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Co-processing of biomass and fossil fuel as feedstock to the fluid catalytic cracking unit


Faculty of Engineering and Informatics

About the Project

The simulation model of Fluid Catalytic Cracking (FCC) unit and many other refinery processes maximise the yields of fuels such as gasoline, diesel, propylene and minimise the yields of CO2. While the increased yields of gasoline, diesel and propylene add to the profitability of the refinery and meet the global demands for energy, CO2 emission constitute global warming. As a result of environmental policies which seeks to raise the need for renewables participation in the transportation sector, biomass-derived fuels are becoming an attractive alternative to replace, totally or partially, fossil ones. However, the sustainability concerns have to do with capital expenditures and operating expenses required if high-quality fuels are required as the final product.

The aim of the PhD is to co-process biomass and fossil fuel as feedstock to the FCC unit. Co-processing of biomass-derived feedstock in oil refineries is a good solution and can create the sustainable pathway for biofuels to be introduced in the market, since it reduces environmental impacts from fossil fuels, decreases the oil dependency of countries and, the most important one, takes advantage of existing conventional FCC unit facilities avoiding the erection of new plants. This work will require some experimental approach for choosing the right catalyst (to be developed if not available) and measuring the conversion from the raw material. The suitability of the fuel produced and the CO2 emission test will be conducted and the data produced will be exploited to improve fundamental understanding that guarantees long-term co-processing of biomass and fossil fuel as feedstock to improve the quality of fuels from the petroleum refineries. gPROMS, Aspen Hysys/Plus, Matlab, Ansys-Fluent and AutoCad are among the many software available for both equation-oriented and sequential-modular approach simulation in this work.

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