Oklahoma Patent of the Month – July 2023
Established in 2007, Emerging Fuels Technology, Inc. (EFT) is a technology company focused on the development and implementation of methods for producing synthetic/renewable-fuels and chemicals from a variety of carbonaceous feedstocks. The company, who is a recognized authority on Fischer-Tropsch (FT) synthesis, has recently patented a method for producing synthetic jet fuel from Fischer Tropsch syncrude. This cutting-edge process offers numerous advantages, including high yields, a favorable iso to n-paraffin ratio, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
The method outlined by Emerging Fuels Technology involves several key steps to transform Fischer Tropsch syncrude into a high-quality fuel product. Initially, heavy Fischer Tropsch liquid (HFTL) products that remain liquid at reactor temperature are separated from the gas phase reactor effluent. The gas phase reactor effluent is then directed to a cooler and subsequently to an enhanced separator, equipped with trays or packing, to enhance separation efficiency. This results in the production of a medium Fischer Tropsch liquid (MFTL) intermediate product. The MFTL stream is combined with the HFTL stream to create a single combined HFTL stream, which undergoes further processing in a hydroprocessing reactor. This reactor consists of a stacked bed, comprising a layer of hydrocracking catalyst and a layer of hydroisomerization catalyst.
The next step in the process involves combining the light Fischer Tropsch liquid (LFTL) stream with the hydroprocessed product obtained from the hydroprocessing reactor. The blended LFTL stream and hydroprocessed product are then subjected to distillation, resulting in the production of naphtha, a fuel product, and a baseoil product.
One of the significant advantages of this method is its versatility. While the primary focus is on the production of synthetic jet fuel, it can also be adapted to produce other fuel products such as diesel or single battlefield fuel. Furthermore, it allows for the integration of baseoil products, which can be used for blending into lubricants.
The use of non-shifting Cobalt-containing catalysts in the Fischer Tropsch reactor is another notable aspect of this method. These catalysts facilitate the production of a heavy waxy syncrude, which is subsequently processed to obtain the desired fuel product. The method’s ability to achieve a high iso to n-paraffin ratio, preferably greater than 4:1, significantly improves the cold flow properties of the final fuel product. Additionally, the inclusion of a small amount of FT alcohol product bypassing the hydroprocessing reactor enhances the lubricity of the fuel.
This innovative process developed by Emerging Fuels Technology offers a promising solution for producing high-quality fuel products, particularly synthetic jet fuel, with reduced greenhouse gas emissions. By leveraging the unique qualities of Fischer Tropsch syncrude fractions and optimizing the hydroprocessing reactor, this method represents a significant step forward in the quest for sustainable and environmentally friendly fuel alternatives. As the demand for clean energy continues to grow, the contributions of inventors like Emerging Fuels Technology will play a pivotal role in shaping the future of fuel production.
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