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The Role of Sulfur during the Cracking of n-Hexadecane and Cold Lake Bitumen with alpha-Fe2O3 and Steam

  • Author / Creator
    Olson, Blake J
  • Coke produced during bitumen upgrading has a high heteroatom content and low economic value. To improve feed efficiency, cracking of hexadecane and bitumen with α-Fe2O3 and water has been studied to decrease coke yield, while increasing sulfur content. Compared to thermal cracking, catalytic cracking of hexadecane with α-Fe2O3 increased the conversion by 11.8% overall. By adding steam, however, the conversion decreased by 5.9%, due to competitive adsorption. The reaction of H2S with α-Fe2O3 was also inhibited by steam that competed for active sites and even oxidized the produced iron sulfides. Conversely, during bitumen cracking, α-Fe2O3 did not affect the coke yield due to fouling of the surface, but did increase the sulfur content of the solid product. On the other hand, the addition of water not only decreased the coke yield by ~3%, but also inhibited the reaction of H2S, indicating that competitive adsorption was still occurring after fouling.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    2013-06
  • Type of Item
    Thesis
  • Degree
    Master of Science
  • DOI
    https://doi.org/10.7939/R3K352
  • 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.
  • Language
    English
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
    Master's
  • Department
    • Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering
  • Specialization
    • Chemical Engineering
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • McCaffrey, William (Chemical and Materials Engineering)
    • De Klerk, Arno (Chemical and Materials Engineering)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Stryker, Jeffrey (Chemistry)