Saturate Gas Plant Operation for Maximum Octance with Reformulated Gasoline

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Gary R. Martin
Process Consulting Services Inc.
P.O. Box 1447
Grapevine, Texas 76099-1447

Andrew W. Sloley
The Distillation Group, Inc.*
P.O. Box 10105
College Station, Texas 77842-0105

Published in
Fuel Reformulation
July/August 1995

Abstract copyright Andrew W. Sloley

Butane and pentane management is key to saturates gas plant operation for overall refinery gasoline pool economics. The process engineer must comprehend a maze of operating conditions to evaluate downstream effects that result for the cut point of the debutanzier. Thinking of the debutanizer as a distillation unit to remove normal butane and lighter components, perfect separation would be perceived as 100% of normal butane and lighter components in the debutanizers’ overheads without any isobutane or heavier components. Obviously, perfect separation will not be found in a refinery since capital investment must be balanced against operating costs to arrive at an acceptable economic payout. As a result of this ‘inefficient’ separation, it is sometimes more beneficial to think of the debutanizer as having a cut point instead of separation between normal butane and isopentane. Proper understanding of recovery options from the debutanizer can greatly improve refinery operating economics. A case study is presented.

4 pages.
Electronic version available in Adobe PDF format file 037.PDF 436k.

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This page updated 12 January 2000.
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