By Robb M. Stewart

 

Chevron Corp. and Honeywell International Inc. Tuesday announced the commissioning and start-up of what they say is the world's first commercial-scale ISOALKY process unit that uses ionic liquids to produce alkylate used to increase octane in motor fuels.

 

On the technology:

The companies said the technology, first used in Chevron's Salt Lake City refinery, is designed to meet the refining industry's needs for a cost-effective alternative to conventional liquid acid systems that offers process safety advantages. "Using a non-aqueous liquid salt, or ionic liquid, the revolutionary new catalytic process is handled with standard personal protective equipment and produces a valuable high-octane blending component that helps lower the environmental impact of gasoline."

Bryan Glover, president and CEO of Honeywell UOP, said: "Ionic liquids have strong acid properties that enable them to produce alkylate without the volatility of conventional acids, allowing for simpler handling procedures. Together with Chevron, Honeywell UOP has commercialized a solution that meets the rising global demand for cleaner-burning fuels at a lower cost while simplifying complex handling requirements."

ISOALKY technology can be used in new refineries as well as in existing facilities undergoing capital expansion or retrofit applications, the companies said. They said the technology has wider and improved feed flexibility relative to conventional alkylation technologies. Ionic liquids are regenerated on-site, eliminating the need for road or marine transportation for offsite regeneration and polymer byproduct handling.

 

Write to Robb M. Stewart at robb.stewart@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

April 13, 2021 09:13 ET (13:13 GMT)

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