Kinetic Modeling of Hydrotreating for Enhanced Upgrading of Light Cycle Oil

Roberto Palos, Alazne Gutierrez, Idoia Hita, Pedro Castaño, Joris W. Thybaut, José M. Arandes, Javier Bilbao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The hydrotreating of light cycle oil (LCO) into high-quality fuels has been investigated experimentally and kinetically, developing a model that accounts for the main and simultaneous reaction pathways: hydrodesulfurization (HDS), hydrodearomatization (HDA), and hydrocracking (HC). The experiments have been carried out in a fixed-bed reactor, NiMo/SiO2-Al2O3 commercial catalyst, 320-400 °C; 80 bar; space time, 0-0.5 gcat h gLCO -1 and H2/LCO volumetric ratio of 1000 Ncm3 cm-3. The proposed kinetic model contains multiple lumps, species, and pathways, leading to the faithful prediction of hydrotreatment products from different viewpoints. The computed kinetic parameters have allowed for simulating the process and seeking the optimal operating conditions. This way, the maximum values obtained for the conversions of HDS, HDA, and HC have been of 90%, 20%, and 65%, respectively; whereas a good compromise between the different hydrotreating goals has been obtained in the 385-400 °C range for a space time of 0.2 gcat h gLCO -1. Finally, the obtained optimal operating conditions have been compared with those optimized in the literature.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13064-13075
Number of pages12
JournalIndustrial & Engineering Chemistry Research
Issue number29
StatePublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2021-07-12
Acknowledgements: The financial support of this work was undertaken by the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (MINECO) of the Spanish Government (Grant CTQ2015-67425R), the ERDF funds of the European Union, and the Basque Government (Grant IT748-13). I.H. is grateful for her postdoctoral grant awarded by the Department of Education, University and Research of the Basque Government (Grant POS_2015_1_0035). The authors are thankful for the technical and human support provided by SGIker of UPV/EHU and European funding (ERDF and ESF). The authors also acknowledge Petronor Refinery for providing the feedstock used in this work.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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