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Process for enhancing the value of hydrocabonaceous natural recources

United States Patent

April 5, 2005
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
A process for upgrading hydrocarbonaceous oil containing heteroatom-containing compounds where the hydrocarbonaceous oil is contacted with a solvent system that is a mixture of a major portion of a polar solvent having a dipole moment greater than about 1 debye and a minor portion of water to selectively separate the constituents of the carbonaceous oil into a heteroatom-depleted raffinate fraction and heteroatom-enriched extract fraction. The polar solvent and the water-in-solvent system are formulated at a ratio where the water is an antisolvent in an amount to inhibit solubility of heteroatom-containing compounds and the polar solvent in the raffinate, and to inhibit solubility of non-heteroatom-containing compounds in the extract. The ratio of the hydrocarbonaceous oil to the solvent system is such that a coefficient of separation is at least 50%. The coefficient of separation is the mole percent of heteroatom-containing compounds from the carbonaceous oil that are recovered in the extract fraction minus the mole percent of non-heteroatom-containing compounds from the carbonaceous oil that are recovered in the extract fraction. The solvent-free extract and the raffinate concentrates may be used directly or processed to make valuable petroleum, chemical or industrial products.
Bunger; James W. (Salt Lake City, UT), Cogswell; Donald E. (Salt Lake City, UT)
James W. Bunger and Associates, Inc. (Salt Lake City, UT)
09/ 979,702
November 26, 2001
STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENT INTEREST This invention was made in part with United States Government support under contract No. DE-AC21-93MC29240 awarded by the Department of Energy (DOE). The government may have certain rights in this invention.