Which bottom-of-the-barrel upgrading technology should we install to reduce our exposure to the pending changes in bunkerfuels regulations? Should we take advantage of the lower-priced, but more-difficult-to-process, opportunity crudes that are increasingly available? How can we move away from the fuels commodities market in favour of lubricant base oils or petrochemicals, which are commanding higher margins at present?
Of course, the answers vary according to audience. It depends on their configuration, how much complexity they have, the markets they serve, their strategy and so on. But, that they are asking such questions is always a positive sign because it is important to be proactive, to plan for future scenarios, as there is usually a lot of value to be captured – or at risk.
Technology experts from across Shell Global Solutions and our affiliated catalyst company, Criterion Catalysts & Technologies, discuss some of the key technology trends that may influence refiners’ profitability in the years ahead.
You may gain insights that could help you to maintain or enhance your competitiveness. Remember, also, that your optimum solution could be something entirely different. For most problems, there will usually be multiple possible technology solutions.
This is why, at Shell Global Solutions, we work closely with our customers to seek out a broad range of perspectives. We combine our skills and experience to explore the technical options together. And when we do, we are finding that the cutting-edge technologies and catalysts, pioneering process schemes and innovative configurations that you will read about here are increasingly relevant to the situations in which many of our customers find themselves.