FLUID CATALYTIC CRACKING

Fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) is the largest conversion technology in the cracking of heavy feedstocks and is by far the main application of zeolite-based catalysts. The FCC catalyst market in 2020 was estimated at two billion USD. The FCC process employs a finely optimized balance between demanding process conditions and intricate catalyst design to produce high yields of middle distillates and olefins to be used for transportation as well as in petrochemical and polymer industries.

Accessible mesoporous zeolites have proven to be instrumental in coping with the steep demands in FCC. The increased access to the zeolite’s micropores enable a variety of significant benefits: increased bottoms conversion, reduced coke formation, boost in middle distillate and olefin yields, and higher quality of the products.

Yet the benefits of mesoporized zeolites are conditional. First and foremost, the severe pressure on the cost of catalysts makes that any (effective) mesoporization technology can only become commercially relevant when its impact on catalyst cost is minimal. Moreover, the harsh (steam) conditions the catalyst experiences in the FCC cycle, implies that its mesoporosity benefits can only be assured when the hydrothermal stability is maintained.

Zeopore offers a unique value in the mesoporization of zeolites for FCC. Zeopore employs strictly low-cost and scalable technologies, which can be tuned towards any parent zeolite (NaY, USY, ZSM-5) and balanced with any catalyst composition. Our ability to work on any zeolite makes that our technologies can be easily implemented before or after existing zeolite modification steps, such as ion exchange and stabilization. Finally, Zeopore has developed unique methods to stabilize its mesoporous zeolites, which allow for minimum development efforts and maximum benefits in the catalytic cycle.

Zeopore’s mesoporized zeolites have already demonstrated their benefits in FCC pilot testing by reputable catalyst manufacturers. Our unique catalysts are currently being scaled to larger amounts to allow for further tuning of catalyst formulation towards maximizing customer benefits.