Published: November 2004
Worldwide environmental regulations are requiring a reduction in gasoline sulfur content and tightening specifications on other components such as olefins and aromatics while lowering the allowed vapor pressure. At the same time, methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) is banned in California, New York and Connecticut, which accounted for 42% of the U.S. MTBE consumption. Furthermore, the new federal Environmental Protection Agency 8-hour ozone air quality standard will likely result in many of the affected 165 counties using low volatility summer gasoline formulations starting some time after 2006.
These regulatory changes in the gasoline market will result in an estimated 113,000 B/D of amylenes and pentanes (C5s) being removed from the U.S. national gasoline pool by 2007. Currently there are no other major uses. Current options for utilizing C5s are burning, storing for blending into winter gasoline or exporting.
This PEP Report addresses long term options for utilizing the C5s removed from thegasoline pool. Order-of-magnitude estimates of the capital investment are made for selected potential processes. The combination of amylene alkylation and pentane isomerization produces two gasoline blendstocks providing increased octane rating along with non-aromatic, non-olefinic volume for the gasoline pool. Sulfuric acid amylene alkylation using segregated olefin feedstocks and C5/C6 paraffin isomerization are reviewed and their capital and operating costs developed.
The report will be of value to people involved with planning refining investments, managing refinery product marketing or performing research and development as well as those involved with planning, managing, operating or designing improvements for existing isomerization or alkylation units.