What is petroleum coke?
Petroleum coke (Petcoke) is the final carbon-rich solid material obtained from the oil refining process and is a group of fuels known as coke. Petroleum Coke is specifically obtained from a final cracking process, which is considered a chemical engineering process, and the hydrocarbons of the oil chains are divided into shorter chains in a section called the coke unit.
In other words, Petroleum Coke is the product of the carbonation of heavy hydrocarbon sections of oil at high boiling points. Petroleum Coke is also produced in the process of producing synthetic crude oil from bitumen extracted from Canadian oil sands and Venezuela's Orinoco oil field.
Coking is a process consisting of thermal decomposition, polymerization and condensation in which heavy petroleum residues are converted into a variety of gases, liquids and solids with a high percentage of carbon, called petroleum coke. Obtained petcoke, which is not calcined, is also called green coke. Based on the initial feed, various cokes are obtained, which are mainly divided into three types: seed (Shot Coke), sponge (Sponge Coke) and needle (Needle Coke).
The physical structure and purity of Petroleum Coke determine its application. According to the study, increasing oil demand, high production of heavy oil in the country, problems of storage of heavy oil residues, pollution caused by them, the import of Petroleum Coke and most of the products needed in the country to invest in, It seems necessary to set up a delayed coking unit in the country.
Petroleum coke has a higher calorific value than metallurgical coke. Its ash content is less.
Due to the very extreme thermal conditions in which oil coke is produced, it has a very small amount of combustible volatile substance, as a result of which this coke is very hard to burn due to the low amount of volatile substance. Uncalculated Petroleum Coke is also called green coke and is mostly used as fuel. Eventually, raw coke becomes calcined coke, which has a high stabilized carbon content, low ash content, and very low sulfur content.
What are the uses of petroleum coke?
Petroleum coke has various non-combustible applications such as graphite electrodes, carbon electrodes or anodes in various industries such as aluminum and steel.
At first it was tought only as a fuel like coal. Today, it is sold in two types, raw (green) and calcined, which is used as fuel because the amount of sulfur and ash is high and no other use can be imagined for it. This coke is used in cement industry, water and electricity units, refineries and paper industries.
Because this fuel alone does not have enough volatiles to create a flame, 70% coal and 30% coke are used. In the cement industry, due to the presence of abundant sulfur in the coke, there is no need to add separate sulfur to the cement, which is a good fuel.
Medium quality Petroleum Coke is also used as a carbon source in various alloy industries, which is considered as an additive. It is also used in the form of calcination, which is used in the industries of aluminum, arc melting furnace electrodes, graphite electrodes, and the production of titanium dioxide pigment.
The important and strategic point in this part is that the presence of sulfur causes rapid electrode corrosion and swelling, which causes rapid electrode breakage. Also, the presence of metals such as nickel and vanadium in coke causes rapid oxidation of the anode in industry.
What is the production rate of petroleum coke in the Middle East?
In the Middle East, 950,000 tons of Petroleum Coke were produced that year, with Kuwait ranking first in the region. The world's petcoke consumption is 76 percent in the aluminum industry, 5 percent in the steel industry and the rest in other industries.
Petroleum coke production project is one of the knowledge-based projects in Iran, which has been implemented with the aim of achieving the relevant technology and in order to meet the important part of the needs of the country's aluminum and steel industries.
The raw material required for the production of coke will be supplied from the bottom of the distillation tower in the vacuum of Abadan refinery and CSO of Arak refinery.
In the process of producing petroleum coke, the raw material (refinery vacuum baton) is converted into more valuable materials such as Petroleum Coke and liquid products (naphtha, diesel, LPG). The current demand of the country's aluminum industry for coke is 200,000 tons per year, a large part of which is currently supplied through imports, and due to the growth of aluminum production in the country, the need for coke will also increase.
World Petroleum Coke production in 2014 was 24.7 million tons, with China alone accounting for 49% of world production.
Advantages and disadvantages of using petroleum coke as fuel and its price
The price of Petroleum Coke and many other minerals in general depends entirely on what grade and purity you need to use. The products of this company are both imported, from the countries in this industry and are available domestically, which are sent according to the quality you need. Therefore, before buying, it is better to specify the quality you need.
- High calorific value
- Low crushing index
- low volatile material
- High levels of sulfur
- High levels of vanadium
There is no risk in your purchase if you are aware of the necessary features and characteristics when buying Petroleum Coke and also know how to use each one. On the other hand, carelessness in choosing and using a low quality product will lead to a waste of your capital and will reduce your work efficiency.
What are the largest producers of petcoke in the world?
The Middle East is the largest producer of Petroleum Coke in the world. The production of acerate coke by the largest producers in 2018 has been as follows:
- Philips 66 (USA) 370,000 tons
- Si Kamko (Japan) 170,000 tons
- Sidroft LP (USA) 150,000 tons
- Mitsubishi Chemical (Japan) 130,000
- GXTG Nippon Oil Energy (Japan) 80,000 "
Meanwhile, Chinese companies Sino steel about 140 thousand tons, Petro china about 60 thousand tons and Baosteel, They produced about 50,000 tons of acerate coke.
The United States, China, and Japan are the world's largest producers of acerate coke, followed by India, Russia, Germany, and the United Kingdom, the major producers of acerate coke and graphite electrodes. There are two companies in the world that produce needle coke from bitumen and coal tar. Both companies are located in Japan.