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Minimization of air pollutants emissions by process improvement of catalytic reforming unit in an Iranian old refinery


The old oil refineries are largest chemical industries that are responsible for emission of several pollutants and GHGs. It is possible to minimize energy usage as well as air pollution by some process modification. The main objectives of this investigation were the minimization of air pollution and CO2 emissions in catalytic reforming unit in an oldest and largest refinery in Iran. To assess the air quality, ten sampling stations were selected for measurement of CO, H2S, SO2, and PM10 in ambient air. Also concentrations of C1–C5, H2S, and CO2 were measured in selected unit. In final, structural and process flaws were identified by analyzing real functional circumstances and they were modified. Results show that SO2, H2S, and PM10 concentrations are higher than ambient air standard levels in all seasons. Also, according to achieved results, the cold separator gas flow rate is reduced from 38,936 kg/day (once-through gas process) to 9,649 kg/day (recycle gas process). Beside CO2 and SO2 emission rates will be reduced 1803 and 136.5 kg/day in this unit, respectively. Furthermore, the modification of this process causes prevention of 1654 kg CO2 emission into the atmosphere, during each coke burning and catalytic regeneration.

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Correspondence to M. S. Sekhavatjou.

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Sekhavatjou, M.S., Hosseini Alhashemi, A., Karbassi, A.R. et al. Minimization of air pollutants emissions by process improvement of catalytic reforming unit in an Iranian old refinery. Clean Techn Environ Policy 13, 743–749 (2011).

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