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Big West Oil Selects UOP’s Tech

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Honeywell UOP has announced that Big West Oil has selected ISOALKY technology to produce high-quality alkylate used to make clean-burning motor fuels at its Salt Lake City refinery.

The refiner is the second in North America to revamp its existing hydrofluoric acid (HF) unit to ISOALKY. This announcement follows the commercialization of the technology by neighboring Chevron at its Salt Lake City Refinery earlier this year.

“We are pleased to announce that Big West Oil has selected the ISOALKY technology for our North Salt Lake refinery,” said Mike Swanson, president – refining division of Big West Oil. “We chose ISOALKY after assessing its key advantages over conventional alkylation technologies. The project will improve operational efficiency at the refinery and represents a key component of our Tier III solution in delivering lower sulfur gasoline to the Utah market.”

The technology 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 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.

“ISOALKY technology is quickly becoming the preferred solution to meet the rising demand for cleaner-burning fuels, without the complex handling requirements and environmental risks of conventional liquid acid technologies,” said Laura Leonard, vice president and general manager, Honeywell UOP Process Technologies. “Big West Oil chose ISOALKY because they saw the benefits of this groundbreaking technology, which marries Chevron’s operational experience with UOP’s decades of experience in licensing and designing over 200 alkylation process units.”

The technology can be used in new refineries as well as in existing facilities undergoing capital expansion or retrofit applications. Honeywell UOP states that it has wider and improved feed flexibility relative to conventional alkylation technologies. Ionic liquids are regenerated on-site with a simple process, eliminating the need for road or marine transportation for offsite regeneration and polymer by-product handling.

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