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Synergistic effect in co-processing a residue from a transesterification process with vacuum gas oil in fluid catalytic cracking

Haruna, Abubakar M; Meredith, Will; Snape, Colin E.


Abubakar M Haruna

Professor of Chemical Technology & Chemical Eng


The catalytic co-processing of bottom fuel oil (BFO) with refinery vacuum gas oil (VGO) using a commercial fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) zeolite equilibrium catalyst was carried out to ascertain its potential as a source for biofuels. The BFO used was the distillation residue from biodiesel transesterification process using waste fats and oil; being a mixture of saturated and unsaturated fatty acid methyl esters. The catalytic cracking experiments were performed in a laboratory fixed bed micro activity test (MAT) reactor at 516 °C and atmospheric pressure. As well as the VGO and BFO, three different blends were used with BFO to VGO mass ratios of 10:90, 20:80 and 50:50, and catalyst-to-oil (C/O) ratios of 3.0 – 5.7. The synergistic effect of BFO in VGO blends includes the yield of gasoline, and LPG being higher than predicted for the blends of 10 wt% BFO in VGO. Also, the formation of more CO2 with the increase in BFO blend level suggests CO2 production through decarboxylation reactions as a possible route. The compositions of the produced gasoline for pure VGO and 10 wt% BFO are similar as well. The cracking of 10 wt% BFO gives a higher fraction of aromatics, alkenes and naphthenes than other blends. However, some deterioration was observed when higher substitution levels of BFO were used, resulting in a decrease in the gasoline yield and higher yields of LCO, HCO and coke as predicted. Overall, co-processing BFO with VGO may be economically attractive because the BFO is obtained from waste oils and fats which are one of the under-exploited sources of biodiesel feedstocks and add value to waste management.


Haruna, A. M., Meredith, W., & Snape, C. E. (2022). Synergistic effect in co-processing a residue from a transesterification process with vacuum gas oil in fluid catalytic cracking. Fuel, 327, Article 124973.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jun 19, 2022
Online Publication Date Jul 2, 2022
Publication Date Nov 1, 2022
Deposit Date Aug 25, 2022
Publicly Available Date Aug 25, 2022
Journal Fuel
Print ISSN 0016-2361
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 327
Article Number 124973
Keywords Organic Chemistry; Energy Engineering and Power Technology; Fuel Technology; General Chemical Engineering
Public URL
Publisher URL


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