EghtesadOnline: Isfahan Oil Refinery in central Isfahan Province has purchased high temperature shift (HTS) catalysts for its hydrogen production units from Khwarizmi Technology Development Company, a local knowledge-based firm, to support domestic manufacturing, head of the procurement office of the company said.
“HTS catalysts are used in hydrogen units of refining industries to convert carbon monoxide to carbon dioxide and increase hydrogen purity,” Masoud Motavali was quoted as saying by the Oil Ministry news agency Shana.
“Isfahan refinery, one of the modern refineries in Iran, signed a contract with Khwarizmi Technology Development Company two years ago based on which the knowledge-based firm was to deliver HTS catalysts to the refiner,” he added.
The catalysts are replaced every four years and the new catalysts will be loaded soon, Motavali noted. “A kilogram of HTS catalyst produced domestically cost $2.9 while it was purchased from an Indian company six years ago and cost $5.7 per kg,” he said.
A catalyst is a substance that speeds up chemical reaction but is not consumed by it. Most solid catalysts are metals or oxides, sulfides and halides of metallic elements and semi-metallic elements such as boron, aluminum and silicon.
In oil refineries, hydrogen is predominately used in oil refinery processes including hydrotreating, hydrocracking, dearomatization and isomerization. Across the world, hydrogen capacity in refineries is increasing due to tighter fuel specifications, the processing of heavier and sourer crudes, increasing need for lighter crude oil products and strong demand for chemical intermediates
Built in 1979, Isfahan Oil Refinery produces 25% of the country’s petroleum products and supplies approximately 11 million liters of Euro-4 gasoline, 18 million liters of diesel and 10 million liters of mazut to 12 provinces every day.
The refinery is the main supplier of feedstock to Sepahan Oil Company, Isfahan Petrochemical Plant, Arak Petrochemical Plant, Jey Oil Refining Company and Iran Chemical Industries Company.
Crude oil of the refinery comes from Maroun Oil Field in Khuzestan Province via a 430 km pipeline. Located in Alborz Province, Khwarizmi Company is a pioneer in the production of catalysts for petrochemical firms, refineries and chemical industries using modern technology in the field of industrial catalyst science.
Indigenizing Petrochemical Catalysts
Over 70% of the catalysts used in the petrochemical industry will be indigenized by the end of the next Persian calendar year (March 2022), managing director of the Petrochemical Research and Technology Company said.
“Up until March 2020, about 30% of the catalysts used in petrochemical industry were localized and it is expected that this will surpass 70% by late 2021,” Shana quoted Ali Pajouhan as saying.
Higher output will cut catalyst imports and help save $180 million annually, he said. Forty types of catalysts are used in the petrochemical industry, he said, adding that Iran will produce $215 million worth of catalysts by 2022.
Based in Tehran, Petrochemical Research and Technology Company, a subsidiary of the National Petrochemical Company, is a major supplier of technology for petrochemical companies. PRTC is striving to improve technical knowhow of petrochemical plants and help expand catalyst production and other key chemicals.
Catalyst consumption is rising and local companies are improving R&D in the tight race to keep up with the times and not fall behind foreign competitors.
Caption: Isfahan Oil Refinery is the main supplier of feedstock to Sepahan Oil Company and Isfahan Petrochemical Plant.