A non-catalytic, supercritical methanol route for effective deacidification of naphthenic acids

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High acid crudes contain large amounts of naphthenic acids (NAs), which lead to severe corrosion in oil refinery equipment and serious environmental problems. The goal of this study is to develop a non catalytic supercritical methanol (scMeOH) route for effective deacidification of NA mixtures and high acid crudes (Laguna and Bachaquero-13). Various reaction parameters, including temperature, pressure, reaction time, and NA-to-methanol ratio, are explored to find effective reaction conditions for reducing the total acid number (TAN) of the mixtures. Almost complete TAN reduction of naphthenic acid (96.9%) is achieved at 400 degrees C, 10 MPa, and 3 h. The reaction in scMeOH at 400 degrees C, 30 MPa and 1 h is effective in the TAN reaction of high acid crudes (93.6-94.0%). The chemical composition of the liquid products obtained under the different reaction conditions, analyzed using gas chromatography-mass spectroscopy, show that esters are the most abundant species, indicating that esterification with scMeOH is the major reaction pathway. The most recalcitrant NA species, which remained after the reaction, are found to be 2-ethy1-2,3,3-trimethyl-butanoic acid and 2,3-dimethy1-2-(1-methylethyl)-butanoic acid. This is attributed to the branched hydrocarbons located near the carboxylic acid groups, which hinder the access of methanol molecules. Crown Copyright (C) 2016 Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Publisher
ELSEVIER SCI LTD
Issue Date
2016-10
Language
English
Article Type
Article
Citation

FUEL, v.182, pp.650 - 659

ISSN
0016-2361
DOI
10.1016/j.fuel.2016.06.023
URI
http://hdl.handle.net/10203/212452
Appears in Collection
CBE-Journal Papers(저널논문)
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