Let's talk nano! Nanocatalysts are substances made up of nanoparticles that speed up the rate of a chemical reaction, upgrading the heavy oil.
The nanoparticles are never separated, thus posing no danger to humans, animals or the environment. Working with these substances efficiently and effectively is where the PC-CUPS team can showcase a truly unique expertise.
These very small particles are ALWAYS suspended in a hydrocarbon (usually the process feed – OIL). In order to increase the efficiency of the catalyst, the particles have to be as small as possible. That is why, when used as Ultra Dispersed Catalysts (UDC), the particles should be submicrometric (preferably in the nano range, i.e. <100 nm).
A nanocatalyst is fabricated online, at the surface in a Catalyst Manufacturing Unit. This unit is a patent-pending unique device. It combines state of the art technology to generate suspended nanoparticles in a fluid. Our fluid is oil residue, which is also produced via a simple separation process. Hydrogen produced in a modular way from any available source in remote areas (water, natural gas or from the oil itself) is also added in very low proportions.
That cocktail of residual oil, nanocatalysts and hydrogen brings not only the heat from the distillation into the reservoir, which is much higher than the temperature of steam used in conventional steam injection and means a higher content of heat into the reservoir, but it also brings upgrading.
In Situ Upgrading Technology
Less valuable material becomes very valuable to the process
Upgrading the vacuum residue allows the generation of diluents, solvents and gases, while also transforming the water in the reservoir to steam. The timeline for injection of the nanocatalyst is quite short. It’s only enough time to form a catalyst bed surrounding the injection well bore. The injection of residual oil and hydrogen has a more continuous timeline.
The produced oil from the start of the process does NOT carry residual. It has a high transportability quality and high value for most refineries in the world. The recovery of bitumen is enhanced due to the introduced heat in a continuous mode, then in a recycling mode it is distilled to keep production of transportable oil which, without residue, will drastically increase the price and quality of the produced oil.