. It is proven to deliver other BBT-related benefits, such as nickel passivation, and lower coke and hydrogen.

In our refinery trials, Boroflex showed the capability to increase yields and to exceed the bottoms upgrading performance of other products in the resid cracking market. We are really glad to offer now another innovative FCC catalyst that can make refiners all over the world more successful.

—Jim Chirumbole, BASF Vice President, Refining Catalysts

Boroflex for superior bottoms upgrading is the third BBT product successfully introduced to optimize global refinery operations since the introduction of the platform. BoroCat, presented in 2016, enables maximum conversion for gasoline in FCC Units with high resid feed metals via improved metals passivation and operational flexibility. The product was awarded the 2017 Hydrocarbon Processing Award for best catalyst technology and the 2017 Thomas Alva Edison Patent Award for outstanding environmental contributions.

In 2017, BASF introduced Borotec to provide refiners maximum conversion and high operating flexibility for use in FCC units with moderate resid feed metals or changing feed quality.

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