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Issue 22, 2014
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Zeolites as catalysts in oil refining

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Oil is nowadays the main energy source and this prevalent position most probably will continue in the next decades. This situation is largely due to the degree of maturity that has been achieved in oil refining and petrochemistry as a consequence of the large effort in research and innovation. The remarkable efficiency of oil refining is largely based on the use of zeolites as catalysts. The use of zeolites as catalysts in refining and petrochemistry has been considered as one of the major accomplishments in the chemistry of the XXth century. In this tutorial review, the introductory part describes the main features of zeolites in connection with their use as solid acids. The main body of the review describes important refining processes in which zeolites are used including light naphtha isomerization, olefin alkylation, reforming, cracking and hydrocracking. The final section contains our view on future developments in the field such as the increase in the quality of the transportation fuels and the coprocessing of increasing percentage of biofuels together with oil streams. This review is intended to provide the rudiments of zeolite science applied to refining catalysis.

Graphical abstract: Zeolites as catalysts in oil refining

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Publication details

The article was received on 01 Nov 2013 and first published on 27 Mar 2014

Article type: Tutorial Review
DOI: 10.1039/C3CS60394F
Citation: Chem. Soc. Rev., 2014,43, 7548-7561

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    Zeolites as catalysts in oil refining

    A. Primo and H. Garcia, Chem. Soc. Rev., 2014, 43, 7548
    DOI: 10.1039/C3CS60394F

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