August 2022

Catalysts

Hydroprocessing catalyst reload and restart best practices—Part 2

Hydroprocessing (hydrotreating and hydrocracking) units are high-pressure, high-temperature units that have multiple reactors, multiple beds per reactor and specialized metallurgy. Catalysts in these units are replaced on a 2 yr–5 yr cycle, depending on feed quality, unit design, catalyst selection, operational constraints and performance.

Dyke, S., PetroQuantum; Pongboot, N., Global R&D

Hydroprocessing (hydrotreating and hydrocracking) units are high-pressure, high-temperature units that have multiple reactors, multiple beds per reactor and specialized metallurgy. Catalysts in these units are replaced on a 2 yr–5 yr cycle, depending on feed quality, unit design, catalyst selection, operational constraints and performance. One of the key drivers for a catalyst change-out turnaround on these high-margin units is minimizing the time that the unit is offline—the cost of downtime is high, particularly when a turnaround is extended. Managing a catalyst change-out turnaround is vastly different than normal refinery maintenance activities: the complexity is higher, the risks and

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