A Novel Approach to Delay Thermal and Autoxidative Fouling Caused by Aromatics in Heavy oil and Petrochemicals Using Tetrahydrofurfuryl Alcohol

  • Author / Creator
    Gomaa, Ahmed
  • Tetrahydrofurfuryl alcohol (THFA) is a widely used solvent. It is a preferred solvent since it is derived from biomass. Multiple patents have reported that adding THFA during heavy oil processing improves the efficiency of the process and increases the yield. One patent for instance reported that adding THFA in a ratio of about 3wt% to feedstock decreased coke formed and increased the liquid yield of the condensable volatiles of some bitumen samples during upgrading. Another patent reported that the addition of THFA during the re-refining of oil greatly improved the efficiency of the process. The patents have yet to report anything on how THFA improves the process. Currently, there is not much literature on the use of THFA in the processing of petrochemicals. In this work, THFA was tested for its effect on the accelerated fouling of different oil samples. THFA was found to improve the autoxidative stability of the oil samples greatly reducing the amount of insolubles formed. THFA was also found to soften existing solids lightening their color and changing their physical nature to gums. THFA effect was found to be proportional to the percentage aromatics present in the oil samples. THFA was further tested on the fouling system of indene. Indene was heated with THFA at different concentration at different temperatures. It was found that THFA delayed the thermal oxidation of indene delaying the formation of carbonyl and hydroxyl groups. THFA's effect was persistent up to 230 °C. An ether compound was also tested. The ether showed similar trends to THFA; however, it was not as effective, failing to prevent oxidation at temperatures of 200 °C and above. THFA was also found to have a permanent effect on the solids formed during oxidation resulting in the formation of softer, yet denser gums than solids. THFA was found to have maximum efficiency if added in a ratio of 1:1 weight percent to the indene.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Spring 2023
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Science
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.