Friday, 16 December 2016

FLEXICOKING™ technology of ExxonMobil – proven cost effective investment

David Ayrapetyan is the Licensing Manager for resid conversion technologies at ExxonMobil Catalysts & Licensing (EMCL) located in Houston, Texas. He is currently responsible for FLEXICOKING™ licensing activities.

You were among our respected speakers at the ASIA-TECH 2016 which was recently held in Bangkok. What were the main issues you addressed in your presentation at the event?

There are a myriad of challenges faced by the refining and petrochemical industry these days. ExxonMobil’s Technology Licensing and Catalysts global business offers a broad portfolio of process technologies and associated specialty catalysts to address those challenges and bring valuable solutions to our customers. A very important area now and in the future is maximizing the value of the bottom of the barrel or resid conversion/upgrading. Our presentation on FLEXICOKINGTM technology discussed the basics of the technology and the benefits it offers, including a specific case study with our licensee Hellenic Petroleum.

Could you please share more about the FLEXICOKINGTM technology?

FLEXICOKING™ technology is a commercially proven, cost-effective, continuous fluidized bed process that thermally converts heavy feeds to lighter products and FLEXIGAS. FLEXICOKING technology, as an integrated process, offers great flexibility when upgrading residuum, as it provides high-value liquid products as well as clean FLEXIGAS that can be used as a refinery fuel or for power generation.
Benefits of the technology include cost effective investment as carbon steel construction lowers capex and an overall smaller plot space is required. Environmental benefits because the process operation is a continuous (non-batch) closed system and can result in low particulate and fugitive emissions. Coke production is virtually eliminated as it is converted into a valuable clean, economical FLEXIGAS without the use of any Hydrogen. It has the flexibility to handle a wide range of feeds.
This well proven process has been extensively used in ExxonMobil’s own facilities and in licensed third-party units around the globe.

What are the environmental benefits of the FLEXICOKINGTM technology?

The environmental benefits of FLEXICOKING™ technology include continuous (non-batch) operation which could result in low particulate and fugitive emissions, and essentially eliminating coke production as it is converted into a valuable clean fuel gas we call FLEXIGAS. 
Implementation of FLEXICOKING™ technology at the Hellenic Petroleum refinery has reduced emissions of NOx by 90%, SOx by 95% and particulates by 97% for the whole refinery complex compared to the refinery configuration prior to project completion. The composition of the produced FLEXIGAS is such that flame temperatures are below the NOx formation threshold, thus enabling significant NOx reduction. FLEXIGAS contains less than 10 ppm H2S thus enabling significant SOx emissions reduction. FLEXIGAS has no particulates which can significantly reduce particulate emissions in the complex.

How does ExxonMobil contribute to the sustainable development of our industry?

ExxonMobil’s approach to sustainability is a holistic one – a full “corporate citizenship” focus rooted in our wider company programs. Our approach to corporate citizenship is designed around six key focus areas that help ensure we promote society’s broader sustainability objectives and manage the impact of our operation on local economies and societies. These six areas are: reducing environmental impacts, managing climate change risks, protecting safety and health, respecting human rights and security concerns, promoting economic development, ensuring industry-leading corporate governance. Many people, organizations and communities are impacted directly by, and have a direct influence on, our business. Engaging with, and listening to, our stakeholders helps us understand their multiple viewpoints and perspectives. We report the challenges we face and our performance to our customers, neighbors, shareholders and employees in our annual Corporate Citizenship Report. Regular stakeholder engagement helps us continue to improve our company and remain a responsible corporate citizen.

Please tell us about other ExxonMobil projects you have been recently involved in.

Our ExxonMobil refining, gas processing and chemical technologies have been licensed and used in hundreds of third-party facilities around the globe. The same is true for our specialty catalysts and technical services. We are committed to delivering advantaged technologies that enable reliable and efficient operations, lower emissions, and higher-value products – all backed by our world-class technical service and operations expertise. We continue working with our customers every day to build tomorrow, together. We would be happy to discuss more with those seeking to learn how we can help their business. We encourage people to visit our ExxonMobil Technology Licensing and Catalysts website to learn more and to contact us for additional information.

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